Traveling is stressful and can bring out the worst in us. It can be even more trying with a toddler in tow. With the pandemic, most of our toddlers are new to the game of travel, and we are new to the game of parenting while traveling. Here are a few tips to keep everyone sane.
Make sure you have all the diapering essentials handy in the car or in your personal item on the plane. By all the essentials, I mean diapers, diaper mat, wipes, ointment, (and for everyone’s sake) a smell-sealing diaper bag (like a plastic doggie bag). You might think, “oh it’s only a couple hour drive” or “it’s just an hour flight, they won’t poop. I don’t need wipes and diaper bags.” Well just by thinking that, you’ve jinxed yourself. The more prepared you are, the less anxious you will feel and the less nauseous your travel mates will feel.
Bring a few toys that your child has never seen before. Littles have a very short attention span no matter what the toy is, but usually a new toy can give you a few extra minutes. They can be large or small. They can be fancy or cardboard boxes--just something that will attract your child’s attention and keep them occupied.
On longer trips you need insulated bottles to keep milk, juice, water, and your Diet Coke nice and cold. It also keeps milk or juice from going bad. My daughter has one water bottle for her milk and one for her water (her backwash severely grosses me out or else you can totally share your own water with your toddler). If I’m driving in a car, it’s easier to have a bigger water bottle full of her milk so I can keep refilling her little one, but on planes her little Paw Patrol one is perfect for her little “pack pack.”
Keep Things Clean
Everyone always teases me about this, but I think it’s a good idea. And now that our health is at the top of everyone’s minds, I've faced a little less teasing. I bring a small travel bag of Lysol wipes. What if you pull down your airplane tray and there is a bunch of boogers on it? No one would be making fun of me then, would they? I also bring a different blanket on planes than the one my daughter sleeps with. The thought of her blanket being dragged around an airport and airplane and then cuddled up with her in her pack and play makes me a little grossed out.
Strollers are life while traveling. I was nervous to take a big stroller on the plane, but when we got to Disneyland I was beyond grateful for all of the storage. It really isn’t a big deal. You wheel your stroller up to the counter at the gate and they give you a tag. Then you drop the stroller off, folded, at the end of the jetway before you board the plane. When you get off the plane it is waiting for. Not having to chase a toddler around an airport because they are strapped in a stroller is everything.
So while traveling with a child can feel like a juggling act, remember how lucky we are to be taking to the air (or road) again, keep in mind a few of these traveling tips, and try to patient with your little one and yourself as you navigate your way to your end destination.
For more mom tips go to babycubby.com.