FAMILY holidays require a lot of hard work, and that's before you've left the house.
But these tips from well-travelled mums will make sure you start your holiday right.
Mumsnet users have shared their best packing tips to make sure you have everything you need – and save a few quid while you do it.
Eating outdoors will often mean encountering some very dirty tables.
One mum recommends taking a tablecloth to make grubby picnic benches much nicer.
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Depending on the fabric, the tablecloth can also double up as a picnic blanket or a pillow when it's rolled up.
No one wants to arrive to their holiday home to find the kitchen cupboards bare of the cooking essentials including olive oil.
It's even more frustrating buying a two-litre bottle for an eye-watering price at the local supermarket.
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One mumsnet user recommends taking a leak-proof travel-sized bottle of cooking oil on your next trip.
Every meal needs salt and pepper, and most people will want some ketchup and mayo to go with their grub too.
One mum suggested stocking up on sauce sachets whenever you're grabbing a bite from your favourite fast food restaurant.
By the time the holiday rolls around, you'll have a stockpile of your favourite condiments, that can be slotted into any spare nook and cranny in your suitcase.
Decent size mugs
Brits are well-known brew lovers, and one mum always find mugs at self-catering accommodation to be too small for her cuppa.
This mum packs "decent size" mugs in her suitcase to accommodate her caffeine-fix.
She keeps her spare mugs safe in her suitcase all year round, so they're always ready for the next trip.
Pasta & pasta sauce
Many families arrive to their holiday home late in the evening after all the local supermarkets have closed.
Left in the lurch with hungry children, you'll be grateful for the pasta and jars of sauce you stowed away between your clothes.
One mum recommended using the empty jars to protect delicate souvenirs on the trip home.
A good breakfast is essential, but foreign supermarkets can be hit and miss when it comes to their selections.
Pack your kids' favourite cereal in your luggage to save on tantrums in the aisles.
Cereal boxes are big and bulky, so buy the smaller multipacks andspread them throughout several suitcases.
Old trainers for the kids
If you have space in your luggage, one mum swears by bringing an old pair of trainers for her kids to run around in.
She packs trainers that are on their way out and bins them at the end of the trip, so she has more room in her suitcase.
Use Extension Sockets
Knowing which plug adapter to bring when going abroad can be one of the most confusing parts of going on holiday.
A big family holiday brings with it scores of electronics, and sharing charging adapters for everything from tablets and smartphones to hair dryers can seem daunting.
One mum suggested making sure you pack a few 4-way extension sockets, which will provide plenty of plugs without needing to buy loads of adapters.
Pack a pop-up washing basket
Collecting everyone's dirty holiday clothes can be one of the most frustrating ways to end a holiday.
To get around this, pack a pop-up washing basket to throw together all your family's dirty clothes while you're away.
Empty it out into a suitcase at the end of the holiday and it's all in one convenient place.
A travel clothes line
A capsule wardrobe is the best way to optimise limited luggage space.
Most mums recommend packing enough clothes for at least five days and then washing them if they need to be freshened up a little bit.
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Self-catering stays often have washing machines, so be extra frugal and decant your own laundry detergent before your travel.
To dry clothes in the heat, pack a pegless travel clothes line in your suitcase to keep your family's favourite outfits fresh.
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