The Value of a Checklist

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Checklists are great things to have when you’re travelling with children. It helps make sense out of the chaos :-) Keeping your checklists and referring to them as needed is more efficient and time-saving than writing a new one each time.
Here are some ideas for the types of things you can utilize checklists for. Using all of these would be overkill – but hopefully you’ll get inspiration and can decide what would be most helpful for you.

1. List of items you must ensure you don’t leave behind when the family vacates a cab, rental car, or hotel shuttle.

- i.e. a list of all the bags, backpacks, purses, special toys and blankets, or gadgets you need to make sure you don’t leave in a

2. Your packing list for each member of the family.

- Having a winter travel version and a summer travel version usually does the trick.

- What needs to go in which packing cube / suitcase.

3. What you need to remember when leaving a hotel room, so you don’t forget.

See this post.

4. List a phone numbers and email addresses.

You can keep this on a spreadsheet, or in your phone if your phone is backed up and you trust you won’t lose the numbers in your phone.

We never remember phone numbers even of close family because they’re all programmed into our phones. Make sure you have the phone numbers of important people written down somewhere too.

Include family, the number you need to call if you have to make an insurance claim, your bank manager or investment advisor, your lost credit card number for each place you bank with, your VISA concierge number, or any one else back home who has an important role where you might need to call them from the road.

5. Your list of things you buy when arriving in a new place for an extended stay.

When you arrive at a new place and do a run to a Wal-mart type store, what do you buy to stock your temporary apartment?

Toilet paper, sunblock, beach towels (usually too heavy for the luggage), bottles of water…..

6. Flight day list.

The list of things you need to do on a travel day e.g., package up snacks, do online checking, print boarding passes, check you have your passports and drivers licenses, check you have your credit cards, find any foreign currency you still have from last time you went to that country, re-confirmed your airport shuttle or other airport transportation arrangements, called Grandma, etc etc.

7. Road trip list
List the things you need to check before leaving on road trip e.g check tire pressure, oil and water; re-setting thermostats and timers, organizing neighbour to collect mail and feed cat etc.
List of things to take in the car e.g cooler, bag for rubbish, picnic essentials, thermos, sunglasses, music, phone charger for car.

Worth the bother?

Making these lists in the first place can be a bit of a pain but once you’ve done them, you’ll be able to refer to them over and over again. Another advantage that makes them worthwhile is that they will help you streamline your thinking processes so that you’re able to pack and pack up faster. You’ll save both money and time by not forgetting things when you have your lists. Your lists will also help reduce mental drain on travel days when you have a million things running through you mind.

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