Going on a road trip with your baby isn’t anything to be afraid of! Traveling with your child is an exciting milestone that the whole family should be looking forward to. It won’t be anything like the road trips you have taken in the past – alone or as a couple – but it will be different in a very special way.
While it can be challenging, traveling with a baby can be rewarding if you’re prepared for it! To help you do that, here are 7 easy tips to remember.
1. Have an assortment of snacks and drinks handy!
Unless your baby hasn’t started eating solids yet, there is no such thing as too much snacks when you’re traveling. Stock up on on-the-go snacks such as the following:
- Biscuits and crackers
- Hard-boiled eggs
- Peanut butter sandwiches
You can prepare in advance squeeze pouches of mashed vegetables and fruits, or you can also go for store-bought brands – whatever you prefer really!
2. Bring extra clothing and diapers.
Babies are well-known to be unpredictable, so you must be ready for whatever may happen on the road. Our own recommendation is to bring at least one change of clothes for every 2-3 hours that you’re on the road. For diapers, it’s at least one diaper for every hour of travel time.
In addition to that, don’t forget about trash bags and changing mats! You may not be able to find a pit stop when an “emergency” occurs, and you may need to change your baby’s diaper inside the car.
3. Be armed with your baby’s favorite toys, music, and videos.
Master the art of distraction! We know how frustrating it can be to keep a baby entertained especially when you need to be focusing on the road, so bring your child’s favorite toys. If toys stop doing the trick, don’t shy away from using an iPad for music and videos to keep your little one happy!
4. Plan out your pit stops
It can be exhausting to be cooped up inside a moving vehicle for hours, and if you feel weary, you can bet your child feels the same way, too! Plan out all your pit stops to get out of the car once in a while. Walk your baby to breathe in some fresh air and take in the new surroundings.
You can also use this time to stretch, eat, breastfeed (if you are nursing), change baby’s diaper, and use the restroom.
5. Don’t forget your child’s favorite blanket!
It’s always helpful to bring something familiar that will remind your baby of home. Your child’s favorite blanket will give them a feeling of comfort, which will help them fall asleep. Play some soothing music to set the atmosphere and use a sun shade on the windows if the sun is up.
PS: Throw your baby’s blanket into the dryer before you leave for that extra warmth!
6. Before you go, make sure your vehicle is ready for the road trip.
Safety takes precedence over everything else especially now that you’re carrying precious cargo inside your vehicle. Before you go, check your oil and coolant, inspect your brakes and tires, make sure that your lights are working, and so on. Don’t forget to also check your seat belts and your baby’s car seat!
7. Don’t be afraid to bend the rules and just enjoy the trip!
Don’t worry too much about not being able to follow your baby’s regular sleep and eating schedule. Just tune in to your baby’s cues and follow them even if they are different from your usual routine. You’ll gradually settle back into your old routine once you get home, so take it easy.
If you don’t normally let your child watch YouTube or eat processed food, then you may have to make a few adjustments when you’re traveling. Don’t beat yourself up over small things! We say that as long as you and your family are happy and fed, then you’re doing absolutely well.
We understand if you’re anxious about bringing your baby to a trip, especially if it’s baby’s first time. But we want you to pursue this trip and make it happen! You are going to learn a lot of things as a family and you are going to create many beautiful memories on the road. Armed with these 7 basic tips, we know that you are not going to regret traveling with your little one.