Perfect Planning

Perfect vacations rarely happen without some thoughtful planning. While not always as exciting as a spur-of-the-moment getaway, a well-thought-out trip may be less likely to deliver stress and frustration. To start the vacation planning process, compile all your trip details in a 3-ring binder or a spiral notebook plus a 2-pocket folder. Whether you’re in the early planning stages or just days away from your trip, gather these items so they’re at your fingertips when you need them.

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• your travel agent’s phone number and email address
• airline or train reservation information, plus phone numbers and website addresses (to check in online or
verify on-time status)
• car rental agency phone numbers, coupons, and confirmation numbers
• hotel brochures, phone and confirmation numbers
• maps of the area you’re traveling to, as well as maps and directions to help you get there
• brochures of interesting places to visit on the way or upon arrival at your destination (museums, state parks, theme parks, historic sites, etc.)
• complete itinerary of your trip

Also, to keep your home tidy in the days or weeks leading up to the trip, dedicate one central location (such as a laundry basket tucked away in a closet or a suitcase stashed in the laundry room) for take-along items. As you encounter things that must be packed (such as travel books and beach towels), toss them in and forget about them until packing day.

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Are we there yet?

Getting ready for a spring break road trip?

A little advanced planning will save time, stress and make the trip more fun for the entire family.  Follow the 3P Approach:

Prepare:  Two weeks before the trip make a list of essentials you can’t forget (phone chargers, passports, etc.).  Pinterest has some great packing lists that include things you might not think of initially, like flashlights or reading glasses.   Start to tackle the laundry.  Set clothing for the trip aside and don’t put it back in the drawers.

Pack:  It might not be planned, but it’s always wise to pack one overnight bag with basics for all family members.  If an unexpected stop occurs, you won’t have to unload all the luggage. Bring a small cooler with water and snacks for the kids.  Keep all electronics together and handy in a separate bag.   Videos for the kids should be together and where they can locate them.

Be Pro-Active:  Make sure the driver is well rested and not distracted.  Have a couple of small surprises for the kids in the glove box.  They can be used to reward good behavior or to calm restless travelers.

Happy Trails!