A Guide To Traveling With Your Baby
As any parent knows, babies need a lot of time and attention, not to mention a lot of stuff. From pushchairs and car seats to nappies and bottles, there is an endless list of essentials needed to keep your little one happy and well.
This is why leaving the house with a young baby can be a bit of a challenge, even if you’re just popping to the shop. But now imagine that you’ve got to travel some distance with your infant - there is a whole lot more you need to consider.
So, whether you’ve got to travel for business or pleasure, by car or by plane, we can help.
In this guide, we’ll look at everything you need to consider if you’re going to be travelling anywhere with a baby.
Is my baby old enough to travel?
The reality is your baby can travel pretty much right away after they’re born, provided it is safe and secure for them to do so. That being said, you might wish to make your own judgement and avoid travelling with a newborn where possible. It is generally recommended that you wait for at least three months before any lengthy or long-haul travel.
What’s more, if you intend to fly somewhere, it’s worth knowing that most airlines will have their own age restrictions for flying in place, though in most cases, babies are safe to fly at just two weeks old.
Make sure you pack everything you need
If you’re travelling with a baby, you need to make sure you’ve got everything you’re going to need. The last thing you want is to reach your destination and realise you’ve forgotten something very important.
Of course, nappies and formula are easy enough to get from the shop, but cots, car seats, prams, etc., are a different story. Therefore, it’s a good idea to make a list a few days before you plan to travel so you can add items if you notice anything is missing. Then make sure to check your list as you pack to ensure you don’t forget anything.
Consider shipping your belongings ahead of time
Whether you’re travelling by car, train, plane or any other mode of transport, carrying all your belongings can be inconvenient, especially when you have a baby and all their stuff. Even in the car, you might have to cram the boot full, especially if you have other children travelling with you.
As such, we recommend shipping your belongings ahead of time so you don’t have to worry about them during your travel. This can be particularly beneficial if you’re travelling by plane as you won’t have to pay extra, check big items or drag bags around with you whilst you have your baby in tow.
There are dedicated shipping couriers who can collect your belongings from your chosen address at your chosen time. They will then transport these to the given address; they can be delivered on your chosen date.
This can make your journey much more enjoyable and cut down on the stress of loading vehicles, dragging bags around and checking in at the airport. Oh, and you won’t have to wait for ages at the carousel to collect your bags once you land! You can simply get up and go.
Make sure you have the important stuff to hand
Whether you choose to ship your belongings ahead or not, it’s important that you have all the essentials with you and accessible at all times. For example, you might need your passports or ID, wallet, phone, keys, etc.
But when travelling with a baby, you’ll also need to make sure you have a nappy bag to hand, which includes everything your little one might need. Be that wipes, a bottle, a change of clothes, a fold-away changing mat or anything else.
It doesn’t matter how you travel either; you should always have these essentials with you to make your life much easier during the journey and to ensure your baby has everything they need.
Don’t forget the entertainment
Finally, no matter how old your baby is, you’re going to want to entertain them throughout the trip - especially if it’s a long journey. So, be sure to take some soft toys, shake rattles, teething rings or anything else that normally gets (and keeps) their attention.
After all, nobody wants a baby crying for the entire journey, least of all you. So be sure to have these to hand whenever you need to quickly grab their attention or distract them.
Feed your baby during take-off and landing
If you’re going to be flying, it can be a good idea to feed your baby during take-off and landing, as this is when their ears are most likely to suffer under the pressure. This can help to reduce the effects on your baby, relax them and hopefully help them to sleep. This might not always stop them from crying, but it is certainly worth a try.
Make sure you have the right travel equipment
Finally, you need to make sure your baby is safe and comfortable as you travel, so it’s important you have the right equipment. If travelling by train or bus, a pushchair will probably suffice, but you also have the option to use a baby sling or wrap. This can make it much easier for you to get about. This can be ideal if you’re flying too, as there is not space for a car seat and you don’t want to be carrying a small baby for long periods of time.
If you’re going in the car, it’s vital that you have a sturdy and comfortable car seat, of course. Also, think about car mirrors so you can see your baby during the journey. To ensure they have a comfortable trip, make sure they are warm enough and that you have blankets wherever necessary.
Not only will this keep them safe and happy and hopefully help them sleep, but it means you can have a more enjoyable journey too.