Received wisdom has it that when traveling with small children, ‘getting there’ is far harder than ‘being there’. The journey really is more important than the destination and can be an overwhelming proposition – long packing lists, unpredictable schedules and cranky kids are just some of the hurdles you may face along the way. But going away with small children needn't be a hassle. We’ve listed the essentials you really need to make traveling with kids a breeze.
Plan and Pack For A Slower Pace
The lightweight, convertible Babymel Georgi, made from recycled plastic bottles
Why not pick out a backpack for your child, too? Bigger kids will enjoy toting their own kit around in a cute animal backpack – the Skip Hop Zoo range include lunch bags, packs for bigger children and minibags with safety reins, which will come in useful in busy airports or attractions. Perfect for carrying treats and toys in preparation for those tricky moments.
How cute? The Skip Hop Big Kid Zoo Backpack, Pug
Transporting Your Child While Traveling
Your strategy to transport your child on vacation depends on how old they are. A baby has very different needs to that of a toddler. However old your child is, there are some essential pieces of kit for you and your family.
Kids Travel Essentials: Infants
Newborns to infants aged around one can be the easiest to travel with, mainly because they are portable and can’t scamper away. As long as you create a comfortable environment for them, stick to their routine and plan your days accordingly, you can keep them happy pretty much anywhere. Keep them calm in a baby carrier. If you’re off somewhere hot, try the BabyBjorn Baby Carrier One Air, which is designed to keep you and your baby comfy with its quick-dry cool mesh fabric.
Soft and breathable - the Baby Bjorn Baby Carrier One Air
Kids Travel Essentials: Toddlers
Toddlers are harder work while traveling as they’ll want to explore – even when you need them to be strapped in for take-off – but will get tired easily. A stroller is a godsend here, even if your child is walking! It’ll serve as a place for them to rest during day trips, a makeshift bed when out in restaurants and something to help with carrying the bags.
We love this fold-down travel essential: the Mountain Buggy Nano V3 Stroller. Its fabric sling seat fully reclines into a lie-flat mode that is perfect for newborns but sturdy enough to cope with wriggly toddlers, too. Weighing just 13 lbs, it’s ultra lightweight and comes with a carry handle and shoulder strap.
Parent Travel Essentials: Stroller Organizer and Stroller Wagon
Staying organized is a must when you have little ones in tow and it’s even more important when you're on vacation. Keep all your day-to-day essentials in one place with the Valco Baby Stroller Caddy, designed to fit on most prams and strollers.
If you’re planning a trip to the beach or going camping, strollers with decent storage usually do the trick, but kids’ wagons will hold a lot more stuff. (Plus bigger kids who are too cool to sit in a stroller are more than happy to take a ride in a wagon!). A wagon will save you multiple trips and carry everything you need, whether it’s beach essentials or camping necessities. Browse our range of stroller wagons, which includes two- and four-seater options.
From one of our mums: 'So practical and comfortable. Holds both my girls and all their friends.'
Kids Travel Essentials: Fun In The Sun
Children may get more exposure to sunshine than adults if carried in backpacks or on a child seat at the front of a bike, so pack plenty of sunscreen for sensitive skin and hats. Don’t forget the canopy for your stroller. If you’re heading to the beach, consider packing a beach tent to give anyone who needs it a break from the sand, sea and sun.
Stay sun-safe with Mustela's Mineral Sunscreen Stick
If you’re pool-side, bring plenty of swim diapers. Pack a swim vest or float suit for babies and toddlers and armbands and float belts for more confident swimmers.
Car Travel Accessories: On The Road
Stay cool, calm and collected when traveling by car.
- Keep the things you and your child need for the journey within easy reach. Try the Diono Back Seat Organizer Stow 'n Go for instant access to healthy snacks, water bottles, wipes and toys.
- Plan regular stops so everyone can get out of the car and have a stretch. Your baby can have a kick about on a rug on the ground.
- For longer car journeys, do yourself a favor and pack your child’s tablet to give you a break and keep them entertained. Younger kids will love a Jooki – a portable, splashproof kids audio player for stories and music.
Oh-so practical for long car journeys - the Diono Stow 'n Go