TRAVELING WITH TODDLERS: Top 35 Must Have Items to Pack

The summer is almost here and it is time to start planning that family trip. Growing up, family trips were the highlight of my life! We did not travel often, but every summer we always took that one trip with the entire family. The world is slowly opening back up and we are getting ready to take our first summer trip with 3 toddlers. Now, I know what you’re thinking “She must be crazy to travel with 3 toddlers. How will they survive?” Traveling with toddlers is possible.

Traveling with toddlers is not new to my family. My husband and I take trips often and are pretty much professionals at this point. The key to making travel fun and stress free is planning and packing. I am an expert planner and packer since I have to make sure that we have everything we need for 5 people. Once I plan the trip, I have to plan all of the packing. This is the fun part! Packing is my least favorite task, but I’ve managed to put together a list of must haves that makes it a little less painful.

Traveling with toddlers- What to pack?

Any trip with toddlers should have the core 5 categories: food, essentials, clothes, entertainment, and car necessities. These are not in a particular order of importance but all are important to doing it right. Here’s a breakdown of each category and a list of things you need to make sure to have before traveling with toddlers.

Food & Snacks

If you have a toddler then you already know that every 30 minutes they want a snack. The best snacks for traveling with toddlers are finger foods and individually wrapped foods so that they can feed themselves. You also want to choose foods that are easy to clean up when your toddler makes a mess. Some of my favorites are

Don’t forget that you can buy some snacks in bulk and separate them into small disposable ziplock bags to save some money. You don’t have to splurge on snacks, you just want to make food more accessible while driving.


Whether you are driving 30 minutes away or 30 hours away, there is always a list of essentials that you need- especially when you add toddlers in the mix. Some of my must have essentials for our trips are

  • First Aid Kit
  • Kid’s Melatonin (thank me later)
  • Vitamins
  • Babyganics Sunscreen
  • Harness
  • Spill Proof Sippy Cup
  • Phone chargers
  • Diapers
  • Wipes


Pack clothes, and then pack clothes again! Toddlers will always be toddlers and as a parent, you have to be prepared for everything. There is nothing like traveling with a toddler and the kid has a blowout and you do not have any extra clothes to change him/her into. Been there- done that! It is not fun! You need to pack

  • Clothes for everyday
  • A spare outfit for each day
  • Regular t-shirts- not the ones with the fasteners at the bottom, these will slow you down if you are changing your toddler in the car
  • Travel outfits- these are specifically for your toddler to get messy and dirty because they will have crayons and food
  • Socks
  • Shoes


Now this category should be considered the essentials too because you cannot survive traveling with toddlers without some kind of entertainment. Here are some of my favorite kids entertainment toys.

Car Necessities

Now that you have packed all of this, the last thing to do is make sure you pack the car. You do not want to be caught without these in your car

  • Disinfectant wipes
  • Disinfectant spray
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Masks
  • Car sears
  • Double stroller
  • Portable potty
  • Window shades
  • Bottle of water

This is not a conclusive list, but will definitely get you started. Most of these items can be found in your local store and on Amazon. I have put them in a list for you so just add to cart and take a trip with your toddlers. Check out my other travel tips here.

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  1. OpheliaT wrote:

    Wow! Thanks so much for sharing these. Such a great list.

    Posted 5.11.21 Reply