Planes, Trains, & Automobiles: Traveling With Baby

In his short life spanning seven months, Baby’s been on a plane six times, a train twice, and too many bus, subway, and car rides to count. This kid’s been on more airplanes in the first few months of his life than I had by the time I was a decade old. Feels like we’re both old hats at traveling at this point.

Over the course of these trips, I learned a few things about plane travel in particular with an infant that new parents might find helpful. The following includes tips and tricks and stuff to take.

(Oh, the stuff. That has to by far the most dreaded part of traveling with an infant. Think back to that first “trip” out of the house with your newborn. You couldn’t believe how much crap you had to pack in that diaper bag: blankets, extra clothes, toys, bottles, wipes, thermometer (because what if the kid seems to have a fever?), the snotsucker (maybe the kids will get a huge snot in his tiny little nostril that has to be cleared in order for him to, like, breath), Desitin, diapers, changing mat, the other changing mat you bought before you realized that your diaper bag came with one, disinfectant gel, disinfectant wipes (the public bathroom changing tables are gross), nursing cover, nursing pads, extra swaddle blankets. Am I forgetting anything? Likely. Oh, you’re wallet and phone, which now goes in the diaper bag rather than your purse because you don’t carry a purse anymore (a purse is another bag to keep track of and that’s the last thing you need when you’re out and about with your baby with all his stuff to keep track of.))

Keep in mind that Baby was 2.5, 4.5, 5, and 6.5 month at the times of travel.

Topics:

Plane, Train, or Automobile?
The Airline Matters
Getting Through Security By Yourself and Baby
What To Have In The Diaper Bag When Flying
Where To Bed The Baby
Sleep Training While Traveling?
Stuff Not To Take
What To Do While Flying
UPDATE:
Must Have: Go-Pod

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Plane, Train, or Automobile?

That depends largely on how old the baby is and where you’re going. Baby flew when he was 2.5, 4.5, and 5 months old and he did great on all flights. He slept for most of the way in the carrier and I even got some reading done on later trips.

Road trips are great if you’re baby is really young as in 0-4 months and sleeps readily in the car. I know a couple of new moms who took their babies (2-3 months old) on road trips lasting 4-6 hours one way and reported that their babies did great, i.e., slept for most of it. Remember, if he’s a newborn, you should stop to feed the baby every 2-3 hours (as per my pediatrician’s instructions) even if they are sleeping in the car seat. You have to wake them up. Some babies will stay asleep in the car seat for longer than 3 hours in a moving vehicle if left to their own devices.

Also, you can install one of those back seat mirrors to keep an eye on the baby while driving, especially if you are alone. Traveling by car with a partner is great because if the baby does get fussy then one of you can sit in the back with the baby.

The driving route gets less convenient once babies get older. Baby at 7 months will sleep in the car seat sometimes, but not every time like before. Sometimes, he will arch his back, make his face get really red, and grunt angrily because he wants out. Five hours in the car seat would drive this little one nuts.

If at all possible, take the train. I was skeptical about take the train to NJ with SC and Baby. Why spend five hours on the train when you can fly for one, I thought. But SC insisted it would be better. And it was so much nicer. Trains have more leg room and comfortable seats than planes, you don’t have to worry about stopping to nurse the baby like in a car, you can play with the baby, walk up and down the aisles without a having to worry about the seat belt sign or the refreshment cart or other passengers passing by, you can check out the dining car at will, hang out between the cars with baby in carrier where the white noise is especially robust and soporific. The only downside to train travel is the cars don’t have a baby changing table in the bathrooms. I know, I couldn’t believe it either. Neither could SC, who actually went to check again after I told him we had to change the kiddo on the seat. Other than that, it’s the next best way to travel besides flying Porter, which I discuss in the next topic. Back To Topics

The Airline Matters

If you are traveling along the Northeast coast, whenever possible, fly Porter. Porter is a small airline company based in Toronto that flies as far West as Chicago and as far south as Myrtle Beach with Boston, New York, DC, and numerous East Coast Canadian cities in between. They keep adding destinations because of their growing customer base.

Porter planes offer roomy leg space, friendly but not hovering service by air and ground staff, quick check in and immigration with almost never a line, and punctuality, often early to land. Also, if you fly out of Toronto, they have an well stock (in quality and quantity) self service all you can eat and drink coffee and snack bar complete with serve yourself bottled water, sodas, and juice. That’s right: all you can eat and drink. Want that fourth cup of cappuccino? Why, yes I would! Excited? Yes! And did I mention their free computer lab with giant apple desk top screens? Yeah, I forgot to mention that. And did I mention you can drink your cappuccino while working on these computers without any infantilizing “no food and drink” signs to ignore. Excited! Yes!

While I flew with them (Baby at 2.5 and 5 months) I always had an empty seat next to me. During the first flight with Porter, which incidentally was also my first flight with Baby, the flight attendant, without prompting, moved me to a seat with an empty seat beside it for my comfort. On the subsequent flights the check in clerks made sure I was seated next to an empty seat without my having to even ask. This is enormously convenient and helpful when you have a baby: you can change his diaper right there on the seat because the bathrooms on airplanes are tiny and I would rather avoid it for this purpose; you can leave the nursing cover, extra toys, blankets, book beside you so you don’t have to bend down and rummage through your diaper bag to find things with a baby in your arms.

The air staff also made sure to stop by and go over the safety procedure while flying with an infant and offered any help I might need during the flight and while disembarking. Even the Porter passengers are helpful, offering to grab my bag for me or pull on/off the car seat gate check bag.

Porter also allows one piece of checked luggage at no additional cost.

In comparison, United left a lot to be desired. We flew United to get to Houston. The seats were so cramped there was about two inches of space between my knee and the back of the seat in front of me once I sat down. If I hadn’t gotten the window seat with SC sitting next to me, nursing Baby would have been a total drag with my elbow and Baby’s head pressed into person next to me, or little feet kicking and fontanel bumping into the side panel. Just reaching down to get the nursing cover out of the diaper bag was a struggle.

And while we were squeezed into a row of three seats with another large male passenger, there were several rows with only two adults, an empty seat between them. Why weren’t we seated in a section with an empty seat when we had a baby to fly with? That’s a rhetorical question on United. On the return trip, we weren’t even seated together. When SC asked one of the passengers to change seats with us, he looked us, at Baby, at the middle seats that we were both assigned to and said, “No thanks.” Granted, middle seats suck, but when you’re a slender middle aged man with an iPad playing some watch-it-now Netflix movie are going to flip a birdy on good manners and considerate behavior to a family with an infant in tow? There are a lot of rhetorical questions on United.

It was only when Baby started fussing in SC’s lap that the douche offered to change seats with me. Let me not throw all the rotten tomatoes on just this passenger; the United check in people are moronic ding dongs and have the customer service sense of gnats.

Fly Porter if and whenever possible. Back To Topics


Getting Through Security By Yourself and Baby

My biggest source of anxiety before the first flight was going through security with the baby. Even by myself, it was hassle enough; I dreaded it with a baby. I played out multiple scenarios in my head, most of them ending with baby screaming bloody murder, people rolling their eyes with impatience, staring at me with pity, or shaking their head in disapproval. Sometimes in these daymares, I forgot my passport and boarding pass in the plastic bin. Sometimes I spilled my breast milk all over the conveyor belt and hastily tried to sop it up with baby wipes while some curmudgeon berated me for getting his Kindle wet. Once I round house kicked a sassy twenty-three year old twit who made a not-so-quiet remark about pregnancy weight. I was arrested for assault, my baby taken away, and missed my flight.

To help with the anxiety I did what professional athletes do: picture the play in minute detail going exactly as planned. The power of visualization. It helped and it can help you to. So visualize the following:

Visualize all the stuff you’ll have with you. If you are flying alone with the baby, before you even get to security or before you leave for the airport for that matter, you want to make sure you have these things and only these things: baby carrier, car seat, stroller, diaper bag with all the diaper bag stuff, easy to slip on shoes, leggings to avoid pants that require belts. And that’s it. No purse. Put your wallet, passport, book (so optimistic), and lip balm somewhere in the diaper bag, preferably in an outside pocket that’s easily accessible. And forget trying to save money by taking a carry on.

First of all, you won’t be able to fit all of baby’s stuff and your stuff into a single carry on if you are traveling for more than a day or two. Secondly, you will thank me later when you try to board the plane with baby and don’t have to worry about a carry-on on top of putting the car seat and the stroller bottom in gate check bags while wearing the baby in the carrier whose head keeps getting bonked by said items as you struggle to get them in the said bags while keeping an eye on the diaper bag while other passengers start boarding and glancing discreetly at your overburdened and clumsy and utterly disheveled self, making motherhood look less glamorous than being an airport baggage handler. Check your suitcase.

Now see yourself and your baby at the security check. Stand at the far end of the table away from of the conveyor belt so that passengers without kids can go ahead of you since you will be slower. Imagine a long line. People are moving but they’re not pushing and there’s no stampede so relax and take your time. Standing off to the side to let people go ahead of you takes a lot of pressure off you to go fast and relaxes the people behind you becuase you’re not holding up the line.

Take two bins. Remove your jacket and shoes and put them in one bin. Put the diaper bag and baby carrier in the other bin. You cannot wear the carrier with the baby through the security scanner so that’s why you have to put it through the scanner.

Then unlatch the car seat with baby in it and put baby and car seat on the table. Fold your snap-n-go stroller bottom and put that on the table in front of the car seat. Unhook any dangling car seat toys and put them in the diaper bag. Push the bins with jacket, shoes, diaper bag, baby carrier through and then the stroller bottom.

See the baby curiously looking around and happy as a clam in his car seat. Take baby out of the car seat. This has to be the last step. If, unlike me, you jump the gun and take out the baby before all the steps described above, you will have to put the baby back into the car seat. If the baby is sleeping, this will be a huge pain in the ass and a source of much anxiety, which other people will pick up on, which will make you more anxious.

Now, you already made sure that there is nothing loose on the car seat like toys or pacifiers. This is good because you are about to ask someone coming up from behind you to flip the car seat upside down and push it through the conveyor belt for you since your hands are full with the baby. Ask nicely like you’re a single mom who needs help. And for that moment you are a single mom who needs help so this will be easy.

Now, if your baby had good head control, you might be able to do this yourself with your free hand while the other one is holding the baby. But if your kid is two months old like mine was for our first flight then you need both hands to hold the baby and need someone else’s hand to help you with this part. And even if you can do it yourself, why not just ask someone to help you? If like me, you are traveling with the baby in the winter and you have one of those Bundleme seat sleeping bags attached to the car seat, ask the good Samaritan to zip of the Bundleme before flipping it over so that the inside material doesn’t get dragged along the conveyor belt.

And no, I don’t know know why airports make you flip the car seat upside down.

Go through the security detector.

Wait for the car seat and ask the security person to flip it over for you and unzip the Bundleme. Thank them. Put the baby in the car seat. Push your bins all the way to the end. Take down and pull open the stroller bottom. Put on your shoes and jacket. Put diaper bag and carrier into stroller. Put away the bins. Click car seat with baby onto stroller bottom. Move away from the unloading area before doing up the straps in the baby’s car seat. I like to have the straps done up whenever the baby is in the car seat just in case the stroller gets knocked over somehow or goes rolling down a hill or a set of stairs. I have a friend who’s baby went flying down a set of stairs in his car seat when she tripped fell down the stairs while carrying the baby. The handle was up and the baby stayed right in his seat even though it rolled upside down twice. He was fine. Another friend lost control of his stroller which fell over sideways but the baby was strapped in she was perfectly fine.

And voila! You and your baby have successfully gone through security by yourselves. If you are travelling with a husband or wife or anyone else with an extra set of hands, then you don’t have to worry about any of the above. One person will hold the baby, while the husband deals with all the stuff. Back To Topics


What To Have In The Diaper Bag When Flying

1. Bottles. Because of the <3.3oz rule, you need to bring your formula or breast milk in the small storage bottles. I suggest two, maybe three bottles, more if you don’t plan to breast feed at all, which I think is the way to go. So much easier to just whip the boob out. And actually I’ve stopped carrying bottles at all at this point. It’s just one more thing you have to remember to pack.

But when I did carry bottles, I used the Medela plastic storage vials. I put nipples on the bottles with the protective lid so that I don’t have to bother putting them on during the flight with baby in hand and only one hand to do everything else. Every flight I had bottles, I was told by security to remove them from the bag and they “tested” them. I don’t know what that means.

2. Extra clothes for the baby, diapers, wipes, pacifier, extra blanket, and nursing cover. The usual.

3. A brand new toy. Nothing keeps Baby occupied like a brand new toy. And by new toy I don’t mean go out to your nearest Magic Bean or click on to Amazon.com. I mean put in a wooden spoon or a small Tupperware container or your hair brush if you don’t mind getting drool on it. As long as it’s new to your baby, it’s a new toy. I also pack other toys that won’t make too much noise so that it doesn’t bother the other passengers, i.e., keep the maracas at home.

4. Pacifier on a clip with extra pacifiers in your diaper bag. Don’t forget to bring the old favorites like a pacifier. And if you don’t already have one, get a pacifier clip. Goes along with the keeping hands free. You don’t want to have to fish for one in the diaper bag every time a baby starts getting fussy. He might also enjoy throwing it out of his stroller which is when you need to get that extra one out of the bag.

4. Documents and wallet and general purse stuff, nothing more. Edit your purse and find a pocket in the diaper bag where you just store you stuff.

5. Baby carrier. A must have to get from gate check to seat and later when the baby falls asleep. Holding the baby for the whole flight is possible if it’s a short one but your arms will get tired otherwise. Some flights offer travel bassinets especially for long flights. Look into this to make sure. Otherwise, a baby carrier or a travel partner is your only option to giving your arms a rest.

6. Gate check bags for stroller and/or car seat. If you plan to drive anywhere once at your destination, you will have to take the car seat. The luggage area on the plane is notoriously disgusting so you want to cover the seat at gate check with gate check bags for car seat and stroller. You can get these on Amazon. I don’t know why the reviews for these bags aren’t stellar for these but both SC and I found them to be absolutely fantastic and they’re cheap. They fold up compactly and keep all of Baby’s stroller stuff in a single bag. If any parts were to come lose, they stay in the bag rather than get lost in the plane. Imagine getting off the plane, unfolding your stroller and it’s missing a wheel. It happens. I saw it with one mother. She got lucky because the luggage person decided to throw it into my stroller bag and so I was able to return the loose wheel to her. I bet she’ll think twice now before gate checking her stroller without a gate check bag. Oh yeah.

7. Water. Once you’re through security, get water. Yes you can get water on the plane but they always serve them in these little tiny cups and then you have to ask the flight attendant to bring you more. The amount you have to drink to keep your milk supply will have the attendant acting as your personal water boy for the duration of the flight. So either bring an empty water bottle and fill it up at the airport, or just buy a three bottles, and stick two in the diaper bag and drink one while waiting to board. Back To Topics


Where To Bed The Baby

If sleep is the number one obsession for parents and sleeping while traveling (for both you and Baby) will take the stress over sleep to a whole new level.

For the first trip home to Toronto, I bought a Bjorn travel crib off of Amazon. It looked awesome and it was rated 4.5 stars. I should have read the reviews. I did not.

Turns out the folded crib is sized just awkwardly enough that it’s too big to be a carry-on and too big to fit into any of the usual suitcases. So you have to check the crib as a whole separate piece of luggage. This gets expensive at $25-$35 for the second bag per flight, meaning $50-$70 for a round trip flight just for the travel crib. With the crib costing $200, you suddenly have a situation where after just a few flights, carrying the thing costs more than the crib itself.

Not only that, Bjorn only has short handles so that you can’t put it over your shoulder to keep your hands free. This a major design flaw by Bjorn: parents with babies and children need to have as many of their hands free as possible when traveling with luggage to pull, strollers to push, hands to hold, water to sip, tossed pacifiers to retrieve, etc.

So I returned the Bjorn and got a Lotus travel crib. It folds compactly enough that it can be taken on the plane as a carry-on. But best of all, it has tuck-away back pack straps, more awesome than a single shoulder strap because you get both hands free and even more securely on your person than just a single shoulder strap which can slip down. I hate that. And the crib is light so you don’t feel like an hauling donkey climbing the Himalayas.

Here’s a good tip from SC: take the bedding and any toys from the crib with you. The familiar smell and sights will help your baby sleep in a new environment. I strip the crib right before we leave and his bedding is the last thing I pack.

Also you will probably have to sleep in the same room with the baby. If you’re used to this, great. If not, you should pack some ear plugs. Baby’s make a lot of noise when they are sleeping.

If you’re staying at a hotel, call ahead and ask them to have a crib placed in your room. Most hotels have cribs for their smaller guests. I haven’t stayed at a hotel yet with Baby, but if I were to in the future, I would still take his sheets with me. Back To Topics


Sleep Training While Traveling?

Now, if you’ve sleep trained your kid, you know how much work and stress that takes. You can read about my experience Ferberizing Baby here. So the thought of potentially ruining all that work while away from home with your baby could be stressing you out.

So what do you do?

Depends on your accommodations. If you can continue to sleep train the baby, i.e., let him cry if necessary before falling asleep on his own without bothering your hosts, then by all means, go for it.

By the time I went to visit my family again, Baby was 5 months old and I’d been Ferberizing him for a month. Because I was staying with my mother, I felt comfortable enough to continue Ferberizing him. And he did great, putting himself to sleep every night I was there with minimal fuss.

By contrast, when at 4.5 months old, we went to Houston to visit SC’s extended family in Houston, I was told that they would not tolerate a crying baby well, feeling the need to intervene. So I nursed and rocked him to sleep like I used to, the very sleep associations I’d been working to break. When we returned home I Ferberized again right away. The first night back home was tough like we were starting sleep training all over again, but the second night was significantly easier than the first time I Ferberized and by the third night Baby back to being a sleep trained baby.

So if you find yourself returning to the old habits to help your little one sleep while away from home–sleeping in the same room with them, rocking, nursing, and singing them to sleep–don’t worry about the consequences. The baby will not be confused. He is well aware that they are not at home and that the context has changed. When home conditions return, he’ll know what to do as along as you are consistent. Back To Topics


Stuff Not To Take

The biggest lesson for me while traveling with Baby was to not over pack. I was so nervous about our first trip that I packed for every possible scenario. No, the washing machine at your mom’s place will probably not break down and, no, the baby at 2.5 months won’t notice that you read that Eric Carle book already.

I packed nearly everything he had, including my clothes and toiletries, in one suitcase, going over the weight limit which the Porter check in ladies chose to kindly ignore.

I did do one right thing for that first trip: I only took one suitcase. If you don’t have a suitcase big enough for the baby and you, either edit your contents or get a bigger suitcase. You do not want to have to deal with another piece of luggage if you are traveling alone, pushing a stroller with one hand, wearing the travel crib on your back and pulling a suitcase with your other hand. Hey, what about that other suitcase? Yeah, that one. Crap is right.

If you are traveling by train, you’ll find that Amtrak stipulate only a carry-on size piece of luggage per passenger on their website. Ignore that. Take whatever sized piece of luggage you want. They don’t care. And you can fill it with brick for all they care; they don’t check luggage weight. Another awesome reason for traveling by train.

You know the usual items to pack–clothes, toys, books, undergarments, toiletries, baby’s bath stuff, breast pump, etc. What’s important to keep in mind when traveling with a baby is what not to pack:

1. Don’t pack too many baby clothes. Washed them as necessary.

2. Don’t pack more than a couple of board books if you really feel you need to take them. The baby doesn’t get bored with the book even after the 20th read. So it’s okay if you read the same 2 books for a week before bedtime. I prefer a couple of cloth books. They’re light and double as mouthing toys.

3. Don’t take too many toys. Especially if you are going to see family, there will be plenty of things to entertain the baby like new faces, new environment, the dog, tupperware and wooden spoons, museums, grass, your sunglasses. Everything is new and different and exciting to a baby.

4. Don’t bother with disinfectant wipes. I’ve heard of mothers wiping down the entire area around their seat on the plane before sitting down to make things hygienic for their babies. Overkill much? It’s called hygiene theory. The kid will be fine.

5. Don’t take your Boppy. Maybe this is obvious to some moms, but it wasn’t to me. I struggled with breast feeding and so for the first six weeks, every feed felt like a Broadway production with Boppy at waist, a folded pillow under my knee and another behind my back, warm compresses on the nipple two minutes before the baby latched to help dislodge blocked ducts, cold wash cloth in a free hand to jolt awake the baby falling asleep at the boob and et cetera. I was an anxious nurser. So even when nursing had settled down to a habituated routine, I was still insecure and felt I needed to have at least my security Boppy for our first trip. And I would have taken it despite SC’s advise to the contrary if I’d had room in my suitcase. I did not. And it’s good there wasn’t because I needed to get used to just using a pillow and/or my arms to nurse the baby when we weren’t in the vicinity of the Boppy.

Nursing at the Houston Rodeo. And no, no Boppy in sight.
Nursing at the Houston Rodeo. And no, no Boppy in sight.

6. Don’t try to downsize by taking the hand pump instead of your electronic pump. Unless you’ve been using the hand pump with your (man) hands this whole time, using the hand pump while traveling so that you can save on luggage space and weight is a terrible idea. It’s made more terrible to the point of horrible when you are lying in bed wide awake with boobs engorged to the point where you are leaking through your nursing pad and soaking your bra writhing in discomfort and even pain because of that damn blocked duct on your right nipple that just always keeps coming back. Trying to pump every two hour in the middle of the night using a hand pump is going to make you start having these gruesome fantasies about grabbing that kitchen cleaver and performing a mastectomy.

If you don’t pump very often and are thinking of forgoing even the hand pump, don’t do it. You never know. For instance, I heard a story yesterday about a mom who’s baby (9 weeks old) decided to go on a hunger strike while they were on a road trip to see family. The baby didn’t eat for 12 hours. During the day (!) For no reason at all. Some of you may be thinking, what’s going on with the baby, but if you’re a mom then you’re thinking, holy shit that mom’s boobs. What happened to her boobs? By the time they made it home, she’d soaked through her nursing pads, bra, nursing cover, and once home, get ready for it, she pumped 20 ounces. That’s 2.5 cups of breast milk. You bet she was kicking herself for not packing that hand pump.

7. Don’t take the base of the car seat. Every car seat should have instructions on how to secure it in a car without the base. Graco, for instance, has a metal “I” clip to be used with a seat belt to secure the car seat.

8. Don’t take too many bottles. Only take what you’ll need to pump and feed the baby. If the baby doesn’t everything you pump you can’t store it anyway. Yes, it’s like dumping liquid gold down the drain. Except it isn’t liquid gold. You’ll make more tomorrow. Back To Topics


What To Do While Flying

Baby sound asleep in my arms during his first flight.
Baby sound asleep in my arms during his first flight.

One of the biggest question/worry parents seem have at the prospect of flying with a baby is: how do I make sure my baby’s ears pop?

During take off and landing, if your baby is awake, and this is a big IF, you can feed the baby or give him a pacifier. If the baby is asleep, however, don’t wake him. He will be fine and his ears will be fine.

Now if you want to feed him with a bottle and you need to have it like warmed up, don’t hesitate to ask the flight attendant. That’s what they’re there for, to help make your flight as pleasant as possible and that includes your baby. Don’t try to do it yourself in the bathroom. I didn’t. Instead I tried to give Baby room temperature bottle, which he hates, and I gave up and offered him the boob and threw out the pumped milk. I didn’t even think to ask the flight attendant to heat up the bottle because the idea of asking a stranger to take my bodily fluids contained in a little bottle, dunk it into a disposable Starbucks cup filled with hot water meant for tea just seemed too much to ask. It isn’t, insisted my sister when I later told her what I did. It isn’t, insisted me to you.

As for if the baby starts fussing, try feeding him and putting him in the carrier to fall asleep. Offer him the new toy that you packed in the diaper bag just for this purpose. Take a trip to the bathroom in the carrier. You’ll probably have to do this at least once, likely more if the flight is longer than an hour and you are drinking enough water, which is copious, to keep your milk supply up.

But the most likely scenario is that he will fall asleep to the ultimate white noise machine: a moving vehicle. The soothing feeling of motion and the white noise of the jet engines or propeller plane (Porter) or train on tracks seems to knock out most babies.

At 6.5 months, Baby was much more active with longer staying (awake) power between naps and was awake for most of his train ride down to NJ. Too excited to sleep. He slept for most of return trip, however. Been there, done that, I suppose. Back To Topics


Must Haves

1. Go-Pod. I meant to write about this product earlier because I used it during out last trip to Toronto. The Kidco Go-Pod is a portable activity chair. Now that Baby is crawling and loves to stand up, the Go-Pod was incredibly useful to have around. I put him in it while we were gardening at Sister’s so that he could enjoy the outdoors without my having to have him strapped to me or my worrying about him crawling into the pool or eating grass. While your cooking or taking a shower or going down to the basement to grab the laundry, it functions like a portable exersaucer or bumbo

I also took it to the beach recently it was super useful, keeping the little one occupied while setting up the towels and sun tent. It unfolds and folds in seconds and it’s very light, which is important when you’re going to the beach
(or anywhere else) with a baby, carrying a bunch of other stuff like cooler, beach bag, tent, diaper bag, et cetera. Going to the beach with a baby is like spinning a half dozen plates on sticks. I look like I belong in the circus, it’s a marvel to behold.

The only drawback is that the material part can’t be removed for washing. Baby had a blowout and got some poop juice on the seat. Best I could do was wipe it vigorously several times with wet paper towels and disinfectant wipes. That seemed to do the job because the material is fairly easy to clean, but I would have prefer to launder it. Back To Topics
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My last piece of advice is to this: your baby is a lot more resilient than you think so go with the flow and enjoy the trip instead of worry about whether he’s being over stimulated, getting enough naps, having his sleep schedule ruined, or germs he’s being infested with. He’ll be fine. The happier you are, the happier your baby will be.

Anything else? Saveur Days would love to hear from you about tips and tricks you may have for making traveling with an infant less stressful and more fun. Send your tips by Email or share it with readers by writing in the comments section below. You can also leave comments in Saveur Days’ Facebook page.

2 thoughts on “Planes, Trains, & Automobiles: Traveling With Baby

  1. This was BEYOND incredibly helpful. We ended up driving from Boston to DC at the beginning of April when my sister had her son. My Lilli was about 3 months old at the time and she slept the entire way. (She’s amazing.) The things that worried me the most about getting on a plane were A. Getting everything on board. It just seems like there was so much to pack. and B. But this is really the big thing for me: I was terrified of having to reinstall her car seat. Just couldn’t fathom it.

    1. Molly, I’m so glad you found it helpful! That’s so gratifying. I know what you mean about the car seat. I was so nervous about even installing it just to get to the airport that I asked the friend to drive us there. Now I’m a lot more comfortable doing it in any car. Your Lilli sounds like a super sleeper. Such a blessing.

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