Seeing the world has always been a priority for my husband and I. Neither of us got to travel much until after college, and we were determined to take at least a short trip to a new place every year. Long before we were even ready for kids, we discussed that we would teach our child(ren) to travel from an early age. But one thing I wasn't expecting, was how much gear is required to travel with young kids. Since I'm sure there are other parents out there who would rather pack light, I'll share my packing list here.
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Food. I suggest you bring enough healthy snacks for your transit and stop at a grocery store for more once you reach your destination. Nothing like a hungry child on a long trip.
Clothes. Truth is kids don't need to wear a completely different outfit everyday, so just pack a couple of shorts, a couple of pants and switch them up. If something get dirty, you can wash it in the sink or you can always buy a souvenir T-shirt if needed. Bring appropriate pajamas, socks and a hat for the current season in your destination.
Toiletries. Snatch up the sample size products they give away for free in the pediatrician's office, they'll save tons of space in your luggage. If your ped doesn't offer these, you can purchase travel-size products at most box stores and baby superstores. Be as minimal as you can -- bath soap, lotion, diaper cream, sunscreen.
Nighttime necessities. Bring a few familiar items so that you can try to replicate your child's bedtime routine. Kids love routine, and these things may make the difference for a good night's sleep.
Stroller/Carrier. Depending on what type of trip you're taking you may want to consider bringing one, the other or both. If you're child has an obvious preference for one over the other forgo the less loved. If you travel often, invest in a sturdy, lightweight stroller and a comfortable, easy-to-maneuver carrier.
Diversions. Do not pack your child's entire toy box. A few favorite toys should do. The best way to help them choose is to let them know that if they want to take it, they have to carry it. One way to solve this, is to bring along a tablet that can be used for a variety of things, including reading, watching movies and playing music.
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