How To Travel With A Baby For A Hassle-Free Journey!

5 Tips to Make Traveling with Your Baby as Easy as Possible

Many new parents wonder whether or not to travel with a young baby and, if so, how to make the experience as pleasant as possible for everyone involved! Before we get into the tips you need, let’s cover the basics first.

So - while it’s technically possible to travel with a newborn (including via airplane), pediatrics specialists generally don’t recommend travelling with a baby younger than one week old and, instead, advise it’s best to limit travel until your little one is several months old. This is to avoid exposing your baby to large numbers of people and, therefore, a variety of viral illnesses or infections - this is the key concern.

It’s important to remember that there’s also a risk when traveling with a baby who is too young to have had their vaccines, as they won’t have protection against certain potentially serious illnesses.

baby looking out onto a lake

Check with your pediatrics doctor before travelling internationally for peace of mind.

However, if your baby is at least a few months old or if you really need to travel, then there are some tips to know that will make all the difference. Because - let’s face it - you’ve already got a lot on your plate without even thinking about a trip away from home. But you’ve got this - and we’ve got you.

The 5 Tips For Happy Traveling with a Baby

Prepare for Take-Off

Preparation is the key to happy travels! If you’re planning on flying, then remember that you’ll need to get the ok from both your pediatrics doctor and the carrier. Every carrier has its own policy; for example, some airlines require a baby under one week old to have a medical form signed by a physician in order to fly.

To make your trip as smooth as possible, make a list of all the things you’ll need to take ahead of time. As well as clothes, diapers, and bottles, don’t forget a car seat to use on the plane and a few familiar toys for your little one to help them feel more settled. It’s also important to be prepared for every eventuality: think about what would happen if your baby got sick en route or a flight was cancelled or delayed. A backup plan is a must!

Efficient packing is essential, especially when travelling with a baby. It's important to consider both the quantity of items needed and your own comfort while navigating through airports with a baby in tow. Selecting the right size of suitcase is key, a small suitcase might not hold everything for both of you, while a large one could be hard to handle. A medium-sized hard side suitcase with four wheels is a practical choice, offering a good balance between capacity and maneuverability. Additionally, using packing organizers or compression bags inside your suitcase can be a game-changer. These tools help to optimize space and keep your belongings well-arranged, which is especially helpful when packing for more than one person. This method not only makes packing more efficient but also eases the process of unpacking and organizing your items throughout your journey.

If you can, get seats on a non-stop, off-peak flight - and remember to bring along your baby’s birth certificate as proof of her age if you need it. If you can, bag a window seat: if your baby will be on your lap this means that any flailing little arms and legs won’t risk getting in the way of flight attendants or other passengers going up and down the aisles.

Comfortable Car Travel

It’s super important to factor in sleep deprivation if you’re planning on undertaking a car journey with a very young baby: a well-rested driver is a safer driver. Your baby will need to travel in a safe, rear-facing car seat; why not stick some pictures to the back of the seat, so your little one has something interesting to look at on the way?

baby looking out on view

Car travel with a baby is challenging, but our tips can help ease the stress!

Keep the sun off your baby’s face using a car window shade or a wide-brimmed hat, and allow for plenty of rest stops for feeding, diaper changing, and simply allowing your bundle of joy to stretch out their legs.

Some babies love music, and this can be a great way to keep them entertained in the car - although you may find you need to play the same song two dozen times if your little one is enjoying it! You could also create a playlist of lullabies to put on for when your baby shows signs of becoming sleepy.

Staying in a Hotel

If you’ll be staying in a hotel as part of your travels, then, again, preparation is the key to success! So, pack a nightlight and also electrical outlet covers along with all the basics you’ll need - and extras - for an overnight stay.

It’s a great idea to ring the hotel ahead of time to see if they have a temporary refrigerator they could put in your room, as many establishments are happy to do so for a small additional charge. If you won’t be taking your own portable crib, then ensure that the crib provided by the hotel meets all safety standards.

Here are a couple of extra handy little hints that’ll help keep your stress levels as low as possible. Firstly, ask for a room on the lower level of the hotel to make getting in the luggage easier and, secondly, find out where the nearest shop is for picking up diapers and other essential supplies, and check out the restaurant menu to see if it has baby-friendly food available.

Get Set for International Travel

If you’ll be travelling even further afield then there are even more things to consider - but it can be done! As well as all the extra packing, it’s vital to ensure that your baby’s vaccinations are up to date and also to check with your pediatrics doctor whether any additional vaccinations are needed for the country you’ll be visiting.

As well as sorting out a passport for your baby, it’s also a great idea to look at family travel insurance plans that offer free cover for children. Plus, if you’re a single parent, it’s highly recommended that you carry a notarized letter from the child’s other parent confirming that they give permission for the baby to travel overseas.

baby smiling on rug

Plan ahead for happy, hassle-free family travel!

We all know that there’s a direct correlation between how well a baby is sleeping and his parents’ happiness, and crossing time zones could put this equilibrium at risk…but there’s a solution! If your baby’s old enough to be on a sleep schedule, start making slight adjustments a few days before the trip to make things easier once you arrive. When you get to your destination, try to keep your little one in brightly lit areas during the daytime to further help them align with the new time zone.

Think About Your Expectations

And this final tip could save you a lot of stress. If it’ll be your first vacation or trip away with your baby, managing expectations is vital. You may feel under some pressure to make the holiday as exciting and fabulous as the breaks you enjoyed as a child-free couple. And the vacation can be just as wonderful - but in a different way.

So, plan to have a slower-paced holiday to avoid having an over-tired, grouchy baby on your hands and a stressful time. If there are several spots you’d like to visit, schedule seeing just one place or attraction per day, and factor in plenty of time to have relaxed fun with your little one, too. And if you can plan travel around nap times, even better! Ultimately, having an adaptable, ‘let’s roll with it’ attitude will pay dividends. Because, let’s face it: there’s going to be a diaper explosion, a spit-up incident, or a prolonged crying fit while everyone on the plane is trying to sleep - accepting this ahead of time is not only liberating but means you’ll be more likely to deal with such situations stoically when they occur.

Plan Ahead for a Relaxed Family Trip

Travelling with a baby may be challenging, but with some forward planning, it may be easier than you think. Take care of the basics by checking with your pediatrics team before undertaking a long journey, air travel, or a trip abroad, and make sure that all your little one’s vaccines are up to date.

Plan your trip - as far as possible - in a way that takes into account your baby’s schedule and personality. For example, if your baby tends to be unsettled in the late afternoon, then avoid beginning a long car journey at this time. If your baby likes a long sleep mid-morning, then this is the perfect time to hit the road!

It can be tempting to overpack, which can cause a hassle in itself when you have to lug everything into your hotel at the end of your journey. While it’s important to pack the things you need, it’s a good idea to only pack enough diapers for a few days, for example, and plan on picking up additional supplies once you’ve reached your destination.

One of the most important things to do is take the pressure off yourself. Your baby may become grouchy, there could well be a few hiccups along the way, and you may find yourself needing to feed your baby when you weren’t expecting to break your journey for another hour. If any (or all) of these things happen, trust your intuition, and know that you’re more than capable of handling these challenges.

Happy travelling! And if you’ve enjoyed this article, check out more at - we’d love to have you visit!


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