In a survey carried out by Citroen, which polled 2,000 UK parents, it seems that holiday nightmares often begin before even hitting the road, with one in ten admitting they are more likely to suffer “packing rage” than road rage. The summer school break is fast approaching there, so there will be many stressed parents trying to load up the car for the family holidays.

With a multitude of potential “trigger causes” – such as packing more than is needed (50%), spending over an hour trying to pack (26%) or leaving something behind by mistake (22%) – what should be a time of family togetherness can fast become a time of unwelcome holiday stress. Admit it, we’ve all been there before during Raya and CNY balik kampung trips.

To help remedy this, Citroen has created an essential car packing survival guide, and challenged four Arsenal players to take on a “Summer Packing Pro” challenge – a light-hearted competition to see how quickly they could load holiday essentials into a Citroen Grand C4 Picasso MPV, which has up to 793 litres of space below the load cover when the middle row seats are pushed forward.

One keeper and attacker per team, so its Petr Cech and Olivier Giroud vs David Ospina and Jack Wilshere competing against the clock. Interesting if you’re an Arsenal fan, but they clearly didn’t read this:

Citroen’s Car Packing Survival Guide

  • Empty out the interior and bootspace of your car before you begin packing to get rid of any items not needed for the trip.
  • Allocate a space in the house or garage to gather everything you plan to take. Decide where things should go based on when they are needed. Remember: last in, first out.
  • Pack the heaviest holiday items into the rear of the boot first to keep the centre of gravity low and weight balanced.
  • Make use of cardboard boxes or plastic crates to stop smaller loads sliding around. This will make the car Tetris easier! Each box can be allocated to a family member to make sure all of their holiday items are conveniently packed together.
  • Fit the children’s’ car seats first and then pack the rest of the items. Fitting car seats can be more difficult after the car has been packed.
  • Encourage your children to pack a small bag of their favourite toys or activities so everything they need for the journey is within reach.
  • Allocate enough time to pack the car at a leisurely pace on the morning of your journey. Having extra time will help you remember those essentials that may otherwise get forgotten.

So who won? Not a very fair fight if you ask this Gooner – there’s a reason why two of the featured players are first teamers and the other two bench warmers, but we love them all.

The futuristic-looking and practical Citroen Grand C4 Picasso is sold in Malaysia by Naza Euro Motors, available in e-THP petrol and BlueHDi turbodiesel form.