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EP11: How to Travel Minimally with Kids

Whether you’re going on spring break or looking ahead to summer travel, we talk about how to travel with kids – the minimalist way. Megan leads the discussion on packing for small children with lessons gleaned from her last summer traveling 12 states and 3,000+ miles in a minivan with her family.

In this episode, we discuss:

  • Starting with a minimal wardrobe
  • Kids taking ownership of their stuff while traveling
  • Plane travel with kids
  • Car travel with kids
  • Traveling with electronic devices
  • Overpacking traps

Don’t pack with the “just in case” mentality. Pack with a “I can pick it up if I need it” mentality.

Links discussed in the episode:

The Magnolia Journal

Traveling Toiletry Cases

Document Boxes – for kid’s activity boxes in the car

Carry-on Luggage – suitcases kids won’t grow out of


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  1. Helpful episode! Do you have a link to the suitcases that each of your kids got? We are currently looking for some, thanks!



      We’re glad you found it helpful Sarah! Megan updated the post so there are some options above for you to take a look at! ^ Thanks so much for listening. – Diane

  2. Jami Jami

    thanks for the tips! i am also a minimalist mom. i have usually allowed moving (yearly?) to help me keep possessions down, but having kids and staying in one condo for 8 years requires intentionally limiting possession and routinely purging. we live downtown chicago in a condo that is not small by any means, but does require a second consideration of most non-consumable things.

    love the sleeping bag tip for car travel! we haven’t bought any for our kids yet, but will definitely get them for any long distance travel.

    a couple tips for you! we walk everywhere and my kids still can’t walk that far. mine use scooters and bikes. razor brand makes folding 2 wheel scooters that many urban families use and take on vacation. the other tip is audiobooks! since we don’t really let the kids watch video in the car, we instead listen to children’s books on tape (or ipod/iphone) in the car. the kids love this and if you pick the classics, the adults end up enjoying them too (1 bc you would be reading these to your kids anyway and 2) you don’t have to actually read them).

    we have many things in common, like a routinely edited packing list, but i love to hear more tips and advice for maintaining minimalism.

    great job and thanks!

    • Megan Ericson Megan Ericson

      Thank you son much for these tips Jami! We’ll definitely pass them on in a future episode. My kids have scooters but I wouldn’t have thought to bring them. 🙂

  3. Lisa Lisa

    I love your recommendations for suitcases, the train case, and the nalgene travel bottles. We travel often to visit family, so I too make lists and keep some of my toiletries packed at all times. If I were to buy a train case like the Kate Spade or a similar one, how many nalgene bottles and what size do you have and use? Could you share a picture of your “packed” toiletries bag? Thanks for the episode! I just found your podcast today, and this was the first one I listened to.

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