If you are going to attempt to travel with small children, it is a must to make sure you are well-equipped. With so many cool products out there to make your life easier, it’s worth the investment. It doesn’t matter how you plan to travel –plane, train or car – being prepared is your best strategy.
- Pack ‘n Play or Travel Crib: If you are travelling to a relative’s home (Hello, Grandma!) and you think you may do it frequently, my suggestion is to purchase one as a “gift” and ship it to their house ahead of time, so they have it available when you arrive. Graco Pack ‘n Play is a good one, but there are lots of options. Don’t forget to include the sheets! If you are going to a hotel, call ahead. Many times they will have one that they will provide you free of charge during your stay. This certainly beats having to check-it with your luggage if you are travelling by plane. A travel crib is also an option and there are many varieties. It’s light weight and doesn’t take up much room in a car.
- Lightweight Stroller: My suggestion here it to only bring a lightweight one, not your regular every day stroller. It is not worth the hassle of dragging it to your destination. My favorite one is Summer Infant 3Dlite-Convenience stroller. Besides being easy to haul, it has a big basket, cup holder, umbrella, and anti-shock front wheels. Again, there are many types available, so check out one in your price range. I would definitely purchase one that has an umbrella option so your little one is protected from the sun if you are outdoors on your trip.
- Car Seat Transporter or CARES Restraint: If you are looking for an easy way to transport your car seat through the airport, the BRICA Roll Car Seat Transporter is the way to go. It’s super light and makes hauling a breeze. Have you every tried to carry a car seat through an airport? It’s very awkward and requires a bit of strength. Something you will not want to be attempting while trying to ensure everything else is under control. You can also consider the CARES restraint system, that fits right on to the airplane seat. This is for kids that are old enough to be in their own seat, but the buckle doesn’t fit them secure enough. Check out Kids Fly Safe for more information.
I would also like to add one more item that will make your trip more enjoyable: A cute, stylish bag big enough to put everything in, but not make you look a bag lady. Make sure to pack it with goodies for kids, as well as for you! A few snacks, clean-up rags, hand sanitizer, coloring books, crayons, I-pad and headphones, magazine and Tylenol, will help with your journey. Have a great trip!