for traveling with little ones. I know there are many moms and dads who have traveled a lot more with their kiddos, so I in no way claim to be the go-to person when it comes to family travel but I’ve learned, mostly the hard way, some tricks that make traveling smoother with a baby and am happy to share the wealth 🙂
- Forget the cute over-the-shoulder diaper bag and use a backpack. It’s so much easier to have something secure to your back than having to constantly adjust a bag that’s slung over your shoulder. Plus I think it’s easier for my husband to deal with carrying around a backpack than a traditional diaper bag (a little less scarring for the ego :p). I use this Eddie Bauer backpack/diaper bag from Target and love it.
- Organize the contents of the bag with individual bags. Sound redundant? It is! Haha But after going on a couple flights and getting so frustrated having to dig around for items I realized I needed to have three bags within the big one,: one for Lucy’s toys, one for Lucy’s food and one for Lucy’s diapers/wipes. The diapers one is great because instead of having to lug the backpack into the airplane’s TINY bathroom, I just grab the smaller bag and off we go. The bags I use are a variation of these ones from Cath Kidston.
- Bring an extra outfit for the babe (obvious) but also be sure to bring an extra shirt for yourself. I would say an extra outfit altogether but I’m assuming you’re like me and are already low on space! It’ll feel great to throw on a fresh shirt (poo, pee, spit-up free) before you get off the plane.
- Wear an extra large scarf. I say this only because some flights don’t provide blankets (especially the short ones) and it’s always nice to have something extra to wrap yourself and your little one in if it gets chilly (which in my experience it does, especially on night flights).
- Just because they invite you to board first because you have children, doesn’t mean you have to. I think spending as much time outside the aircraft as possible is best. I have no desire to get onto that plane and spend any unnecessary time in cramped quarters with Geo and Lucy… the flight is long enough 🙂
- If you can, buy a handful of new toys to slowly introduce to your little ones throughout the flight. I literally just went to London’s version of the Dollar Store, Tiger, and got some things like measuring spoons, a mini snow globe, a wind-up pumpkin (random shit! lol), and showed them to her on the flight. It was fun for her and me.
- Lastly, my favorite thing about flying was being able to sit back and watch a movie. The first couple flights with Lucy I didn’t even bother turning the t.v. on because it didn’t seem worth it. One of my recent flights with her though I realized I just needed to find a movie so stupid that I didn’t need to follow a script to understand what was going on… that movie was Blake Lively’s The Shallows. And yes, it was awful. BUT I’m not gonna lie, during those brief moments of downtime it was nice to lock into my screen and know what was going on even though I hadn’t been following it.
Oh and I know there are lots of strong feelings about medicating your child during a flight but I’ll be straight-up and share that we gave Lucy Benadryl during our red eye home to London a few weeks ago. It was the first time we’d given it to her (ever, actually) but she’d had a cold all week that seemed to be getting worse and we were concerned her ears would be bothering her on the flight. I know, I know all about having her suck on a bottle or paci during the rise up and descent but the hours were so late I knew she wouldn’t be interested in a bottle at that time. So we drugged her and it worked.
We gave her 1.5 ml of the suggested 2.5 ml for a 7 month old and I would totally do it again. Our only motivation to give it to her was to prevent her from being in pain, and it did just that. SO if you have any reason to think your baby might benefit from some medicine during a flight than I don’t see why you should avoid it. It’s just an opinion but I know moms in my own circle of friends that might feel differently about this and I just think its important for any mom contemplating it to hear from someone who’s gone this route.
Flights can be stressful but Geo and I try our best to find humor in it all!
Ps. Get ready to get a workout in! I feel no regrets eating candy on a flight because I know I’ve earned it carrying all this extra weight around! 🙂
Grateful: For the opportunity we’ve had these last few months to travel and experience so many new things together as a family. George and I understand what a rare chance this is and are trying to enjoy every moment of it. Next up: Barcelona!