Wondering how to handle feedings, nappy changes, airplane rides with an infant? Don’t stick to home with all these thoughts. Find out everything you need to know about traveling with a baby.
We did 2 weeks of domestic and 3 weeks(yes!!!) of international traveling with our 9 months old. Despite the fact that she enjoys traveling we were bit skeptical. We did everything from carrying her milk, toys and her favorite nursery rhymes to make sure she is comfortable.
Here some tips form our personal experience
- Get his/her passport / passport card in place. Needless to mention that international travel requirements(passport/visa) is applicable to infants as well
- For domestic travel, usually we were asked for birth certificate to check the DOB but passport card also worked for us
- After 6 months when she started with her solid food we decided to take her out. Prior to that we did only day long / weekend trips
- As everyone know that up to 2 years of age infants can travel on minimum fare (10% or so of adult fare). However, some domestic flights allow infants on lap to travel free
- Booking ticket for an infant is easy, just select and add “infant on lap” while booking ticket online
- Make sure to call airlines and take an infant bassinet seat, this gives lot of support to parents not only baby can sleep comfortably instead of lap, it’s also easy to keep all items handy around leg space
- So far we have never paid any additional changes for infant bassinet
Check-In and Boarding:-
- Never forget to carry infant stroller/pushchair, we always carried 2 pieces( car seat and stroller) traveler
- One extra check-in bag is allowed for infant, weight limit may vary airline to airline. You can also carry one additional nappy/diaper bag in cabin. During security check-in inform to security officer regarding baby food
- People with infants always get a priority in queues for security check-in, boarding etc and sometimes for immigration too
- Check-in stroller/pushchair at the gate of plane, however baggage tag they will provide at check-in counter itself
- We always carry her formula bottles in flight. These tiny little bottles of 4oz each are convenient to carry and ready to feed as an when required
- Its common for babies to have some discomfort in ear. Feed the baby when flight is on low altitude However never feed when flight is about to touch the ground
- All lavatories in plane has baby changing, space is always a constraint so carry only necessary items for changing the baby
- Usually we try not to feed a lot during flight since baby is not moving much. Puffs and crunches for solid and milk works well so far
- Flight attendants can service for cleaning the milk bottles, providing whole milk( if required) or baby food. Sometimes for diaper too
- Regarding collecting the stroller/pushchair while de-boarding, we had a different experience for that in each travel, at some instances we got it back at baggage belt instead of gate.
- As soon as we land and pick the rental car, first destination is grocery store(identify it before you start your travel). Purchase all necessary items for you and baby. Checklist that we use can be found here
- We prefer traveling with complete travel system(car seat and full size stroller) instead of umbrella stroller. During long walks baby can sleep comfortably and for keeping/hanging the diaper bag, bottles etc.
- Apart from fresh food we carry some puffs, crunchies and cereal as per her taste. Also, check the local grocery store for some good ready to eat stuff for baby. We found some good rice puffs and veggie bites in Canada and UK.
- We have identified some outlets like McDonalds, Subway etc which has baby changing/Family toilets. So as and when required, search one of these nearby in map even this works on highways/freeways as well.
- Before booking hotel check for refrigerator and microwave, it helps to prepare/warm food for baby
- We always carry her milk bottles(ready to feed ones), flask of warm water, pair of changing clothes and diapers in nappy bag.
- Select diaper bag wisely and travel friendly, we selected an unisex backpack. My husband and me both can put it while traveling.
- It’s good to put all baby food in one bag, all other bags will not be opened during security check in
- Usually Baby changing are separately available in airports as a family room
- Carry harness for the places where stroller is not allowed like museums, forts etc.
- Check with your doctor regarding vaccination, required medicines etc
- Keep all required items for baby handy always, like medicine, blanket, cap/hat for any sudden change in weather.
- Never forget the mosquito repellent patch or spray. Folding mosquito net for baby can also be carried
- We missed rainproof cover all the time during Canada UK travel. We were covering the stroller with big polythene whenever was raining