There are many things that you can do to make travel with an infant easier. As a mom of four who has a mother in law that lives over eight hours away I am seasoned in traveling with babies.
I know so many people who are afraid of travel with their little ones or overwhelmed at the thought of having to go somewhere far away. So when it comes to taking trips they avoid it at all costs. Traveling with your baby does not have to be stressful and you can really have a great time. These tips can help to relieve some of the stress and make traveling with your little one more enjoyable.
Tip # 1 – Plan Ahead and Pack Accordingly
No matter where you are going weather can change and you might have a need for something that you did not see. Pack extras like jackets and off season outfits so if the weather changes you are up for everything. Also think about how many days that you are going and always add extra clothes.
Tip # 2 – Make Travel Fun with New Toys or Books
All children love toys and books while they are on the road. When your baby gets bored it will challenge you to keep them entertained. If you have small toys and books that they have not seen before then you will have an easier time getting them interested in something.
Tip # 3 – Technology Can Be Lifesaving
As a parent I do not like to rely on technology all of the time. However when we are traveling technology can be a lifesaver. All of our children have loved tablets and being able to watch cartoons while traveling. If it is something that you do not often do they are going to enjoy it even more.
Tip # 4 – Choose Your Travel Clothes Wisely
Choosing the clothes that your little one travels in wisely is a must. You want something that is going to make diaper changes quick and easy.
Tip # 5 – Travel with a Copy of Your Baby's Birth Certificate
Having a copy of your baby's birth certificate with you when you are traveling is a must. It can make it easier to bring her in and out of the country if traveling abroad and can make airlines or trains a breeze when traveling in the US.
Tip # 6 – Choose Longer Layovers
I know that you want to get where you are going as quickly as possible. However by choosing the longer layover times you will give your baby time to stretch and play while waiting on the next flight.
Tip # 7 – Take a Travel Bed with You
You might be tempted to use a crib or hotel portable crib because of the ease but these are not always up to date with safety regulations. So instead choose to take a small portable bed with you. There are options that are much smaller than a play yard that can fold into a small size and even be stashed in a suitcase.
Tip # 8 – Be Patient
If your baby is getting cranky or upset then it is likely that they have a need. Try to think about what you would do differently at home and how you would handle the time/situation. Keep calm and be patient while trying to assess their need.
Tip # 9 – Set Up Your Space
When you arrive the first thing that you should do is set up your space to make it as comfortable and home-like to your baby as possible. This can help your baby to relax and not feel the anxiety of being in new surroundings.
Tip # 10 – Wear Your Baby
You can wear your baby to help keep yourself hands free while navigating through different places. This can be lifesaving when your baby is constantly surrounded by new people because they will feel comfortable being right next to you.
Tip # 11 – Stick to Your Routine
Sticking to your routine is very important when traveling. For me personally this is something that I have always done but sometimes I get odd looks or someone will make a comment. However if you have seen my children when we did not stick to our routine then you would completely understand.
Tip # 12 – Do What You Know is Best for Your Baby
I know when traveling to see family that it can be tough to keep your baby on a routine or to keep him or her from being passed around. However sticking to your guns and doing everything that you know is best for your baby will help you feel comfortable enough to travel again.
Tip # 13 – Set Up Different Areas in a Hotel Room
Having different areas set up in a hotel room can be lifesaving. There are four distinct areas that you want to have set up as soon as possible after arriving. These include:
1. Changing Area – Have everything you need for effortless diaper changes in one area.
2. Play Area – Pack a sheet with you and designate a specific area of the floor as a play area. This will help baby not to be confused and want to play in their sleeping area.
3. Sleeping Area – Have one spot designated for bed time or time to sleep.
4. Kitchen Area – Have everything set up in one area for quick bottles, snacks, and/or meals.
Tip # 14 – Know Your Airline's Policies
When traveling on an airline call ahead of time to ask about car seats and strollers. These items are generally free to take along with you and most of the time they can be gate checked if you need them while at the airport. Knowing ahead of time what your airline allows and will do is very valuable.
Tip # 15 – Give Your Baby the Right Nap Environment
Some babies will sleep while you are baby wearing, in a car, or in a stroller. Others will not. Know your baby and if yours is one that needs to be at home to nap then plan on taking turns at the hotel room for naps.
Traveling with your baby can be a stress free and enjoyable experience that creates memories for you to cherish. These tips can really help you to feel like you know what you are doing and can help you be prepared for anything while traveling with your little one.