Tuesday, 29 November 2016

10 Tips When Travelling With A baby

Just under two years ago our small family of three traveled to Nevada and California to visit some dear friends. We flew to Las Vegas, drove to LA and then up to San Fran where we then flew back home to Canada. It was a 10-day trip, packed with so much to do. Our first born was just over a year, and we had yet to really travel with him with the exception of driving to Kelowna and the Island for no more than a few days. We knew this trip was going to be a whole other ball game. We had numerous hours of driving, swapping from house to house and a whole lot of unpredictability as to just how it was all going to go.

However, in all of the chaos, I thought this trip would be there were a few things that made it that much easier. Here are 10 tips I recommend to anyone traveling with a baby for the first time! 

1. Backpack diaper bag

I actually didn't have a backpack for this trip, but when we traveled to Victoria that following winter my dear friend did and I was quick to change over. Nothing beats one less bag hanging off your arm and two free hands. You can buy some really gorgeous ones such as Fawn Designs and Lily Jade with all sorts of pocket options and different ways to carry your bag if you like options. 

2. Pack up special toys

By special toys, I mean toys your kid has never seen before. I gathered a bunch of small cheap toys over the last few weeks at home and stuck them in a small bag for the airplane. Each time my son seemed to be at the end of his rope with one, I would give him another. Same thing as we drove from LA to San Fran (same bag of toys since they were still a novelty). We would give him a toy one by one, as his attention span for each of them grew less and less. It worked wonders.

3.And there is always Paw Patrol 

And if the toy idea doesn't last long and your about done, there is always Paw Patrol.

4. Wear baby while going through customs and security.

We had so much stuff to carry, push, and organize through customs. Strapping our little guy on us was the easiest way to get through it all. I was able to do everything with him on me right up till we sat in our seats on the plane. This way you can pack some of your luggage on your stroller instead of having your baby in it and still have two hands to move stuff. Beluga Baby Wraps and Ergo Carriers are amazing for this. 

5. Bring an umbrella stroller

One of my favorite things we did was buy a really light weight stroller. One we could easily carry since we rented a car, and obviously had to bring it on the plane. Plus, with airports you never know if your stuff will get damaged, so buying something cheaper was a great option.

6. Be the last on the plane

I know there is the special boarding time at the beginning airport offer to get yourself sorted out on the plane, and if that works best for you, go for it. For us, though, I really enjoyed going last. I don't do well with crowds and small spaces, so the idea of having tons of people boarding the plane and having to wait an extra 15-20 minutes on the plane was not comforting. This way it was less time for my me and my child to be in a small space and less time to get antsy. We are quite organized people so we were ready when we got on the plane with an under seat bag and our overhead luggage. We didn't need to go through bags or pull out anything. So coming on last was quick, efficient and we were in the air in a matter quickly after.

7. Don't forget to change diapers before boarding

Is there really any need to explain. Here's hoping your baby doesn't take a big poo. Changing a diaper on an airplane just doesn't seem like fun. 

8. At the hotel, use the bathroom as a bedroom

Want to feel like your still on vacation, and like you don't have to go to bed at 7 when your kid does? Make the bathroom a separate room. Most hotels will have cribs, or if you have a playpen, throw it in a safe area in the bathroom and you have yourself a little room for your baby. Yes, we did sometimes use the lobby bathroom, but all the movies and late night talks made it totally worth it!

9. Ask for a crib

Most hotels have cribs. Ya, I had NO idea! Ask for one when you book, no need to bring a playpen if you don't have to. Saves you one less thing to bring along.

10. Bring a sound machine

Lastly, bring some sort of baby husher or noise machine. Especially if you have used one since they were born, this little tool can help prompt your baby to take a nap which is especially helpful if you are on the road during nap time or in the stroller. Also, back to number 3, about putting the baby in the bathroom. The noise from the sound machine will echo in there, loud enough you may even be able to use the bathroom without waking your little one!! Perfect for midnight pee breaks.

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