Things to keep in mind before embarking on a journey with your baby or toddler

Traveling with your family, especially with infants or young children, is a serious endeavor. My extensive research and personal experiences, including successes and mistakes, have taught me invaluable lessons about traveling with little ones.

If you do not have the time to spend on this, here are my 3 top suggestions that will make your trip more fun and stress-free when traveling with small children. Enjoy some great times with these travel tips (just like me and my friend in Zion, in the photo above).

1)The time is against you.

All you need is extra time. Then add more time to that. With kids, travel takes more time – getting ready for them, toilet breaks, diaper changes and feedings, unloading the car, loading luggage etc. It can be a lot to handle when you travel.

You feel anxious and stressed when you’re in a hurry. It is more likely that you will forget something. You may get on the wrong train. Bickering or blaming one another. You could even take your anger out on innocent children. It’s not worth it to let the situation get that bad, as those children will at some point try your patience.

We were more relaxed and patient, both with the children and each other, on the trips we took where we had extra time. The trip went much better.

When you have a schedule or a commitment (like making a reservation for a flight), you may want to leave a lot sooner than you thought you would. It’s always a good idea to have a few minutes extra in the airport. You can use them for eating, getting organized, settling down, using the restroom, changing diapers and, most importantly, letting the kids burn some energy.

2) Pack lightly. Pack light.

Packing before a trip also takes extra time. Always takes much more time than expected. There’s so many things to pack and arrange. There’s more to do than just pack. You also have to look after the kids and house. It will therefore take longer. It may sound obvious, but I had to make a couple of failed attempts before realizing it. You should do as much preparation as possible 2 weeks before your departure, followed by more things that need to be done 3 days prior. The day of departure is reserved for packing fresh foods, finalizing laundry, and any other last-minute tasks. Please sign up to receive my packing list.

When you are traveling, things will get messy. If you believe that packing cubes will be helpful, consider them. Personally, I would rather not touch them.

When I traveled light and packed only what was necessary, the journey felt much more enjoyable. It was easier to organize and keep track, particularly if you’re flying or making multiple stops. It’s less important for a road trip from door to door.

3)The size of the object is important.

You will be more relaxed if you are able to have more room, particularly if you’re on a long trip. You may feel crowded if you are not careful.

It is the same for your rental or own vehicle. Recently, we bought a Toyota Tundra as it was so much more spacious than our Explorer. This makes a road trip much more fun!

The same goes for your choice of accommodation, be it a suite or an apartment, or if you are staying in a hotel. Opt whenever possible for a larger room (at least 350 square feet). Better yet, choose a room with separate areas for living, cooking, or sleeping. All of you will be able to sleep more soundly, both at night and during naps. It would be great to spend some time together with your partner once the children are in bed.