Packing for a holiday when you have a large family can be a bit like a military operation. Packing for a skiing trip with a large family is something else altogether.
Given the amount of kit required for just one person, the potential to forget something is high.
In order to avoid too many things getting left behind, I always make a list of what has gone in the bags and I lay everything out in piles as it would be worn. Thinking head to toe what everyone will need and then just adding the extras on is quite a useful trick for making sure everyone has what they need.
The hardest part is deciding how many of some things to take. Bear in mind that it is unlikely that you will have washing facilities, but also be mindful that you don’t want to end up taking more than you need to either, especially if you are flying, as the weight allowances are so restrictive for families when children are small. I often pack a tube of hand washing gel for any emergency washes.
So here’s our list:
- Warm hats
- Ski helmets
- Face masks/balaclavas – when it is very cold these can be worn under ski helmets
- Sun glasses
- Goggles – these are often easier to keep on very small children
- Sun cream/sun block
- Snow boots
- Ski socks
- Thick tights work well for very small children
- Thermal tights, leggings, base layer bottoms
- Thermal base layer tops
- T-shirts – useful for layering and keeping the heat in
- Polo necks – can keep little ones that bit warmer
- Ski jackets
- All in one suits – you might find these better for little ones
- Underwear – easy to forget when you are so focused on the specialist equipment
- Sports bras – don’t forget these, much more comfortable and more supportive
- Gloves or mittens
- Glove strings – a must with little people
- Thermal inners
- Heat packs
If you are skiing with children apres ski is likely to be relaxing in your accommodation, swimming or a spot of sledging so you won’t need loads of party outfits. I would recommend:
- Slipper socks with grips as the floors can be slippy
- One outfit each
Travel day bags:
- Busy bags – I pack each of the children a busy bag which includes a range of activities to keep them busy, a few of their favourite things, and something new to do on the trip
- Nappy sacks – make great rubbish bags as well
- Snacks – bucket loads to keep everyone going
- Warm gloves and hats accessible for when you arrive in the resort
- Chargers for electronic devices
- Toddler walking rucksack or reins
- If self catering you could take a meal for the first night – this might sound a bit crazy, but when everyone goes into meltdown after a long day travelling, you will be so glad you can whip out that packet of pasta and packet sauce and feed the hungry and grumpy tummies!
- Towels – check this with your accommodation provider
- First aid kit including thermometer
- Boot warmers – these are genius, if you warm everyone’s boots up before they put them on, you will all start off warm. It is much harder to warm up once the cold sets in
- Travel cot and sheet – again, check with your accommodation provider. We will be taking a Baby Bjorn Travel Cot Light with us when we go
- Travel essentials – e.g washing stuff, tooth brushes etc. Take travel size things where you can to save on space and weight. I like the elemental herbology “Globe Trotter Kit” -This stylish kit includes the bestselling botanically enriched body wash and body cream, along with Hand Nutrition and Nutritive Lip Complex, all neatly packaged in a beautifully illustrated ‘global city’ canvas bag to take with you on your journey. There is plenty of space to fit in all your other holiday bathroom essentials, but it’s lovely to have a few special bits to use whilst you are away.
Now all you have to do is multiply all this by how many people you have in the family (6 in our case) and fit it all in the bags. Oh and if you are flying, keep under the weight allowance, a challenge in itself with a family…fortunately, we took the snow train last time!