It’s easy to feel shackled to the house right after your baby’s born. Your body is still healing, and their immune system is still growing, so it makes sense to stay inside. But once the baby is ready to travel at about three to six months, I know I’m ready to shake off cabin fever and hit the road, baby in tow. But any mama will tell you that travel is no simple feat, especially with an infant. It can be done, though. You just need a whole lot of patience and my tips and tricks for traveling with a baby.
Strategize the Flight
Most of us can relate to the experience of sitting behind a baby who’s screaming on an airplane. It’s uncomfortable and unpleasant as a passenger, but y’all, it’s even worse when that baby is yours. But don’t worry; generations of beleaguered moms have figured out all kinds of tips for traveling with a baby by air.
Here are a few of my favorites.
- Try to get an aisle seat.
- Call ahead to see if you can reserve a bassinet for longer flights.
- Get to the airport even earlier than you think you need to.
- Avoid layovers, if you can.
- Bring a bottle for your baby to suck on during take-off and landing.
You also may feel tempted to cash in on the fact that “lap babies” get on the plane for free. Trust me—book that extra seat for the baby. Being able to spread out will be a lifesaver on that flight.
As moms, we can get a reputation for always having mountains of stuff with us. After all, we want to be ready for anything. But the more stuff you have, the more stuff you have to lug around, tote through baggage check, and risk losing.
Take my advice, y’all: if you can buy it at your destination, don’t bring it. Bring enough diapers and wipes for the road, and buy the rest when you get there. And instead of bringing your whole stroller with you, just wear your baby. It’ll keep your hands free anyway.
Maintain Sleep As Much As Possible
It’s tough enough getting your babies to sleep at home. Getting them to sleep on the road can seem like an impossible dream. And if you’ve ever gone toe-to-toe with a sleep-deprived baby, you know that it can suck some of the fun out of any situation. Here are a few things that can help:
- Try to put your babies down at the same time as you would at home.
- Develop a nighttime routine that mirrors your normal one.
- If you can’t get a nap in, try to do an earlier bedtime.
- Make sure the baby has enough playtime during the day so they sleep at night.
Bottom line: try to create the ideal environment for sleep by making your baby as comfortable as possible. If you have sound machines, sleep sacks, and sheets from home, use them.