Essential Items Checklist for Travelling with a Baby
Travel is stressful. Getting a grip on the dozens of items a baby needs every day is stressful. Combine the two and you get a colossal headache! However, after taking several short and long flights to varying destinations (Chicago, Barcelona, Philadelphia, and Beijing), we have come up with this checklist of essential items we pack every time we travel.
These are the items we recommend you take along on your next trip, and the reasons why we think these are handy to have on a trip!
- Changing bag: A changing bag that you use on a daily basis containing all essentials such as a changing mat, spare nappies, wet wipes, and a set of spare clothes etc. A good quality, sturdy bag with lots of pockets is very handy to keep all these tiny items organized and easy to find. We highly recommend the one from .
- Microwave Sterilizer Bag: These bags let you sterilize items such as bottles, teethers, breast pumps and soothers in the microwave. You cannot go wrong with Medela here. If there is no microwave around, there is the option of using sterilizing tablets. However, we personally could never get comfortable with our baby’s bottles coming into contact with any chemicals. Therefore, we always ensure access to a microwave when we travel.
- (Optional) Portable bath tub: Unless your baby is old enough to sit in the adult bath tub, it’d be great to have a portable bath tub that can easily be folded and stored in a suitcase. This would be similar in size to the bath tub at home and make bathing a little easier. The is beyond adorable, although it requires inflation.
- (Recommended with the portable bath tub above) Air Pump: If you don’t have the lungs of an Olympic swimmer, you would most likely need a pump to inflate the Munchkin Inflatable Duck. Here’s the pump we recommend.
Out and about
- Baby car seat and stroller: Anywhere we go, we bring our car seat that attaches to the stroller base. This car seat and stroller strike the ideal balance between light-weight and sturdy. Thankfully, they have returned without any scratches after having been checked in as luggage on several short-haul and long-haul flights.
- Baby carrier: In addition to the car seat and stroller, we usually also bring the baby carrier as it’s more comfy for the baby. If the terrain is not smooth, or if there are a lot of stairs to climb and an elevator isn’t available, a baby carrier makes it easier to move around. is comfortable and reliable.
- Fridge to go: If you are going to be out for a while, e.g. in a long-haul flight or an entire day walking around, a fridge or an ice pack can help protect the milk / food from going bad. We have been using the one from Koo-di for months and swear by it. It’s compact and light-weight.
- Teether: It is usually a good idea to bring a teether toy along that the baby can chew on or play with. On long flights, you will eventually run out of ideas and letting the baby spend time with his favorite / familiar toy is a good way to distract him. We recommend the all-time favorite .
- Soother: If your baby uses one, it’s recommended to bring a spare one along. It’s likely going to fall down on the floor and you wouldn’t want to pick something up from the floor of an airplane / train / bus and reuse it with sterilizing it first. (To minimize the chances of it falling down however, it’s highly recommended to use a soother clip like the MAM Soother Clip that can be used to secure soothers, teethers as well as toys to the baby)
What we don’t recommend taking on a trip
- Travel cot: These are heavy (~8 kg) and unnecessary! You can call your hotel and reserve a cot in advance, most will be happy to provide one. If you are concerned about hygiene, you can simply take a clean bed sheet along and use that with the cot provided by the hotel. As long as you secure it properly to the mattress / cot frame provided, there is no risk whatsoever.