I recently returned from a road trip back home to attend my sister-in-laws super pretty backyard wedding. Don’t worry you’ll get to see how cute it was soon. When we returned from our 12 hour drive I had a strange amount of energy and got us unpacked so quickly.
After getting bags unpacked and put away so quickly I just had to share with you a few of the things I did to make it such a quick and smooth process. I did a quick search and there are a lot of packing lists and checklists, but not many that will help you unpack quickly. I’ll give you plenty of tips and tricks today, plus a free unpacking checklist to help you get it all done quickly.
1. Dump out all of your laundry right in your laundry room
No matter if you wore all of your clothes or not, washing everything that has been in your suitcase will give you a fresh, clean start. Dumping it all out on the laundry room floor makes it easy to sort and start laundry right away.
2. Have a ready made meal for dinner
I highly recommend having a quick frozen meal ready to throw in a skillet or the oven once you return home. You will definitely not feel like cooking after traveling. Having something ready to go makes your life so much easier. A great option is one of those one skillet Voila frozen meals.
3. Sniff Sniff
If you have gone on a road trip you most definitely will need to air out your car and make it smell nice again. A simple way to do that is to place a cotton ball with a few drops of essential oil on it in your car for a day or two. It will smell so nice afterwards.
4. Put your suitcases away right away
There’s nothing worse than feeling like it takes forever to unpack because your suitcases are left out. If you get them put away right away the trip is visually over and you’re ready to get back into your routine.
5. Clean your house before you leave
Picking up big messes, making beds, and cleaning out the refrigerator before leaving for your trip will make unpacking so much easier. Plus, coming home to a clean house is so much nicer than walking into a mess.
6. Keep separate bags
Keep toiletries and chargers constantly packed in a separate bag. All you’ll have to do to unpack is take the bag out and put it away. No need to put everything inside of it away. This means you’ll have a travel toothbrush, toothpaste, phone charger, etc. but they’ll all be grouped together and packing and unpacking will be a breeze. All you will have to do is throw a toiletry bag in your suitcase and not have to fish out everything you need from your medicine cabinet.
7. Take care of the car
If you are taking a road trip, schedule an oil change or car detailing within a few days after your arrival. Set this up before you leave to help you get back into your routine. This will also take care of any car issues that may have come up on your trip.
8. Set a Timer
For procrastinators it may help to set a timer once start unpacking. Have a time limit will help you get motivated to get everything out and put away. Give yourself a prize if you need to for finishing unpacking before the timer goes off.
9. Don’t repeat
When unpacking, be sure to put like items together. One way I do this is to put everything that needs to go back upstairs on the bottom step. This way I’m not running up and down the stairs a bunch of times, but can take everything at once. If you use a central location to unpack, like your laundry room, you can even just make piles of items by which room they need to go back to.
10. Enlist Help
You probably didn’t go on a trip alone, so you shouldn’t be the only one doing all of the unpacking. Get your husband, kids, or hey call a neighbor if you need to to help you. Having someone sorting laundry while someone else is cooking dinner will make the unpacking go much faster.
Now that you’ve gotten some great tips, feel free to click on the image below to print out a quick cheat sheet to help you unpack. I highly recommend just posting this in your laundry room or central unpacking area as a reminder.
Do you have any other unpacking tips? If so be sure to leave a comment so I can reply. I hope you get to go on a great adventure this summer! I’m sure it will be a breeze to unpack with these tips when you return home.