Getting ready for your first trip with a newborn can seem like a daunting task. With hundreds of questions filling your mind, it's important to stay calm, cool, and collected. Although you can't predict every possible bump on the road, you can still do many things to prepare as best as you can. There are ways to make this work. Keeping your little one calm and entertained during a trip may seem like a mission impossible, but with the right approach, it can be done. Here is a collection of tips that will help you make your journey less stressful and more enjoyable for the parents and the baby, too.
The first step you should take on this journey is to make a checklist. If you haven't travelled with a baby before, this can be a life-saver. Making the list of all the necessities you need is important so you don't end up with an unnecessary burden. Grab a piece of paper and write down all the things you think your baby will need. Then go back, revise, and priorities. Think carefully about which of those things are really necessities and which you can go without. Make sure you do this few days before the trip. That will give you enough time to prepare and maybe add some items you forgot to include. Here are some of the things your travel kit should include:
If you're travelling by car, there are a number of things that need to be checked off the list before you hit the road. First things first, make sure your car is serviced and clean. Baby's immune system isn't developed as yours so they can get sick quite easily. The next step is securing your baby during the trip. If you haven't done it already, do some research and invest in the best car seat for a baby that you can find. It's also advisable to look for some safety tips which will ensure you do everything right, like fasten the seat properly. This is also important if you have to change transportation along the way. Majority of airlines will allow you to bring your car seat on board. This way, your baby will have more space (it will be less cranky) and you won't have to hold them on your lap for the entire flight. It's best of both worlds.
Whether you're travelling by plane or by car, schedule it during your baby's nap time. Children's endurance spam is relatively short, so try to coincide the departure time with bedtime. This way, your baby's sleep schedule won't be disrupted which means a more pleasant experience for everybody. If you're driving a long distance, it's best to drive at night. It may not be the most enjoyable option for the parents, but you will probably make fewer breaks because your kids will spend most of their time sleeping.
Many women tend to get nervous about nursing in public, especially during the flight. If you're one of them, don't worry, we've got you covered. You can pump milk at home and bring it on a plane in bottles. Another great tip is to make a privacy curtain by pinning the receiving blanket to the seat in front of you and on the side of your own seat. Passengers are usually very understanding and they will probably offer to give you a hand. On the other hand, if your baby is bottle-fed, you need to prepare bottles with baby formula powder. When on the plane, you can simply add some warm water which is something flight attendants always have on hand.
One of the advantages of travelling by car with a baby is that you can take a break whenever you want. Before hitting the road, it's important to remember that it will probably take you more time than you originally planned. Sure, you have scheduled your departure time during your baby's nap time, but that usually doesn't last more than a couple of hours at best. Making stops will benefit not only a baby but the parents, too. You'll get the chance to stretch and to rest. Plan your route ahead, and look for interesting places that can be interesting for stops like picnic areas, playgrounds, or restaurants with a nice big garden.
This might be the most important tip of all. Even if you did everything you could to plan and prepare for this trip, unexpected things can happen. If that happens, don't be hard on yourself and try not to lose your temper. Take a deep breath, and if you can, take a break and find a place where you can relax for a moment. Seeing things as challenges and not obstacles will help you stay in a good mood. When it gets hard, just remember - that too shall pass.
Travelling with a baby doesn't have to be a nerve-wracking experience. There are many ways that can make your trip smooth sailing. Following these tips will ensure you plan, prepare, and most importantly enjoy travelling with your little one.