On your way out the door for a well-deserved vacay, do you ever pause and think, “I feel like I’m forgetting something but. . .”? Passport? Check. Tickets? Check. Kids and car seats? Check and check.

In the middle of all the excitement for your trip, it’s easy to forget some details. Besides staying on top of what to pack, there are some things that we need to take care of around the house. Jump below for some reminders of what’s easily overlooked and what to handle before you jet off for your vacation.

  1. Empty the Trash

    How many times have you come home to an unpleasant odor? Don’t forget to empty the kitchen trash, bathroom bins, and litter box if you have one.

  2. Make Mail Arrangements

    Rather than let your mail pile up, set up a “hold” order with the post office or have someone you trust pick it up for you periodically.

  3. Snap Your Burners

    Snap a photo of the knobs and snap them off. Be sure to turn off the burners on your stove completely, especially if it’s gas. That goes for the oven, too!

  4. Unplug/Turn Off

    Energy vampires should be unplugged or at least turned off. That goes for the ice maker, computer, and probably Alexa too. If you have a timer for your lights or thermostat, don’t forget to set it. Otherwise, turn off the A/C, lower the heat, and leave the right amount of lights on to deter burglars.

  5. Handle Bills

    You don’t want to come home from vacation to no electricity or water. Take care of any upcoming bill payments for your house, phone, or credit cards.

  6. Clear Out the Fridge

    If you know those strawberries or eggs will go bad during the time you’re away, toss them. Clean out any items that are dead or are on their last breath. Don’t forget that some things can be frozen!

  7. Scan the Weather Reports

    Do this for your destination to pack accordingly, but also for your home. If there’s stormy weather expected on the homefront, be sure to bring in any outdoor furniture, toys, etc. before locking up. If you have a pool, prep it.

  8. Leave Contact and Trip Info

    Have a friend or family member designated to keep tabs on your whereabouts in case of emergency. Provide your itinerary to them just in case!

  9. Purge Your Wallet

    Remove any credit cards or other items that you won’t be using for this trip. That includes any foreign currency.

  10. Back up Your Passport

    Make paper and digital copies of your passport to keep on you in case of emergency.

  11. Make a List and Check it Thrice

    Put together a checklist for everything you need to pack for each member of your family. Also create one for what should be done before you leave and miscellaneous tasks like charging devices, packing boarding passes, washing dishes, or refilling prescriptions.

  12. Launder Your Sheets

    Change the linens on your bed so you can come home to a fresh set. And don’t forget to empty the washer of any wet laundry!

  13. Notify Your Bank

    If you will be in another country or area of your country for an extended amount of time, you may want to let your credit card company and bank know. This way they won’t flag all your purchases for suspicious activity.

  14. Look Out for Nature

    Show bees some love by leaving a spoonful of sugar-water in your yard. They’re responsible for the majority of our food supply, but summertime isn’t always kind. Feed them with a mixture of 2 tablespoons of sugar and 1 tablespoon of water with this recipe. Leave it out in your yard while away.

  15. Prepare Your Freezer for a Power Outage

    You won’t know if your power was out for a significant amount of time while away, but you can set up a detection device with a little bit of juice. Get the details from the King of Random here.

Put the nagging voice in your head to rest and travel with peace of mind by following these tips. It never hurts to be prepared!

Do you habitually forget things when you leave town? Which of these do you always do/always forget? What else would you add to this list?