Travel Essentials for a Family Holiday


What is on our list of travel essentials?  I will of course be following my ten top tips for Flying with toddlers which you can read here (plug plug) but what is essential?  What do I actually take on our family holiday.

Here is also a fabulous list of Autism Family Travel Essentials that make a trip that little bit easier.

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1.  Sunglasses

This pre-supposes that there will actually be sun (but there will – won’t there!). No holiday is quite complete for me without a large pair of sunglasses to swank around in, even if the only people that will be seeing me is my family.

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2. DVD’s.

Whilst I don’t want my Mini Travellers to be watching loads of tele. There might not be Cbeebies in the Villa/Hotel (shock horror) so we need to make sure there is some television they will deign to watch. Even if its just to give them some down time before we go out again.  Frozen will definitely be taken.


3. Armbands/Float Suits

We usually use armbands when the kids are on holiday, which gives them the freedom to be safe in and around the pool, but the lovely people from Splash About have converted me to float suits. Have a look at the review here. Amazing.


4. Books/Kindle

I am a book person. Always have been, always will be.  I love love love reading.  One of the wonderful things about our summer holiday was some child free time to read on the sunlounger undisturbed.  Since having the three Mini Travellers, time for reading on holiday has been very very limited. My aim every holiday, is to get through at least one book!  We also take books for the Mini Travellers as they have inherited their Mother’s love of them.

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5. Crocs

A holiday essential for the Mini Travellers.  They are waterproof, they can put them on and take them off by themselves and they match* everything.

*read don’t match at all with anything but aren’t really supposed to.


6.  Colouring stuff

Colouring books and pens seem to get us through all sorts of situations. They are perfect for the plane, the airport, the villa itself and even taking out for meals as quiet entertainment before the meal arrives. Wouldn’t be without them.  I’ll also be printing off some of these Frozen colouring pages

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7. Calpol

There is nothing worse than being away, the kids being poorly and being without calpol. Calpol cures a multitude of sins, and whilst we obviously hope we don’t have to use it, I wouldn’t be without it.


8. Marmite

Controversial I know. You either love it or hate it right. Well my kids love it, and if I take it, I can guarantee they will eat the strangest tasting of foreign food as it basically masks the taste of everything you put it on.  It’s not to be encouraged but if all else fails. Marmite it is!


9.  Blackout Blinds

We all love the sun, but there is nothing worse than being on holiday and being awake at 4am because the sun is shining through your toddlers bedroom window and they are announcing it is time to get up. This is why we have always travelled with two Gro Anywhere Blinds.  I simply can’t recommend them highly enough.  They are easy to put up and don’t take up too much room in your suitcase, and are only £24.99.  You literally stick them with velco onto the window and your children sleep – why would you not pack them! Seriously unless I am going somewhere where I either know it is going to be dark, or they have told me there is blackout blinds – I find the space in my suitcase   If you would like to win a blind of your own, why not have a look at our competition below!


10.  iPads

Sad but true. Particularly as a blogger. I have a villa with wifi, so social media updates can be regularly updated! You lucky things.

What would you pack??

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Karen Beddow founded Mini Travellers in 2014 while doing what she loves most...going on holiday!

Mini Travellers is for parents looking for holiday ideas, destination reviews, days out and things to do with the kids. We also have family travel tips, activity ideas and all other things family holiday related. Take a look at some of our latest reviews for holidays and day trips in the UK.

20 thoughts on “Travel Essentials for a Family Holiday”

  1. Great list! We take all of the above. The iPad has to be one of the most important for us, loaded up with games and films to entertain.

    I also take a blanket each for the girls (for the plane) and sun hats for everyone. Poppy loves a hat.

    Love that you take Marmite with you!!


  2. Love that sunglasses photo – so sweet!!! And I totally agree about Crocs/jellies – ever holiday we’ve been on I’ve been like, damn, I wish I’d got him some crocs!!

    Thanks for linking up to #TheList xx

  3. This list is brilliant. I love the picture of you and your girls in your sunglasses. You all look very cool. But I can’t believe that you are taking marmite with you. Yuck! I hate the stuff. Each to their own, I guess. I hope you are having a lovely holiday. I am not at all envious. Thanks for linking up with #SundaysStars. Hugs Mrs H xxxx

  4. Wow!! Totally going to use the marmite trick too – encouraged or not!!! Very jealous you’re on holiday but hope you’re having a fabulous time!!! Can’t wait to hear all about it. Love Steph xxx #SundayStars

  5. I’m so glad somebody else uses tv to calm their kids down- I sometimes feel guilty about it but since ours stopped sleeping during the day it’s been the only way to get them to relax! I’m really excited about the glo-blinds. We had a terrible week in Sweden where we eventually had to move the cot into the bathroom because it had the smallest window!!

  6. Fabulous post and a must-read for anyone heading off on a mini adventure with kids! I really want to start more adventures and the Gro Anywhere Blinds are such a brilliant idea and a really exciting give away.
    Not sure I agree with the Marmite though. 😉

    Ray xx

  7. We’ve never been abroad with the babies!! We just haven’t been able to afford it, as yet! That said, most of your list still applies for holidays in the UK 🙂 I would LOVE those Gro Blinds — when we visited Wales the other week, I mentioned to my husband that we could do with some; the curtains where we were staying were really quite thin!! PS — totally agree re Marmite 😉 #SundayStars

    Caro |

  8. We love the Gro Blind. It is amazing in the summer and on holiday. Little Miss H’s nursery is very bright and the Gro Blind guarantees that we don’t all have to wake up at 04.00 in the morning. This is a brilliant list and competition. Hugs Mrs H xxxx


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