How to pack for a School Trip

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The primary school trip is just around the corner now, you haven’t started packing and now you are starting to panic!

Relax – we are going to make this really easy for you.

We understand that this could be your child’s first time away from home and that can be very stressful, so you want to make sure that they have everything with them. We have been delivering residentials for nearly 40 years so we know exactly what kids need to bring on a school trip.

Here we have put together an extensive equipment list that will ensure you know how to pack for a school trip.

How to Pack for a School Trip – The Essentials

  • Suitable Clothing: 

This is probably the most essential item to think about when packing. A lot of this depends on the destination of the school trip and the time of year but one thing is for certain, kids will find a way to get their clothes dirty or wet! 

In the UK and Ireland, the weather can be very unpredictable so it’s important to pack plenty of layers such as coats, jumpers and lots of t-shirts.

Extra trousers or tracksuit bottoms are essential as kids will be running about outdoors, through forests and out on the water so it’s more than likely they will get soaked!

For a 3-day residential we would recommend bringing 3 changes of warm clothing that you don’t mind getting mucky.

We also recommend packing shorts should the weather be forecast as warm and swim gear for the swimming pool

Don’t forget to pack appropriate nightwear either. This will give you peace of mind that they are nice and cosy in their beds.

suitcase packing for kids trip

  • Waterproofs:

We all know by now that rain is never too far away in the UK or Ireland so make sure to pack a waterproof coat for the kids to wear while they are out exploring the great outdoors.

We will provide wet suits and buoyancy aids for activities such as kayaking and windsurfing.

  • Toiletries:

Toiletries are a must-have when packing for a school trip. Essentials include toothpaste, shampoo, shower gel, deodorant/roll-on, hairbrush etc. A top tip from us is to buy small toiletry items for travelling so that your young one doesn’t have to carry a heavy bag full of large bottles.

Toiletries for school trip

  • Comfortable Shoes (and spare shoes!)

Throughout the school trip, kids are going to be running around in the outside so they need shoes that are comfortable and also a spare pair for when they get wet and dirty. 

At Share Discovery Village we recommend bringing a pair of old trainers that you don’t mind getting wet so that you can wear them out on the lake when taking part in watersports such as banana boating.

pairs of trainers for school trip

  • Personal Medication

Needless to say, if a young person has any medical conditions for which they need to take medication, make sure to pack it. Medication can be safely stored by trained staff in refrigerators if need be.

While out on activities, our first-aid trained staff can carry any pieces of medical equipment such as inhalers or epi-pens. As a registered charity that offers opportunities to people with disabilities, our staff have lots of experience in dealing with all types of medical conditions.

how to pack for a school trip - medication

  • Towels

When packing for a school trip, remember to put a towel in the bag because we do not provide them at the centre. Kids will be in and out of the water quite regularly so it’s important that they have this to dry off.

  • Lots of socks!

We have already mentioned suitable clothing but we thought it important to reiterate that you need to pack lots of socks for kids going on a school residential trip. Kids will be kids and get their feet wet lots while out exploring so it’s a good idea for them to be able to change their socks to prevent them from getting a cold or flu.

  • Pocket Money

Meals and activities are all covered in the residential package but it’s good to pack pocket money for a number of reasons. Young people can buy souvenirs at the gift shop to remind them of their holiday as well as treats from the vending machines and Mauds Ice-Cream!

  • A reusable water bottle

This is an important item to pack to make sure your young one stays well hydrated on their school vacation, especially when the weather is hot. With so many action-packed activities in store, the kids are going to work up a real thirst.

Share Discovery Village really care about the environment and we have completely cut down on single-use plastic bottles, so we ask our visitors to look after the local environment when they stay here. You can refill your reusable bottle almost anywhere at SHARE and any member of staff will be happy to help you find a filling station.

Reusable water bottles for kids

  • Some entertainment

Packing a book or music player for the bus journey can be a good idea to keep kids entertained. We don’t, however, recommend parents packing lots of digital devices such as phones or iPads because they are here to have fun, outdoor experiences and to develop their social skills.

  • Sun cream/hat

The sun has been known to shine here before! When it does, it’s vital that kids are well protected from the rays, otherwise, they could have a bad experience on their school trip. While out on the water, it is especially important to be well protected from the sun. 

What to bring on a School Trip – the Optionals:

  • Disposable Camera

We recommend that kids bring a disposable camera rather than a phone or digital camera as they are less of a distraction and cost very little in comparison. A disposable camera is ideal for young ones to capture memories from their adventure with all their classmates.

  • Wellington Boots

These are only really needed in wintery months and if your instructor has advised to bring them for certain activities. Otherwise, they can add unnecessary weight to your suitcase when old trainers can do the same job.

When Should I Start Packing for a School Trip?

Most of us, even though we won’t admit it, don’t start packing until the night before! This is ok but to be sure that you have packed all of the essentials, try packing 2-3 nights before.

Any other questions about how to pack for a school trip?

If you do, just contact our office at any time and our staff will happily inform you about what they think you should bring based on your activity programme and length of stay. They will even check the weather forecast for you!

Hopefully, this covers everything and you can now send your child off on their residential knowing that they are well prepared and in safe hands!

For more information on school trips such as activities, accommodation and catering, check out our Complete Guide to Primary School Residentials.

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