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Tis the Season: Travel Tips

Are you planning on traveling for the holidays or planning a vacation in the near future? Here are a few of my favorite travel tips.

Preparation and Packing

• Pack diapers and pull-ups if potty-training. Running to find a bathroom with only a moment’s notice in an unfamiliar place will not add enjoyment or ease to your travels. {Don’t worry about regression; it’s unlikely and they will figure it out eventually.}

• Pack tons of busy activities; window clings, stickers and a sticker book, magic scribbler, new book or toy. Use them as distractions, bringing them out one at a time.

• Don’t be afraid to use your smart device; apps can be your friend. If you do plan on using a smart device on a plane, make sure the games and activities you have can work in airplane mode and have your child practice using headphones prior to your travels.

• Pack non-sugary snacks. Preventing ‘hangry’ moments while on the move can be difficult, but your long car ride or airport navigation will be smoother without the sugar high. I promise.

• Don’t forget to check any travel restrictions or regulations for both your mode of transportation and arrival destination. Ask about accommodations available for traveling families.

While Traveling

• Antibacterial wipes and hand sanitizer, these are great for wiping down questionable surfaces and cleaning hands.

• Print boarding passes or tickets at home. This can save you time and avoid having to entertain young ones while waiting in line. Also, ask about early boarding options for families.

• Plan ahead for security. Limit jewelry, wear easily removable shoes, empty pockets into carry on, etc. Talk about the process and what to expect with the scanners ahead of time.

• Know and understand the regulations for traveling with breastmilk and/or formula.

• When flying with a child under 2, you are not required, but encouraged to purchase a seat and strap them into an FAA approved car seat. Not all seats are FAA approved, so check into this beforehand. If you do not purchase a seat and plan on having your child on your lap, you can ask about open seats when boarding and hope there is a sympathetic attendant or passenger willing to switch with you. If the flight is full, simply check your car seat. I recommend purchasing a car seat bag for added protection.

• If you plan to travel with a stroller, bring an easy to use, lightweight stroller and check it at the gate.

If you have any "travel hacks" to share, please leave a comment below! We wish you safe travels and many memories made on your family vacation!

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