how to travel with little ones :
I had a lot of requests for this post. I have to be honest, with the 7 year age gap between Goldie and Ozzy, I kind of forgot what is was like to travel with a baby. You might feel like you have to pack up their entire life, but you don’t. Kids adapt to their environment. Here are few tips for traveling with kids I’ve learned throughout my 14 years as a parent!
Traveling with a Baby:
- Be prepared. That doesn’t mean pack up the nursery, but make sure you have enough of the essentials.
- Airlines will allow you to bring water on flights( if they are for a babies bottle). I packed two bottles of warm water for Ozzy incase I couldn’t clean one out on the flight.
- In my carry on bag for Ozzy I packed: two bottles (with water), can of formula (always bring more than you think you need. You never know when you will have a flight delay), two toys she had never seen before to keep her engaged, wipes, 6 diapers, bags to put stinky diapers in, two pacifiers (incase I drop one and it’s dirty), hand sanitizer, one swaddle, extra onesie, 3 apple sauce squeeze pouches, age appropriate snacks.
- I think it’s a good idea to pack a couple of items your baby isn’t familiar with so they are curious and it keeps them occupied, even for a couple of minutes.
- When the drink cart comes around, ask for an extra cup or two and a couple of ice cubes. This kept Ozzy entertained for about 15 mins. She’d shake the cup to hear the ice move. I’d put a couple drops of water in at a time and she’d dump on her face, hoping to make it into her mouth.
- Biggest tip when flying with a baby, try not to stress. Babies cry. Ozzy did great on the flight, but lots of babies were crying. It’s okay. It doesn’t make you a bad parent. It’s just what they do, especially being confined in a small space for a long time.
- If you are flying make sure your baby is sucking on something like a pacifier or bottle during take off and landing. The air pressure during those transitions can cause pressure in their ears which is super painful, especially for a baby.
- Call the hotel ahead of time and ask them to add a pack n play to your hotel room. They are so bulky to bring yourself.
- Take advantage of gate check. Take your stroller all the way to the gate and then have it checked right there.
Traveling with a toddler:
- Kids love to wear backpacks or carry a bag. Let them!
- I always pack their bags for them and don’t let them open them until we are on the plane or in the car for a road trip. The element of surprise is exciting for them.
- Inside the bags pack: sticker books, paper, crayons, special snacks, favorite toy, small blanket, stuffed animal. Again, pack a couple of new toys they haven’t seen.
- I like Wiki Sticks for kids. Lots of entrainment and you can throw them away after;)
- Other toys that work well on flights are BOOGIE BOARDS.
- If you are bringing your car seat on the flight, this LAP TRAY is great to keep everything in one place.
- If flying, let them choose what kind of drink they get. If you are anti soda/sugar ask the flight attendant to just put a splash of sprite or juice into sparkling water. My kids always loved that and thought it was cool to get a special drink.
- If driving, bring a bag of small wrapped toys and for every hour on the drive (if they are being good) they can choose a present from the bag and unwrap. These are as simple as: fruit snacks, candy, dollar section toys.
tips for traveling with kids:
- all the same from the toddler section applies for kids
- again have each child with their own bag. Kids like to pack their own and choose what goes inside. Let them and then sneak in a few extra surprises to pull out when they get bored or need a distraction.
- no one wants to be the parent that says ” oh I just give them an iPad and they’re good”, right? But guess what, you do what you need to do to survive traveling with children…
- always pack gum or something chewy like taffy or caramels. I learned this trick from a parenting coach years ago. When they start to throw a fit and you sense a meltdown to occur, put the gum/candy in their mouth. It causes them to pause and chew, once they chew it’s sweet and something they like so they are much more likely to calm down and become somewhat reasonable humans again:)
- so easy to travel with teens. give them a device, a snack, some earbuds and have them pack their homework.
- with Avery and Poppy being easy to travel with, but still sisters who fight. I like to give them different tasks while we are away. For example: Avery is in charge of finding the best places to eat and Poppy the best places to see. Now we may not go to all the places, but at least they are doing some research, investing in the family trip and when we do eat/see what they chose it’s always fun for them to have been part of it.
- if your child needs a crib make sure to call ahead and request one. they go quick in hotels. if taking a road trip, this is my favorite PORTABLE CRIB. It’s so light weight and folds down small.
- bring your own baby wash/lotion. Hotel products can be too harsh on a babies skin.
- if you have the option to do laundry while you are there, do it. I only packed enough for 5 days (we were gone for 10) and did the laundry half way through.
- Family travel is so much fun, try not to stress!