Flying with a baby for the first time can be intimidating… at least for me it is. I’ll be flying with Serenity for the first time ever, in just a few days and it has been overwhelming the amount of preparation that needs to go into flying with a baby. Traveling with a baby (or during pregnancy) can present its own unique set of obstacles, especially when it’s your first time. On top of that, everyone has an opinion about the right and wrong way to travel with your family, but don’t let that dissuade you from planning a trip. In reality even a long haul flight with baby is really only a very small portion of your entire trip…at least that is what I am telling myself in order to get my head in the right mindset.
“It’s too dangerous!” “It’s negligent!” and “It’ll be too problematic!” are few exclamations you’ll have thrown your way. And then there’s my particular favorite: “It’s very selfish. Babies need routine; they don’t want to be traipsing all over the world.” I for one would not want Serenity to be home while her father is graduation from Basic Training nor would I want them to miss the opportunity of seeing each other in what has been arguably, the hardest months of our lives.
Is traveling with a baby difficult? – Yes— but so is traveling without one and yet we still enjoy doing that. Its definitely more work than just throwing a couple of diapers, pre scooped formula and extra clothes in a diaper bag, but that doesn’t mean it’s not worth it.
So I’ve made a list of things that
Just as we need things to travel and enjoy our trip, babies need things too. And lots of it. Babies need to eat, so I’m sure you’ll have food. Babies need to sleep so you’ll want to make sure you have a safe place for them to do so. From what I’ve gathered from friends who have travelled with their babies (including newborns. Yes, I have a friend who travelled to three destinations in roughly three weeks with her newborn and he was perfectly doing so), it is manageable. You’ll need to adjust your pace and expectations.
Here are a few key to get you started:
When can baby safely travel?
Different airlines have different policies. Some require an infant to be at least two days old, others at least 2 weeks old. Doctors recommend you wait until your baby’s immune system is more developed before flying, usually at least one month, though most recommend anywhere between 3-6 months. I’m flying with Serenity at the ripe age of 8 months and half. So she well meets all of these requirements.
- Breastfeed/ Formula- f you’re breastfeeding, you’ll have it much easier than the rest of us. Serenity is bottle fed, so I’m making sure that I’m bringing everything that comes with. Bottles, Powder, water and cleaning supplies. TSA rules do not apply for breast milk and formula. Of course they will be inspected. Don’t worry, they won’t taste or open a fresh new can of Breastfeed/ Formula, but they will put the bottles and cans in a machine to make sure thats its actual baby food.
- Sling- I didn’t use mine since Riley hates it but most babies and parents love it! It’s a hands free option.
- Diapers: I brought enough to cover us for the plane ride and then some. It all depends for long your flying and how long your staying at your destination. I researched online for Walmart’s, Targets, Bjs and Costco neae our hotel and luckily we had a Walmart super center less than a mile away from us. So if we needed anything extra or more diapers, Walmart was near by
- Wipes/ butt cream- this is a no brainer
- Extra Clothes – for everyone, mom & dad include — babies blow out, enough said (this was a bigger problem 4-7 months, after which it pretty much stopped)
- “Toys” – something amusing for the baby, I packed only 2-3 toys that I knew would amuse her. She barely used them on plane as to my surprise fell asleep for the ENTIRE Flight.
- Blanket – handy to cover them up when sleeping on long haul flights or to give them a spot to sit on the floor (I don’t recommend a sleep sack for this because it can be tricky to get them in it once asleep on a plane). Plus it kept her covered from the air vents and away from germs. Speaking of germs
- Disinfecting wipes- used them to clean the surfaces, table and arm rest.
- Snacks – For older babies that have started solids. Fruit, yogurt, bars, all good. I never thought I’d be a pouch carrying mom, but they have become my holy grail. I brought a few since Serenity (Riley) much rather eat my food/
- Pacifier & pacifier clip + back up- again for babies who love them.
- Zip locks bags / trash bag – for dirty diapers and soiled.
- Stroller – optional I took my sisters in law and it ended up being a hassle as it would get stuck. So we bought another at Walmart and it was much better! didn’t often take one when she was small but we use it more the older she gets. My recommendation is below on the gear list.
- Carseat – optional – Now that I experienced flying with a baby, I would only bring this if I had to. To my amazement, if you’re renting out a car and they know you have a baby, they’ll offer to rent you a car seat. I didn’t even know this was even an option. So the next time I travel to Fort Leonard Wood, I’ll be leaving my car seat system. I unfortunately had to haul around my car seat and base and it was not fun at all.
I hope that you find this list useful and that you will utilize it when you fly out with your little one. I did make a YouTube Video of the items that I did pack and I will Insert it here: