Okay I’m going to break it down quick ‘n easy like. The idea here is to pack the minimum required, because with bébé it is easy to over pack. The truth is, you don’t really need that many things. You’re going to want to make two lists – one for on the plane and one for the suitcase. Here goes.
On the plane, you’ll need the following:
- Plastic bags of various sizes. As in, a few gallon ziplocs as well as some smaller ones. Toss wipes and dirty diapers in there, blown out clothing, you name it. Just toss it and forget about it until you reach your destination.
- These easy to carry wipes for the seating area. Our pediatrician, wise man, told me that germs are airborne but the most common way our little ones get sick is from touching germy surfaces. So don’t worry about the weird stares you are getting, especially if you’re traveling during cold and flu season. We got on that plane and we wiped down every surface in our immediate area, and then some.
- Extra night diapers (more absorbent) – think 3 for every hour you’re on the flight. It’s probably too much but better to have an overabundance of diapers, amiright?
- Your usual diaper bag fare, including wipes, burp cloths/bibs, travel-sized hand sanitizer, pacifier, some toys to distract bébé, and extra clothes – 2 to 3 sets for the little one, and you might throw in an extra shirt or two for yourself. For more info, see Packing List: The Essentials.
- Snacks, plenty of snacks. I hate to say that they are a key to bébé’s happiness during a flight – I am usually against snacking, but on a flight I’ve learnt to just let it go- Puffs and Frozen Yogurt bites are the best traveling snacks as they won’t make any mess! Plus, bébé loves them.
I’ve found having a grab bag of the essentials to toss into the diaper bag is key. That way when nature comes calling the little one – and blowouts seem to be a baby favorite on long airplane trips – you can just grab the little bag out of the diaper bag and everything you need is already neatly stacked inside. We use the Skip Hop clutch but any smaller clutch will do. In it I have an extra onesie, three diapers, a travel hand sanitizer, wipes, plastic bags, and when you open it up a little mat unfolds to lay baby on when changing her. Voila – airplane diaper emergencies solved.
For the rest of the trip, here are some key items we couldn’t have traveled without:
- If you’re pumping, bring all of your pump equipment, including three or four bottles and tops to switch back and forth. If you’ll be freezing while there, don’t forget your freezer bags.
- Black garbage bags to cover the windows of wherever bebe is sleeping!
- Travel crib – I like the lotus travel crib or the Graco pack n play.
- Bébé’s crib sheet from home for that familiar smell
- Sleep sacks and Swaddles. Aden and Anais make great light pretty ones, like this.
- Lovey if bébé has one
- Bedtime books and blankies – anything that is part of the bedtime routine is a must.
- Baby Monitor.
- White Noise Machine. I like the Dohm because it is true white noise.
Remember that wherever you are traveling they are likely to have baby gear rental spot so check it out before you leave and reserve some of the bigger items like swings, bathtubs, or even the travel crib.