What to Bring for an Outing with Your Toddler or Preschooler

Last time we learned what should go in a diaper bag when going out with a baby. But what about outings with toddlers and preschoolers? Do you need to bring stuff for them? What kind of stuff is needed and how much? What kind of bag should you carry? I’ll try to answer all those questions here.
Remember that what you bring depends on where you are going, how long you will be out for, and how many kids you are packing for. When I go out, I have to bring stuff for a baby, toddler and preschooler. Thankfully most of the items overlap so I don’t need to double them up.


Going out with a toddler takes a lot more out of you than going out with a baby. Toddlers can run you ragged and you need both hands free to keep up with them, so you may want to opt for a backpack, though a shoulder bag or even your regular diaper bag could work too.

You will want to pack:
– 2 or 3 diapers – if you haven’t begun potty training yet

– A few pairs of underpants or training pants – if currently potty training

– Change of clothes or two
– Snacks – cookies, crackers, carrot sticks, rasins, cut fruit (non-messy), banana, etc.

Scarlett at 6 months and my
current trusty diaper bag.

- Milk bottle or sippy cup, if needed

– Bib
– A few favorite books and toys
– Wet wipes
– Hand disinfectant
– Tissues or handkerchief

– Sun hat and sunscreen
– Sweater or jacket, other winter essentials
– Blanket
– Anything else you personally need for your child

Since they are older, they need less stuff when out. You could always have them carry their own essentials in a small backpack.

You may need some or all of the following:
– Wet wipes, hand disinfectant, or both (I use both all the time. If I am somewhere where there is no water to wash their hands, i.e. the park, I use the wipes to get the dirt off and then the disinfectant for extra cleansing.)
– Change of clothes, especially pants and underwear
– Snack
– Waterbottle
– Tissues or handkerchief
– Sun hat and sunscreen
– Sweater or jacket, other winter essentials
– Small books or toys
Remember, these are only suggested items. You may need some or all of them; you may even need aditional items depending on your destination. Also, when you aren’t sure if you should bring an item or not, remember the adage that says, “It is better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it.”

Mommies, what do you pack for your outings? Do you have tips on packing for more than one child, and more than one age group?

Leave a comment


  1. I just feel like I bring everything with me.I leave a bag with an extra outfit for each kid, extra diapers, wipes and snacks in the back of my van that way I don't have to carry everything, but I have supplies in case of emergency.

  2. Great list! I usually either pack way to much stuff or nothing at all, but I always have wet wipes. They're a life saver. 🙂

  3. This is great list. My preschool carries all these things in his backpack too.


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