Packing for Baby

in the zoo

If this is your first trip with your baby, it doesn’t matter if you’re gone for a matter of a day or weeks, you’ll need to pack wisely. When packing for an overnight trip with your baby, you’ll need lots of things you obviously didn’t bring when you were traveling solo, but this is not too overwhelming if you take your baby’s suitcase through his day. Also, it is wise to pack a day or two ahead of time to be sure you can wash anything that is dirty and find missing items.

Mornings

Find items your child needs every morning. While you don’t need to bring your highchair along to a hotel, you might opt for a booster seat if you’re staying with relatives. The booster will give you somewhere to feed your baby that is more transportable. Think about your morning routine and grab necessary items. Your list might include:

  • Diapers
  • Wipes
  • Pacifier
  • Spoons
  • Baby food
  • Bottles
  • Formula
  • Blanket
  • Small Toys
  • Clothing
  • Portable DVD Player
  • Favorite Cartoon or Movie

Playtime

Your next step will be to think through your child’s morning activities. You can’t bring he whole toy chest, but purchasing a new toy or two and packing up a few old favorites will be a nice treat for your little one when she gets to the destination. These are also great on an airplane or in the car. Items you might use during playtime include:

  • Small toys
  • Sippy cups
  • Snack bowls
  • Dry snacks
  • Blanket

Outside Time

After you play, if you normally head outside (or even if you don’t) stop to think about what you’ll need if you spend any time outside at your destination – which is likely virtually everywhere. Bringing along a stroller is likely a necessity, but you might consider investing in a small umbrella stroller if you can to make travel less big and bulky as a stroller can easily be your largest item. You can, however, take the stroller right up the gate on an airplane. Items you might need from outside time include:

  • Stroller
  • Backpack
  • Carrier
  • Sling
  • Hat
  • Sunscreen
  • Towel
  • Swimsuit
  • Insect repellent
  • Shoes
  • Socks
  • Cover-ups
  • Personal floats for the pool (floating arm bands, for example)

Lunchtime

You’ve likely already packed most of your food items from breakfast, but double-check to be sure you have the following. You’ll want to include a small container of dish soap to wash out bottles and utensils in the hotel sink as necessary.

  • Bibs
  • Eating Utensils
  • Plates
  • Bowls
  • Cups
  • Bottles
  • Formula
  • Baby food
  • Small container of dish soap

Naptime

Following lunch, think about your baby and his naptime. What items does he need to feel like home? Be sure to think about these:

  • Blankets
  • Monitors
  • Pacifiers
  • Cuddle object – teddy bear, etc…
  • Special music or lights

Outings

After nap, when you head out for an outing, look around to see what items you must absolutely have. The list varies a bit depending on whether you’re traveling by car or pushing a stroller.

  • Stroller
  • Carseat
  • Jacket
  • Cap
  • Gloves
  • Scarf
  • Blankets
  • Well-stocked diaper bag

Bath Time

Near the end of the day, you’ll have bath time and this will require some items you might not have grabbed previously. During bath time, you’ll need:

  • Baby wash
  • Shampoo
  • Baby washcloth
  • Towel
  • Pajamas
  • Lotion

Packing Tips

When you get ready to pack the huge assortment of things in front of you, look at how much space you have available to actually stow all of these things. If you’re looking at limited space, remove things you can buy at your destination within reason. You wouldn’t leave behind clothes, for example, but you can leave behind formula and diapers with the intention of buying more to use on the trip when you arrive. You would do well to jot down a shopping list as well to have on hand immediately upon arrival so that you don’t forget anything when you do go to the shops.

Also think about how much time you’ll have between washings. If you’ll be visiting relatives with a washing machine, you can wash and dry almost every day. However if you are staying on a resort for a week, you might have limited access to washing machines and you’ll need to bring extra blankets and clothing to compensate.

Airlines do allow you an extra suitcase to accommodate all of the gear that comes with traveling with small children in most cases. Be sure to ask you airline about their policy in this regard before beginning to pack any bags.

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