I have been so excited to share this info because I am a huge advocate of traveling with your kids, and not feeling like once they are born you have to stop all activities because of them!
When we told people we were bringing Roo the first thing the would say is you are crazy. People didn’t understand why we would want her to tag along, but to me it was the perfect opportunity to explore with my little family and get to start showing her the world, a huge goal of mine. The other thing people would say is good luck, which I do agree in some ways which I’ll explain below.
So I want to share my top tips for traveling with a baby under 1.
BEFORE YOU TRAVEL
- If traveling abroad call ahead and pay for the taxes for your baby to travel with you (when you travel internationally they charge you the taxes, so in our case to England it was $250.) When you call, also request the bassinet. Some planes have it depending on how long it takes to get to each destination. Had we called further in advance we would have been able to request it over the phone but instead we had to wait until the day we got to the airport and they gave us the bulkhead so we could have the the bassinet which is put in the middle seat. It was seriously a life saver for us.
- Make sure you have the baby listed as infant in arms on your flight
- Bring your stroller and car seat and check them at the gate- We take it every single time, even to Europe. We also have this bag to help with our carseat so it doesn’t get damaged.
- Consider upgrading to Economy Comfort and check if there are empty seats on the flight so that you can bring your carseat on the plane
- TSA PRE CHECK- this has saved my life so many times. Whether I am traveling with Rooney or on my own it has been the biggest life saver.
FOR YOUR FLIGHT
- We got some advice to bring gift cards for the flight attendants. I have to admit I was not convinced it would be this game changer for the flight but boy was I wrong. We got on, and boarded first, and got situated. I went and found the flight attendants and gave them all a $5 gift card and they were so excited. I think just being appreciated for their work is what made them so happy. We had people coming to our seat over and over to help with really anything and just check on us.
- Airplane Travel Pillow – We bought this amazing foot pillow that allowed me to put my feet up on it and relax more so that it wasn’t so uncomfortable with my legs sitting down, I was able to lay down more. It was a huge lifesaver for my trip to Boston, but for Europe I did pull it out and use it as well.
- Bring a few toys, but not enough that she has to many items. We put binky clips on all of our toys. We love the Ryan and Rose clips.
- Have snacks pre packed for the flight. Rooney is really into Veggie Sticks and it was the perfect snack for a plane ride and also for Europe in general. She had something she could hold in her hand and self feed.
- Have them wear pajamas for over night flights. We thought about having her go in one outfit and then change but that would have been a mess, so she wore a Loved Baby pajama set that we LOVE, and she was war, comfy, and ready to go to sleep when we put her down. We also brought her sleep sack and that was huge. She sleeps so much better in it and so having it there was so helpful to keep her in her normal routine even while on the plane. This is our favorite one, the Love to Dream Swaddle Up.
- Have extra clothes in your bag, as well as doggy bags to put the poopy diapers or the poopy clothes in. Change their bums right before you get on the plane also to avoid having to do it right when you get on and are taking off and it’s a delayed time schedule.
- Nurse before you take off and nurse when you are landing to help with ears popping. Rooney falls asleep almost every time we take off but it still does help with them popping their ears. Also bring your baby headphones! It will help your baby distract form the noise around them and also keep them super relaxed! Rooney loves hers and doesn’t mind sleeping with them on either.
- Pack light- have a few toys, a change of clothes for you and baby, and 2-3 diapers in there depending on how long your flight is. We had snacks, my headphones, charger, our leg pillow, and wipes in our carryon bag and it was fairly full even with that, so packing simply is so important. My favorite diaper bag is the Freshly Picked Diaper bag for traveling. It was perfect for storing all of our items as well as being a good backpack with side pockets.
- BRING CLOROX WIPES! I can’t stress how gross planes are and germ. I am not a germaphobe but in this case I totally am. I wiped down our chairs, the pillow on the chair, the arm handles, the serving tray. When Rooney flew when she was 6 weeks old, I had her covered the entire time and still she got a cold. The air circulating in the plane is not great either so if you have a little one, wear a nursing cover also.
- If you don’t plan to bring your stroller in the airport bring your baby carrier. I love my WildBird sling but they will make you take it off since it has metal on the rings. The ERGO doesn’t have any metal so you wouldn’t have to take that one off, and the same with the Solly Wrap, so use your best judgement on what you think you will use the most. I also like this because then I don’t have to worry about packing it. I often having something to wear her even when I bring my stroller with me as well.
I hope this is helpful! I know I am not a master or a professional with this but I do know that after traveling quite a few times, this has worked for us and I hope I can help you as well! Just know that you can do it and don’t be stressed over all about traveling because I also believe that they can feel our stress! So stay calm and you got this!