Travelling with your baby is fun but learn from my experience and avoid these 9 mistakes I made when travelling with our baby.
1. Our first mistake: Bringing the stroller that she never wanted to use
The first mistake I made when travelling with our baby was assuming that she wanted to use the stroller. Yes, we brought it but unfortunately, she never used it.
Of course this may not be applicable to everyone but I regretted bringing the stroller all the way to Turkey and Bosnia. She only sat in it once and most of the time, we were just too lazy to push the stroller on cobble streets in Turkey and Bosnia. Also, the streets in Istanbul can be very busy making it very difficult to maneuver.
Therefore, learn from my mistake when travelling with a baby:
- Research about your destination to see whether they are stroller-friendly
- Determine whether your kid would most likely use the stroller
As for us, our daughter had always been very clingy so she would prefer using the carrier because it allows her to be close to us. Everywhere we went in Malaysia, we would bring her in our carrier because we were too lazy to bring the stroller around.
2. Not giving her medication before flight
The second mistake I made when travelling with our baby is that we did not giver her medication before flight.
Our daughter had just recovered from her cough before we left but it got worse the night we flew to Istanbul. We did not continue giving her meds thinking she had fully recovered.
As a result, I would suggest for parents to give some meds before flying IF they are still recovering. It would make the child more comfortable. Also, be sure to talk to your paediatrician before you leave the country to ask whether your baby or toddler is fit enough to travel. The doctor would also recommend or prescribe the appropriate medication for your kids.
(Related post: How to travel with kids on a long flight)
3. We tried to cut down on cost but this was a mistake: Not getting a hotel that allowed early check-in
The flight to Istanbul from KL was long and tiring for us. We landed at Attaturk around 5am and went to our guesthouse to keep our bags. Regrettably, we could not have an early check in which made us even more tired.
You could imagine how tiring kids must be if you take a long flight and are unable to check in early that day. If you are not allowed to check in early, that would mean that you would probably need to start sight-seeing but that would mean that it might not be so enjoyable.
Our daughter was cranky and tired so she was not okay the first day. She could not be wiped, bathed, fed without crying. She was unwell and uncomfortable.
4. Booking a very small room
Before we had a baby, we were fine staying in small hotel rooms.
But when you have a baby, a stroller and two huge bags, booking a small room could be a mistake when travelling. Why is that so? Because a small room limits your movement can really have a negative effect on your mood too, especially when your baby is cranky or gets sick.
So I suggest that if you have extra money, get a slightly bigger room. Remember, you’re on a holiday so you should try to minimize your anxiety whenever you can. A slightly bigger room does not necessarily have to be more expensive, it just must be more spacious, clean, and safe.
5. Another mistake(s) we made on our trip with our baby : Don’t choose style over comfort!
Wearing uncomfortable shoes
Another mistake I made when travelling with our baby is that I chose style over comfort. When we travelled to Bosnia and Turkey, it was approaching fall. I was told that I should bring boots to keep my feet dry if it rains.
So I bought these leather boots which I thought would be really comfortable.
After walking a whole day in them, my feet started to hurt. I don’t know whether it was me and the lack of sleep but the pain got to me.
But thank God I brought my sneakers! That saved my life in this trip!
I think if you know you may not be able to withstand the pain of wearing anything other than your sneakers, always bring one JUST IN CASE.
6. Bringing too many clothes
Before leaving for our trip, I was worried whether we had enough and the right clothes for my daughter. I was anticipating the vomit and other poop accidents that might happen and to be honest, it happened a lot. But I did overpack her clothes because I wasn’t sure where we could do our laundry.
Therefore, please learn from my mistakes when you travel with your baby:
- Calculate roughly how many clothes you need every day
- Research about your potential hotel or stay to see whether they have laundry services
7. Packing unnecessary makeup
Okay, so I didn’t bring the whole nine yards but I brought a lot of make up remover because I wanted to make sure my face was clean but to be honest, I didn’t even use that. That was the seventh mistake I made when travelling with our baby: bringing unnecessary things!
I just used my eyeliner, eyebrow liner, lipstick and my powder. I don’t even remember bringing my blusher. So yeah, I should have kept it to a minimum!
8. Not packing diaper cream
I thought I had packed everything we needed for Aisha and I even made sure to bring extra things like clothes, diapers and wet wipes. But the ONE THING that I forgot to bring was nappy cream!
After two days, I found that she had nappy rash but thankfully, she wasn’t cranky! We normally used sudo cream but we bought Mustela nappy cream when we were in Istanbul because we couldn’t find a small Sudocream. Mustela actually worked pretty well!
(Related post: 11 things to pack when travelling with kids)
9. Not buying enough breast feeding friendly tops
I didn’t want to overpack for myself since we had to pack many things for our daughter. I packed several long tops but many of them didn’t have zippers in front. So whenever my daughter was cranky, I had to go to a baby room to feed her, or feed her in the car which sometimes made her really impatient.
So learn my mistakes I made when travelling with our baby: have a few of breastfeeding friendly tops would be pretty handy for you!
But honestly, no matter how hard you plan your holiday, something might just come up.
These aren’t really “mistakes” per se, it’s a learning curve. I will say that this experience has made me a better planner and it has taught me to become more patient. Parents should always go on a break- whether it’s just in the country or abroad. But you can always have your holiday and travel with kids.
If you are travelling with your kids by car, read how to make your kid happy in the car seat.