Traveling with a baby might sound pretty intimidating, especially for new parents or those who don’t have that much experience going on trips and journeys. Now, on top of it, try to add the demanding task of staying within the budget — that’s a recipe for a big challenge.
While an enriching and character-building experience, traveling also tends to take us from our comfort zone. In stressful situations, parents are especially prone to spend money on a whim just to keep their children from having a complete meltdown.
Happy children are easier to handle in a new environment, and we’re not going to judge you if you ever happen to reach for your wallet while out and about with your kids. Instead, we prepared a short and easy-to-follow guide that will help you learn how to plan a vacation.
Here’s how both you and your newborn child can stay content and enjoy the amenities of your destination.
One of the most important things to keep in mind is to start planning for your upcoming trip as early as possible. If you’re going with a newborn, this is a crucial step. You’ll want to have a better understanding of how your child will behave on a long journey, and you’ll also need to figure out how to bring them along.
For example, suppose you’re planning a vacation across Europe. In that case, you’ll need to make sure that the car seat you buy is suitable for use abroad, not just in one country, as some safety guidelines may vary from one place to another. You might also want to search for travel & vacation coupons to save some money on your trip.
In addition, if you want to travel by plane, there are some requirements that you will have to meet. Depending on the airline you choose, these might differ. Nevertheless, usually, only small children who are within the age of two or under can be seated in a parent’s arms during a flight. If they’re older than that, they will have to be placed in an approved child safety seat.
All major airlines around the world have their regulations regarding child seats, so make sure to check the details before you book your flight.
Look at Reviews and Ratings
Once you’ve figured out some of the logistics of traveling as a family with a newborn, you should look for reviews and information about the location itself. One of the great features of the modern age is that you can find reviews online for every single thing on the planet.
So, if you want to read reviews on a specific hotel or restaurant, just type it into a search engine, and you’ll see lots of information pop up, including reviews on travel websites and forums. Check if they’re family-friendly and offer amenities such as a crib or chairs for small children. If there’s a place that managed to catch your attention, but you still have some questions left, don’t hesitate to contact them by e-mail or make a phone call.
If you’re bringing your baby on a trip, make sure to pack as light as possible. It means that you shouldn’t pack too many clothes and other items because you don’t know what will happen or how long you’ll be there. Instead of carrying around heavy bags, try to pack only the essentials and leave the rest behind.
Keep in mind that even if you end up miscalculating the number of clothes you have to take for your child, you can always buy something new after arriving at your destination or use a hotel sink or bathtub to do a quick laundry run. When it comes to diapers, don’t stuff your bag with as many as you can possibly fit. Take those that you’re going to use during the flight or the car ride and buy more after you arrive at the place you’re vacationing in.
It’s All About Timing
When it comes to traveling with a newborn, timing is everything. If you’re going by car or train, then try to avoid rush hours whenever possible — try to leave before or after the rush hour period. Doing this will help you avoid traffic jams or delays since you won’t have to deal with other drivers or travelers that way.
Also, it’s best to avoid the peak summer season when everyone else seems to be taking vacations as well. By picking off-season travel periods, you’ll have more room for yourself and your family without having to worry about crowds. Additionally, traveling during the off-season will help you to reduce the costs of the whole trip significantly, as almost everything from hotels to food at restaurants and entertainment is cheaper at that time.
Keep Your Kids Entertained
Traveling with a toddler can be challenging enough, but doing so with a newborn can be even more demanding because babies require constant care and supervision — which is why you should always try to keep them entertained while on the road.
Bring along some toys that are easy to clean up after they are used or simple games that your kids can play while strapped into their car seat or stroller.
With these tips in mind, planning your next vacation will seem like much less of a hassle. Just remember that it doesn’t matter whether you’re traveling with an infant or toddler — it’s never too early to start planning your journey. Besides, remember to look at reviews and ratings before purchasing your plane tickets. This way, you will prevent yourself from making a choice you will regret down the road.
Remember that vacation should be a relaxing time. By following the advice above, you’ll be able to plan a vacation on a budget while traveling with a newborn. Farewell, wind to your sails, and bon voyage!