Tuesday, 15 November 2016

8 things you need to plan ahead when travelling with baby

8 things you need to plan ahead when travelling with baby

Are you planning to travel with kids soon? Looking for mental and practical prep before embarking on a trip with child?
Read the 8 things you need to plan ahead when travelling with baby.

I have always been quite the planner.
Last year I planned for a holiday every 3 months or so, whether that was to celebrate my birthday in Istanbul, an accidental babymoon in Paphos or a rearranged holiday to the Maldives, I plan to be away as much as possible in a year.
I wouldn’t say everything has changed since becoming parents, I now have to plan to be away, and plan to include my baby. Easy. No!
There is a lot to think of when travelling with baby, ensuring that they are safe in the sun (there is sun everywhere!), what to pack in baby’s hand luggage, what to pack in my hand luggage, carry a buggy, carry a sling, the list is endless.

If you are looking for a guide of things to remember to plan for when travelling with baby, keep on reading.

“...anything could happen and you want to enjoy yourself and not feel pressurised by a schedule.”

  1. Plan to not plan
This post is all about planning, and the first point is to not plan?! You don’t need to plan your daily activities, anything could happen and you want to enjoy yourself and not feel pressurised by a schedule.

  1. Ensure travel documentation is up to date
You won’t be able to travel without a passport, so ensure that all passports are in date, and that your babies or children have a passport of their own. Not only that, but check whether your travel destination requires a visa, something Mr.L and I didn’t consider until our travel agent mentioned that we needed to obtain a visa to visit Zanzibar. Lastly, if you are travelling alone without your partner, ensure that you are carrying all documentation which proves you are their parent, and that you have permission to travel with them.

  1. Check medical requirements
Thinking back now, I most probably didn’t plan as much as I should have. I should have most probably chosen a destination that didn’t require as many travel vaccinations as Zanzibar does. There are malaria tablets for the whole family, taking Chance to get his first year immunisations early to ensure that he is adequately protected, vaccinations for Mr.L and I and more. Luckily, I checked with my GP and the travel clinic to ensure that we were up protected when on our travels.

8 things you need to plan ahead when travelling with baby
Qatar Airways

  1. Plan the best place, time and date
Linked to the above, search for destinations that require the absolute minimum such as visas, vaccinations etc. Every time I book a long haul trip I ensure that we plan around Chance’s sleep time. Booking flights around nap/sleep times as mentioned in the post 21 great tips for flying with babies means that your child will be relaxed on the journey. Travelling off peak also means that flights are less likely to be full so you can bag an extra seat possibly, especially if you aren’t flying business class. On our way to Zanzibar we were initially anxious about the fact that there wasn’t a direct flight, but breaking up the journey allowed for Chance to move around easily without being confined, which is a huge benefit. Planning when to travel in advance might seem like you would miss out on the last minute holiday deals, actually sometimes especially when it comes to luxury travel it is better to book ahead and in between seasons; peak season for Zanzibar is December to March, we chose to travel middle to end of November which means we benefit from fantastic weather, at reduced costs.

  1. Keep everything the same
By same, I mean don’t try and make any radical changes before a trip, unless they are necessary. In the post 21 great tips for flying with babies I said to avoid immunisations, weaning etc, unfortunately sometimes vaccinations are necessary to be safe on the trip. What I did try and implement before flying which was laughable was Chance sleeping in his own room. #FAIL! Now I have a child who needs to take up ¾ s of the bed as opposed to 50%.

  1. Travel light
Trying to carry absolutely everything doesn’t work, always! You may need to have hands free to grab passports, snacks, juggle a fussy baby, so try and make things as easy as possible. We heavily rely on our Ergobaby when travelling, so we have our hands free to carry a much needed car seat and possibly a buggy. If your child is too big for a baby carrier, a lightweight buggy/stroller may be needed.

“the common traits of a child friendly hotel ... complimentary baby cots, baby amenities, babysitting services and kids clubs”

  1. Choose family-friendly hotels
It was only when looking for a bank holiday break that I noticed that many of the hotels that we would have usually picked weren’t child friendly; in the post 7 stylish child friendly hotels the common traits of a child friendly hotel included proximity to travel hubs, complimentary baby cots, baby amenities, babysitting services and kids clubs. Even the Residence Zanzibar is extremely child-friendly offering cots, spacious living areas, offers to make pureed foods for Chance as well as a complimentary air conditioned kids club for 4-14 year olds.

  1. Survive the journey
Lastly, but most important survive the journey by organising pre-ordering your child’s food in advance , packing non-messy snacks within hand luggage, pack entertainment for the journey, check in advance and early, book seating in advance, and plenty more tips to be found within the post 21 great tips for flying with babies.

What tips do you have for travelling with children? What ages were your little ones when you first travelled with them?

Thank you for reading and please do follow me on Bloglovin’ to keep up with my experiences of travelling with a baby every Tuesday.

Thank you.

SAL xx


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