I think most parents can agree they never truly realized how much stuff their baby would need. And when it comes time to take a trip with your little one, it becomes even more obvious. Packing for yourself is usually one of the most irritating parts of traveling, and now you have a baby to pack for, too. But it's always worth it, right?! Today we're helping you make this not-so-fun task a little bit easier by telling you everything you need to travel with a baby.
Ensuring that you have each of these essentials packed and ready to go means the stress of packing will be behind you so you can have a fun and enjoyable trip with your baby.
Sleeping Essentials on Your Trip
We're starting off with sleep because if your baby doesn't sleep well on vacation it really can put a damper on the trip for everyone. And let's face it, if your little one isn't sleeping, then neither are you. You'll want to make sure you have all of these essentials packed and also have a good plan in place for your baby's sleep as we discussed in the article, "How to Help Your Baby Sleep While Traveling."
I know it can be a lot, but anything that helps your baby sleep at home should come with you while you travel.
- Travel Crib - this can also be a pack 'n' play that folds up. Just make sure that your baby is used to it before you travel.
- Sheets for travel crib - possibly and extra set, too
- Dreamland Baby Wearable Weighted Blanket or Swaddle - weighted blankets do wonders for sleep, and these ones made specifically for your little one from Dreamland Baby are a far better option than the typical sleep sack.
- Baby Monitor - if you can manage it, we highly recommend having your baby sleep in a different room than you so everyone can get their best sleep. So, you'll want to have your baby monitor handy.
- Calming Music Device - music does wonders for calming a baby as we discuss here
- Lovey, stuffy, or favorite Blanket - to snuggle before sleeping
- Pacifiers - if your baby takes one.
Feeding Time On the Go
To help feeding time go smoothly, you're definitely going to want to plan ahead. Forgetting something could mean the difference between a happy, calm baby and a screaming, frustrated one. A hangry baby is not someone you want while traveling. Being proactive in your packing will ensure that feeding time goes smoothly.
- Wide-Mouth Bottles - you can, of course, bring any bottle your baby uses, but wide-mouth bottles are much easier to clean and means you can skip bringing the bottle brush.
- Burp Cloths
- Sterilizer bags - as long as you have access to a microwave, this makes for an easy way to sterilize pump parts and bottles
- Bottle Wipes
- Portable Bottle Warmer - you'll want to make sure you have one that is truly portable and can be used on the airplane, etc.
- Breast Pump - If you pump for your baby, you'll want to have this with you on the plane, as well
- Nursing Cover - if you breastfeed. Using one will help your baby be less distracted as they eat.
- Cooler Bag
- Formula - it will be helpful to portion these into a bag or dispenser ahead of time
- Baby food - for babies who are eating solids.
- Baby spoons
- Wipe-off bib - because the less wash you have to do on vacation the better.
Staying Clean and Healthy While Traveling
By now you've gotten in a daily routine for keeping your baby fresh and clean. You know about how many diapers she uses and how often she needs to be bathed. So, these things are pretty easy to plan for. Sickness or teething, on the other hand, is usually a surprise. We hope you don't have a sick baby on your trip, but it's best to be prepared just in case. We're recommending items to eliminate as many germs as possible, while also having the tools you need in case your little one needs extra care.
- Diapers - always over plan when it comes to how many diapers to pack! Trust me!
- Plastic Bags - for dirty diapers and clothes
- Changing Pad
- Sanitizing Wipes - You'll definitely want to wipe down your baby's airplane space to keep germs at bay.
- Portable Bath Tub - you can get one that inflates for easy packing
- Travel-sized baby shampoo and body wash
- DIY Baby First Aid Kit - Consider what your baby may need. It's best to be prepared - recommended top items include: infant Tylenol, baby thermometer, saline nasal drops, band-aids, and diaper rash cream.
Pro Tip: If your baby's ears get plugged on an airplane, utilizing a pacifier can help. Even if it's not feeding time, consider breastfeeding or giving your baby a bottle as this can help, too.
Being On the Move
Whether you're flying or driving, transporting your baby is a big part of your travel plans. Not to mention planning for all of the activities you'll do once you arrive at your destination. Be sure to really consider all that you plan to do on your trip so that you have what you need to easily get around with your baby. Because forgetting something as simple as a stroller will equal a very worn-out mom and dad!
- Lightweight collapsible stroller - You'll want a stroller that's easily portable, folds up, and doesn't take up too much space. A little basket underneath will come in very handy, too.
- Car seat - Even if your baby will be on your lap while you fly, you'll need this when you arrive. Car rental companies do rent out car seats, but I would personally avoid this option if you can help it. You can get a very safe, yet inexpensive car seat that is lightweight and much easier to haul around during your vacation.
- Diaper Backpack - Maybe you normally use a diaper bag, but a backpack is much easier to get around with.
- Hip Seat to carry baby - This is a new product on the market that has saved me over and over again traveling through the airport when I want to ditch the stroller. I ordered the Tush Baby after I saw it on Shark Tank and could not recommend it more!
Pro tip: if you fly Southwest with a lap baby they usually have 1-2 unsold seats and if you ask you can bring your carseat on and put your baby in it, score!
It's Time to Travel
Once you have everything checked off your list and packed, you are ready to travel with your baby! Beyond the needs listed here, you'll of course want lots of clothes for your little one as well as some new and favorite toys to keep them busy and happy. Safe travels!