By : Juhi Bansal
Travelling with little ones is anything but easy. But, I would always suggest you start early than experimenting when they are older and have a mind of their own. Also, when they are still little, you and the husband can holiday to destinations of your choice and your itineraries don’t have to include zoos and Disneyland :).
In the last article I discussed what you should carry in your little ones carry on bag. Apart from that you may want to bring a few more things with you to the vacation.
Here are some other things you may want to carry with you when you’re on a holiday:
- Diapers both regular and swimming (of course you can buy in case you run out but I preferred carrying enough stock more so because the countries we were visiting were quite expensive)
- Baby food like cerelac and purees and fruit pulps, formula, daal, sooji (your kid may not easily like the taste of locally available baby food)
- Finger foods like bread sticks (whole wheat) etc.
- Once the baby starts teething you may want to let them feed themselves. They will dirty the house and probably waste a lot of food but this is the best way for them to learn to eat independently. Of course, you will have to make peace with the fact that most times they will end up eating a fraction of what they eat when you spoon feed them. Also, be prepared to change clothes several times a day 🙂 (or you may want to use the wearable cover-all bibs).
- Baby Bjorn (K exclusively carried her in the Bjorn- I think both of them loved staying so close to each other-but it can easily break your back after 20 kms and 1o long hours!)
- Baby stroller (use the super light ones also called umbrella strollers so you can ferry them around easily)
- I also started the trip with her utensil and clothes washing liquids, baby utensils, boiled water thermos etc but quickly realized the pain. Thankfully, we didn’t see any adverse effects after stopping her special products (she was teething then) but you may want to take a call depending on your child’s immunity.
Things you can avoid carrying:
- Sterlizer. Instead you can use a big pan to boil the baby’s items (should already be available at your place of stay). I stopped even that one week into the trip because it was turning out to be too much work! :). You could just make sure you wash the bottles etc with warm water or put them in the dishwasher.
- Too many clothes, jackets, shoes, bibs etc. Washing and recycling is much easier.
- Utensils etc. One bowl-spoon-cup set is good enough
- Toys (I avoided this completely. Instead carried a couple of her favourite compact books).
Things to keep in mind before and while flying:
- Make sure you book a bassinet. It was a blessing for us, especially on the long flights. Iy played, ate and slept in them.
- Get the husband to help! K was more than forthcoming, infact Iy only came to me for her feedings and it was generally very smooth.
- Use priority services at the airport. Use the airlines strollers, get to the top of all lines (boarding, security check etc) and use assistance while in the aircraft.
- Wear a button down shirt or shirt-dress for easy and frequent nursing sessions.
We booked Air bnbs exclusively in this trip and we are very happy we did. Staying in hotels may get to the kids after a while. The best part about these apartments was that they were centrally located, fully equipped (so we could cook atleast one meal) and sleep in a home like bed. And ofcourse it cost us way way less than a good hotel!
Here are a few more pictures of Iy vacationing in Europe.
Please write to me for any specific queries but do remember that there is always a first time for everything with kids. If my experience is anything to go by, it’s better to immerse them as early as possible. And do not for a second underestimate the little ones. They are much stronger and adaptable than you think!
P.S. A love for Wanderlust is probably the best gift you can give your child
Part 3 will be especially for mothers looking for outfit ideas which are stylish and nursing friendly and how you can steal some “me time” while on vacation.