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Checklists for a Better Trip

If you are like me, then you forget things, especially when you are running out the door to go on vacation or a road trip.  Oh, you will remember it, a day or two later when you are 5,00 miles away.

You might as well accept that reality and learn to make an use a planning checklist, packing checklist and a "last minute checklist".


Here they are. You can down load them open them in your word processor and adapt them to your own needs.

Last minute checklist

(click here to download a TXT file of the Checklist).

  • Is the mail placed on hold?
  • Newspapers put on hold?
  • Are the following in the car?
    • wallet or purse,
    • cellphone,
    • laptop and / or iPad,
    • chargers,
    • Any needed NPS passes, vouchers, coupons, reservation receipts, tickets or season pass
  • Is all trash taken out?
  • Lights turned off?
  • A/C or Heat turned down or off?
  • Windows and doors locked?
  • Check pets' food, water, litter and location of pets, make sure internal doors are open. (or taken to pet sitter or kennel)
  • Check webcams are turned on.
  • Security or alarms turned on

Packing checklist

Here is a sample packing and planning checklist you can download and edit to adapt to your needs.

Sample Packing Checklist

Last minute cold foods to pack in the cooler

·         Frozen hamburgers

·         Frozen cooked chicken

·         Milk

·         eggs


·         Snacks for kids

·         Dry foods like breakfast cereal

·         No fridge lunch foods like Jam, peanut butter, bread

·         Seasonings, sweeteners

My Clothes

·         Eye glasses or contacts (in car, if you need them)

·         Shorts, socks, undies, etc.

Spouse’s clothes

·         Yeah.  Better let them pack their own

Child 1  Clothes

·         Shorts

·         Shirts

·         Underwear

·         Socks

·         Swim suit

Child 2  Clothes

·         Shorts

·         Socks, underwear

·         Shirts

·         Underwear

·         Swim suit

Camp gear

·         Tent

·         Rain fly

·         Ground tarp and cover tarp

·         Paracord and bunge cords

·         sleeping bags

·         inflatable pillows

·         Bear spray (Yellowstone and Montana)

Cook gear box

·         Fry pan, large pot and small pot

·         1 sharp knife and a small cutting board

·         Aluminum foil

·         Spatula, large spoon

·         Ziploc bags and containers

·         Disposable paper Plates and cutlery

·         Cups

·         Dish sponge and small dish soap

·         A half dozen laundry soap pods, in case you need to stop to do laundry somewhere.


·         Dramaine or other motion sickness stuff

·         Small first aid kit

·         Instant read thermometer

·         Medicines for any family members that need them


·         Nintendos 3DS, iPads or tablets and their chargers and cartridges Things to keep the kids busy on the long drive days.

·         GPS

·         Laptop if needed for work

·         Camera or Camcorder

·         Battery changers

·         Cell phone charger


·         A couple umbrellas and lightweight rain ponchos