Using a checklist can help you make sure that all the essentials are packed and you haven’t forgotten something important. Find out how to prepare and pack for your holiday effectively.
Whatever your destination and mode of transport for getting there, packing space is likely to be tight - so it’s important to take the right essentials.
Before you start packing, make sure you’ve got:
Chances are you’ll be heading somewhere sunny and warm. This means you can swap out chunky layers for lightweight clothing and have more space to play with in your luggage.
As well as the obvious swimwear, shorts and t-shirts, don’t forget to pack:
Having more people and age ranges to pack for means there’s a higher chance of forgetting something. But making a list for each family member is a good way to avoid this.
Plan for your arrival by putting towels and swimwear at the top of your bag (or nightwear depending on what time you’ll be arriving), so the kids can be ready as soon as you get there.
Your family packing list might include:
Whatever adventure you’re planning, having the right kit in your luggage or rucksack means you won’t have to waste precious time once you arrive.
If you’re going to be outdoors for most of your trip, then packing lighter and smarter is the way to go. And if you’ll be doing organised activities, see what kit is included before you take or buy your own.
Don’t forget that you'll need to get the right travel insurance to make sure your holiday activities are covered, they won’t necessarily be included as standard on a policy.
Your activity holiday packing list could include:
Whether you’ll be skiing, snowboarding or having a relaxing winter trip, packing for a much colder climate means taking thicker, warmer clothing and bulkier kit.
You can bring your own equipment, like ski boots and snowboarding helmets, but you’ll usually be able to hire them at the resort.
Remember you’ll also need travel insurance that covers snow sports.
Your winter packing checklist might include:
If you’ll be exploring a city for a few days, you won’t need to take too much. But there are a few essentials that can help to make your trip a success.
For a city break, it’s a good idea to take:
Whatever type of trip you’re going on, it’s always a good idea to pack a basic first aid kit. Taking one can help you quickly manage minor ailments and injuries while you’re away.
A good rule of thumb is to pack a small amount of everything you’d normally have in your medicine cabinet at home.
For example, your travel first aid kit could include:
To help your holiday go smoothly, you need to think about more than just which items to pack. Your pre-travel checklist should also include the following tasks:
Get this as soon as you book your trip and make sure you have the right cover for any activities you might do
Your travel insurance may already include cover for them, so check your policy. If it doesn’t, you can buy an add-on to protect your devices while you’re away
Make sure your passport is valid and has the required length of time left on it before you travel. It can take up to 10 weeks to renew your passport, so do it as soon as possible
Restrictions vary between airlines and can change at short notice. Make sure your bag is the right weight and size before you set off
Let your bank know you’ll be going abroad and the dates you’ll be away to avoid them blocking your card when it’s used overseas
Make sure you allow enough time to get to the airport or departure point and keep an eye on expected roadworks and traffic delays
Before you leave home, turn off the heating (except in winter) and water, and don’t leave electrical items on standby. Switch off all kitchen appliances except the fridge and freezer
Use automatic timers to turn lights on and off in the evening to make potential burglars think you’re still at home
Give them your emergency contact details just in case and leave a spare key with nearby family or close friends