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5 Mistakes To Avoid When Traveling With A Baby

I’ve made plenty of mistakes when travelling with my babies. I once forgot to book a cot and discovered the hotel had nothing available.  I’ve also forgotten to bring a spare change of clothes for me onboard and sat for 12 hours with a top decorated in vomit.

With a minefield of mistakes out there to make, which ones can we avoid?

NOT TRAVELLING!  

Don’t worry about messing up your baby’s sleep patterns, jetlag etc.  Life is short and one of the best times to travel with children is when they don’t move and don’t cost too much (flying with a toddler = no fun).  Extra bonus if you get a bassinet when flying longhaul. This is the time for you to pick the destination you want to travel to rather than planning your day around what activities the kids would enjoy.
Sky in Bassinet
OVERPACKING

I can’t believe the amount of hand luggage I see some parents turn up to for a flight.  Whilst I appreciate you need a plentiful stock of milk, nappies and wipes, beyond that, babies don’t need too much.  One indispensable item for you is a baby carrier which makes travelling through an airport and wandering around a city that much easier.
Sam and back facing Ergo 360
NOT SPEAKING TO YOUR ACCOMMODATION IN ADVANCE 

You never know what a hotel/guesthouse/villa has to offer unless you ask.  Why schlep a travel cot halfway across the world when your hotel can provide a lovely one for you for free?  Hotels these days have wised up to parents needs and can often provide all sorts of fancy things from sterilisers and baby baths to moulis and even strollers. You should also reconfirm everything you have requested at least a few days in advance of your trip.

Calcot Manor - contents of baby boxRIGIDLY STICKING TO YOUR BABY’S ROUTINE

It’s your holiday and it’s time to relaaaaaxxx….  Whilst it’s good to get your child on to local time as soon as possible, don’t feel you have to retreat to your hotel bedroom for every midday nap or worry about keeping baby up past their usual bedtime.
Think about buying or borrowing buggy blackout which will make it easier for your baby to sleep whilst you go out for dinner or sit by the pool.  Who knows, if you put your baby to bed later than usual, perhaps you’ll get a lie in the next morning (wishful thinking?)

Snoozeshade plus photoGOING IN CLUELESS

When it comes to parenting, people LOVE dishing out advice and that includes travelling with kids (hello, have you read Jetlag & Mayhem?)  Firstly, seek advice on where to stay and what to do, nothing beats a friend’s recommendation.  Then surf the net, get ideas and tips from all those wonderful sites out there.  Check items off a packing list to make sure you don’t overpack (no 2!) but do bring everything you need.  

5 comments

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  1. Madaline Huntsinger Federico

    This is a great article! I live in Italy but travel back and forth to America with my now one year old! The only thing I would add is “choose the right airline!”. I’ve had great luck with ALL airlines until I got to United (just returned two days ago!), most infant in lap babies get those weird belts – not so on United – you literally have to insure you have a death grip on baby!
    Thanks for sharing!!!
    Found you via SITS Saturday Sharefest

  2. Heather

    Very good tips! I like the idea of phoning ahead. I have only done one big trip (in a car) when Nicky was 6 months old – it was horrific driving while he was crying. We split the trip up into two segments. When he slept it was great – otherwise I think he was just sick of that car seat!

  3. Rachel G

    My parents traveled with all of us kids at very young ages (my baby sister took her first flight at 2 weeks old since she had to go to the embassy to get her passport!) I think they were really good examples to me for the future to not be afraid and avoid traveling with little ones.

  4. MummyTravels

    Agreed – great tips. Especially the ‘do travel’ one. It’s so easy to be put off by the other people’s fears and horror stories, and while nothing in life runs smoothly 100% of the time, that’s as true at home as abroad. I’ve had some wonderful travels with my daughter already and she’s not yet two. The same goes for relaxing the routine – every trip has seen jetlag or not wanting to nap in a buggy or unusual meal times etc. As long as some food and sleep goes in, it all works out somehow.

    1. Nicola

      Absolutely!

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