Traveling with a newborn can be difficult and is avoided by many parents. If, however, you have to or wish to travel with your newborn, here are some helpful tips for making your journey easier:
Double Check With Airlines and Pediatrician
Before buying the tickets, check with your airline to ensure you understand any restrictions. Some airlines require that the child be at least two weeks old, unless the parent has a medical certificate indicating a doctor authorizes travel.
It’s also a good idea to check with your pediatrician before you travel with a newborn. For example, if it is flu season, your doctor may recommend that you delay your trip or drive instead. Also, certain destinations require travel vaccines. Your baby may be too young to be vaccinated and therefore would be at risk of contracting a serious illness.
Parents need to be prepared while traveling with a newborn. You might want to consider purchasing travel insurance. The purpose of travel insurance is to cover unexpected expenses, such as medical or canceled airline flights, that might occur while traveling. With a newborn, it is more likely that you may have reason to cancel your plans, seek medical attention or return home early.
Preparations don’t stop there! Newborn babies require a lot of gear. Some things you might want to bring with you include:
- Lightweight Stroller and car-seat system
- Feeding supplies such as a nursing cover, bottles and burp cloths
- Diapers and wipes
- Rash cream, baby fever reducer (e.g., Tylenol)
- Extra clothes for you and baby
- Pack and Play or bassinet
A well-stocked diaper bag will also be enormously helpful on your flights and car rides.
Keeping Baby Safe on Flights
You may wish to bring your baby’s car seat on the flight for comfort and safety. If you do, your baby will need his or her own seat on the plane. Check with your airline in advance to ensure that they permit usage of the car seat in-flight.
Babies may experience an earache during takeoff and landing, so offer a pacifier or bottle to suck on during this time. Also, avoid allowing other passengers to touch or hold your baby, to minimize the risk of baby getting sick.
You may wish to travel by car instead of plane to your destination.Traveling by airline is faster, but you are around a lot of people both in the airport and on the plane. You baby could cry a lot during the flight, causing you and other passengers stress and discomfort. Also, newborns have not been vaccinated and are therefore could become very ill while or after traveling.
Traveling by car allows you to travel at your child’s pace. Remember that a newborn needs to eat frequently. Most babies need to eat every two to three hours. You need to stop, feed your baby, change his or her diaper and give baby time to relax and stretch before continuing your journey.
If you have a long drive ahead of you, consider breaking your trip into two or more days, allowing you plenty of time to make it to your destination without stressing you or your baby.
People travel with newborns all the time. It just takes a bit of preparation to have a safe and smooth trip!