My Tips for Traveling with a Toddler
Ahh… this post was supposed to be up in February. And here I am, it’s the beginning of May and I am finally working on it! Better late than never, am I right?
This is perfect timing, too, since I am about to embark on another trip with Izzy this week. Wish us luck! Now on to reading the post…
At the end of January, my dad took Izzy and me with him to go visit family in Missouri. At the time, Izzy was only 18 months and to say I was stressed and nervous is an understatement. There were so many things I was worried about; how Izzy would do on the plane, how I would carry all of her stuff along with mine, how would I stop my active toddler from getting stir crazy, etc.
Here are some tips that I learned that helped me get through the stress and worry of travelling.
1. Don’t stress the future.
You don’t know what is going to happen when you travel with children. Prepare yourself the best you can, and just take everything as it comes. There’s no use in worrying about something that hasn’t even happened yet!
2. Get your child excited about travelling before you embark on your trip.
Buy them a book about planes, have them color some travel coloring sheets, point out planes in the sky, show them videos of planes, do whatever you can think of to get them excited about their trip!
3. Pick an appropriate time to travel.
If you can, try to fit the plane trip around your child’s nap times or the time of day that they are the happiest. We know Izzy is happiest in the morning, so all of our flights were scheduled for the morning. Chances are, it won’t work out perfectly even if you travel at the best time during the day, but hopefully it helps even a little bit.
4. Make sure to pack
• Tons and tons of snacks
• A bottle or sippy for your little one if they need that to drink out of. This is great because they can drink out of a bottle during take off and landing to help their ears pop.
• Toys galore. Anything and everything you can fit in your bag that you think may entertain your child, bring it!
• A secret weapon. My secret weapon for Izzy was a brand new notebook since she loves coloring, and a tablet with some Disney movies downloaded on it. Obviously, she colored the entire time; That’s my girl!
5. Pick your seats wisely.
Hopefully you will be lucky enough to snag a whole row so your toddler can have some more space. We were lucky enough to get an entire row, so it was easy when I had to go change Izzy’s diapers to get up and go to the bathroom, and she was able to look out the window with my dad whenever she wanted.
We ended up getting super lucky when we traveled. Izzy was an angel for the most part and spent the entire time coloring and laughing. She got chocolate milk while the plane took off and landed so her ears would pop, and she ate all the snacks her heart desired.
But I know some children don’t have as easy as a time. And mama, I want to tell you that that is okay and perfectly normal. Which brings me to my next point…
6. Remember that it is okay if your trip doesn’t go according to plan.
When does life ever work out perfectly? If you’re having a hard time while traveling, take a deep breath and just try to get through the day. I bet you’ll be able to look back one day and laugh about the situation.
7. Don’t worry about judgement from others.
If your kiddo is the one screaming and crying on the plane, don’t sweat it. Mostly everyone understands, and the ones who don’t are just meanies anyways and their opinions don’t matter. That’s right… I said meanies.
Travelling is hard no matter how old your child is.Just remember to do your best and ultimately that is all you can do. You got this, mama!