Making Traveling Fun With Baby!
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Making Traveling Fun With Baby!

by Chantal Maddocks

You love your baby more than anything, but the very idea of traveling with an infant fills you with anxiety. Running errands with your little one in tow is hard enough! You probably think that a long road trip or a plane ride is out of the question, but travel with a baby on board is possible. You might even enjoy it! The better you plan your trip, the easier it will be on everyone. Here are a few tips for traveling with your baby:

Pack Smart: When you're flying with a baby, you want to be prepared for everything and then some. As a parent, you already know the drill. But on a plane, it's even more important to have all those essentials. It never hurts to have extras of all the basics. Pack extra diapers, extra snacks, and extra clothing. It can get chilly when you're in the air, so bring clothing you can layer.

You also want to bring fun, interactive games as well as comfort toys so baby will have something familiar to play with. I never forget my daughter's 'Nite-Nites' blanket that she can't sleep without or else it will surely lead to a melt-down. So keep baby entertained with toys, games and snacks and before you know it, you'll already be at your destination! *Tip: Opt for toys that have minimal small pieces or parts. It's easy to lose them during traveling.

Selecting Seats: When you book your flight, give some thought to your seat choices. If you sit in an aisle seat, you'll have an easier time getting up for bathroom breaks and walking the aisle. If you're more concerned about having privacy for nursing, you might want to choose a window seat. If you're comfortable with your baby on your lap for the duration of the flight, you probably don't have to book an extra seat. Many parents find that the bulkhead seating on a plane is ideal. It offers a little more room, and with no passengers directly in front of you, you might feel less stressed when your baby fusses.

Fears of Tears: If you're anxious about flying with an infant, you've probably imagined getting dirty looks from passengers as you try to soothe a crying, inconsolable child. The truth is, it happens. But it happens to every parent at one time or another. You can try feeding or taking a stroll up and down the aisle, but sometimes there's not much else you can do. Just know that there are plenty of sympathetic parents who know what you're going through. And this too shall pass.

Schedule Around Sleep: Depending on your destination, you might find driving to be a more attractive option. Travel by car gives you more room and more flexibility, but it's still important to be prepared. If you want to maximize your peace and quiet in the car, try to hit the road when your baby is most likely to fall asleep.

Be the DJ: Don't forget the tunes! Every great car trip has a good soundtrack. Make sure your playlist includes songs that your baby will groove on.

Dining and Driving: When it's time to eat, it's worth your time to pull over. Feeding your baby in a moving vehicle is a messy business, plus it is unsafe. It will be much easier, and safer, if you take a break from driving for meal times.

Having a baby doesn't mean that you're confined to a nursery until kindergarten. With a lot of preparation (and maybe a little luck) you might find that traveling with your baby is easier than you once thought.