10 Travel Tips to Remember Before Going Abroad with an Infant
You can travel alone, but you know it’s a different level of fun when you travel with the people you love! It’s a great time to bond and catch up, visit lots of places and try on new adventures! — but what if you’re traveling with someone who can’t go on huge adventures, walking, running, hiking, shopping and so much more? What if you’re traveling with your infant?
There it goes. Traveling with your infant is definitely not as easy as traveling with teenage kids. You have to consider and remember a lot of things before traveling with a baby because he/she is still very dependent on you. Children under one year old are considered infants.
Well, you surely do not want to have a hard time during your travel, so you must know, as early as while still planning for your international trip, what to prepare for your travel with your precious infant. Here are 10 travel tips to keep in mind:
#1 – SEEK PEDIATRICIAN’S ADVICE
Infants are still very fragile, sensitive and prone to many medical conditions because they’re just new to the world, and their bodies are still adjusting to everything, especially to the environment. There are certain requirements to check if your baby is already fit to travel.
Don’t skip consultation with your infant’s pediatrician before deciding that you’re bringing the little one with you. When the immune system is already developed, that’s when he/she is recommended to travel. Additionally, your pediatrician will examine your baby’s health. If there are no complications at all, then you shouldn’t be worried about bringing your infant with you abroad. Consulting your doctor and your baby’s doctor also gives you a chance to pack some helpful tips for a better travel experience while your baby is also healthy and safe.
#2 – GET A PASSPORT FOR BABY
Babies get free entrance perks to some establishments, kiddie parks, resorts and other family-friendly places, but not when traveling. Babies cannot get free passes to ride airplanes. Just like big kids and adults, they are required of a passport in order to go on board. Make sure to schedule an appointment to get a passport for your baby and to bring all necessary things to submit. The baby must be awake when his/her photo is taken.
#3 – PACK EXTRA BUT NOT TOO MUCH
Packing is seriously hard! It’s not easy to choose what to bring and what to leave. You have to count the days of your stay, the weather, the fashion, the comfort and many many more! It’s just one of the most stressful preparations before you fly. Doing it for yourself is already not easy, how much more if you have to do it for yourself and another? Well, it just takes more patience and wise planning.
Pack extra clothes for yourself because your infant might spill milk and food or, like what infants usually do, throw up. You might get all messy, stinky and wet, so you need back up clothes. Bringing “just-an-ordinary-day” kind of clothes might be helpful for you to save those fabulous dresses.
Carry necessary garments but not too much. It might be a hassle if you have lots of luggages to keep an eye on. You might also have less time to choose from lots of clothes, so it’d be better if you don’t have much things to dig into.
#4 – WRAP BABY’S GOODIES
Do you get angry when you’re hungry? Babies do, and when they do, they make a loud cry to let you know! Don’t forget to bring milk for your infant. If he/she can already consume food, you can also bring some baby food suitable for him/her.
#5 – CLOTHE WITH COMFORT
Dress yourself with clothes you’re confident in and you’re comfortable with because you can’t always maintain a good position when you’re carrying an infant or managing to make the crying calm down.
Of course, you must also clothe your baby with comfortable clothes, so that he/she won’t get irritated and annoyed. Clothes must not be too tight for undisrupted movement and not to loose to avoid accidents like slippings or getting hung onto somewhere. Don’t forget his/her diapers, undies and other hygiene essentials.
#6 – TAKE ADVANTAGE OF BABY’S BREAK TIME
Although many say that babies below 1 year old aren’t as playful or as frisky as the older ones, children today are unpredictable. At any age, they can begin moving fast and naughtily. With that, the parent/guardian gets restless without a choice too; that’s why, a sleeping baby means a resting mommy/daddy!
During your travel, you need extra energies with you because you’re not only strolling and getting into adventurous trips, but also carrying, running after and keeping a keen eye on your little one! Take advantage of the time your infant falls asleep. It’s the perfect and most peaceful time for you to get that sought-after rest!
#7 – DON’T FORGET BABY’S SLEEPING ESSENTIALS
If there’s one wrong mistake parents can do here, it’s forgetting baby’s favorite pillow or plushie that makes him/her sleep. Based on a personal experience and other people’s experiences as a kid (and even as teenagers), some people have a favorite pillow (for some, a blanket or stuffed toy) which they can’t sleep without.
If your baby has this (yes, at an early age), don’t ever leave it at home if you’re traveling abroad. One, your baby might not be able to sleep well; and two, it’s the same for you. It’s a lose-lose situation!
#8 – FIND FUN FOR BABY
Traveling is absolutely for adults because little kids won’t be able to fully understand and enjoy, however, it’s not bad to let your baby have a great experience — even if he/she probably won’t remember it. Research about infant-friendly spots around the place you’ll be visiting. There might be some activities for little kids and parents, and you might get the chance to also meet other parents and their babies. Even if your baby won’t remember, you can, and you can let him/her know when he/she already understands.
#9 – ASK FOR ASSISTANCE
It’s good if you have other teenager or adult companions with you and your baby as you travel — if your spouse isn’t present. You’d have someone to assist you in carrying your baggages or in looking after your baby.
If you’re alone, you can always ask for help from other people or from hotel staff for instance. Surely, establishments such as malls, accommodations and airports have assigned people to lend a helping hand to people with specific needs like pregnant women, persons with disability, old people and those with infants. You will surely be helped in no time, so no need to hesitate.
#10 – KEEP YOUR EYES ON THE GRAND PRIZE
Your baby, just like a sought-after grand prize, is extremely precious! — but your infant of course, is priceless and more precious than riches! That was just to imply how important your baby is and how important it is to look after him/her.
Never let your baby sit down, play or walk somewhere without parental/guardian supervision. The baby might fall and get hurt or might touch some objects they shouldn’t touch. They might run into accidents like broken glasses or slipping. Worst, you never know, but there might be suspicious people around, getting a chance to take advantage of your complacency. Always pay attention to your baby wherever you are.
To travel with your infant is a challenging thing to do, but a fun one too if you’re mindful and responsible enough to prepare for the things to bring and to remember. Keep in mind that you are not alone in this travel and that you’re not only with adults. There’s an infant who knows nothing yet and can’t take care of himself/herself, so you, parent, got to do it for your baby. Traveling with an infant is not all stressful and impossible. It’s just up to you how to make it organized and worthwhile.
Nicole Ann Pore is a writer, an events host and a voice over artist. Travel, health, shopping, lifestyle and business are among the many subjects she writes about. Through quality and well-researched writing, she informs and even entertains readers about things that matter. She is also interested in film critiquing and filmmaking. Giving all the glory to God, Nicole graduated Cum Laude from De La Salle University Manila, Philippines with a Bachelor’s Degree in Communication Arts.