Travelling with your baby need not be a daunting endeavour. Yes, there are prams, car seats, camp cots and other paraphernalia as well as bottles, formula and nappies that you need, but perhaps now is the time to take a leaf from the effortless mothering book.
Now moms from this book seem to just sail through from one situation to another with no sweat at all. But they do all have a secret weapon. It’s called preparation and it’s powerful!
If preparation or good organisational skills entails your own list making, then so be it. If it involves asking other -travel mums for their to-do lists, then this is even better as you will only stand to gain valuable advice from those mums who have tried and tested the travelling with baby saga. Regardless of whether it was successful or not for them, you can learn from their triumphs or their tragedies. Keep in mind, too, that the younger your baby is the easier your trip will be because younger babies spend so much of their little lives sleeping.
Hiring baby equipment makes sense
Making your life easier are the specialist companies in most major cities across the globe that deal with the hiring out of baby equipment. This way you will not have the burden of taking baby equipment as luggage if you are flying or as extra luggage in the car if you are driving. And if travelling by air you also won’t have the added stress of the baby equipment being stolen while in transit or it embarking on a journey of its own, leaving you stranded at your destination!
Make sure you choose a reputable company so you can be sure the items you hire have been sanitised before you lease them.
Whether your trip is by car or by plane, the hotel bookings you make for your stop-overs should also be well arranged. Check when booking stay-overs that your chosen accommodation is baby friendly – from accommodating the warming of bottles and providing mosquito nets, to all the essentials you will need to keep your little one comfortable.
Jet lag affects little ones, too
Jet lag is a horrible sensation, even for adults. It affects most of us and our babies and children are no exceptions. Because babies sleep so much we tend to forget that jet lag can and will affect them too if you are crossing the time zone.
Here, again, the golden rule is to keep things simple.
You may choose to adjust your little one’s feeding schedule according to the time zone you’re crossing into a week or two before you leave and to just -wing it on the other end, so to speak.
But the best advice remains hydration. This will help your baby rest and stay calm on the flight or trip. If Mom is breastfeeding then it’s imperative that she too stays well hydrated so that feeding is not interrupted.
Give him time
Once you arrive at your destination it’s best to expect the unexpected for a day or two. Your baby will be niggly and tired, but remember it is an adjustment for him too. It wouldn’t be fair to put too much pressure on him by planning too much. Rather give him time to adjust and rest for a day or two.
If you are going to a country with lots of sunshine, this can help hugely with jet lag as the melatonin our bodies produce at night is activated largely by sunlight. However, be aware of the weather conditions wherever you are going and use loads of UV protection on your toddler’s delicate skin.