Mamas, you know that taking your family on vacation can be an experience in more ways than one. Sure, you’re making magical memories to last a lifetime, but getting to your destination is half the battle! Whether you’re jetting or driving, here are some travel hacks to make your journey a smooth and safe one.
Bring empty water bottlesIf you’re flying, your full Hydroflask may not make it through security but bring it anyways. Your little ones will get thirsty along the way and you won’t have to pay up a hefty fee for a water bottle inside the airport.
Be prepared with a first aid kitAccidents and emergencies happen, so it’s always helpful to be prepared with a travel first aid kit. Keep emergency meds and bandages on hand just in case!
Keep kids safe with stickers, ID bracelets, or Temporary TattoosWorst case scenario: you lose your little one in the airport or at a train station. Keep them equipped with some sort of identifying information, like your name and phone number. Personalized temporary tattoos, such as Tottoos are a great identifier, in case you and your babe get separated.
Photo by June and Jade
Babywear through securityIf carrying around your tot’s car seat stresses you out, consider wearing your baby in a carrier or wrap. This keeps you hands free to deal with other luggage or managing multiple kiddos in the security line. Plus, no need to buckle and rebuckle your little one to send the car seat through x-ray machines. Many mamas also swear by TSA Precheck® when traveling with the family.
Pack tightly: roll your clothes!This may seem like a common sense hack, but rolling your clothes instead of folding them can save you loads of space. Pack everything in tight, and you can bring more of what you love!
Download movies to your device in advanceWhat did we do before iPads and tablets??? Having movies and games queued up can keep your babe entertained for hours. Now streaming services, like Netflix or Amazon, allow members to download movies and TV shows to devices for a limited time. Plan in advance how much device time you want your babe to have and keep some shows on deck for when you may not have access to wi-fi, especially for longer trips.
Photo by Kristyn Johns
Let people helpIt’s OK to need some assistance when you’re traveling! People may offer to help you and you’re not a failure if you accept! Simply pay it forward the next time you’re traveling alone--you never know what mama is in need of your help.
Wipes and plastic bags will be your best friendsWipes! Wipes! Wipes! There can be no shortage of wipes when you’re traveling with your babes. Sticky fingers? Check. Dirty diapers? Check. Crumbs on your car seat? Check. While you’re at it, throw some plastic bags in your backpack. These can be used to collect trash at the end of a long road trip or keep dirty clothes or shoes from smelling up an airplane. Be prepared for any #blessed mess with these everyday household items.
Take a tackle box or bead organizer for snacks
Avoid getting your Goldfish crushed and your apple slices squished on your next trip. Using a plastic organizer while traveling ensures you leave no snack behind! A different snack belongs in each compartment, with an added lid for security.
Photo by Positively Oakes
Pack some surprises (and prizes!) for the tripTravel can be a trying experience for even the most patient little ones. Bringing surprise games and small presents for your trip keeps the journey exciting! If you’re a frequent traveler, your little prizes can come straight from the dollar store, so you don’t break the bank every time. The ultimate hack for long drives? Mamas suggest buying window clings for an easy, mess-free, activity that keeps things entertaining.
Drop dryer sheets in your suitcaseIt’s no secret, traveling is a messy business. Keep things smelling fresh until your washing machine is in sight by slipping dryer sheets in your luggage.
Make sure to give yourself plenty of time when traveling with children. That being said, timing isn’t always in your control so try being flexible with your timing. Your little ones can sense when you’re stressed and a stressed mama is not a happy mama!
Wherever you end up this summer, we hope you have happy and safe travels! Did we miss your favorite hack? We’d love to hear it and add it to our list! Let us know what essential tips and tricks YOU have for traveling with the fam.
Thank you for sharing your tips! Here are some of your great suggestions:
- Use packing cubes so clothes stay organized and dirty/clean clothes are separated.
- Bring mess free coloring books so they don't bleed onto clothes or car seats!
- Put together totes for each kid with activities, books, snacks, and more. Everyone will feel special to get their own special bag!
- Your littles ones can earn "car bucks" or "travel points" when they behave well and lose points when they behave badly. Bucks and points can be cashed in for prizes along the way!