The holidays are here and with them comes travel and overnight stays that can be terrifying for many new parents. It is understandable to be concerned about staying away from home with your new baby because there are many things to things to consider and plan ahead of time. A little preparation and forethought in advance of your trip can go a long way towards easing your mind and ensuring you are as prepared as you can be for specific scenarios that arise. Today, we are providing you with some tips for traveling with a newborn to help you get started with your preparation.

Determine the Essentials

While it may be tempting to try to pack everything in the house so that you are completely ready for any eventuality, that becomes extremely impractical and usually, results in you having much more than you need. Consider how many days and nights you will be staying at your destination and what items you make use of every day with your baby. When traveling with a newborn, taking a few minutes to determine what items are worth bringing with you and what you can purchase if you need will help avoid over packing. The other aspect to the “bring vs. buy” argument is whether or not your destination will be somewhere you will visit often. If you are visiting your baby’s grandparents, it may be practical to purchase some (or have them purchase) some of these items to keep at their home for convenience and their use when the baby is staying with them. Remember, the point here is to have a good idea of what YOU will need to care for your child while you are away from home.

Make a List

Once you have a handle on what the things you will need, it is time to get organized with a good old-fashioned list. When traveling with a newborn, there are many things that can distract you from what you are doing and that distraction can lead to things being left behind. Utilizing a list when traveling with a newborn provides a fail-safe against forgetting the essentials you settled on for your trip. It can also be helpful to organize your list in a way that is logical to you so that you can quickly work through and check off the items as you pack them. Perhaps a list organized by rooms where things are stored, based on the time of day they are used, or activity they are used for will work perfectly for you.

Maintain Your Routine

One of the keys to traveling with a newborn is keeping them on a normal schedule while you are away from the house. Following a routine can be difficult because those you are visiting with want to be able to see the baby but it is not worth the issues that will likely arise later from a baby that is overtired, overly hungry, or overstimulated. Staying on schedule as best you can, helps to ensure that you have a happy baby most of your visit and minimizes the amount of transition necessary when you arrive back home. Having a conversation with your hosts ahead of your visit allows you both to get on the same page about the expectations for scheduling and how they can help you maintain it.