As the parent of a newborn, you want to make memories with your child. However, traveling with such a young one can be a challenging feat. If you don’t want the fact that you had a baby to hold you back, then there are some tips that you should keep in mind when traveling with your tiny tot.
Bring the Necessities
Babies require tons of equipment to make your life easier. Some of the most used things include pack n’ plays, portable cribs, strollers, clothing, diapers, wipes, and special bath lotions. Space is always at a premium when it comes to traveling, so you want to find things that can easily fit within your allotted space. Space-saving combinations are always a good idea. There are a few different types of baby strollers with car seats that might be smart to bring. These units won’t take up too much space, and they can ensure your child is safe wherever you go.
Map Out Rest Stops
When traveling by car, you will need several rest stops. A breastfeeding mother will need a place to remove the child from the safety seat to feed securely. Additionally, diaper changes are always easier when you have a changing table that you can spread them out to attend to business properly. Keep in mind that the baby doesn’t like being cramped up in that car seat for extended periods. Get them out and walk them around for a few minutes to ensure their little legs don’t get too tired and stiff.
Understand You Might Not Be Able to Do Everything
You must realize that when you travel with a young child that you are on their schedule. If they don’t get their daily naps, feedings at a particular time and all their needs attended to promptly, then it’s going to be a rough trip. Additionally, you may not be able to climb Mount Everest when you have a newborn in tow. Also, keep in mind that things, like clubbing and going to noisy shows, might not be a good idea either. Your child may be startled and scared by loud Broadway or Vegas type productions. Remember, you are on their schedule, and you may have to tame your vacation itinerary when your child is so young.
Wearing Your Baby Is Key
One of the best inventions in the baby world is the pouches that allow you to wear them. Both fathers and mothers can attach the baby to the front of their body, and they have their hands free. Everything becomes easier when you don’t have to use a stroller in tight spaces. Though a stroller is valuable in many areas, it might not work for all situations. However, carrying your baby with you gives them comfort that you are close should they feel apprehensive. Plus, as you walk the gentle motions of your body can put them right to sleep.
Babies Need Passports Too
If you are planning on traveling out of the country, then you need to get a passport for your infant. It may seem a little crazy to make a newborn have a passport, but it’s required. Laws have certainly changed over the past few years, and there are all sorts of safety measures in place. You want to make sure that you apply for the passport about 4-6 months before you leave as you want ample time to receive it. One advantage of having a passport is that you can put stamps from all over the world in this little book. Your little one will have tons of memories and stamps that they can brag about when they are older.
Stick to a Schedule
While vacation is all about blowing the 9 am – 5 pm routine, you want to keep a good schedule for your baby. It’s hard enough to get them on a routine, and you don’t want to undo all the hard work that you’ve already done. It’s okay to bend the rules just a bit, after all, it’s a vacation. However, if your child has become accustomed to having a bath at 7 pm and a bottle at 8, followed by a bedtime story, then you need to try to keep things as normal as possible.
Traveling with your baby is not an easy task. However, all the picture-worthy moments and things you can explore with your little one makes the headache of hauling their cargo worthwhile. Think of the photo opportunities of your child in front of the Grand Canyon or posing by Mount Rushmore. Certainly, it will give them bragging rights when they are older. The key is to be prepared so that the child is safe, and try to remain on a schedule no matter how difficult that might be. It would make things much easier on you when you get home if they didn’t stray too far off course.
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What to Consider Before Hauling Your Vacation Gear in Your Car
Most people wish they could just teleport to their dream vacation and not have to deal with the stresses of packing the car—and that is understandable. Who would like packing after all? However, here are a couple of things to consider before hauling all your luggage into your car that will make packing a breeze!
Securing Your Gear
Have you ever taken a trip, got out of the car to haul all your luggage into the hotel, and—whoops!—everything tumbles out? Yeah, it isn’t fun trying to re-sort things out and pick up your stuff from the pavement. That is why you should secure your gear before leaving. It makes unpacking and reloading a breeze.
One of the best things you can do to secure your gear is get a headache rack. A headache rack protects passengers from objects that might break through the back window and cause injuries. Furthermore, you may want to get a car back carrier to divvy out bulky items from your regular luggage. Lastly, make sure you take the time to adequately secure any larger vacation gear, like surfboards or bikes, with cam straps.
Adding Extra Space
Nobody likes squeezing luggage into the back of a car or underneath people’s feet. You want to ensure that everyone is comfortable during the long trip, and that your luggage remains safe. Luckily, there are so many options for adding extra space. First, consider getting a small trailer, especially if you are carrying larger items. Second, you want to get a hard roof shell or car back carrier to hold extra luggage. Third, consider purchasing vacuum storage bags to minimize the need for larger suitcases.
A Method to the Madness
The number one worst mistake people make when packing their car before a trip is that they pay no attention to the order of things. You should never just squeeze everything into your car haphazardly. There is always a system, or method, to the ‘madness’ of packing.
The first things that you should pack are the larger, heavier, bulkier items. However, you should even do this without organization either. Think to yourself, “What items will I need to quickly reach, or take out at a hotel?” So, you may not want to pile all your beach gear on top of an important suitcase you will need before you reach your destination. Next, place all the small, lighter things using the same system: keep the items you will need to quickly get to in easier-to-reach areas. That way, you won’t be hitting your head for having to remove all your luggage to get to one small thing.
Everyone needs a vacation every once in a while. Vacations allow you to achieve a ‘clean slate’ and the relaxation, family time, and fun you need. However, save yourself a headache by following these steps for more secure, organized luggage.
Here’s another article you might like: What to Consider Before Buying a Used Car
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