Preparing for a Successful Road Trip:

4 years ago I rented a convertible, ran upstairs and packed a bag, waited for K to get home and told her we were going on vacation for a week. We put 12 hours of open road behind us and spent the next 6 days in Virginia.  These days our trips aren’t nearly as spontaneous, but that doesn’t mean we can’t have a great time.  With a little more preparation we can still take T on a great road trip.


We started packing for our trip about a week before we left.  Checklists were put together identifying 3 different bags that needed to be packed: the in-car bag, the overnight, and the long-haul. Anything we don’t need in the week leading up to our trip gets packed away and checked off the list:


The In-Car Bag:

What do you need when you hit the road on your own?  Drinks, Twizzlers, phone, passport.  What do you need when you hit the road with a baby?

  • drinks
  • snacks
  • passports
  • phone chargers
  • pacifiers
  • toys
  • change of clothes
  • diapers
  • wipes
  • pre-made bottles
  • formula

The Overnight:

Our trip was about 7 hours door to door.  If it were K and I we would have made the trip in one shot, but with the Wee Baby T in the back we thought it was only fair to break the drive up.  Fortunately we had a stop over at K’s mum’s house to drop the dog off for the week.  Getting the overnight break is nice, but it poses a challenge – we don’t want to unpack the car for the night, so having a grab-and-go bag just for the night was incredibly helpful.

  • clean outfit for the baby
  • toiletries
  • diapers
  • wipes
  • bottles & baby food
  • pacifiers

The Long-Haul:

Congrats! You’ve arrived at your destination.  Scope out the room, claim your side of the bed, and unpack your long-haul bag.

  • clothes for the week
  • shoes
  • games/entertainment
  • swim suits (if appropriate)
  • baby food
  • bottles/nipples/liners
  • Laptop & Camera
  • Baby shampoo

Obviously the specifics will depend on your trip, but breaking the packing down into practical chunks will help you assess what you really need to bring, and keep you from packing the entire kitchen, “just in case we don’t like the peanut butter they sell there…”

Good luck out there!



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