Traveling with a baby can present its own unique set of obstacles, especially when it’s your first time. Small babies are susceptible to illness, but when they’re really little you have more control over what and who they come in contact with. And is traveling with a baby difficult? Yes, because there is definitely more work involved than tossing a handful of diapers into your backpack, but that doesn’t mean it’s not worth it.
The best food for baby, is also the easiest to “prepare” when you’re on the road/flight. Breastfeeding not only eliminates lugging bottles, nipples, equipment, formula milk and etc. But also baby will be getting valuable antibodies that will protect against illness when you’re away from home (especially to other countries).
When you’re traveling, a stroller is not just a stroller, it is a highchair, a bed, and an all-around stuff-lugger. The type of travel you prefer will dictate whether a lightweight or an all-terrain stroller would be more appropriate but don’t cheap out here. Good strollers are easy to push, and most are easy to fold up when needed. In warmer climates, slings and carriers can become uncomfortable, so a stroller can offer some shade as well.
Bring a goody bag containing a few of your baby’s favorite toys, plus some surprises. Possibilities include nesting toys, baby-proof mirrors, rattles, musical toys, soft animals, pop-up toys, plastic keys, and teething rings. Only take a handful to make packing easier.
If your baby has started on solids, bring as much baby food as you’ll need for the trip. (Exception: If you’re traveling internationally or to a place where it might be tough to find what you need, it may be less of a headache to pack a full supply of food). Bring a bib that’s large enough to cover most of baby’s outfit, with a waterproof coating so it can be easily wiped off, and can be folded or rolled for easy packing. Bring enough diapers for the trip. It’s a good idea to pack a few extra diapers in case of travel delays. Also pack trash bags for dirty diapers. Pack at least one extra change of clothes for yourself and your baby. Store them someplace that’s easily accessible, like in a carry-on backpack. You never know when a diaper leak or other mess might require a change of clothes. Travel with a blanket so that when you’re in a park, or an airport, you can offer your baby a nice spot to lie down, crawl and roll.
If you try to cram too much into your days and into your trip, you’ll end up feeling exhausted. Use your destination’s local parenting websites to find parks and other baby-friendly outings that will be easy and comfortable for everyone. That climbable monument/jungle trek/coral reef has been there for a long time already and will still be there when your child is old enough to enjoy it with you. Take things slow.