How to pack your car for a holiday

Going on holiday can be a hassle – the stress usually starts with organising your luggage, deciding what clothes you’re taking and electing a babysitter for the family pet. If you’re going on holiday with your car, however, it can make things even more complicated.

The last thing you want to find on the morning you leave is that your luggage doesn’t actually fit. One way to maximise your luggage space would be to leave the kids behind but, however tempting that may be, they probably won’t thank you for it.

To help make your holiday packing a little easier, here’s carwow’s essential tips on how to pack your car.

Know your boot

Children or pets can take up more room than you realise

Knowing your boot’s rough dimensions is quite handy because you can gauge whether your luggage will actually fit. You also need to consider what items you might want to take. If you have a young baby, for example, you probably have enough accessories to start your own branch of Mothercare, so you need a boot big enough to fit everything.

Make sure anything you don’t need is taken out the boot and stored somewhere else – if it’s the middle of summer but you have a winter coat in the back, you probably don’t need it. Removing it frees up space for necessary items and marginally reduces your fuel consumption.

If you have a lot of things to take with you, a roof rack with a box may be the key to fitting everything in.

Practice Tetris

Large items first for maximum points

The way you load luggage into the car can be crucial. The motto is – always make sure larger items of luggage go in first, otherwise you could have wasted space where smaller items could be crammed in. So big suitcases on the bottom, and handheld luggage on top, simple!

As well as making sure you can fit everything in, you need to make sure it’s safe. Make sure your rear windows aren’t blocked up with large items and nothing loose could go flying around the cabin and distract you or, worse, cause injury to occupants. Everything needs to be secured, and there should be no obstruction to the driver’s visibility.

Vacuum to victory

Vacuum packing can help avoid having to rope in extra muscle

Another tip for those packing heavily is to vacuum pack the belongings in your suitcase. You can buy vacuum bags from most supermarkets and they’ll make a huge difference. Simply pop your clothes in one, attach your vacuum and suck out that space-sapping air.

Ask yourself while packing – do I genuinely need that item? Clothing, sun-tan lotion and teabags we can understand, but do you really need to take your own pillow? You need to be ruthless so you’re left with more room for the things you need to take.

Get creative

Good holiday packing favours the ambitious

If you’re taking your car on holiday it might feel like added effort but it’s actually a blessing in disguise. You’re limited on a plane to stowing luggage in accordance with strict airline guidance but your car is your own kingdom. The gaps under the seats, in the footwell and in the glovebox, to name but a few, are all fair game for the ambitious holiday-maker.

You’d be stunned at the amount of luggage that even small cars can swallow if you make use of all the available space. Remember the aforementioned rule, however – never block the driver’s visibility, even if it means making the dreaded second trip.

Appeasement is the best policy

Distract your little distractions for a zen-like cabin

You need to consider this is probably going to be a long journey so, if your children are with you, they need to be entertained. Constantly being asked “are we there yet” should be avoided at all costs, so what’s the solution? A tablet computer with an array of music, games and films can be a great (and space-efficient) way to pass the time.

What next?

Take a look at the carwow car configurator to see how much you could save on your ideal next car or, for more options, head over to our deals page.

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