A helpful guide to travelling with babies

One of our BabyBliss mums, Kesh, shares her great tips on travelling with a young family.

My husband Tim and I travel a lot for work and always as a family with our boy, Roo. Roo is only two years old and has already taken more than 100 flights! Our travel isn’t always smooth sailing, but we have learnt some really helpful lessons over the years that make our travel that much more enjoyable. So if you’ve got a trip planned with your little people, here are some tips!

Carry-on essentials
When travelling domestically, we check in one bag and carry on two. Tim always carries on his camera bag, which also has all of our important things like wallets, phones, travel documents and keys and I have a bag with all Roo’s essentials for the flight. This is what’s included:

Nappies – I pack only the amount I will need for the flight, plus two extra to be safe.
Wipes – No brainer.
Muslin wraps – Muslin wraps are amazing. They can act as a bib, pillow, blanket, change mat, sun shade, comforter, wrap, privacy sheet… basically whatever you need them to be! I pack two, one for the dirty stuff and one for the clean stuff.
Boobs/bottle with formula – It is hard to forget to pack your boobs so I probably didn’t need to mention that! Feeding during take off and landing works a treat to keep baby settled and free from painful popping ears. So get that bottle warmed by the flight attendants before take-off or get your boob ready to go in the baby’s mouth just as you lift off. A great thing too is that usually the combo of motion, jet noise and feeding puts the little one straight to sleep.
Food (if your baby is on solids) – I love, love, LOVE those squeeze packs of baby food and they are perfect for travelling. Ella’s is my favourite brand because they are actually 100% organic (lots say they are, but unfortunately they’re not), easy to find in most grocery stores and Roo really likes all of the different flavours.
Baby items are exempt from the liquid allowance for air travel which includes drink, milk, pre-packaged food and medication. They still like you to keep the individual liquid amount to under 4 oz. or 100ml. Some airports don’t take a second look at anything baby related and some are still paranoid so check with your airline before you head off on the specific requirements of your airport security.
Toys, books, snacks – If your baby has a favourite one, make sure to throw it in the bag. There might be times when you are stuck in your seat longer than you want while the seatbelt sign is on.
Change of clothes – I always dress Roo in the most comfortable onesie he owns for flights and pack an extra in the carry-on bags just in case of emergency. For long haul flights I pack two spare changes.

Checked luggage
In addition to more of what we’ve included in the carry-on list above, we travel everywhere with:
Our pram
A baby carrier
Our portacot – We’ve invested in a brilliant portacot which is really light and very easy to set up (a Babybjorn travel crib)

Extra tips for travelling with babies

Check your pram at the gate – When we travel long haul and we know there will be waiting at the gate, we check our pram at the gate. This means you can keep your bub in the pram right up until you board. Just mention when you’re checking in that you’d like to keep your pram until the gate and you should be good to go.

Use ring slings – If I don’t check the pram at the gate I keep Roo in a ring sling. The ring sling (I use Sakura Bloom, so beautiful) is awesome because it takes two seconds to get him in and out at the scanning machines and I can carry him right onto the plane without getting sore arms.

Adjust your timings – Travelling with little people means everything just takes longer. Allow extra time to get to the airport or driving time if you are road tripping. It’s always when it’s least convenient that you have to attend to an urgent nappy change.

While our travelling is more considered now we have a baby (no more last minute escapes or random departure times) it has changed for the better. It is much more intense and sooo much more fun. We completely love travelling with our boy and look forward to the new adventure it will be when our second baby arrives in March next year. Our travel won’t stop, I know that for sure!

You can check out more of Kesh, Tim and Roo’s adventures at afield.com.au

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