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Travelling with a baby: 5 tips to make life easier

Updated: Aug 8, 2023

Planning your next holiday? But you realise you now have a baby and travelling is no longer as simple. Fret not, we’ve got your back! Read on to learn 5 tips to make travelling with a baby easier.

Plan ahead when travelling with a baby

Pick a baby-friendly destination—look for changing and nursing facilities, family-friendly activities, good weather and stroller-friendly pedestrian streets or walkable paths.

You might want to start small by taking a short road trip to test the water. Driving also gives you the flexibility to adjust your itinerary according to your baby and your needs.

While planning ahead is great, don’t overload your itinerary so that it’s not exhausting for both you and your baby. Try to plan the travelling around your baby’s nap time so that he can get some restful nap.

Pack sufficiently (but not excessively!)

Refer to a checklist as you pack. When preparing your checklist, consider what your little one will need or use during the trip from the moment he wakes up in the morning all the way till bedtime.

Bring something that can help your little one feel at home like his favourite toys and teether.

Also consider bringing small items from the bedroom such as a white noise machine to create a home away-from-home so that your baby can fall asleep more easily in a new environment.

My little one plays with her favourite toys from home after having her morning milk while we get ourselves ready for the day.

Last but not least, throw in a first-aid kit (and maybe lots of snacks for your little one and yourself) and you’ll be good to go!

Check your readiness

Travelling with a baby can be tiring—even the planning and packing stage can wear you out before embarking on the trip!

So, discuss ahead with your partner to check if you have the bandwidth to travel with a baby.

It’s OK to delay taking a trip until you feel ready for it. Just because your social media is filled with your friends’ vacation photos, it doesn’t mean that you have to push yourself to do it.

Keep the routine loosely

Babies thrive on having a routine. The consistency helps them feel safe in a new environment. Nonetheless, don’t be afraid of deviating from your baby’s routine a little. Babies are flexible and adaptable.

Be creative to maintain your little one’s routine while travelling. Consider a stroller nap to recharge your baby, room service for dinner to keep the early bedtime. A well-rested baby is more ready to enjoy a trip with you!

The better you are at keeping the established routine, the easier it is to return to your normal life after your trip ends. Taking care of a baby who fights nap while tackling your post-travel laundry is not an easy feat!

Bring a stroller AND baby carrier

A stroller is useful when your baby needs to take a nap (and also when you have lots of shopping bags!). If your usual stroller is too bulky, why not consider renting a compact one from rental company or even your friend and family?

Meanwhile, a baby carrier can be handy to keep your little one close to you especially when he is feeling uneasy with the new and stimulating environment. It’s also a good alternative when you’re travelling on public transports and around uneven terrain.

Keep a proper posture when using a baby carrier, or else you might end up with shoulder and back pain!

Airline travel- additional inputs from the IBU network

Marissa Chin, who calls her son an "escape artist" says he is a havoc creator. For his safety and her sanity, she recommends the use of a car seat on the plane. You need to buy your child a normal ticket, "We flew with AirAsia and Malaysia Airlines. As long as the carseat is FAA approved, it's allowed. But yes you'll need to buy a seat, and it needs to be on the far end / window seat. Any age is fine.

We did have a bit of a hiccup with MAS on one of our flights at the check-in counter, but once we rolled the carseat to the gate, the crews knew what to do."

Kinna A says it's better to install the carseat on a plane rather than checking it in

1. The child will have a car seat they're used to on arrival. No renting necessary.

2. We have no control over what happens to the carseat once they're checked in. We know how they handle the luggages down there. A hidden broken component in a carseat is unsafe.

3. They are seated and fastened safely on board. (Major plus when there's turbulence, or you just wanna have some time to dine)

Your best days of exploration are not over yet! Travelling with a baby can be challenging but it can also be rewarding and will certainly create some long-lasting family memories. With a baby, it’s still possible to see the world!

Written by Hazel Lo

Hazel is a full-time working mom with a toddler. Together with her supportive husband, they practise respectful caregiving at home and enjoy bringing their toddler to the park every weekend. Professionally, she is a training consultant and coach.

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