This post title will probably make a few of you cringe 🙂 Definitely not the easiest task traveling with kiddos, but definitely worth it as the memories won’t be forgotten (for us anyways, neither girl will probably remember this trip). For those of you who don’t know me, we live in Denver and just last week took our two girls (ages 1 and 2.5) to Key West, FL. We were so paranoid about how the flight was going to go as we had a somewhat unpleasant flight with our 1 year old a few weeks ago to Napa. So I am going to offer some advice on tips and tricks that worked for us with our travel this time and also a few items that I wouldn’t travel without! I hope this helps some of you out if you are a little nervous of the ‘what-if’s’ when traveling with your kids.
First things first, always be prepared!!! We went to the dollar store the night before to stuff their fun little travel backpacks full of a couple new fun toys and games, coloring books, etc. (along with (dare I say it?) over $40 of gummies from Lolli & Pops, haha). Blair, our one-year-old, LOVES books and although it took up a lot of room, not to mention the weight of cardboard books, it kept her occupied for a long while on the flights. Peek-a-boo books, the puppet kind, touch and feel, anything that involved her worked like a charm. We packed cozy blankets that we wrapped her up in and allowed for better naps since she was comfy, warm, and cozy. And yes, she is a year so all judgements aside, but if any of your kids use pacifiers I would pick up a paci clip so you don’t have it falling on the floor your entire trip! We loaded up on tons of snacks…Applesauces, pretzels, gummies, juice, fruit snacks, cookies, cheese and crackers, coconut chips, goldfish- a mix of sweet and (a little) salty did the trick. We let Brooklyn pick out a snack at the airport and she actually preferred her coconut chips since she picked them out over her gummies! We were also traveling in the morning through the afternoon and packed lunchables for them to have as their lunch and it made feeding them much easier than any other meal I could have easily packed.
Brookyln being 2.5 was much easier to entertain. She isn’t allowed to play on an iPad unless we are traveling so it makes it really special and she sits the entire flight and plays games and watches movies on it. When spirits got low after being on the flight for 3 hours, we pulled out the window clings! Everyone around us was commenting and Brooklyn and Blair played with them for a good while and it made it fun for them to look out the window with their new clings on them (sorry, SouthWest!). Don’t forget to pack TONS of Wet Ones to sanitize the entire area on the plane that your kids might be touching. I am so OCD about germs and I just wipe everything down so I don’t have to worry so much about what the girls touch. I’m not even going to tell you how many packs we went through on this trip. We brought playdough as a backup and we didn’t end up needing it, but I think its an easy thing to keep kiddos entertained as well. We bought the under the sea kit since we were traveling to the beach, so it might be fun to theme yours based on where you are going 🙂 Same goes for window clings or any of the games you bring, sometimes a theme gets them even more excited of whats to come on the trip.
The last item I absolutely would NOT travel without is disposable changing pads! They are the easiest item to pack and it helps limit the germs when changing your kiddo. I have two in diapers and I absolutely HATE changing them at the airport, or even worse, on the airplane, and these disposable pads make it so I can put it down, change them and throw it out! I highly recommend them all the time, but I wouldn’t be able to travel without them!
I would love any other tips and tricks you other mamas and dads out there might have to offer for our next vacation 🙂 You can’t have enough ideas when traveling with kids!