Traveling with babies and children can be a nightmare, so let’s take a look at some simple tips that will calm the nerves of parents and kids alike.
Flying with Babies and Toddlers
Birth certificate. If you are flying with a baby under the age of two, be sure to bring this. Most airlines will ask to see it to prove their age, otherwise you will be paying full price for their ticket.
Correspond naps with flight time. Choosing a flight for a time that your baby would usually sleep will make your trip go so much smoother.
Get a window seat. This ensures you’ll only have to guard one side from sneaky, curious baby hands trying to grab the passenger next to you. I was stuck in a middle seat once and had to wrangle my son for three hours.
Make a checklist and pack smart. Pack a carry-on bag small enough to fit under your seat because it’s a hassle to reach a bag in the overhead compartment. Also, pack a change of clothes for baby and for yourself. Accidents happen. My son pooped on a flight once and it came out all over the place. I had a change of clothes for him, but not for me.
Bring something for the baby to suck on. The intense pressure changes from take offs and landings hurt their ears, but sucking on something will ease the pressure.
Pack entertainment. Let them pack a carry-on with things they like. Also bring a small blanket and pillow.
Gum. Chewing gum will help them (and you) deal with pressure changes during the flight.
Driving with Babies and Toddlers
Bring plenty of toys. Lots and lots of toys. Don’t skimp here, you will definitely need them to occupy a bored baby. Also, have someone sit in the back with the baby to entertain them.
Window shades. My son, like most babies, absolutely hates having the sun in his face. Find something to block the light.
Plan on a longer trip. With a baby in the vehicle, travel times will take longer with pit stops to change, feed and give the baby a break. Take your time.
Bring a portable play pen. If you will be staying over night anywhere on your trip bring one of these. Sharing a hotel bed with a baby is miserable, every move you make will wake them and you’re restless the entire night worrying they will roll off the bed.
Entertainment is key. Let them pick toys, electronic devices or other forms of entertainment to bring. You can invest in a portable movie player and watch movies as well.
Games. You can go classic with I Spy and Slug Bug or get creative.
Pit stops. Make stops every three hours or so to stretch, have a bathroom break and look around.
Motion sickness. Be prepared for this. Make sure to have on hand either over the counter relief or some ginger ale to sooth the sickness.