Travelling with a baby requires a bit of preparation. In my opinion there are eight must-have items for traveling with baby.
These baby travel gear items make family travel that little bit easier and smoother.
Bear in mind what works for one, might not work for the other. They say that no two babies are the same and that’s definitely true with my two mini-explorers. My first, Nova, was pretty chilled out, whereas my recent newborn, Kit, has colic so she pretty much cries all the time when she’s awake.
It’s hard work to say the least, but it hasn’t put us off travelling with a baby. However, my newborn travel essentials for Kit are slightly different than Nova’s ones.
8 Newborn Travel Essentials
1. Baby Travel Bags
When you travel with a baby I strongly suggest you group items and put them in clearly defined bags. So one bag for changing items, one for medicines, one for feeding things etc.
It means that you can just grab the relevant pod, rather than lugging the whole bag about. This set up is perfect for tiny cabin toilets on planes.
You could use clear freezer bags, travel pouches or something like a PacaPod. I’ve used PacaPods for both my babies. A PacaPod is a changing bag that comes with smaller pods. You can also just buy the pods to use in your own bag.
Recommended reading: Packing List for Young Families
I wholeheartedly recommend a backpack as you can just shove everything in and forget about it. The straps are usually padded and you tend to get more space than a handbag change bag. When you’re trying to hold a million and one things, it’s so much easier to have both hands/arms available.
As much as handbag style changing bags are cute, I don’t find them practical when I’m on my travels (or at home). At the very least go for a large changing bag.
Recommended reading: Travelling With a Newborn (All Your Questions Answered!)
3. Nuna SENA Travel Crib
The Nuna SENA Travel Cot came on all of our baby adventures with Nova and Kit. It’s stylish and practical. We used it loads with our first born, Nova, and even after using it with Kit too it’s still as sturdy as ever, which is testament to the design. I won’t say much more as you can read my Nuna SENA review here.
Sure, you could attempt to hire one through your accommodation but why play travel cot roulette?
4. Travel Baby Bouncer
We didn’t bother with a bouncer for the first time round and initially we didn’t with Kit. However, once we realised she had colic we splashed the cash on this BABYBJÖRN bouncer.
It was personally recommended to us. Not only are all of the reviews great (from parents in a similar situation), but it folds flat and is super lightweight. It’s perfect for carting from room to room and ideal for taking on our travels. It also looks a lot more stylish than some of the garish ones.
It’s not quite the miracle cure we were hoping for, but it often soothes her enough to give us a bit of light relief.
Recommended reading: 7 Tips for Baby Travel and Colic
5. Joolz Essentials Blanket
A homely blanket in an unfamiliar hotel room makes all the difference. Babies are so receptive to smells and textures, so we always travel with at least one blanket.
The Joolz Essentials Blanket is a great one because it helps with regulating temperatures and absorbs moisture. It’s a good one for travels as it can be used for both stroller naps and sleeping through the night.
Recommended reading: Review of the Egg Stroller (pictured above)
6. A Travel Changing Mat
A portable changing mat is so handy. I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve not wanted to put Nova or Kit down on the manky change table or grubby floor.
This Mamas & Papas portable changing mat is so soft, plump and pretty. Rather than the cold, shiny wipe clean sorts, this one is more like a cushion. I find it’s less startling for my little one and I like that I can shove it in the washing machine and drier.
Recommended reading: 10 Trip Options for Travelling With a Baby – Which One is For You?
7. Mini-Explorer Milestone Cards
They’re photo props – basically like the monthly milestone cards you commonly get for babies, but these ones celebrate all those exciting travel firsts – first flight, passport, train ride etc. The reverse is a postcard so I’ll be capturing all the precious details of the trips too. You can read more about them and see lots of pics here – Shop Mini-Explorer Milestone Cards.
I came up with the idea when Nova was a few months old and we’d already travelled quite a bit by then. With Kit I was able to use the full set of Mini-Explorer Milestone Cards. Yay!
8. Baby Carrier Travel
Baby carrier travel makes travelling with a baby a breeze.
The We Made Me Pao Papoose carrier seems to have the longest name in the world and the most buckles! It’s also not the prettiest of carriers, but it’s the only one that I seem to get on with (and I tried a lot). Most importantly for me, it feels sturdy and secure. I don’t worry that I’ve put it on the wrong way or that baby isn’t correctly positioned.
You can carry baby in three different positions, but with a newborn it’s just front-parent-facing. A carrier is a lifesaver at home, but especially when you’re travelling (and for a colicky baby).
Bonus Must-Have Item (If You Have Another Young Child)
Lascal Maxi BuggyBoard
We originally shunned a double buggy as Nova preferred to walk. However, on our travels we tend to walk a lot and it’s a bit too much for his little legs so we used a BuggyBoard. He absolutely loved it.
It comes in a mini and maxi version. We went for the maxi one as it fits both our travel system stroller (Egg) and our holiday stroller (Nuna PEPP Luxx).
We used to pretend it was the bus and he rang an imaginary bell when he wanted to get off it – usually to splash in a muddle puddle!
So aside from nappies etc, these are my must have items for traveling with a baby. What are yours? X