When you are going on air travel with kids, the biggest issue is how to pack.
But the question is, how are you going to fit everything in one bag?
To pack in a space-saving manner is extremely important to have a stress-free and enjoyable trip.
You do not want to see your own stuff cluttered around you during your stay in a hotel room. And, then pack everything again for a hotel check-out gets challenging. Obviously, you do not want to waste your vacation packing and to unpack all the time.
For domestic flights, almost all the airlines charge extra money for check-in luggage. Although you can take a carry-on with you, still you cannot fit EVERYTHING for the whole family in one carry-on bag.
The good news is if you know these hacks, you might be able to take everything you need in your carry on bag.
So if you are planning something with kids, the biggest concern is what to pack and how to pack in your suitcase for air travel, so you do not end up leaving essential items.
The most important thing to remember while you pack is the “Minimalist Approach”.
To be honest, with kids there is absolutely no minimalism unless they are grown-ups and able to manage their stuff by themselves.
Recently, I have traveled to four destinations with two kids 3.5 years old and 2 years old, we were nine in total and, we had to take about 5 flights within 15 days.
It was not easy. Trust me!
Packing for everyone is tough especially when you are planning a vacation for more than a week.
We were traveling through southwest airlines and we were allowed to take 2 bags for each passenger, still we could not overpack as we were 9 people. Therefore, we could not have 18 bags to stroll around multiple flights. All we needed was a reasonable amount of bags that could accommodate 15 days of clothing and essentials.
To travel light, the best approach is MINIMALISM. You cannot take along everything but essentials. It is that simple.
During holiday time, many families seem to be traveling to see their loved ones and may want to stay for a long time despite having other commitments.
There are a few packing hacks for my readers that can be helpful when you are packing your bags with lots of shopping and gifts.
This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclaimer for more information.
Space-saving Tips to pack your luggage for air travels
This is something tough to understand. It took me a couple of travels to understand what does it actually means. DO NOT OVERPACK.
Take the essential stuff only you think is necessary. When you are traveling, you hardly get time for unnecessary stuff that you may use once in a while at home.
For instance, no matter how religiously the self-care routine you follow, you may not want to take your pedicure kit with you if you expect a busy schedule on your trip.
2. Foresee how busy is your travel
If you are traveling for leisure only, you can foresee how busy you would be while you are at the destination.
Do not take your hobby kits if you are going to have a super tiring day.
3. Throw away boxes
For me traveling is fun if there is a lot of shopping. I love to shop and love to buy gifts for my family.
If you like to shop too, the best hack is to throw away boxes to save you a lot of space in the luggage.
Also, if you are shopping from big stores like Apple or Macy’s, you can fold bags nicely and put them in the outermost luggage compartment to keep them wrinkle-free. You can use it on the destination while giving away gifts for your loved ones.
4. Buy small box gifts
Are you buying gifts for someone? Try to get something smaller where everything can be contained in a small box, so it doesn’t take up a lot of space.
If you have gifts for the family, choose things smaller in size, not value.
5. Get travel size bottles
If you are going to have a short trip, using travel size bottles is the best thing you can do to save up space, stress, and energy.
Hotel rooms provide shampoo and basic toiletries. If you do not have any special preferences about shampoo, conditioner, or other toiletries, you can use the ones your hotel has to offer.
Try not to forget your body spray and deodorants. Normally, hotels do not provide deodorant and sprays.
6. Remove hangers from Brand-new clothes
Brand new kids’ clothes come with hangers. If you do not have enough room in your luggage, remove hangers.
7. Brand new undergarments
Well, as a matter of fact, most of the time we tend to buy some new stuff for travel, for kids or for other family members. Whatever is in the boxes, unbox and put it in a ziplock or clear bag.
If it is a pack of clothes, take out unnecessary boards, paper, etc. it will save you tons of weight and space.
For instance, If you have a brand new pack of undergarments – The best way is to open the box and take the number of items you actually need while you stay.
8. Packing pairs
Do you know the pain of a missing sock? If you are packing too many pairs of socks or have new ones, tape each pair of socks with scotch tape; that way, you won’t lose them in the luggage.
You may also want to put socks in your shoes – if you are taking an extra pair in the luggage. It will help your shoes stay in their shape.
9. Keeping handbags safe in the luggage
Fill in your purse or shoes with small clothing items to help retain their shape in the luggage while you travel.
10. Organize and utilize space efficiently
Packing luggage depends on your preference. Some people want to keep it minimal and they do not know how to efficiently utilize the space.
However, some are rough packers, they utilize the space, regardless of how the suitcase looks like from inside.
Packing that looks organized inside out is essential; you need to utilize space efficiently for small heavy items and big light-weight stuff.
11. Compression bags
Use compression bags if you have stuff with too much volume. You can get compression bags from almost every store like Walmart, target, Tjmax, etc. If you are short of time, you can also order from Amazon and get it in two days if you are a prime member.
12. Packing Diapers
Well the money-saving tip, if you have a huge stock of diapers, the best thing is to take them with you whether its a domestic or international travel.
Moms traveling with little kids need diapers for little ones. Open and put in the zip pocket of your luggage or layer in the bottom of the suitcase, whatever works for you.
Diapers do not have much weight but volume. Adjust diapers according to your bag and luggage requirements.
13. Packing Clothes for Multiple kids
Packing clothes for multiple kids is challenging. When you are traveling with kids use ziplock bags for planning outfits for each day.
Pin or tape your rolled clothes so you do not have to deal with luggage clutter or unfolding.
For makeup lovers – if you have a million palettes and you love all of them, you still gotta choose one or two that is sufficient and do justice to your everyday makeover.
14. Use a pills organizer for jewelry.
If you are packing jewelry for your daughter(s) and yourself, there are chances you need to take a few pieces with you. To be precise about what to pack, take a pill organizer for tiny jewelry pieces. Also, you can organize according to days.
15. Hanging bag for toiletries if packing for the whole family
Although you can use ziplock bags for packing toiletries and packing for two and more people, this is the travel hanging bag that can cater to almost everything. It is available in two sizes, large and extra-large, to pack for the whole family.
Bags are good to keep everything contained in one place. For toiletries or makeup bags, use the most lightweight bags you have in your closet.
16. Choosing travel-efficient Bags
It is not recommended to travel with a bag that weighs 10lbs already without luggage.
Get a lightweight, hard-side, four-wheeler spinner luggage that you can stroll with one hand. It is super essential for your travel with a kid.
There are chances when you have to pack a lot of stuff you have to organize it and balance the weight between items with volume and small items having more weight.
For instance, as a rule of thumb, if you are packing things with extra volume like diapers and pillow, I highly recommend you to choose duffle bags. They are light-weight yet have tons of space to accommodate pretty much everything.
17. Choose Digital scale
You need to have a scale to make sure it is 50 lbs and under. I highly recommend you to use the digital scale as the non-digital scales are not going to be accurate.
18. Kids carry on backpacks
When you are on the plane, you must have these essential items for kids to wear diapers. You need to know what to put in clear bags for TSA security screening to save time and delays. You can also take milk in a baby bottle but do not forget to put it in the tray while screening.
Here is what you need to know about carryon essentials moms need on air travels.
Traveling with a lap child and a toddler? Here is what you need to know to have a stress free travel.