Eight Tips For Traveling By Plane With a Newborn
One of the most exciting things for a new mom is taking your baby on vacation. I absolutely love going back through old family photos to show my older kids what trips we took them on when they were tiny. They love it too.
Before you take your first trip on an airplane with a brand new baby, there are a number of things you’ll need to take into consideration in order to make the trip as smooth as possible. The one thing I can’t stress enough is that traveling with a baby won’t go how you think it’s going to go. Plan on being flexible and rolling with the punches and you won’t be disappointed. Let’s dive into the five tips:
This one is probably a no brainer for most travelers. For years, we’ve heard that you need to arrive at the airport at least two hours before your flight. When bringing a baby, you should add at least another hour since you have more stuff and taking a baby through security takes a wee bit longer.
Bring a Passport or Birth Certificate
Believe it or not, airport security needs proof that the baby you are taking on a plane actually belongs to you. I remember our first trip with our first daughter. We didn’t bring a birth certificate and had no problem going through security on the way to California, but coming home, we were stopped and we missed our flight.
Ask For Help Going Through Security
If you are going through security with a spouse, make sure to tag team efforts. It will make the process go faster and be less stressful. If you are traveling with baby alone, some TSA agents are more than willing to help you get your things loaded on the belt, break down your stroller, etc. If they aren’t jumping right in to help, it is no impolite to ask… so do it.
Change Diapers Before Boarding
Before boarding your flight, you’ll want to make a quick trip to the family bathroom to do one last diaper change and make sure baby is wearing something warm since planes can be cold. You might also consider putting her into an overnight diaper that will hold more liquid.
Wipe Down The Plane
You wouldn’t believe how dirty airplane seats and tray tables can be. Like, they are seriously disgusting. You can read about it in this forbes post. One, very strong, recommendation is to bring a small packet of clorox wipes and completely wipe down your seat, headrest, arm rests, and tray table area before allowing your baby into the area. Even with updated cleaning standards due to COVID-19, I wouldn’t risk it.
Take a Small Stroller
You may be tempted to bring your large stroller that works with your car seat adapters, or even a large jogging stroller, but that’s a seriously bad idea. First, they are incredibly difficult to navigate through security and second, they take up so much room on the plane and in your hotel room. I recommend picking up a small umbrella stroller just for traveling. I promise, you’ll thank me later.
Wear Your Baby
In addition to or in replacement of a small stroller, you might just consider wearing your baby. Forward facing baby carriers are extremely comfortable and are much easier to get you and your baby through the airport and to wherever you’re going on your trip.
Breastfeed if Possible
If you are physically able to breastfeed, I highly recommend doing it the entire trip. Not only will it cut down on the amount of things you need to bring (bottles, formula, etc.), but it’s just easier and you and the baby. If you will be feeding with a bottle, the kids on the plane blog have a great post for you to learn more about how to do it effectively.
Obviously, there are lots of other things to consider when traveling with your baby, but these are the eight most important things. Here’s a post on 18 tips for traveling with newborns that you might check out if you feel you need a little more hand holding.