Going to be away for an extended period of time or on a big trip? Here are some items to consider and think about. Be safe. Don't broadcast, even on social media, that you are going away for extended period of time if your home will be empty while you are gone. This is like inviting bad things to happen to your home while you are away. Only keep those you trust and know in the loop. You can broadcast and share about your trip when you get back.
10 - 30 Days Before
Packing List: Create and tailor to your trip plans and destination.
Pets: Arrange pet care; plan far ahead for boarding, especially during holiday periods.
School: Prearrange school absences for children.
Luggage: Decide what capacity you need and fits your form of travel.
Driving?: Schedule pre-trip maintenance for your vehicle.
5 - 7 Days Before
Prescriptions: Make sure you are stocked for your trip duration.
Meetings/Appointments: Reschedule or notify of your absence.
Bills: If you aren't using autopay for these, make sure to check due dates and pay early if necessary.
Books: pick up books, magazines, and/or update your e-reader or device.
Support: Leave a copy of your itinerary/contact info with a friend or family member. (Highly recommended if you are traveling alone, going on a hiking trip, or traveling out of state/country).
2 - 4 Days Before
Mail: Suspend delivery, or ask a neighbor/friend to collect it for you.
Yard and Plants: Mow lawn, or arrange to have it mowed and plants watered.
Trash: Same as Mail.
Lights: Set automatic timers at varying times and multiple rooms.
Batteries: Charge rechargeable items that you are bringing with you (laptop, phone, camera, etc.)
Documents: organize tickets, passports, maps, medical info. etc
Weather: Check forecast and adjust packing accordingly.
Begin packing: organize what you need ahead of time.
Reservations: Confirm reservations, if any, for plane, hotel, etc.
Refrigerator: Clean out perishables that will go bad before you return.
Office: Remind and inform coworkers and boss of your return date.
Computer: Set out-of-office automated response for work.
Check-in: Flying somewhere? Use online check-in to print or download boarding pass early.
Luggage and Bags: Have everything together and ready to go by the door, so you don't forget anything.
Set an alarm: make sure you allow yourself plenty of time if you have to go through any security check-points on your trip or for traffic. Nothings worse than missing a flight or starting out a trip in heavy traffic.
Day of Departure
Plants: water inside and outside.
Heating/Cooling: Reduce thermostat and water heater settings; raise air conditioner settings. Or use eco setting if available.
Electricity: Unplug idle devices (example: toaster, coffee maker, hair dryer, television.) Even if they aren't turned on they will still pull electricity and run a bill. Plus if you don't have a surge protector can prevent them from getting damage if a storm happens while you are away.