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Planning Ahead: Getting Organized BEFORE You Leave for Vacation

Updated: Jul 17, 2023


As the excitement of an upcoming vacation washes over us, the anticipation of sun-kissed beaches, awe-inspiring landscapes, or vibrant city adventures fills our imaginations. However, amidst the daydreams and travel plans, it's easy to overlook the importance of getting organized before embarking on that much-awaited journey. Neglecting this crucial step can lead to unnecessary stress, overlooked essentials, and a mess to come home to. Here we delve into the art of efficient organization before setting off on a vacation. I'll walk you through the steps to take to ensure a smoother, more enjoyable experience from the moment you lock the front door to the moment you return from your getaway.

  1. Create a To Do list on your phone: I started mine weeks (maybe months)

before the vacation to keep track of tasks on my plate leading up to the date. As I transitioned my daughters' wardrobes to summer clothes, I made note of any items I'd need to purchase. As another errand popped up, I jotted it down. Consider tasks it would be nice to come home to as well. I love coming home to fresh sheets on my bed, and I hate finding spoiled food in the fridge, so I made sure to include those items on my list. Here's what mine looked like for my most recent summer vacation.


2. Assign dates/times for your tasks: As my vacation neared, I scheduled out these tasks as they made sense on my calendar. I didn't want to wait until the last moment to hit the grocery store, so I made sure to purchase road trip snacks on my weekly grocery trip on Monday. I lumped in my errand at Nordstrom Rack since it was on the way. Consider how you can efficiently tackle each of the items on your to do list.


3. Pack ahead of time: Don't wait until the last minute to pack those suitcases! This can lead to unnecessary stress and potential setbacks. Nobody enjoys the chaos of haphazardly throwing items into your suitcase, only to discover later that you've forgotten essential items. Plus, early packing allows you the opportunity to assess your travel needs, make any necessary purchases in advance, and ensure that everything fits. Planning and packing ahead of time also provide a chance to address any unforeseen circumstances, such as laundry, repairs, or locating misplaced travel documents, which can be especially challenging when time is limited.


4. Give yourself a day before you leave: In other words, don't save any important tasks for that last day before you go. This precious buffer day allows you to tie up loose ends, mentally transition into vacation mode, and ensure a smooth departure. By granting yourself this downtime, you can take care of any pending tasks, such as finalizing work assignments, organizing your home, or completing last-minute errands. This frees your mind from the weight of unfinished business, enabling you to fully immerse yourself in the upcoming adventure without distractions or lingering responsibilities!


The effort and time invested in getting organized before you leave for vacation are well worth it. By following these strategies and tips, you can set yourself up for a smoother, more enjoyable travel experience from start to finish. So, as you prepare for your next vacation, take a deep breath, embrace the power of organization, and savor the anticipation of what lies ahead. With your suitcase neatly packed, your documents in order, and your mind free from distractions, you're ready to embark on a journey that will leave you with cherished moments and stories to share for years to come.


Happy travels and may your organized adventures be filled with wonder, joy, and unforgettable experiences!


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