Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Travel with a baby

Shelby just turned seven months old and we are about to complete her fourth trip on an airplane!  My parents are in Northeast Arkansas and they cannot survive without seeing Miss Shelby at least once a month, so we have been alternating us flying up and then my parents coming down here for a visit.

Now that my daughter is a seasoned traveler, I thought I would share some tips that I have learned navigating airport travel with an infant:

The paperwork
Kids usually fly free until they are two on most airlines but do make sure you have a copy of your child’s birth certificate. That is needed to get a boarding pass for your little one.

The car seat
I was so nervous about the car seat the first time I flew with her. I had visions of it being destroyed in baggage claim and being stranded once we arrived. A couple of options are available to alleviate this stress.  You can gate check the seat and they will bring it to you on the tarmac when you land.  Or, you can purchase a car seat travel bag like this one.  I paid a little more for one with wheels on it and it was worth every penny!  That way I could check it along with my luggage and not worry.

The baby sling

With our first flight, Shelby was about two months old, so the baby sling was a must so I could carry everything by myself and her as well.  On her second flight she graduated to a baby bjorn carrier which was great.  She could face out and see everyone as we walked through the airport.  Only tough part of this is getting through security because you have to take it off and hold the baby and get all your bags up there and take your shoes off . . . you get the idea!

The umbrella stroller
Once Shelby got big enough to sit up the umbrella stroller worked magically.  It is light, collapses and/or opens quickly and gives mom a break from carrying the baby.

I’ve always been a bit of a control freak about parking at the airport. Pre-baby I would park close and pay the higher rate because I didn’t like waiting for those shuttles to take me to my car.  Well, it’s a new day!  I’m definitely learning to ask for help and that includes parking further away, letting a nice shuttle driver help me with my bags and driving me up to the entrance.  Highly recommend!

Of course early arrival is always a good idea-you never know when you might encounter a needed wardrobe malfunction due to spit up or a poopy diaper that needs to be changed!

What has worked well for you when traveling with a baby? Share your tips!

Makala Pollard is a Sr. Marketing Specialist with Texas Health Resources, Stepmom to two boys, and Mom to 7-month-old daughter Shelby.

1 comment:

  1. When it comes to airport parking lots, a lot of travelers often choose the off-site parking option because it’s more convenient, given that there are always people from the service you hired to take care of you. The shuttle personnel of the parking company usually help by dropping off the travelers and picking up the luggage they have. Also, travelers don’t have to worry about the security of their car because it is usually placed in a secure location for safekeeping.