Are you planning on caravanning this summer? Maybe you've already got your static caravan holiday booked and you are now planning what to take on your caravan holiday?
There's no need to pack up the entire house. Instead, start by making a "caravan holiday checklist" of all the necessities and leave some space to tick items off as you go. Caravans tend not to have a lot of storage space so you're going to want to pack smart.
Clothing will probably be the hardest part of your packing list - you will want to pack light depending on how long you are planning to travel for and where you are headed to. A few outfits that can be washed (either by hand or using the on-site facilities) and at least one warm outfit, or at the very least a decent fleece or jumper. You can't always trust a British summer so consider an easy-to-pack and quick-to-dry raincoat or kagoule that you can pop in your bag. You may also want to pack a pocket umbrella and wellie boots.
Packing Tip: Rather than folding clothes, roll them instead - you'll prevent creases and rolled clothes take up less room than folded. For extra space, you could consider vacuum packing clothes and bulky items such as towels. Don't forget to fill your shoes - use this extra space for storing socks and other small clothing items.
Is there a swimming pool on-site or will you be heading down to the beach? Make sure to pack your swimming essentials including life-savers, arm-bands or inflatable vests for the youngsters.
Depending on the accommodation you have booked, you're likely not to be supplied with basics such as towels, toilet roll and washroom products. Consider purchasing a washroom bag (waterproof and with a closing mechanism, zip or toggle) and fill with basics such as shampoo, conditioner, toothpaste, soap and your toothbrushes. On your last day, you can always throw everything back into the wash-bag without worrying about making your clothes or belongings damp.
Packing Tip: Try to pack lighter towels - think beach towels rather than bath towels as they take less time to dry and can be hung up much easier.
Consider packing some caravan essential kitchen basics including tea towels, mugs, kitchen roll, knives and cling-film or aluminium foil. Some simple cleaning bits such as washing-up liquid, sponges and multi-purpose cleaner could also prove to be useful!
Don't forget the favourites such as milk, tea, coffee, salt, pepper and cereal. Depending on the time of your arrival, you may want to treat yourself to your favourite drink after a long journey!
Packing Tip: Pack bits you may want easy access to on the top or towards the top of your bag. After a long journey, most people will want a drink before starting to unpack.
The "Just-in-Case" pile can very quickly get out of hand, so make sure to carefully consider what you'll need to take with you. A first-aid kit will always be essential - make sure it includes basic medical supplies including plasters, disinfectant, painkillers, children's medicine, bug-spray and antiseptic cream. A pocket sewing-kit can also come in handy for those inconvenient clothing mishaps!
You could also include a small "laundry essentials bag" that contains some washing powder, black bags or a holdall for carrying washing and potentially a portable washing line and pegs too.
Packing Tip: Rather than taking full packets of make-up, creams and toiletries, consider decanting into small travel-friendly bottles or even contact lens cases. Less space and easier to clean on your return.
It's unlikely that you will spend all the time in your caravan while you are away enjoying your holiday (unless the weather is really terrible!) so you will want to ensure that you've got bits to head out and about with. Carry a couple of different factors of sun-cream, kids' sensitive skin will always need a higher factor, but you may want a lower factor cream for your personal use.
Day bags containing water bottles, snacks and a map of the area are always handy and can be stored easily during the travel process (or always used for extra storage during the trip!) Don't forget to pack some enjoyable bits for the kids, in case of long journeys in the surrounding area.
DVDs or game consoles make for great entertainment should the weather keep you indoors. Alternatively, books and board games are a great way to bring the family together in the evenings.
These days, we are rarely seen without our electronics - our smartphones, music players and various other technological gadgets. If you are going away and want to stay connected, you'll want to make sure all the relevant chargers are packed.
You may also want to invest in portable battery-packs; the higher quality designs can charge devices up to ten times on one charge (depending on charged product). There are also solar powered portable batteries if you are heading away from standard accommodation with hook-ups.
If you need to stay connected to the internet while you're away, some caravan sites do have Wi-Fi, although it may be at an additional cost. Consider investing in a portable dongle - it may work out a bit cheaper than on-site Wi-Fi and could also provide a better connection.
Going away is great fun and a static caravan holiday is like a mini adventure. Many Brits have fond summer memories of staying in a caravan at least once in their lives. There's no need to panic over packing and definitely no need to pack everything in the house. Plan ahead, pack smart and most importantly of all, enjoy your well-deserved holiday!