It’s easier to fly with an infant than a toddler so if you have the choice, try to do as much long haul travel before your baby starts crawling and after she has started walking. That’s not to say that flying with an infant on your lap is a piece of cake. There’s still a lot to consider. In-flight nursing and bottle feeding both have their challenges; then there’s ear popping, blowouts, bathroom breaks, the potential for crying, yoga in the isles, dirty looks from fellow passengers. And that’s all before you arrive at your destination. Baby gear has made travel a little easier, from gate to hotel room. Here are my travel with infant essentials.
- Diapers and wipes – take one diaper per hour of flying as a rule. Also pack more in your stowed luggage to use until you can buy more at your destination. Airport pharmacies usually stock diapers, but at an exorbitant price, so bring more than you think you’ll need.
- Sensory toys like a tactile set or Lamaze toy can keep baby’s hands busy in a dimly lit cabin.
- Dual purpose cover – Milk Snob’s all in one car seat cover and nursing shawl is perfect for travel. It’s also super soft so you can use it as a blanky for naps.
- Medical essentials – Hand sanitizer is useful in-flight and at the airport to spray hands and dropped toys. I also pack a thermometer, nasal aspirator, baby nail clippers, Tylenol or Motrin.
- Snap style carrier like the Baby Bjorn – this is the easiest carrier for the plane. Just click baby in and get your yoga on by the exit row. The Ergo is also pretty quick and easy too, but unless you can wrap your baby in a Moby or Solly in your sleep, pack them in your stowed luggage and take a snap style on board.
- Change of clothes for flight – As well as your vacation outfits, pack at least one complete set of clothes in your carry on for unexpected blow out or throw up, or unsteady dinner service.
- Travel crib – I love the BabyBjorn Travel Crib. Ours has taken us through Europe with Finn and Australia twice, most recently with Jules and we use it for family visits too. It’s compact for travel but folds out to be really roomy and sturdy.
- A travel bath like the Munchkin inflatable duckie is great for hotel accommodation or any place not set up for kids.
- Travel systems like the Chicco Bravo Trio come with a car-seat and a stroller that converts into a snap-and-go base for the car-seat. Both are able to be checked in as baby items and replace a bulky bassinet-style infant stroller.