I have been traveling with my oldest daughter, Indie Rey, since she was 6 months old. We started out taking road trips from cities to cities and then I took her on a month long trip alone abroad to France, Portugal and Italy when she was 11-12 months old!
Since then, traveling with Indie Rey, who is now 2 years old, has changed dramatically! She's now a mobile little curious toddler, but my biggest advice is your attitude when you take family trips. Your attitude will dictate your trips. Sure, there are moments of meltdowns or times where you say to yourself, "I am never doing this again" but you're creating memories and the ability for your baby to see the world with you! Don't ever give up because of that!
Here are a few tips that has worked recently in our trips to Mexico City and upcoming trips we're preparing for this summer!
1. Pack a busy bag!
Toddlers are all about learning and imitating. They look to you for guidance. If you have a bag, they want a bag. If you're pushing a luggage, they want to push it too. Pack them a bag similar to yours filled with activities that can occupy them on the Airplane! Here are a few examples:
a. Bring a Kindle for desperate measures
b. This notebook is a lifesaver, it changes colors as you draw!
c. Bring Mad Matter and a few shape stencils + ask the flight attendant for a few plastic cups
d. Bring Washi Tape and ask for Paper or buy this!
e. This book is also great for toddlers with this buckle toy
2. Always bring a change of clothing.
Along with the diapers, wipes and sanitizers, don't forget that extra change of outfit. You'll need it!
3. Don't be afraid to accept help!
If you're traveling alone, there are nice people out there that can help you. Even the flight attendant can help you watch your baby if you need to pee! Just ask. It makes a difference. We know you can do it all, but accepting help along the way is helpful for you!
4. Bring a Munchie Mug, Water Bottle and More Surprise Snacks.
Toddlers are alllll about learning, discovering and being distracted. What I've learned is to distract Indie from something if she's about to break down and cry. And luckily, she loves to snack. Much like trying to get them in their car seat or their stroller seat, stash some "different" snacks in your bag to use when you're in desperate need! :)
5. Don't focus on their nap schedule
If you're on vacation mode, just think, vacation baby. Nothing will go as planned. The best thing to do is have a good attitude and promote a good experience for both you and your baby. We all know toddlers go a little hay wired when they skip their nap, but they'll live! so will you!
6. It's all about your attitude.
Babies and Toddlers feed off of your vibe. Yes, I said it, and I believe it. If you're calm, they'll understand that everything is okay. Try to keep a positive attitude throughout the journey and it'll set the tone for the vacation!