A guide to moving out of state with kids

This is a partnered/Guest post



Moving out of state can be a very stressful and exhausting undertaking, and attempting to do so with children of any age may seem impossible and downright frightening; however, if a bit of extra thought is put into the planning for the move before you rent a pickup truck and some effort is made to keep the kids involved and in mind along the way, the entire moving experience can be a positive experience for both the children and the adults.

Tips for moving with children

Even with the amount of stress and work that moving entails, it is still possible to make it an enjoyable and even fun experience for everyone.

No matter how old the children are, moving can be scary and disorienting.  Leaving behind a familiar home and room, as well as school and friends, can be very traumatic.  It is vital to begin talking about the move freely with the children long before the move takes place; talk about how moving feels for everyone, letting them know that what they are feeling about the move, whether positive and negative, is important. Answer any questions they may have honestly and completely.

Involving the kids in the moving process can go a long way toward helping them to cope with the move and to adjust to their new surroundings.  Assign tasks such as packing the items in their own rooms and putting together a box or bag of things to bring on the trip.  Preparing their own things for the journey will give them the confidence and assurance that their treasured possessions are safely packed and ready to go.  Packing a bag to take along not only gives them things to play with, read and do while taking the trip to the new home but also it gives them several cherished pieces to put into their new room straight away, making it their own from the minute they arrive.

The new rooms can be another way to reassure kids and get them excited about the new home and the entire settling in process.  Encourage them to get excited about their new bedrooms and play areas, choose colors, themes and accessories for the spaces, and allow them to help with the actual process of painting, papering and decorating their rooms.

Don’t forget the pets

Dogs and cats grow comfortable in their home environment, seeing it as their personal territory, and traveling to new surroundings can be terrifying and frustrating for them.  Family pets are frequently the closest friends of the children, so helping them to adjust smoothly will also benefit the kids.  Planning ahead is important; ensure that the family pets are all healthy and vaccinated, and that any regulations in the new area have been followed.  It is best to keep the pets contained to the house for a while as they adjust to the new home; they could attempt to travel to the old home if they are let loose.

Maintain old routines and patterns for both the pets and the children.  These daily schedules will help them to grow accustomed to the new surroundings and give a connection to the old and familiar to those who are having problems adjusting.



I'm a mother of 2 who likes to get involved in too much! Besides writing here I started a non-profit, I'm on the PTO board, very active in my community and volunteer in the school. I enjoy music, reading, cooking, traveling and spending time with my family. We just adopted our 3rd cat and love them all!

More Posts


  1. We’ve moved twice (once to a different country and once to a different state) our daughter was 3 and then 17 each time. Although the age was significantly different both times we involved her in the process so it seemed more exciting then scary to her.

  2. It definitely helps to normalize things to keep routines

  3. thankfully we’ve never had to move out of state since we’ve had kids but I think we will in the next couple years.

  4. Forget out of state. I don’t know if my group could handle moving down the block. Good advice though. I just hope I don’t have need of it… lol.