I received the Toyota Sienna for our road trip, but as usual, all opinions are my own.
When we planned for my son’s college journey, one of the first things I thought was that we needed space and comfort for our trip on “move in” day. I wanted to make the trip memorable but also needed the space to haul all his items to his dorm. Today I’m sharing our journey through family moments with the Toyota Sienna.
Family Moments On Board The Toyota Sienna
Hope you check my College packing list (link) and how we prepped to make my son’s journey easier and happier.
If you checked my lists, by now you know we had to pack a lot, so I highly recommend:
- Keep everything you bought in the same room, so you don’t forget anything
- Take inventory & check your master list (link) for last minute needs
- Group things by categories, such as school supplies, clothing & shoes, cleaning and room maintenance and electronics
- 3 days prior to the trip, start packing again, using the categories to make it easier to find things once you get there.
- I saved some sturdy packing boxes – large ones. Filled them with items, double taped them and used a marker to write the category, so we’d know what to open first, once we got there. Think moving process, as if you were moving to a new house.
- Use paper or bubble wrap around fragile items such as electronics, glass, lights, speakers and do not pack tech items with anything that contain liquids. I’ve learned my lesson, trust me!
- Don’t overload paper boxes to avoid accidents and make sure you have a few plastic containers which will not be discarded to stay at your son/daughter’s dorm for extra storage.
Once everything is packed, sealed, and concealed, it’s on to day 2:
Pack the Vehicle
The day before the trip, pull seats down, clear the vehicle to make sure you have as much room as possible.
I actually did that to my SUV a month before the trip and I was terrified to realize that we did NOT have enough room in our trunk for college move in needs.
That is one of the main reasons why I was relieved to partner with Toyota to take the Toyota Sienna Hybrid with us.
But let’s talk about Cargo Space, because college move in time is all about having cargo space to fit all your teen needs!
I love that the Sienna Hybrid offers third row hide-away seats and second row flexible sliding seating. We moved the second row seats forward to maximize the space.
Let’s get to packing your vehicle for college move in tips:
Start with larger items, boxes which are not fragile, the idea is to pack bottom to top, stacking, again, to maximize space.
We started with the suitcase, plastic sturdy boxes, then, shipping boxes and finally tech and more fragile items.
Check it out! We packed 14 boxes/moving containers and 2 suitcases into the Sienna and still had a lot of room!
I feel like we could have moved two kids with all that space! Just kidding, no more kids for us!
Hubby and son were happy to see all the space they still had left!
Let’s Talk once more about cargo! Your kids are your most precious cargo, right?
That is why I was super happy to hear my son ask my husband to drive his car to the university and that he wanted to ride in the comfortable Toyota Sienna with mom!
Those moments make memories! I think it was his last step as a stay at home single teen, his last time to enjoy being dependent and being taken care of by his parents.
I was happy to have more than enough space for my 6’8” son to ride comfortably by my side with all his needs met and #ToyotaWellTraveled literally meant traveling well for us!
Check the inside of the Toyota Sienna out:
A few things I loved about the Toyota Sienna All Wheel Drive Hybrid:
Love the fact that it has more cup holders than you can possibly need, so we’ll never fight over that!
Also love the USB and ports and wireless charger to ensure your devices are charged and in our case, I had peace of mind to follow my husband, knowing I could call him if we got separated.
More than we could possibly use!
It wasn’t just the trunk that surprised us, but also all the space we had in the front seats which allowed my tall boy to stretch and sleep comfortably.
I felt they were wider than other vehicles, giving me that extra wiggle room for our 5 hour trip.
You’ve heard all about comfort, space and tech on board the Toyota Sienna, now let’s talk about the details inside.
Love the panel which is seamlessly integrated with the dashboard.
The large storage space under the center console, offered me room to place my purse without worrying about it getting lost in the cargo space during our trip.
Also love the storage in the center to house some of my teens items, wallet and headphones when we was not using them.
Driving The Cargo
I can’t imagine driving a small vehicle and adding a U-Haul type of trailer to bring the items to college.
I feel that would add stress to our trip, plus parking during our journey would be a nightmare.
The Toyota Sienna offered the space but the driving felt so smooth and handled the road so well, I didn’t even feel like I was driving a long mini-van.
Well, I can’t forget to mention that we made the 5 hour trip and still had one half of a tank left.
The Toyota Sienna Hybrid gave us 36 MPG on the Highway
Move In Time
We arrived on campus safe and happy!
The Toyota Sienna offered the best of all worlds to mark a new path in my son’s life!
He parked his car in the parking lot and spent the next 3 days riding with us! I can’t blame him, can you?
Students helped us move items upstairs. We were so grateful for the Liberty student’s help!
They gathered around the Sienna and moved all the items upstairs for us!
Unpacking and Dorm Decorating Tips
Once items were moved, we started opening the boxes by categories:
- Clothing and Shoes – to see what kind of space was left in the closet
- Lights and Décor – we helped him with mattress cover, bedding, bathroom shower curtain and other décor items, being mindful of his roommate’s space.
- Next was the electronics, wall extensions for all the tech and his LED wall lights, first item he wanted on his list.
- Last we gathered cleaning supplies and stored them along with toiletries and school supplies in places which were easily found.
- We bought 3 months of supplies which we planned to last until Thanksgiving break when he will be coming home and we can send more items with him.
Here’s the result
You can tell by my son’s happy face that he’s all set!
We spent three days helping him get settled and figure out some last minute campus needs, we also toured local restaurants with him to share some meals before heading home, per his request.
I feel so happy to know that he is in the right school and that we provided all that he needed for a successful school year.
We left Virginia knowing he made the right decision, and that Liberty University will give him the foundation necessary for going after his dreams.
I want to take the opportunity to thank Toyota for not only providing us with the best college move in ride, but also for the gifts which made our trip even more special!
You can find more information about the Toyota Sienna AWD Hybrid HERE.
Hope you’ve enjoyed our Family Moments On Board The Toyota Sienna.
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