How to Prepare Your Moving Day Essentials Box

Portrait of a happy client with a male courier delivering goods by vehicle to a woman home, workman moving parcels on the background

Sell the house. Check.
Book the movers. Check.
Clean and pack. Check.
Prepare your moving day essentials box… not checked.

When it comes to preparing for moving day, there can be lots of things to get checked off your to-do list, but preparing an essentials box or moving day emergency kit is one you don’t want to forget.

If you are not sure what types of items you’d want or need to include, no problem, we have you covered. We’ve moved thousands of families over the years so we know a thing or two about what types of odds and ends you might need those first few days before everything is unpacked.

Packing these items in a separate box that is easy to locate will ensure you aren’t hunting through dozens of boxes to find those tools to put together the cabinet or sheets and pillows for bedtime.

Let’s start with the essentials

No matter how far you are moving, these items are necessary. Be sure to have plenty of snacks and water especially if you are moving in the summer, and any necessary things like toilet paper, and garbage bags. Here are some essential items you don’t want to forget:

  • Snacks and Water
  • Pet food (if needed)
  • Paper towels and Toilet paper
  • Emergency first-aid kit
  • Tool bag
  • Trash bags
  • Charging cables for phones and other needed devices
  • Any medications or prescriptions you may need
  • Batteries and chargers for power tools
  • Lightbulbs and flashlight, just in case
  • Cleaning supplies

Remember these personal items

It can be hard to get everything loaded, unloaded, and unpacked, all in one day, especially if you are relocating any significant distance. This next list of items includes things you might need for that first night in your new home if you don’t have all your items unpacked. In addition to the essentials above don’t forget to pack things like:

  • Change of clothes
  • Sheets and pillows, in case you aren’t finished unpacking before bedtime.
  • Toiletries
  • A Shower curtain, if your shower doesn’t have doors.
  • Bathroom towels
  • Paper plates, napkins, and plastic utensils to use until the kitchen is unpacked
  • Pen and Paper, in case you need to make quick shopping lists
  • Any paperwork and records you might need the first few days in your home

Tech & Electronics For Moving Day

Make sure you’re prepared for anything and be sure to include these tech and electronic items in your moving day essentials box.

  • Laptop or tablet
  • Chargers for all devices
  • Extension cords and surge protector
  • Camera to document the empty house and the new one

These items might not be essential, but they will make your first few days a little easier. Moving can be stressful, but being prepared will help make sure everything goes as smoothly as possible.

Moving Day Essentials For the Kids

Planning and preparing for a move with kids in tow can add an extra layer of needs that you’ll have to accommodate throughout the process. Especially on moving day, there are so many things happening, and making sure your kids feel comfortable and included can make a huge difference.

As you are packing up your essential items, consider creating a box just for your kids. Here are some things you might want to include:

  • Child’s blanket or stuffed animal
  • Toys, books, and activities
  • Snacks and Juice boxes
  • Diapers and wipes (if needed)
  • Change of clothes for kids plus extra shoes if needed

Pro tip: Allow your children to help pack their own essentials box so they feel included in the process and feel that they have a little bit of control over their involvement in the relocation.

Other Moving Day Essentials to consider

While these items aren’t needed, having them can certainly help to make moving day a little easier. It might be worth considering packing a few of these in your essentials box:

  • Radio or Speaker for some background noise
  • A box of ‘must-have’ items for pets like food, medications, leash, a few toys, and their bed
  • Quick and easy meal items and snacks if you’d prefer not to eat out
  • Plenty of water

Once you have your essentials box packed, make sure it’s clearly labeled and that it’s one of the last items to go into the moving truck, which means it will be first to come off. Another option is to keep your moving day essentials with you, especially if you will arrive at your new home before the movers.

Packing and loading your essentials box

Packing a moving day essentials box is a great way to ensure you have all those little items that you’ll need throughout the day in one place, meaning less time wasted searching for them, and when it’s time to call it a day, you can easily find things for showering and bedtime.

If your box will contain items for multiple members of your family, consider labeling or sorting items by person so you can easily distribute them. The more organized your box, the less likely you are to lose things.

Remember to clearly label this box (or boxes) and carry them in your car or load them LAST into the moving truck so that they are one of the first things off the truck.