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Now that your family vacation is coming up shortly, what do you need to do to prepare in advance?

Of course, you need to make sure that your passports are all up to date.  You need to make sure your travel documents are in order.

What about a little pre-planning for packing?  The last thing that My Vacation Lady wants our clients to do is stress out over getting ready for your family vacation so we always suggest making a list of what you need to pack and cross the items off the list as they go into the suitcases.  In addition to packing from a list, here are 5 simple tips from the Family Travel Network on making packing for your family vacation a bit easier:

How To Pack In A Crunch: 5 Great Tips For Families

Every family knows how stressful it is to pack before a vacation. Packing can be a struggle for some people, but for others, utilizing certain strategies and products can make the process a breeze. All that planning and huffing and puffing to just get the suitcase to close can be exhausting, so here are a few tips to help make your packing less stressful.

The experienced travelers of InterContinental Hotels Group’s Priority Club have provided some great ideas for our readers. For one, a great way to organize your suitcase is to use “space bags.” There are many types of space bags for each individual to choose from, but honestly, gallon size plastic bags work great. You can pack each day of clothes into bags to keep them organized or keep shorts separate from shirts, etc. These plastic bags are also great to store toiletries, shampoo, etc and prevent shaving gel or hairspray from accidentally leaking onto your clothes. Other “space bags” can be purchased in different sizes and allow you to vacuum out the air. These nifty bags allow you to easily pack everything you need instead of cramming everything into the suitcase and having to sit on top to close it.

Another recommendation from experienced travelers is to use plastic bags called Eagle Creek’s “Pack-it-Folder”. It keeps the clothes from being wrinkled, while conserving space at the same time. These are very handy for business travelers.

A third tip is to roll your clothes instead of folding them. Most hotels have an ironing board and iron located inside the room. Because of this convenience travelers can roll their clothes, allowing more room to pack, without the worry of wrinkling their garments.

The fourth tip is to pack socks and other items into shoes in order to create more space inside the suitcase. This can also be an organizational tip because you can already match the socks with shoes you will wear instead of having to dig them out of the bottom of the suitcase.

The final tip is to be sure to leave room for souvenirs. Pack some clothes that are not important and that you are willing to leave behind at the end of your travels. This can be a way to clean out your closet and simultaneously help you to be able to pack better for your trip.

So next time you get ready to pack for your travels, keep these packing tips in mind and you won’t have to stress about trying to cram tons of clothes in a heavy and bulky suitcase.

Do you have a packing tip that you would like to share?   My Vacation Lady is always looking for great packing tips to pass on to our clients.  Email the tip to and we’ll share it on our Tuesday Travel Tips on Facebook and Twitter or in a blog post.

Happy Travels!