Traveling with a baby by car can be challenging for most parents. This is especially true when you aren’t adequately prepared and your trip is long. Therefore, it’s critically important to be well-prepared to make your travel experience more enjoyable and less stressful when you have a baby on board.
With careful planning, you can avoid common pitfalls when traveling with your baby in the car and make your trip as smooth as possible. Most importantly, you should prioritize your baby’s safety by getting them a quality car seat from a recognized manufacturer like Diono. The car seat needs to be designed for your baby’s size and age to ensure adequate security and comfort while on the road. Alongside having a suitable baby car seat, here are some tips to follow on how to travel with a baby in the car:
1. Pack Essential Items
The first thing you need to do before leaving is to ensure you pack everything your baby will use during the trip. Stock your baby’s diaper bag with wipes, extra diapers, a changing pad, diaper cream, wet wipes, burp cloths, small trash bags for dirty diapers, and wash bags for dirty clothes. Take more diapers and wipes than you need to ensure they don’t run out halfway through your trip.
Pack enough feeding supplies since you and your baby need to eat during the trip. Make sure you carry enough snacks and water for yourself to stay hydrated and nourished, especially if you’re breastfeeding. Pack enough formula, bottles, pacifiers, and a thermos with hot water if your baby is bottle-fed. If your baby eats solid foods, ensure you carry enough for the trip.
A baby blanket can also be handy for covering your baby while sleeping or even supporting their head in the car seat. You may also want to carry a towel that can serve as a makeshift diaper-changing surface or for wiping spit-ups and spills. When packing essentials, you need to decide what items to stow away in the trunk and what to keep at arm’s reach.
2. Keep Baby Entertained
Have a vast selection of engaging travel toys onboard since your baby will want to play whenever they’re awake during the journey. A variety of soft toys or mouthing-friendly toys for your baby to explore and play with can help keep them occupied throughout the trip. A toy tether that attaches to the baby car seat handles can make it easier for your baby to explore the different toys without dropping them on the floor.
You should also have a car seat mirror that you can use to keep tabs on your baby while they’re playing in the back seat. It can also let you know when your baby is napping or having milk spit-ups, especially if they are alone in the back.
3. Make Frequent Stops
When traveling with a baby in the car, plan to make frequent stops, especially if it’s a long journey. This is important since sitting in the car seat for too long can hurt your baby’s back, making the journey uncomfortable for them. Take breaks every hour to allow your baby to stretch out in their stroller or on a blanket.
This also makes a great time to change diapers or clothes and refresh and recharge before continuing the journey. Your toddler can also use this time to crawl around, jump, and play outside the car. You should consider stopping in a park or somewhere your baby can play and enjoy themselves.
While traveling with a baby in the car is often quite demanding and exhausting, following the tips above will help you prepare accordingly to ensure a hassle-free and convenient journey. Be sure to prepare beforehand to deal with unprecedented situations that may arise during your trip. You can do that by ensuring you have a first aid kit on board and important phone numbers that you can call in case of an emergency. Check the car’s condition to ensure everything is working properly to prevent any unexpected incident while on the road.
*This is a collaborative post. For further information please refer to my disclosure page.
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