With my family coming to visit this past week–And Hubby’s family arriving this coming week–it has made me a tad reminiscent of trips of past.

You know, the days where you’d play “the alphabet game” from the back seat between bathroom breaks at the highway pit stops?  My parents used to load our car for full on cross country trips.  And while my most recent road trip was just a mere two-hour jaunt up the coast to Santa Barbara, but it still got me thinking: road trips aren’t that different from relocation–except that it’s only a one-way trip.  My family moved quite a bit.  From both sides of Florida to Maryland to Michigan–and eventually on my own to California.  And every single move involved road tripping across the country, winding our way across mountains and valleys.

And so, here’s a list of things that might help the family make a long trip seem less arduous.  To keep your kids entertained during those long hours, and the detours less frequent.

Road Trip Packing Checklist

Updated from an article found here.


  • “Tricks” bag (new games, toys, and any other magical distractions)
  • “Treats” bags with easily to grab snacks.
  • Small cooler for upfront and larger cooler in the back filled with refill items


  • Camera and video camera
  • Updated maps or navigation system (When traveling, it’s worth it to upgrade to the latest software.)
  • Cell phone and DVD player charger


  • Rolls of quarters (for tolls, laundry, gumball machines)
  • Easy on/off shoes for the entire clan
  • Pillows and Blankets
  • First-aid kit (with motion sickness relievers)
  • Roadside emergency kit
  • Flashlight



  • Wet wipes, paper towels or napkins
  • Trash bags
  • Toilet paper (Have you ever stopped at a rest stop that’s out of TP? It happens.)
  • Training potty (if your kids are at that stage)
  • Laundry bag for dirty clothes
  • Mini bottle of laundry detergent
  • Laundry Basket (great for carrying lots of small bags into the hotel room or to the beach, plus I hear it’s handy for doing laundry. Luggage simply fits inside in the trunk).

If you’d like more information on the San Fernando Valley or Los Angeles, or to have help looking for your next home, please feel free to reach out! I’m happy to help, no obligation.

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