Getting home for the holidays or to your vacation destination may seem like a daunting task if you’ve got a baby or toddler. Take a breath and read on! We’ve got the tips and tricks to help make your travel easier for you and your little one!
No matter your method of travel, safety first!
If you are traveling by car, be sure the carseat is installed correctly and securely. You also want to make sure you can see and/or reach your little one in a hurry if they need your help. Having a headrest mirror in place gives you an easy way to keep an eye on your little one.
Most airlines have their own recommendations for traveling with an infant. These things may include reserving a seat for the baby, infant fares, age requirements for a Child Restraint System, and documents for verifying the baby’s age. Some airlines give families early boarding options, which can help the process go smoother. Check with your specific airline to ensure you have everything you need to fly safely, and what they can do to assist families flying with them.
Survival Kit (otherwise known as the diaper bag)
How do you survive road trips or air travel with an infant? Preparedness. It’s the only way. This means strategic packing and planning for your little one AND you.
Here’s a list that may help:
- 1 diaper for every hour of travel.
- Wipes, ALL of them. They’re not just for bums! Handy for cleaning up spills, vomit, etc.
- Changes of clothes for baby and you. Think applesauce and turbulence…
- Ziplock bags for dirty clothes and/or trash. Keeps the smells inside making it more pleasant for you and your travel mates.
- Hand sanitizer, for times the wipes won’t cut it.
- Muslin blanket to drape over baby or carseat to decrease light and/or noise.
- Consider using a babywearing device if allowed by your airline.
- Baby’s favorite blanket, lovie, or snuggle. (You can take your’s too. #nojudgement)
- Food: You can take pumped breastmilk or formula with you when flying, along with freezer packs to keep it cold. When going through the security checkpoints, remove the items from your carry-on and inform the TSA agent so they can be screened separately .
- First Aid Kit for illness or medical necessities.
Other tips and tricks:
Takeoff and landing can be particularly tense times when flying because the pressure in your baby’s ears may cause them to hurt. If your little one is uncomfortable, try feeding them or using a pacifier. If baby is doesn’t settle, some parents have found favor with their seatmates by handing out snacks or earplugs.
Traveling at night or at a time when your little one is normally asleep can be a good technique. Hopefully they will sleep most of the way making your trip smoother. If your little one is awake during your travel, having toys or ways entertain and distract them is crucial for making the trip easier.
If you are taking a road trip, plan on stopping frequently to accommodate baby’s feeding schedule. It is always a good idea to add a little extra time to your travel plans, giving you extra time to deal with spills, diaper changes, feeding times, and wardrobe fixes.
Here’s hoping this list has helped you feel prepared to take on the trips in your future.
However and wherever you go, we wish you safe travels!
Authored by: Lois Perks