The weird way we pack for road trips

This is how we pack for road trips. And we take a lot of road trips. A lot. Over time, we’ve adapted a new method of packing. We call it the Bin Method. : )

Here are some of the bins stacked up and ready to load.

Stacked Bins packed for a road trip

I bought a multi-pack of clear bins at Costco. (I can’t find them on Costco’s website anymore, but here’re the exact same ones on Amazon.) A few days before our trip, out come the bins! I put one in each kid’s room, one for me and one for husband in our room, one in the kitchen, and one in the bathroom. I am one of those who is kept up at night making lists in my head of things we can’t forget to bring. As I think of things, they get tossed in. Seems weird, but I never forget anything anymore, and I sleep much better at night ; ).

Here they are all packed into car. Room to spare for 10 days away!

Pack for a road trip

As shown, these bins contain:
Kid One’s Clothes | Car Snacks | Husband’s Clothes
My Clothes | Kid Two’s Clothes | Bathroom Necessities

There are so many pros to this method:

  • Bins stack easily in the back of the car.
  • Each person gets their own bin.
  • When you get to hotel, you just grab a cart and transfer bins to the room.
  • If you choose to unpack, clothes go into the dresser drawers, and then the bins stack up out of the way.
  • If you choose to live out of the bins, they are clear so you can see those swim trunks you are looking for even if they are buried a few layers down.
  • We don’t really unpack the bathroom bin. It just goes straight into the bathroom, so everything we need is right there.
  • I don’t know about you, but we put nothing on the floor of hotel rooms. These bins can be put on the floor since they are not fabric and won’t transfer any potential living things. (I know I know. But I always err on the side of caution. I check all the beds for bedbugs too before we move in! And I throw that bedspread out of the way in a corner somewhere, too. ew.)

Couple hints: Make sure you put the snacks top center, as shown above, so they are easily reached while on the road. Also, throw a plastic grocery bag in each clothes bin, for underwear that has been worn.

Anyway, we just got back from our annual trip that involves 40 hours of driving, so I kind of know the drill. This method may not be for everyone, but if you try it, I bet you’ll convert like we did.

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