Essential Things You Need To Know If You Will Travel With Your Baby In The Car
Traveling itself is already stressful, bringing your baby along is a whole different story. However, you don’t have to dread the long hours of driving with your precious one. There are things you can do make the journey fun and avoid all the crying and screaming.
The key to a smooth and hassle-free road trip with kids is preparation. It is necessary to organize and plan everything to ensure your drive will be safe and successful.
Car Safety Seats
The law requires for kids to be in a car seat until they are old enough to fit safely into your vehicle’s seat belt. Make sure to be careful when choosing one since there are several models and brands available out there such as front-facing only, convertible car seats, and booster seats. You may want to consider a convertible seat which you can use in a front-face mode and switch to the rear-face mode when your baby is older. Check out the Graco Extend2Fit overview to find out more about the benefits of a convertible car seat.
Car seats today are heavier and padded to keep your little one as safe as possible in the event of a car crash. However, this may also mean it’s entrapping too much heat, which can make your child uncomfortable especially if you’re traveling during the hot months. If this is the case, it is essential to keep the following in mind:
- Try going on a road trip in the evening or early in the morning to avoid the scorching heat.
- Keep your baby cool and comfortable by dressing him in light clothing.
- Run the aircon for a few minutes before hitting the road to cool its inside off.
- If your baby is starting to sweat, lightly pat him using a damp, soft cloth.
- Schedule a few breaks to keep your baby hydrated. Give him a bottle of milk or water.
- Avoid using sippy cups which can be hazardous during a crash.
If you’re renting a car, do not rush your car seat’s installation. Follow the manual and guidelines carefully. Also, if you’re borrowing one, make sure it’s from someone you truly trust and double check the seat for any loose or missing parts. When it comes to your little angel’s safety, you can never be too careful.
Consider Driving at Night
The best time to go is during at night where your baby or toddler can sleep throughout the ride. You also don’t have to worry about him wanting to eat, crying because he’s already bored and wants to go out, or taking him with you when stopping for gas.
Furthermore, consider bringing a lot of snacks to avoid making too many unplanned stops for meals. You can just stick to your scheduled gas and bathroom breaks.
It is also crucial to never drive when you had even the slightest alcohol intake. Make sure to get enough sleep in the day to avoid getting sleeping while driving. This can mean a matter of life and death for you and your family.
Baby Supplies you Need to Bring
From diapers to extra clothes, packing your baby’s things can be overwhelming so make sure to create a list to avoid forgetting all the necessary stuff.
Aside from a separate luggage for your baby’s essentials, keep a bag of his supplies nearby in the car. You don’t want to stop every time your kid cries or want something. Fill a separate bag with little supplies of the following which you can replenish during your scheduled stopovers if needed:
- A pack of baby wipes.
- At least three diapers and a changing pad that’s portable.
- His favorite blanky.
- A couple of his favorite toys and a new one.
- A small cooler with bottles of breast milk or formula.
- Ibuprofen or Tylenol for babies.
Bring Healthy Snacks
Keep your child happy and full by packing healthy, delicious snacks to avoid unscheduled stops as mentioned earlier. You can put it in a bag inside your car where you can conveniently reach for a snack or two anytime your little one gets hungry. You can also bring a separate cooler for packed lunches, fruits, water, and other healthy drinks. Although healthy snacks are great, try to bring a variety of foods from salty to sweet treats.
Pack your Child’s Favorite Stuff
If you definitely have to travel in the morning, or if your baby wakes up during the drive, give him his favorite toy to keep him distracted and entertained. Also, if you have a toddler, you may want to bring a couple of new toys as well. Kids at this age are more interested in playing with new toys instead of what they already have.
Moreover, packing his favorite pillow or favorite blanket can keep him more cozy and comfortable. Bring things that he can associate with naptime or bedtime to help him fall asleep quickly and soundly.