Since we were traveling for the last week, the tips listed below made my week run a lot smoother, so I thought they’d make a good Manic Monday!
Air Travel has changed a lot in the last few years. With more rules, regulations, and restrictions, it feels like making traveling with baby, or kids, simple and easier is nigh impossible. So, below, I’ll share the things that make it easier for our family. And, I must say, we’ve made getting through security with a family of 5 run like a well oiled machine!
1. Check with your airline about food allowances for babies. I discovered that sterilized water for baby’s bottle IS allowed. You may be asked to taste it, and may be pulled aside for a deeper search, but you are allowed to take water in the baby’s bottle. Baby food is allowed, but I recommend brand new store bought jars or pouches. If they can’t identify this lump of goo in your Tupperware cube, they will most likely make you toss it.
2. Take enough food for the time of your travel plus 2-3 extra feeds. You never know when you are going to get delayed, something will spill, or baby will suddenly be extra hungry. If you breast feed, don’t worry about keeping baby to his normal schedule. I’ve found some element of demand feeding is usually needed. But, fight the temptation to over pack. Chances are you’re going somewhere that will have places you can buy food, formula, diapers, etc once you get there.
3. Take a change of clothes for baby and yourself in a carry on. It only took one time of baby’s diaper exploding poo all over me and baby to learn this one.
4. Wear slip on shoes. In the States, everyone is required to send their shoes through the scanner. Tying and untying is a waste of time. In Europe you only have to remove your shoes if you are wearing boots of any kind (including work boots for men) or thick heeled shoes.
5. Pack one or two new toys/books, or toys he hasn’t seen/played with for awhile to take on the plane so they will hold his interest. This trip, I hid his favorite 2 toys for a couple of days before we took off, so when he saw them on the plane he was super excited to play with them. For older kids, if they have handheld video games, or are watching a movie on a device, please make sur they wear headphones! You want to be respectful of those around you! The same goes for baby toys that play music. I save those for home, or pack them in the checked bags.
6. Take a stroller that collapses with one hand. You must remove baby from any apparatus (stroller, sling, carrier, car seat, etc) and send it through the scanner. It saves time and effort if you can do that with one hand (since you’ll be holding baby with the other). We have swapped strollers with friends several times in order to do this.
7. Take cash. If all else fails and baby is inconsolable, buy drinks for those around you. They’ll care a lot less about your crying baby. 🙂
8. Relax. take some deep breaths. Traveling stresses me out. Every time. But, as the thermostat of my family, the more relaxed I am, the more relaxed and happier they are.