Travelling with Babies and Young Children: Essential Packing List

6 min read

Last Modified 28 June 2023 First Added 5 June 2023

The excitement is at its peak, the time has finally come to travel with your little one! But what do I pack? You might be wondering. Fear not, we will talk you through the essential packing list to travel with your little one.

In this article, we will give you tips and tricks on what to take with you and what to pack for your baby on your travels.

What do I pack in my carry-on bag?

Whether you are travelling by car, plane, or train, you will need to take a carry-on bag to have your baby’s essentials to hand, as naturally, your baby will still need a nappy change or food on the go! So here is what you should consider packing to have the easiest journey as a parent and for your baby’s comfort:

  • Nappies, nappy bags and nappy cream: be prepared by taking at least 2 days and night’s worth of supplies, in case of delays or traffic jams on the road. You do not want to run out of nappies while you are waiting to board your plane or are stuck in the car with very little access to your boot. Take plenty of nappy bags with you, they take up very little space and can be easily stored in your changing bag or carry-on bag.
  • Baby wipes and nappy bags: take a lot of them! You will need them not only for changing the baby but whenever you need to clean up any spills or the lovely food décor your baby has decided to spread across their face! These will be extremely handy while out and about, so, be sure to pack them. Nappy bags are great for nappies but also as emergency rubbish bags for all those wipes!
  • Changing mat/pad: the last thing you want is to have to deal with a very full nappy without a changing mat or pad. It would also offer more comfort for the baby during nappy changes.
  • Muslins and bibs: be dribble and sick ready with plenty of muslins and bibs while on your journey. This will save you from having to walk around with a patch of your baby’s sick on your top (you can also pack up a spare top for yourself, just in case).
  • Expressed breast milk/formula milk and bottles: make sure you have some milk supply while travelling so your baby can have food at any time. We also recommend taking at least 2 empty clean bottles and teats.
  • Baby food pouches and baby biscuits: they take up little space so are perfect for travelling. It will also allow your little one to have some solid food during the journey. There is a wide range of baby food pouches available. Same for biscuits, there are a lot of choices out there, find the perfect one for you.
  • Dummies: if your little one uses a dummy, take 2 or more so you have a backup if one gets lost or falls on the floor.
  • Antibacterial gel: hygiene first! The essential to keep your hands germ-free while taking care of the baby during your journey.
  • Spare outfit for baby: do we need to give details on that one? An overflowing nappy or a sick disaster, be prepared for any eventuality.
  • Tissues: Just a great item to have on any journey, especially around children!
  • Favourite soft toy/comforter: lastly another addition to your carry-on bag is your baby’s favourite soft toy/comforter, the one they cannot sleep without, the one they always look for, the toy that would help stop any tears in case of a meltdown, yes that one! Take that one!

Needless to say, travelling with a little one is not going to be a light task, so you need to make sure you have all the essentials for a smooth and enjoyable journey for both your baby and you.

And what about the suitcase?

In your baby’s suitcase, you will get to pack a lot compared to the carry-on bag, mostly clothes. However, there are a few other key things not to forget such as:

  • First aid kit: in case of falls, bumps or cuts, this will come in handy.
  • Baby soap/shampoo: to bathe your little one during your holiday.
  • More nappies (unless you are prepared to buy more once arrived at your destination).
  • Sun cream and hat: you want your baby well protected from the sun if you are heading to a sunny destination. Baby’s skin is very sensitive and should not be exposed to the sun.
  • Another little bag: for dirty clothes (if you do not have access to a washing machine)! You would not want to mix clean and dirty while away.
  • Baby’s Travel Cot and Baby Carrier: the must-have for a peaceful night while on holiday and for calm days out. Your little one will feel at home if they sleep in a familiar cot, like a perfectly packable travel cot. Also, give yourself the option to have a baby carrier (in case you don’t feel like taking a pram or stroller).
  • Calpol or baby paracetamol: Baby can be unwell on holiday. There is no time or place for a temperature to make an appearance, so be prepared, and have medicine to ease your little one’s pain, just in case.
  • Swim nappies and swimming suits: if you go on holiday and have access to a pool or the sea.
  • Nightlight: if your baby is used to sleeping with one, pack it and take it with you.

And of course, clothes. Pack enough clothes (at least 2 outfits per day, in case of an emergency change is needed) depending on how long you are going for, that includes baby vests, shorts, dresses, leggings, socks, tops, jumpers or cardigans for those chilly nights.

baby on mums lap in a plane.

A few more useful pieces of information:

Did you know that most airline companies allow you to take 2 large baby items such as a collapsible pram/buggy/pushchair and a car seat , at no extra cost?

This is particularly handy when flying as the waiting time can sometimes be lengthy and carrying your baby for a long time, on top of the hand luggage and handbags, will prove difficult after a while.

Also, your baby will enjoy discovering their surroundings whilst in the comfort of their pram. (Conveniently enough, you can also sneak in a few extra nappies and a pack of wipes in there! ) The car seat will also be useful if you need to travel by car after your flight, safety first!

If you travel by train, the weight restriction and the number of items you carry are unrestricted compared to planes but bear in mind the more you take, the tighter your journey could be.

As you probably guessed, travelling with a baby or a toddler is not a light task, have a look at our baby equipment range to find the perfect items for your holiday. We hope this article can help you with what to pack for your next journey.

Have a safe trip and enjoy your time away with your little bundle of joy!

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