Preparation - Before You Travel

We’ve put together the following tips to help you get ready to head off on your adventure:toddler packing suitcase

Make sure you check out the list of must have's from our latest Facebook poll at the bottom of the article!

  1. On long journeys think about booking a transit hotel if you have a long stop (or delay) along the way. These are hotels within the airport that do not require you to go through customs etc. See our article on transit hotels here
  2. Take your babies fitted cot sheet with you; not a clean one but one he /she has slept on for at least a night so it smells like them and their bed and home. For toddlers you may like to take their pillow case, neither take up too much space in your luggage.
  3. Consider your airplane seating carefully; Babies under 1 year old (and under 10-11kgs)are generally given preference by airlines when it comes to bassinet seats but even if your baby is older than this it can be worth asking for a bulkhead seat (the seats at the front of each section of the plane generally near the toilets or the galley) it will give you more leg room and babies can usually sit on the floor for a little play at your feet and you also don’t have someone sitting in front of you putting their seat back etc. The down side to bulk head seats is the arm rests don’t lift up so there is no way for your little one to stretch out even if you are lucky enough to have a spare seat next to you. There is also no storage space in the seat back in front of you so you need to stand up and get your belongings out of the overhead locker every time you need something. There are websites dedicated to helping you pick your seats on an aircraft, a good one is www.seatguru.com
  4. See a doctor (if you are leaving Australia) to discuss any vaccinations that may be required approximately 6 weeks prior to travel. For our articles on travel health, click here
  5. If possible before travel get baby used to room temperature baby food this makes life much easier if you can’t get access to microwaves etc.
  6. Get babies and kids used to sleeping in a number of ways and places, will baby sleep in your arms? Or on a bed? When travelling it is a huge advantage to have adaptable kids that will sleep in any situation.
  7. Try out your portacots / travel cot at home for nap time to allow kids to get used to them and highlight any issues before you go away.
  8. Go out shopping before you leave and buy a couple of small new toys and keep them hidden, don’t bring them out until you are on the flight and the kids are getting frustrated and really bored, for older kids you may like to wrap them to increase the excitement.
  9. Take along a couple of story books that you can read together.
  10. Request baby or children’s meals for your flight, or let the airline know about any food allergies etc well in advance. Meal requests must be done at least 24 hours before departure.
  11. Discuss with toddlers and older children what to do if you get separated, perhaps they are to stay where they are and ask someone in uniform for help or find a large monument as soon as you arrive anywhere that is visible from everywhere and meet them there if you get separated.
  12. If you are planning on using Phenergan or another sedative for your child (and we are not suggesting that you do) make sure you test it at home before travelling; in some children it can have an opposite effect and you could end up with a hyper child bouncing their way through the flight instead of sleeping like you had hoped.
  13. Clean out the pockets and underneath basket of your stroller before going to the airport, it is easier to do at home than at security checks.

We asked our facebook likers what their number 1 travel product is, here are some of their suggestions:

Porta Cot / pop up cot Ergo carrier
Trunkie Nigh Light
Swag Wipes
Portable high chair Snaplock bags in ALL szes
Masking Tape, make shapes, set boundaries and its easy to remove Raffertys food sachets

 

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