Travel with a Baby Under 6 Months Old: Road Trip Edition

How to Travel with a Baby under 6 Months

Just DO IT!

As many avid readers and followers know, my husband and I love to travel, so you know us having a baby under 6 months wouldn’t stop us from making moves!  Scout is five and a half months now (a day shy of 24 weeks – time flies) and she has already been on a road trip and traveled by air!

In this post, I’m sharing with you some travel tips and what we packed for our road trip.  I’ll update you on our air travel tips and link to it once it’s complete.

Traveling by Car

Background

Scout’s first road trip was when she was approaching four months.  It was a 13 hour car ride (each way) and we stayed at our location for four days (three nights).  We also brought our two dogs – how fun!

What We Packed

Cloth Diapers (20 count)

Don’t forget to pack the wet bag!

Scout is cloth diapered and because I was familiar with the place we were staying, I decided to pack them instead of disposables.  Their absorbency is way better than disposables in my opinion which allowed for us to ride a little further before having to stop for a diaper change.  I also had the option to wash the diapers on site which I knew going into the situation.

If you are unsure of your living conditions or your trip is longer than three days, consider packing disposables or hiring a cloth diapering company to provide and pick up your soiled diapers for you (less mess, less stress).

Stroller

The stroller we have is the Mountain Buggy Nano.  I purchased it from Amazon and it is, by far, one of the best baby gear purchases I’ve made.  Since we were traveling to Arizona and it is extremely hot in the summer time, I knew I wouldn’t want to baby wear her like I typically do.  The stroller was clutch and it folds down to the size of a briefcase so it didn’t take up a lot of room in our trunk!

Car Seat + Base

Self explanatory, really.

Diaper Bag

Inside of the diaper bag I packed a couple cloth diapers so that I could have them on hand inside of the car.  I also packed a few extra onesies, burp cloths, her wooden ring and rattle, wipes, and of course the changing pad.

Pumps

I decided to carry both my electric and manual pumps along with a few bottles just in case I needed to feed her when we couldn’t stop (she is exclusively breastfed).  Though I ended up not needing any bottles, I did use the manual pump because I was so full (I didn’t use it until we got to our final destination and I only used it once).  For my electric pump, I did buy a car adapter in case I needed to pump on the road.  All of this fit into her diaper bag.

That’s it for the baby gear.  We really like to travel light, so all of her clothes were packed with mine.  We co-sleep so she didn’t need a bassinet or pack and play.  We don’t use anything to keep her “contained” so she spends majority of her time on the floor rolling around (at that time she was able to roll both front-to-back and back-to-front).

Additional Tips

Travel at Night

Traveling at night was best for us and the baby.  The traffic was smoother and lighter, and the baby slept upward to 5 hours upon hitting the road (giving Mama some much needed sleep, too).  If you can’t travel at night, early morning is also ideal.

Pack Light + Smart

You really don’t need the whole house and baby doesn’t need a lot of stuff to be happy (especially a baby under 6 months of age).  If the baby has to have a toy, pick the toy that isn’t cumbersome.  Need to read to baby?  The destination will likely have magazines on site (no law that says you only have to read baby books to a baby).  If using disposable diapers, pick them up from a grocery store upon arrival (or right before if it is off the beaten path).

Plan Your Stops

This should be a no brainer!  We knew where to stop on our trips because we planned for them.  With Scout being an EBF baby, I was thinking we would have to stop every 2-3 hours just for her to nurse which was not the case entirely.  She slept for a good while so we were able to bypass one stop and go straight to the next without bothering to wake her.  Once she was awake, it was an every 2-3 hour deal, but we also had to get gas so we knew when and where were the safest stops.  To keep from stopping for food, we packed our own (saves times and money).

Give Yourself Time

We didn’t have anything planned for our arrival so we didn’t have to meet a certain ETA for our trip.  This made the ride a little more stress-free as we didn’t have to rush or reduce stops because we had a deadline.  Give yourself time to get from point A to point B without the extra rush.  Lord knows you have a baby in car so ANYTHING could happen!

Lastly, our travel arrangements included me sitting in the backseat right beside the car seat so that she knew she was not alone (and it cuts down on the crying).  Baby girl shed NO TEARS and entertained herself when she was awake unless she wanted me to talk to her and we had so much to say to one another!

Would we do it again? Absolutely.  I know as she gets older her needs will change so we will have to adjust accordingly, but we have places to go and things to see and I sure don’t want her to miss any of it!

How do you travel with a baby?  What are some of your essentials?