Tips for traveling with a baby

Last year August was the first time we travelled international with Kitana and it was a trip and a half! Traveling with a toddler can be more difficult than a newborn, well that’s what I think.

Today I’m going to share my tips on how you can make traveling a bit easier on you and the family.

Tips for traveling with a baby:

1. Carrycots:

If you are traveling international, make sure you let the airline know that you are traveling with a baby. Why?

a) You need a carrycot and it has to be reserved. Babies from 0 – 12 months or a certain kg qualifies for one.

b) They give you front seats near the carrycot, this gives you a bit more leg space than the other seats which is needed if you have a toddler.

Source: British Airways
Source: British Airways

2. Packing:

Kitana has her own suitcase when we travel. This is easier to make sure you keep babies toys/shoes/clothing etc together and you don’t mix up anything with yours or forget items during your journey.

My trick is using clear bags (sandwich airlock bags) for her shoes, a clear bag for her toiletries or just put them into a clean nappy sack to avoid any leakage. Roll the clothing neatly, don’t fold. Tightly rolled clothes take up less space than folded ones in a suitcase.

travel tips for babies

3. Nappy bag as carry on luggage:

a) Include a tablet (if you have a toddler). Educational games can be helpful during a long flight or car ride.

b) A few toys (Tip: Buy small toys which you can use to surprise your child during flights.)

c) I always carry at least 2 sets of clothing including a jacket in my nappy bag for short or long distance traveling. I pack a pajama set if we traveling at night to associate it with bedtime. Make sure you pack light and comfortable clothing for baby, a onesie is perfect. This makes it easier to change nappies.

Nappy bag

4. Snacks:

The pureed foods sold in the pouches is perfect for traveling with a baby who just started solids. Puffs is perfect for toddlers. I absolutely love this flippy snack cup I found on the net, its perfect for traveling and can be hooked onto the pram.


5. Baby carrier:

I prefer using this instead of carrying a stroller, its light and easy to carry around or pack. Close Parent has the perfect one which comes with its own little bag that can be kept in your nappy bag.

Close Parent Carrier
Source: Close Parent

6. Breaks

Take a break during long distance traveling especially if you going by car. Give yourself time to freshen up and for baby to relax. Plan your trip in advance to ensure you have a good amount of time between your flights.

Traveling with a baby

7. Feeding

Feed baby milk on takeoff and landing. Even though I’m an adult, my ears still get clogged from the pressure changes. It can be very uncomfortable and scary for a child. Breast feeding or formula is the best way to prevent this, it helps clear the ears.

8. Travel Crib:

If possible try to pack your own travel crib. This helps babies feel more comfortable with the new surroundings.

Source: Mamas and Papas
Source: Mamas and Papas

9. Medicines

Carry medicines and a hand sanitizer, you will never know when you will need it especially if you in a foreign country.

10. Nappies/ Nappy sacks

Lots of nappies, wet wipes and nappy sacks. Kitana ended up having a running tummy during our international travels, thank God I had enough of everything. I used nappy sacks for almost everything including dirty clothing from our day visits.

11. Season Packing:

Pack a little for winter and summer, you will never know when the weather will change. It’s good to have a bit of both unless you certain about the weather temperature.

Source: Naartjie
Source: Naartjie

12. Bathtub and accessories:

If possible carry your own bathtub and bath toys for baby. The Stokke bathtub has been a LIFESAVER for me during travel. I felt comfortable knowing her bathtub was clean, it really helped in the hotels that didn’t have a tub. Make sure you know what type of room you getting when booking and let them know you have a baby so a tub would be easier. Hygiene is a big issue when traveling with a baby.

Stokke bathtub

 13. Extras:

Carry spare bottles, pacifiers, disposable changing pads, bibs and sippy cups.

14. Baby food:

If you carrying baby food, buy a small cooler bag and pack them in with the cutlery. Try and carry lots of liquids for you and baby too.

15. First Aid:

Make sure you have a small first aid kit in your bag. Volvo gifted me one and now it’s permanently in my nappy bag.

Travel first aid kit

Traveling with a baby requires a checklist. Make sure you use one before you reach your destination and when you packing to go back home. If your baby is used to a lovely (taglet), make sure you carry at least 2 of his/her favorite item.

Happy Travels 🙂 …

Tips for traveling with a baby

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Hi, I’m Shan. I’m an entrepreneur and a sucker for good adventures. I was listed in Forbes Africa 30 under 30 2019 and just recently launched my start-up – MomSays.

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  1. 2014-10-02 / 15:04

    This is a life saver for new parents. I loved all your tips.

    • Shan
      2014-10-02 / 15:42

      I wish I had this before travel, I guess you only learn once you become a mom. Thanks for the lovely comments.

  2. 2014-10-02 / 15:40

    Thank you for sharing such useful firsthand information. I will keep this information on hand for our travels.

    • Shan
      2014-10-02 / 15:42

      Glad you enjoyed the post :).

  3. Charlene
    2014-10-02 / 16:11

    Such useful info. Am travelling (locally thank-goodness) with my 10 month old twin girls at end of October and so seeing your post has come at exactly the right time! It would be great if you could let us know what is necessary in one’s first aid kit? x

  4. 2014-10-02 / 23:10

    Great tips! So far we’ve flown once with my daughter when she was 6 months – she’s 7 1/2 months now. We love traveling so I’m going to pin this for future reference!

  5. 2014-10-03 / 06:10

    I wish they had carrycots on US domestic flights. My son is a little too big for them, but I would love the extra space and a place to put him while he naps. Great tips!

  6. 2014-10-03 / 06:16

    I have traveling a ton with a baby both domestically in the states and internationally. These tips are spot on. I had never heard of carry cot or the Stokke bathtub, but they both sound fabulous and I will definitely look into it! Sharing on FB 🙂

  7. 2014-10-20 / 03:30

    Glad I read this today! We are traveling this Wednesday. I definitely needed these tips.

  8. Lauren
    2014-11-18 / 16:20

    I’m flying to the Eastern Cape in December with my poppet so this is brilliant timing!

  9. 2014-11-18 / 19:06

    These are all great tips! Over here I know tons of Moms who could likely use some of these tips- I’ll pass them on!

  10. Masshole Mommy
    2014-11-18 / 19:08

    My kids have been traveling since they were babies and snacks are the key to happiness. I never leave home without them.

  11. 2014-11-18 / 19:56

    Very nice tips for new parents who like to travel.. We never had a real issue traveling, to be honest i do not remember what we

  12. 2014-11-18 / 22:36

    Love that you put the shoes in a zip lock bag. Im always going nuts looking for to shoes that match in a duffel

  13. Fi Ní Neachtáin
    2014-11-18 / 22:43

    Fabulous tips, I could have done with your post before our first family holiday this summer just gone. Snacks got us through the plane journeys.

  14. 2014-11-19 / 00:18

    This is a great post. I love all of these tips. I wish I’d read this before we took our first trip with my son. THAT was an adventure…

  15. 2014-11-19 / 01:34

    Thanks for the great tips, it’s hard to be travelling with a baby. These tips would definitely be useful for me in the future!

  16. 2014-11-19 / 01:48

    Traveling with babies is like bringing the whole house since they need a lot of stuff. This are really helpful tips.

  17. 2014-11-19 / 03:24

    I love your idea of using baggies for baby’s shoes 🙂 Genius idea!

  18. 2014-11-19 / 03:24

    Traveling with babies is always a hassle. These are all great tips to make it easier!

  19. 2014-11-19 / 03:51

    Does a baby younger than a year old need a passport to travel? First aid kit is very important.

  20. 2014-11-19 / 04:07

    I have never traveled far with my babies but if I do I now know what to take with me. I feel like it would be so much stuff.

  21. This is a great list: first aid kit is very important. I travelled a lot when my kids were babies and I always had extra clothes for me in the carry on. Accidents happen :-_

  22. 2014-11-19 / 05:16

    These are great tips for traveling with a baby. I will have to share this with a friend that is about to do some travelling with her daughter.

  23. 2014-11-19 / 05:49

    I’ve found that having the jammies for baby for nighttime makes a big difference too. They know that means sleep time!

  24. Catherine S
    2014-11-19 / 06:18

    These are all great tips for traveling with a little one. Our travel crib made it so much easier to visit the grandparents.

  25. 2014-11-19 / 08:00

    Thanks for the tips, I do not have kids yet but should like to think I will remember some of these when the time comes.

  26. 2014-11-19 / 08:34

    All wonderful tips especially the clear baggies for shoes etc., and holding baby close is always a preference for me.

  27. 2014-11-19 / 09:42

    My husband and I have been super nervous about traveling with a baby for the first time, but these tips are super helpful in relieving our fears. Thanks

  28. Sandy
    2014-11-19 / 10:04

    We travelled with my babies a lot. Carrycots are very handy.

  29. Aisha Kristine Chong
    2014-11-19 / 10:05

    When you have a baby on board – its always safe and better to be prepared.

  30. Amber Louise Edwards
    2014-11-19 / 13:37

    Complete list of baby essentials…usually I’d add baby music or toy.

  31. Elizabeth O.
    2014-11-19 / 14:30

    Great checklist and survival tips too.

  32. 2014-11-19 / 16:28

    These are great tips! I travel all the time with my little ones, it’s tons of work but so much fun!

  33. 2014-11-19 / 16:41

    It’s always pretty hard to travel with a baby, but these tips make it seems just a bit easier; thanks!

  34. 2014-11-19 / 18:27

    I’ve been traveling with my little one since he was 6 months. The things I have learned through trail and error. Now 2 years later it’s a breeze.

  35. 2014-11-19 / 18:53

    It’s amazing how much stuff you need when you travel with a baby. My kids are 14 months apart and I traveled with them all the time when they were infants. I loved it..

  36. 2014-11-20 / 18:43

    We traveled to Mexico when my youngest was just a month old and she was a awesome on the car ride. But once we got there not so much. Thanks for these tips.

  37. 2014-11-21 / 05:38

    These are some really great tips! We didn’t do much traveling when my son was a baby.

  38. Oh my, they sure make better things they did when I traveled with our kids when they were babies. Sort of makes me wonder how generations before us had more than one 🙂

  39. 2014-11-29 / 06:10

    Love these tips, have used them with my 3 kids in the past. the only thing I would add is the snot sucker – er, bulb aspirator. dry air in plane, dry air in hotel, makes for large clumps of dried boogers in babies – and then they can’t breathe 😉

  40. crovinca
    2015-09-23 / 12:05

    this a really great tips! i enjoying reading this article so much,thanks! No.12 tips, it was happen to me and im grateful i have bought this “rocket fountain bath toys” i found at
    It is really hard to make my little girl to have a bath time without her bath toy.For every parents: bath toy may seems insignificant, but trust me, this small investment is really lifesaver and time-saver.

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