Besides the standard overnight packing list (clothing, pajamas, toothbrush, etc.), plus the location specific needs (swimsuit? jacket? hiking boots?) here are some extras you may want to consider:
• insurance cards, phone numbers, and important medical information (given to adults)
• small toy or stuffed animal as a "traveling buddy"
• disposable camera or inexpensive digital camera (depending on age): let your child document his or her travels to show you when they return!
• journal or notebook to record experiences, thoughts, and feelings (check out this Travel Journal Roundup for ideas on buying or making your own!)
• spending money (given to adults, or kids, depending on age)
• pillow and blanket for car ride; check out this post for inspiration on making a travel pillow for kids!
• plenty of books, travel games, and scratch paper for long car trips; or check out some suggestions from our readers for toddler-age kids.
• washable, refillable water bottle or canteen
Being separated from parents — especially for days at a time — can be a frightening, yet empowering experience for kids. It's important to encourage them to be independent, take on new adventures, and above all — have fun!
(Image: Sarah Dobbins)