Traveling With Baby?
Want some "been-there-done-that" tips on traveling with baby and have a good time? Read about planning, air travel, car travel, baby friendly vacation spots and more.
Traveling with a baby can be a great experience...
A screaming baby, runaway older siblings and furious, exhausted parents...
I've been there, done that. But there are ways to make baby travel times much better.
Below I've gathered some tips to help you make your family trip successful! Start out with our general tips that work for almost any trip you plan to do with your baby.
There are also some extra things to think about if you plan to travel by air with your baby. Click here for some tips on air travel with a baby.
My number one tip?
No matter where you're going or how - plan and pack ahead!
More on that below!
Are you traveling with baby to some place hot? Click here for some tips on how to care for your baby in hot climate.
And if you want an extensive guide to traveling with babies, toddler and preschool kids, I recommend Travels with Baby: The Ultimate Guide... Very helpful and detailed!
Now have a great time!
Tips for Traveling With Baby
Plan and Pack AheadWhen traveling with a baby it is so important to plan ahead.
I've done the opposite so many times - packing the night before leaving the house.
It's not a good idea!
You will sleep poorly if at all, and will spend the first of your well deserved trip exhausted and irritated. If you breastfeed, the quality of the milk may also be affected, making your baby less content.
In addition to being exhausted, the risk is much higher that you bring too much if you desperately pack just before you leave. Traveling with a baby means bringing a lot of things anyway. There is no point in bringing even more stuff than you actually need.
Plan and pack ahead!
Get Your Sleep And Stay SaneWell if you do plan ad pack ahead, it will be possible to make room for a good night's sleep the night before you leave.
Traveling with baby (or traveling at all, actually) can be quite exhausting.
With a new baby, you are probably tired anyway, so becoming even more tired can be tough.
If you will be traveling by car, being sleepy is of course very dangerous!
Help Your Baby SleepIf your baby needs a pacifier, a certain blanket or stuffed animal, don't forget them at home! It can be worth even bringing your baby's pillow or sleep sack if he uses one.
Anything that will make the sleep situation as normal as possible will help your baby feel safe and hence sleep better.
It may also be a good idea to teach your baby to sleep in different environments before you leave. Let him sleep in the stroller, the car seat, on your bed (if safe), in your arms, in daylight if you usually draw the curtains, with the radio on and so on.
This is actually very important if you plan to travel by air with your baby, since an air plane there is nowhere to go to find a calm spot.
Stick To The Routines
If possible, keep an eye on what time it is to be able to some degree maintain your baby's usual eating and sleeping schedule even if you are away from home.
I would say that the sleep schedule is the most important. If you breastfeed, it is very possible that you will feed your baby more frequently as it is a very effective way to soothe a baby.
But it is easy to forget the baby's sleep if there is a lot going.
Hide Some Favorite Toys
Depending on how old your infant is, you need to bring toys to distract him. The older the baby, the more things to play with.
A tip is to take away a few of your baby's favorite toys two weeks before the trip and then introduce them one at a time during your traveling.
Hopefully a happy reunion!
No Stain, No Pain Food & Drink
Make sure that both you and your baby have ample access to food and drink. It is not fun to have to wait in line or desperately seek for a gas station for clean water or something to eat for your crying baby.
If you breastfeed, your baby's food is fixed easily, but you'll have to take care of yourself to produce enough milk.
You may also want to make sure you feel comfortable with breastfeeding in public. At least get yourself a good nuring tank top. The Boob brand is my absolute favorite for nursing tops that make discrete breastfeeding a breeze.
If your baby drinks formula or is old enough for solid baby food, keep it readily available. Also bring a few spoons, baby bibs and paper napkins.
A small bottle of water to clean your baby (and yourself...) after the meal is also practical.
When traveling with baby, you may want to consider what type of baby food to serve during the trip. Tomato sauces and carrot purees are hard to clean off without warm water.
Baby crackers and bananas are great snacks to bring along, as well as other finger foods.
Another tip is to let your baby practise at eating semi-cold foods at home now and then, so you can just feed him on the go while traveling if you have to. A baby who has never tasted anything but perfectly heated foods is not likely to accept cold baby food even if he is starving.
The Right InsuranceIf you haven't fixed it already, make sure your baby (and the rest of your family!) has appropriate insurance cover before you go traveling with your baby.
What is needed depends on where you live as well as to where you are traveling and for how long, and above all on how well your baby is already covered by insurance.
As a minimum, get a quote from a high-quality insurance company that provides good cover for children, such as Gerber. You can fill out a form to get a quote for a child life insurance from GerberLife here.
An Appropriate Medical Kit
Don't forget to bring a medical kit that is appropriate for all family members.
If you traveling with baby abroad, I think it feels the best and the most safe to bring your own aspirin, nose spray or drops etc, because you know they work and are safe for your baby.
Other things to bring are a digital thermometer, medical spoon, nasal aspirator, band aid, and baby nail clippers. A convenient kids first aid travel kit is Medibag First Aid Kit
Don't forget to talk to a pediatrician well ahead of traveling to any exotic places, to have time for immunizations as well as to get advice on additional medicines to bring.
Diapering On The Go
When traveling with a baby, it is not always easy to find a nice spot to change diapers.
To facilitate diapering, bring a foldable changing pad that fits into your diaper bag. With this and a small towel, you can put your baby down for diapering almost anywhere if you have to.
Also bring plastic bags and lots of baby wipes so that you can change diapers without access to water. If your baby's skin is sensitive to baby wipes, bring soft napkins and a bottle of water.
Diaper rash is never a fun thing and even less so when traveling. Bring a good ointment and let your baby be naked as often as possible is you are in a warm and humid place.
And bring enough diapers to last until you can find new ones, of course.
Tips On The Best Baby Vacation SpotsWant tips on where to go traveling with baby? Visit our section where parents can share tips among each other. You can both share your own secret baby friendly vacation spots and get ideas on places and even hotels and malls to visit with your baby. Find baby friendly vacation spots here!
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