16 May 2006

More toddler travel hacks

I'm gearing up for summer vacation already, and the prospect of a road trip is on the horizon (although with gas prices being what they are, it might actually be cheaper to fly). Elizabeth's airplane travel hacks couldn't come at a better time!

  1. Sleep in clothes--we had a flight that took off at 8 am and so we left the house around 5:45 am. Booo. It helped a lot to have the boys already dressed, down to the baby's socks and Robeez, and it didn't seem to disturb their sleep one bit. My older boy is potty trained by day but sleeps in a diaper so I just put his underwear on over his diaper and whipped the diaper off when we had time at the airport.
  2. Use your carseat bag for more than just carseats. This is a high risk/high reward kind of hack, because if you're checking your carseat and it gets lost, you're in trouble. I gambled, though, and put our coats and blankets in the bag with the carseat--this meant I didn't have to deal with wearing them (we are always hot on the plane, it seems) or carrying them and worrying about losing one.
  3. Double umbrella stroller! An absolute must, and gate-checkable. Hang everything off of it.
  4. Once you get to your seat, immediately dole out snacks and customize the seat area to your needs. I like to stick a pack of kleenex, a pack of wipes, and a bottle of water into the seatback pocket as well as a plastic bag for trash. That way you aren't hunting around for these things when the inevitable messes come, and you have a central place for all the trash you will immediately begin to generate.

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Use your carseat bag for more than just carseats. This is a high risk/high reward kind of hack, because if you're checking your carseat and it gets lost, you're in trouble.

You can always try to plane-side check it... we've done that and got one of those foldable luggage rollers...

Always gatecheck carseats and strollers.

As a traveling mom on an infant, I always carried a spare shirt in the diaper bag, just in case I get puked on.

I also pack everything in large ziplocs (diapers in one, extra set of clothes in another, burp rags and clothes, etc.) This eliminates frantic digging in the diaper bag.

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