Ultimate Packing List for Full-Time, One-Bag Family Travel 

Our family of six travels full-time with one backpack each. Can you imagine living long-term with only the contents of a backpack? It’s one sacrifice we make to live a life of travel, and we love it!

To put it simply, you need clothes and screens. Clothes for obvious reasons and screens because that’s probably how you handle most of your work, school, and entertainment.

What to pack for a family gap year

The best clothes to pack are those that don’t wrinkle easily, are versatile (such as black pants that could be dressed up or down), and can be mixed-and-matched.


It’s up to you whether you bring a laptop, tablet, and/or phone for every person. We’ve found that our older kids need their own laptops, since they use them for school and entertainment, and our younger kids do fine with a tablet.


You’ll want your own hairbrush and toothbrush, but anything that will run out, like toothpaste, shampoo, and soap, I recommend buying when you get to each destination. Most places will provide them for you anyway.


You can probably expect most places to provide you with towels, but we love to travel with microfiber towels. They fold up super flat, so they are easy to add in with your clothes, and they can double as a beach towel!


It’s always smart to have a first aid kit with bandages, first aid cream, and basic medications, including any prescriptions.

First Aid & Emergency Supplies

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