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Tips for Summer Travel With Children



Summer is here! Let the family adventures begin! But first, what are some things you might need to consider before venturing out? Aside from packing for forecast weather at your location, having a general activity game plan, or having copies of your emergency contact numbers and papers handy, Dr. Nilong Vyas (MD), Pediatrician at Sleepless in NOLA and Medical Review Expert at SleepFoundation.org offers some additional tips:

DURING A FLIGHT

While having access to electronic devices can make things a lot easier for keeping your little one busy during a flight, it is important to consider the following. "Avoid exclusively using electronic devices for babies 0-24 months for entertainment on a flight; instead, bring toys, games with minimal pieces, and stuffed animals to keep an infant occupied." Additionally, Dr. Vyas recommends "Feeding the baby a bottle, breastfeeding, or offering a pacifier during take-off and landing can help relieve elevated ear pressure, which can cause pain and crying."


When it comes to determining how many seats to book for a flight, there are various things to consider. Depending on the ticketing class, options available for infants, etc., it is worth checking in advance with the airlines. Dr. Vyas adds, "Most infants can be held on the lap during a flight, but if it is a long flight or your child is very mobile, buying a seat on the plane may be beneficial, although it adds to the expense."

DIAPER CHANGING OPTIONS

Always be prepared to change a diaper, especially when traveling in unfamiliar locations. "Most airports, airlines, and restaurants are equipped with baby changing tables but be prepared with diapers, wipes, and hand sanitizer." If you are wondering how to do this easily, consider a modern twist on the fanny pack.

REDUCE THE NUMBER OF LARGE BABY GEAR ITEMS

If you make reservations in advance, be sure to ask about what resources are available when for parents traveling with an infant or toddler."Pack an infant crib or pack-and-play to ensure the baby has a safe sleeping environment while traveling. Many hotels and rental companies will offer cribs, strollers, and even car seats to keep babies safe during your trip without needing to lug those heavy items."

SNACKING

Littles are happy if they have quick access to snacks. Traveling with snacks can be easier if you have a spill-proof snacking container or other options designed for use by small hands."If bottle-feeding or breastfeeding your baby, feeding them can be a breeze, and when your little one starts eating solids, using travel pouches makes feeding on the go a lot easier and less messy."


FIRST-AID KIT ADD-INS In addition to a basic first-aid kit, there may be some additional items to have on hand for your little ones if they are teething, for example. "Remember to bring any medications the child may be taking, but also pack sunscreen and anti-itch ointments for sun protection and insect bites, respectively."


No matter where (or how) you plan to travel, it is always handy to look ahead, ask what is available at the planned venues, or even book through a service that offers family vacation packages like on this site. We are not affiliated with this site, but it is a great example of what is out there. Don't be afraid to ask about your options.


Safe Travels!

Photo by Natasha Babenko

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