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Who here has ever traveled with a toddler?! This is my first foray into traveling with my LO and I’m low-key freaking the heck out. Cam and I are going to visit my family for an entire week (super excited about this) but I’ll be going alone. That means I get to navigate the airport and a plane ride with a toddler. YIKES!
Anytime that we’ve travelled with Cam, pre and during pandemic hasn’t been more than a car ride away (some long and some short).
Ever since I booked the trip, I’ve had some low-key anxiety about it. I’ve never traveled alone with Cam before and he’s slowly becoming WAY more independent (hello terrible twos/threes).
I looked for everything from travel hacks to activities. I do not want to be that parent on the plane with a screaming child. However, I also will do everything in my power to make sure that not only are Cam and I comfortable but that so is everyone else.
While this trip may be a little different than others since I am traveling to family that also has kids so I don’t need to bring a lot of that stuff. For example, I’m not bringing Cam’s full car seat because my sister has an extra, I am however going to bring his stroller just so that navigating the airport is a little easier.
Below are some of the top tips I found that I will personally be trying out for our trip (except the equipment rentals).
Amazon will be your saving grace, no matter where you are traveling. Depending on where you are going, you can also have things delivered directly to your hotel. This ‘hack’ is utilized a lot by families who travel to Disney as most of their hotels will hold packages until you arrive.
Equipment Rentals – there are so many places now that you can rent baby stuff from it’s amazing! Anything from cribs to strollers can be delivered to your hotel room and returned at the end of your stay. This is a great option if the trip is over 7 days. That way you aren’t bogged down with all the equipment & baggage claim is way quicker. This is a go-to for families who are traveling to theme park destinations (Disney) since they don’t have to bring a lot of stuff with them.
5 Point Harness – this is an awesome idea if you are not bringing your child’s car seat. This harness has straps that go over the seat and lap belts that connect to the actual seat belt of the plane. It’s also the only one on the market that is actually FAA-approved. I’ve purchased this exact one for our trip next week and will post a review while we’re using it!
Diaper Bag Essentials
Bag – I bought this AMAZING Weekender Tote that can be used as a carry-on or a purse (I’m currently using it as my everyday bag). What makes it awesome you ask? The fact that it is HUGE, so not only will it hold my stuff but also the crap I’ll need for Cam (diapers/wipes) with room to spare. It’s also got this ‘strap’ that you can easily slide over the handle of a rolling suitcase.
Snacks – SNACKS on SNACKS on SNACKS. Make sure that you have enough snacks to honestly get you through an entire day.
Cups – For children, you are allowed to bring your own drinking cups. Everywhere I read suggested using a cup with a spout. The constant sucking motion should help with the pressure build-up in their ears as you take off and land. I already own this Mickey NUK Active Cup but any sippy cup should work.
Keeping a toddler entertained while strapped in a seat is difficult at the easiest of times. If you have an extremely active toddler (like me), this is honestly my 2nd biggest fear. Below are some ideas and suggestions that I’m personally going to have up my sleeve.
Coloring – I am currently in the process of stocking up on a lot of mess-free coloring pages. These pages are great because you don’t have to worry about the LO’s coloring where they shouldn’t. They have tons of different characters too.
Tablets – We recently upgraded Cam to an iPad Pro and while we’ve had to hide it a few times to ensure not a lot of screen time. This is a MUST HAVE for traveling with children.
TIPS and TRICKS:
- Have your LO start drinking halfway through take-off/landing. This should also give them a distraction in case they get scared.
- Make sure to have a travel charger with you. I have this Anker PowerCore block but there is also one that has multiple ports as well.
- Download a bunch of their favorite shows or movies and some games and hopefully, you should be good to go! This is also great in case your plane doesn’t have WIFI.
Thankfully our flight is only about 2 hours so a few Mickey episodes or a Toy Story/Cars movie and we should be good to go. Super wishful thinking on my part because to travel with a toddler is just stress-inducing as it is. But I have to think positive and hope all will go well with minimal hiccups or else I’ll be stressed out already and it’ll just get worse.
I plan on doing a follow-up post to let you all know how things went. You can check it out here. I’ll let you know what worked and what didn’t and also anything else that I figure out along the way!