Are you traveling with your baby soon? I’ve compiled all my baby travel essentials into this comprehensive baby travel packing list. Hope it helps you on your trip!
Table of Contents
Baby Travel Essentials
What to Pack when Traveling with Baby
Let’s face it — Traveling with a baby isn’t easy, but as long as you plan ahead and make some adjustments, traveling with your baby can lead to wonderful experiences.
Our five-month-old baby has already been on several road trips around Spain, and we’re now in Singapore on her first trip abroad. She seems to love it as much as we do, smiling and giggling more than usual. (If you’re still not convinced, read my post on why you should travel with baby.)
That said, I know packing for a trip with baby can be a pain. Little travelers need a surprising amount of stuff — from toys to diapers, milk powder and many more.
Don’t let that stop you from traveling though. The reality is that you don’t really need to bring many things that are considered baby travel essentials. You can usually buy most of their necessities on the road (unless you’re in a remote place or in the wilderness) and you can often repurpose the things you already have (eg. muslin cloth can double as a nursing cloth).
I’m sharing my baby travel packing list here to help make traveling with a newborn much easier for you. This baby travel list is specifically for babies (kids under one year old) — if you want to know what Alberto and I pack for ourselves, refer to this post for our packing list. Also check out my list of travel gifts for kids (including babies) if you’re looking for gifts.
My Baby Travel Packing List
A pack of 10 to make sure the baby has enough on the plane, in transit and for the first day of the trip.
I always carry these with the diapers. Buy the kind with a plastic cover for the opening so the moisture doesn’t leak and your wet wipes stay wet.
Diaper rash cream
Small bottles of baby lotion and gel
Make sure they are less than 100ml if you intend to pack them in your carry-on bag.
I use a reusable pad that came with my diaper bag to put under the baby when changing her diapers.
Just bring one for the plane and in case the climate is cool.
Bring a few — you can use them to clean up the baby, protect your clothes from messy burps, shade your baby, and more.
Only if your baby uses one.
A few of your baby’s favorite toys
1-2 toys are enough. Most babies are happy to play with a leaf or paper that you can grab from anywhere.
Clothes, socks, and booties
One to two outfits per day is a good guideline. Remember you can always hand wash them quickly if you run out.
Swaddler or sleeping bag
If you usually swaddle your baby at home, be sure to bring baby swaddler on your trip to make sure she gets her 7-hour sleep no matter where she is.
Sun screen and hat
It’s important to protect your baby from the sun using a water-resistant sunscreen of SPF 30 or higher.
2-3 will be enough.
If you’re no longer breastfeeding the baby, carry enough formula milk for the flight and first few days of travel. I usually bring a tin and then buy more at the destination.
If your baby is already eating puree, it’s more convenient to pack a few ready-made cans/bottles.
Extra bottles and cups if appropriate
2-3 bottles will be enough; again you can always wash them.
Lightweight plastic bowl with utensils
If your baby is eating solid foods.
Just a small pack with infant paracetamol, cotton swabs and band-aid. I bring this on my carry-on bag so I have it at all times.
Baby sling or carrier
My baby is the happiest when we wear her in the BABYBJORN Baby Carrier . It’s a convenient, hands-free way to keep your baby close in crowded places like airports.
This can be gate-checked or stored in the overhead bin of an airplane. We use the Chicco Liteway Stroller which is small, lightweight and easy to stow away, perfect for traveling with a baby.
Items that Should Not be on Your Baby Travel List
As I mentioned, many “necessities” aren’t really baby travel essentials; you can always buy them at your destination if you REALLY need them.
Remember that packing light will reduce stress and make you – and your baby – happier.
These are some larger items that I wouldn’t include in my baby travel packing list:
Portable crib or bassinet
This is usually big and cumbersome, it’s easier to let your baby sleep with you than carry this around.
You can usually bathe your baby with you in the tub or in the shower. If you REALLY need one, bring an inflatable one.
Choose an airline with bassinet seats (British Airways and Qatar Airways are said to be the best in this). If you need one at your destination, rent a car with a car seat which usually costs just a few more dollars per day.
Tips for Efficient Packing with a Baby
The golden rule is to pack the same things whether you’re traveling for a week or one month.
The basic baby travel essentials are the same, so don’t go overboard and pack unnecessary stuff. Remember, the less you pack, the easier it is to move around and the less stressful you’ll be.
Here are more tips to help you pack better:
Start preparing to pack a few days before you travel. Leave items out on a table or dresser as you think of them.
For your carry-on, use a diaper bag with waterproof lining and lots of compartments. I use the Kaiser Diaper Bag as it’s got special compartments for fluids and also for my laptop and other gadgets, plus it looks cool!
Bring an extra outfit or two for your baby in your carry-on bag to prepare for leaky diapers and baby spit-up.
Prevent leaks by packing medicines and toiletries in resealable plastic bags.
Clothes are the least important items, you can always wash or buy them at your destination.
What are some of the important things you always include in your baby travel checklist? Share with us in the comments!