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Packing for a Family RV Trip

Packing for yourself is usually a breeze. At this point, you pretty much know what you need on any given trip, and if you forget something, you can usually just go out and buy what you need. However, once you start a family, things will start to become more complicated. You’ll have more people to worry about, more necessary supplies, and simply buying forgotten items can start to get expensive. That’s why you’ll want to approaching packing for a family RV trip a little differently from packing for yourself or even you and your spouse. To help you out, Ryan’s RV Town has provided some of our favorite tips but we’d love to hear yours as well. If you’re from Seattle, Tacoma, or Bellingham, Washington, then stop by our dealership to chat and swap tips with our friendly staff.

Over-Prepared is Better Than Under-Prepared

When you’re traveling alone, it’s always better to try to save as much space as possible and pack less. You’ll still want to be conscious of how much you’re packing, but when kids are involved, you might actually want to pack more than you need. Kids tend to get dirtier when they’re outside playing, so extra clothes will help keep your trailer clean and your kids comfortable (if you need to, you can always stop by the local laundromat). Make sure your first-aid kit is up to date and has all the essentials for keeping your kids healthy, like cough medicine and bandages. Also things like sunscreen and bug spray are going to prevent miserable vacation days, so have plenty to last you the entire time you’re gone.


Food notoriously occupies a lot of space and time. Grown ups can get grumpy when they don’t have enough to eat, and it could be even worse with your children. Plus, your child might be a picky eater, which also limits your options. Try to sneak in nutritious dishes with things they’ll like. It’ll probably take some coaxing, but it’s important to avoid lots of junk food as this can make them feel sick and miserable.

Also remember that children, especially younger children, are more prone to spills. Throw in a rocky RV and you’ve got a disaster in the making. Consider using sealed cups while they’re still fairly young and use lightweight plasticware to make things easier to carry.

Finally, consider involving your kids in some of the meal planning. Obviously, you’ll have to step in to ensure every meal isn’t ice cream and cookies, but ask them about some of their favorite meals and try incorporating this into your meal plan so they’ll be more excited about camping food. You can also get them involved in prep, like mixing or measuring ingredients.


Electronics can be a bit of a controversial area, especially when it comes to camping. After all, the whole reason you take your travel trailer on the road is to get away from the hustle and bustle of daily life, which includes electronics. Plus you’ll be surrounded by a plethora of outdoor activities to keep you occupied. However, your kids have probably grown up with electronics and suddenly yanking them away entirely can leave them unsure of how to occupy their time. And some technology isn’t necessarily bad, so consider approaching use of video games or other media with moderation.

Let them know when is a good time to be on their phones or handheld devices, like during quiet times, and encourage games that will be more educationally beneficial. You can also look for coloring and reading apps (which will also reduce the number of supplies you have to bring along).

No matter how many tips we give you, at the end of the day, you’ll know what your family is going to enjoy the most because you know them best. Balance fun with health and safety and you’ll have the perfect recipe for a fun and memorable RV trip. If you still need the travel trailer to camp in, stop by Ryan’s RV Town and let us show you around the models we have available right now. We proudly serve Seattle, Tacoma, or Bellingham, WA.