Travel Advise…

As everyone else in the blogosphere struggles to get back into the working frame of mind, fresh back from your Festive season holiday travels, I find myself battling to focus myself at work.  But for very different reasons.

The Young Family are soon heading to the beaches of Plettenberg bay for OUR holiday and I cannot wait!  The last time we were on a PROPER holiday I was 18 weeks pregnant and I can feel that I am well overdue a time out and good rest… Ha!  Who am I kidding?  I will be on holiday with boisterous 20 month old – I won’t be getting much rest or time out but I will (weather gods permitting) be getting a good healthy glow to my skin.

Whilst I am terribly excited about hitting the beach with my little guy and seeing his first time reactions to all Plett has to offer him, I am a tad nervous too.  Why?  Cos we are flying to PE and this will be Kade’s first flight.

Thankfully, just as the holiday season was hitting last year, I got the following travel tips from the Pampers Institute:

Starting to plan your year end trip? Many new parents feel that once they have a baby that their travel days are over, but many parents will tell you that the first six months are the easiest time to travel with a baby. Is it easy? Not exactly, but with enough planning and the right attitude, it’s not as hard as you might think.

Planning will ensure that you and baby have a safe, relaxing and healthy trip.

If you’re travelling by car, Pampers Institute member and leading pediatrician, Dr Hari recommends planning the trip around baby’s routine. “Try driving at night or early in the morning when baby is most likely to sleep. I also suggest sticking colourful pictures of babies or flowers to the back of the seat facing baby. A good baby car seat is essential to ensure safety.”

Travel Tips for Baby

For many couples, December is about packing bags and heading off to a beautiful destination to relax, rejuvenate and recover from a year filled with the usual comings and goings of a busy life. If, however, you’ve just had a baby or a toddler is a member of your household, you may feel hesitant about booking that accommodation. The good news is that according to the expert panelists of the Pampers® Institute, travelling with baby this festive season needn’t turn into a stressful ordeal.

On the road

If you’re travelling by car, Pampers® Institute member and leading pediatrician, Dr Hari recommends planning the trip around baby’s routine. “Try driving at night or early in the morning when baby is most likely to sleep. I also suggest sticking colourful pictures of babies or flowers to the back of the seat facing baby. A good baby car seat is essential to ensure safety.”

Renowned parenting expert and Pampers® Institute representative, Sister Lilian offers the following advice: “Long car journeys need to be broken frequently to take into account the short concentration span of your little ones and their need for movement. Also ensure that baby is not hungry when setting out, and avoid any foods that give unnatural energy highs like sweet or savoury treats and flavoured drinks.”

In the air

For baby’s first plane ride consider the following top tips suggested by pediatric nutritionist and Pampers® Institute expert, Claire McHugh:

·         Feed during take-off and landing:  babies can’t pop their ears, so it’s helpful to offer a bottle to ease this pressure.

·         Pack plenty of formula, bottles, food and enough water for bottles and cereal. If you’re nursing, stay well hydrated so that you produce enough milk throughout the flight.

“Flying with baby from a week or two after birth is possible if all is well with mom and baby. With that said, it is often advisable to wait for the first six weeks to give both mom and baby time to get to know each other well and adjust to their new life together, so that mom is quite comfortable handling baby. It is also a good idea to be sure that baby is well which is usually confirmed at the first check-up at 6 weeks.”

“It is important to treat any colds or blocked noses and upper respiratory or ear infections, as excessive mucus can increase the discomfort experienced from pressure in the ears on take-off and landing. Baby should not drink for between one and two hours before take-off, so that there is a strong urge to drink when in the plane to help equalise pressure,” adds Sister Lilian.


Travel Bag Checklist

Sister Lilian suggests the following essentials for your travel bag for car and plane travels:

ü  A bag of special little toys that are only used in the car. Make sure the same toy is not given on each journey

ü  Music that soothes both little ones and their parents

ü  Mobiles dangled from the roof of the car

ü  A bunch of keys and a magnet are very useful for fascinating older babies endlessly

ü  Older children respond well to recorded stories

ü  A change of clothes for inevitable spills and leaks

ü  Pampers® nappies and wipes

ü  Bottles and a non-spill cup

ü  A security item from home like a blanket (also for warmth as flights can be very cold)

ü  Rubbish bags

ü  Baby food utensils and cups

ü  Toys that baby hasn’t seen before

ü  A jacket and cap for small babies

ü  Healthy snacks like dried or fresh fruit

ü  A dummy for those who make use of one

Bon Voyage

Perhaps the best piece of advice put forward by the Pampers® Institute is to plan ahead. The experts recommend mentally working through your holiday plans as you pack so that you are prepared for every eventuality. Sunblock for the beach is as important as a good quality bucket and spade, while gloves and beanies will find their way into your suitcase if you picture your baby in colder climes. Whatever the weather may be, being prepared will ensure a happy stress-free holiday for mom, baby and indeed the entire family.


Now a lot of the above tips can be used for Kade’s first flight and holiday travel but tell me peeps, how would you suggest I keep my extremely energetic 20 month old entertained on our flight bearing in mind that we DO NOT have an IPAD or TABLET of any way, shape or form?

Assvice seriously needed here!


7 thoughts on “Travel Advise…

  1. Buy some fun new books that you can look at together that involve a lot of him showing you things in a book. Also buy some stickers and a few cheap toys from Plastics for Africa, and when he gets too bored bring out a new toy. Stamps are also fun and should keep him occupied. If he still sleeps, try and book your flight over sleep time so you can get about 30 minutes down time. Make sure you have an aisle seat so you can let him run up and down the aisle. I flew on my own with Dylan to Pretoria when he was about 18 and 20 months. It was challenging but doable.


  2. Sorry, I cannot advise you at all. We haven’t traveled for more than 2 hours in a car with baby G. But we are also planning a trip to the coast in 2.5 weeks and we are driving! I don’t know what I’m going to do with baby G who HATES to be in the car… I asked my dad to come with and hopefully help out a bit, but he hasn’t decided yet if he is coming with. We have a tab, but baby G really doesn’t want to watch TV, so I guess watching movies is out, but we will try…


  3. We flew to George in December and the following worked for us. A dummy (if Kade has one) for take off. We found it useful to sit at a window seat and show J all the cars and buses driving past when we were still on the ground. Then he was thoroughly entertained by looking out the window during take off. Books helped a lot and some finger snacks to keep him occupied……and how about some crayons and a coloring in book.
    I was also adviced to give him some illiadan 30 mins before the flight to help with his ears.

    Good luck. I’m sure it will be fine.


  4. Our girls love flying and driving so haven’t got much advice but think you’ll be pleasantly surprised, we have been thankfully. If you need anything while in PE (although I imagine you’ll be in a rush to get to Plett) but if not and you want a quick swim or garden to run around in before your flight back just shout. We are in Summerstrand so literally 5/10 minutes from the airport. Have a wonderful time.


  5. We’ve done a lot of traveling with Gwen (13 countries in 13 months), though she’s only 14 months so I can’t really speak to older children. But what we’ve found indispensable is: plenty of food/drink; a change of clothes (we’d gotten away without that one for many, many trips, and then she spent most of the flight back to the US for Christmas sitting on my lap in just a diaper…); one or two small toys; one or two books. Depending on the length of the flight, he’ll probably end up occupying himself with things that come with flying — the laminated safety on board card has always been a hit with Gwen (the first time she grabbed one and started chewing on it, Joel looked at it and her in horror and swore he’d never touch one of them ever again), as is flipping through the magazines and crumpling the air sickness bag. She also occupied herself for most of the 8 hour flight to the US by putting her pacifier in and out of the cover of her bottle, and trying to put the cover on the bottle with and without the pacifier in it. It doesn’t take much to entertain small kids sometimes!

    If your airline lets you board early because you have a small child, do so. The extra space and the not-feeling-like-you’re-holding-everyone-up is totally worth it.


  6. well, I don’t know about advice because I followed everything (I may have even blogged it – check my Dec 2010 archives) all the clever people said – I had 5 small things for each one and here’s how it went down.

    On the way there (to PE) they were interested in looking out the window (we each had a child with us on a different row) and playing with plane things, etc.

    On the way back it was a total DISASTER – late afternoon (4 pm flight so the crankiness ramps up as we approach supper time) – they CHUCKED the food everywhere – I was very glad they had to clean all that up and not us!

    Nevertheless, I love flying so I would put up with everything….. 🙂

    Oh wait i do have some advice – very useful to keep expectations in check. My one friend told me “same circus, different tent” and that is the truth. Sometimes it’s the same circus, worse tent (without a nanny) 🙂 🙂

    Enjoy your time at the beach – take lots of beautiful pics and then put down the camera and enjoy running after your little guy – I loved this very physical stage.


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