Baby and Toddler Travel Tips

Being a mom of 2 (one 4 month old and one 22 month old), I feel like I have a pretty good grasp on how to make traveling with kids a bit easier on you.

Traveling with a toddler and a baby are entirely different but both challenging in their own ways. Before getting into the details, one of the best travel tips I can give is to try and stay positive and upbeat. Traveling for adults is exhausting, so just imagine how our little ones feel. They feed off our energy and can tell if we’re stressed out. The things that you’re stressing about really aren’t a big deal at the end of the day. If anything, it will be a funny story to look back on. 🙂

Top Tips

In this section I will be going over my top tips for traveling with littles. These apply to both babies and toddlers!

  1. Choosing flight times.
    • When is your child the happiest? Morning, afternoon, night? If possible, try to schedule your flight time around this. From my experience, most children are happiest in the mornings and not as much at night time. I always tried to schedule flights earlier rather than later… but not too early. 6am flights seem like a good idea until you realize you have to wake up at 3am to get to the airport on time. The only time I’ve taken a night flight is when Finley was 3 months old. At that age they don’t really know day from night anyways so I knew he’d be fine, which he was! My favorite time to fly is around 10:30am. That way you don’t have to be to the airport until 8:30am which leaves you enough time to still have breakfast at home but you aren’t rushing out the door. For toddlers, scheduling the flight around their nap time can be risky but also amazing, depending on the day. One flight we had right over Mia’s nap time and she slept about 75% of the flight, so that was great! However, she definitely could’ve gotten overtired and screamed the whole way as well, so we got lucky.
  2. Buying a seat.
    • Most (if not all?) airlines don’t make you buy a seat for your baby until they’re over 2 years old. When Mia was young and we’d go on trips with her, I chose to buy her a seat. Mainly so I could put her car seat there and then we had a row to ourself. As you know, you’re pretty on top of one another in airplanes and I always felt weird having someone RIGHT next to me while I’m breastfeeding her. This obviously isn’t in everyone’s budget but if it is, I’d recommend it. *Pro tip – if there are open seats on the plane, you can ask the flight attendant if you can carry on your baby car seat and they typically will let you. This could be a way to get a full row without having to pay.*
    • Mia is still under 2 years old (at the time of writing this) and we still buy her a seat. We bring her carseat on the plane and buckle her into it and treat the plane ride like a car ride. We’ve found this works the best for her. There was one flight we brought her car seat on but didn’t buckle her in and just let her roam – worst idea ever. All she wanted to do was run around and crawl all over us, which made for a VERY long 2 hour flight. If you buckle them in from the beginning, it shows them that it’s going to be like a car ride!
  3. Feed at Take Off & Landing.
    • For my babies – nurse/bottle feed/use a pacifier during take off and as you start descending. This will help prevent their ears from hurting, which no child likes. Every flight we had Mia on before she was 1, I nursed at take off and she typically fell asleep while nursing. Planes are so loud that it’s actually pretty soothing for them to fall asleep to.
        • Pro tip for my nursing moms – BRING A BOTTLE AS WELL. There were multiple flights where both Mia and Finley were too distracted/overstimulated to nurse and would just scream. Having a bottle handy was key for preventing them from going bonkers lol!
    • For my toddlers – give them something to suck, chew, or drink during take off and landing. This will help the ear popping as well. Mia did well with her milk, fruit snack, applesauce packet, or crackers.
  4. Ask the Flight Attendant Where the Changing Table is.
    • I’ve delegated this to Tommy. The moment we board the plane, he asks the flight attendant what bathroom has the changing table. More often than not, only one of them does (at least on Southwest). It’s also very inconsistent, one plane it’s in the front bathroom, the next it’s in the back. Knowing where this is can save you from having to run up and down the plane with either a toddler about to pee their pants or a baby’s blowout getting everywhere
  5. Easy Access Diapers.
    • In a ziplock in your diaper bag put a diaper, wipes, and a poop bag. This way if you need to make a quick diaper change, you can just grab the ziplock and run to the bathroom. As we all know, airplane bathrooms are TINY and lugging a massive diaper bag into it, then having to fish through that isn’t easy.
  6. Message Ask TSA on Facebook.
    • This might SAVE you so please read on. TSA has a Facebook account called “ask TSA” where you can message them asking them questions about everything you can think of. Some TSA agents might forget rules and tell you you need to get rid of things, throw things out, etc. So if you message their Facebook page and then take a screen shot of the reply, you’re able to show the agent the rules right on your phone. This is especially handy when it comes to traveling with baby food/pouches/breastmilk/formula/etc. Please see the screen shot below, I always screen shot this message before we travel so I have it handy.


That sums up my top tips but now let’s get into a few more specific ones for babies versus toddlers!


Baby Travel Tips


  1. Baby Wearing
    • One of the best things you can do is wear your baby. This allows you to have both hands free which makes things easier on you when boarding/getting situated. I have a few different carriers and all work well while traveling. The one downside to baby wearing is that they usually make you take your baby out of the carrier for take off. This can be frustrating if the baby is asleep but sometimes they let you get away with it.
      • Solly Baby Wrap: This one is nice because it’s so lightweight and I don’t know about you but I always sweat when I travel lol. I also love this wrap because you can easily sit down in it and it doesn’t bunch up and it’s extremely compact.
      • Baby Bjorn Carrier: The nice thing about this one is that it doesn’t require you to hold their head. The Solly Baby wrap you can pull one side of the fabric over their head but neither of my kids liked that until they were asleep. The downside with this is that it isn’t that compact
      • Artipoppe Carrier: This carrier is one of the most comfortable carriers I’ve ever worn, which is probably where the hefty price tag comes in. But I’ve never had an issue with back pain or shoulder pain when I use this one.
  2. Mamava Pods
    • These little pods are in most airports that I’ve been in and are such a great resource. There is an app you can download and then it finds your location and tells you where the closest pod is to you. It will also tell you if it’s vacant or in use. The pods themselves have a little place for you to sit in peace so you can feed your baby.


Toddler Travel Tips:


  1. Board the Plane Hungry
    • On the most recent flight we took with Mia she boarded the plane hungry and it ended up being the best thing ever. We fed her breakfast before leaving for the airport and then she didn’t eat again until we got on the plane. This worked out perfectly because she was so hungry that she ate for about 1.5 hrs of the 2 hour flight LOL. Pro tip – pack a peanut butter sandwich because it takes long to eat but they usually love it. 😉 I plan on writing a separate blog post of my favorite snacks for Mia so stay tuned for that!
  2. New Snacks
    • I try to have new and exciting snacks for Mia on flights because then she gets excited to eat them since they’re different. This could also just be something as simple as cutting her peanut butter sandwich in the shape of a star versus regular. Toddlers are pretty easy to please when it comes to that lol.
  3. New Toys


Whewwwwwww okay I think that’s all I have for my travel tips. I hope this helps you guys as you take adventures with your littles. Anytime I get stressed out, I try to remind myself how grateful I am to be traveling with my kids. Making memories that will last a lifetime!!


Peace & Love,

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