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Ready for Travel: The Home Checklist for Your Family’s Summer Trip

2 minute read

Whether you’ve had your big family trip planned for months, or the high 90s temperatures and paralyzing humidity call for a weekend cool-down getaway, check off some boxes before you leave town for your fun summer trip.

Need some ideas for that fun summer retreat? These global destinations stay refreshingly cool during the summer months of July, August, and September – compared to most places in the northern hemisphere, anyway.

Cool Global Cities for a Fun Summer

1. Seattle, Washington
2. San Diego, California
3. Yellowstone National Park
4. Denver, Colorado
5. Milwaukee, Wisconsin
6. Coastal Maine
7. Alaska
8. Michigan’s Upper Peninsula
9. Nova Scotia, Canada
10. Mexico City, Mexico
11. Reykjavik, Iceland
12. Buenos Aires, Argentina
13. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
14. Belfast, Ireland
15. Isle of Skye, Scotland
16. Queenstown, New Zealand
17. Melbourne, Australia
18. Cape Town, South Africa

Once you’ve planned your summer getaway, make sure you’re able to fully enjoy it by taking the necessary steps to prepare your home for your time away.

Checklist for Your Family’s Summer Trip


  • Notify your credit card company that you’ll be leaving town so your cards don’t get flagged for fraudulent purchases
  • Notify your home security company, if you have one
  • Leave a few lamps on if you’re going on a short trip. Invest in automatic timers for a longer vacation to create the illusion that your house is occupied
  • Let at least one neighbor know your plans and leave emergency contact information with them. This same neighbor can also assist in watering plants and caring for pets that will be left behind
  • Ensure you have a working smoke detector on every floor
  • Dispose of any food in your fridge or pantry that will go bad before you get back, and take out all the garbage to avoid a smelly return
  • Unplug small appliances and electronic devices
  • Set your water heater to “vacation” mode
  • Depending on the length of your trip, you can either shut off your water completely or at least turn off the valves to the dishwasher, washing machine, and the sinks
  • Adjust your thermostat so your air conditioner doesn’t waste energy while you’re away. Setting it to 85 degrees in the summer will allow for a safe environment for plants, animals, and electronics


  •  Take a walk around the exterior of your house to check for any damage that would need attention: loose fence post, broken roof shingles, etc.
  • Park your cars inside the garage and ask a neighbor to park in your driveway every couple days to make it look like someone is home
  • Hold your newspaper and mail if you don’t have someone that can pick it up for you
  • Install a motion-activated sensor on an outdoor floodlight
  • Make arrangements for your lawn to be mowed
  • Secure any outdoor patio furniture, grills, or pool supplies in case of inclement weather


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