Traveling with kids can be a stressful time. There is twice as much to prepare for and if you’re anything like me- you’re constantly worried about anything and everything. When preparing for our trip to Michigan, my biggest fear was how my 10-month-old would handle the 2 hour plane ride. She’s wild, energetic and hates being confined. So I’m sure you could imagine my level of anxiety.
But if you fail to plan, you plan to fail. Here is a list of tips I have put together to help you prepare for your next trip.
1. Timing is everything. I found it easier to fly in the evening because by 6p.m. baby girl has had dinner, a bath and a chance to expel extra energy. She was able to relax and enjoy the ride. Keep in mind, just because a flight may fall during mid-morning nap time does not mean baby will nap. I found this out the hard way.
2. Pack enough snacks. Pick simple no mess options. A few of our favorites include goldfish, squeezables and homemade trail mix. Prior to leaving everyone had a chance to make their own trail mix, my favorite being Apple Pie. All you need is apple cinnamon Cheerios, dehydrated apples, yogurt covered raisins, teddy grams, mixed nuts and a dash of cinnamon.
3. Travel hands free. I have friends who swear by flying with a stroller, but I prefer my Ergobaby carrier. I was able to carry bags, hold my Starbucks, and go through security without handing baby off. This is also very useful when traveling alone.
4. Pack a change of clothing and dress in layers. I thought putting baby girl in thick jammies would eliminate the need for her blanket- that was a mistake. Poor thing was sweating the entire flight. On the way home she was much more comfortable in a t-shirt and lightweight jacket.
5. Entertainment does not have to be electronic. We brought books, teething toys and action figures. Little man and I took turns reading to the baby, so everyone was happy. Small toys to keep little fingers occupied were a life saver. Having a teething ring handy helped keep her busy while soothing sore gums.
Lastly, do not stress. If you’re stressed your kids will stress. And traveling should be an enjoyable experience. Make it fun. Play games. Document your adventure. Grab a glass of wine, sit back and relax.