Tips For Traveling With A Baby

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We just recently went on our first vacation with Rhett, so I am basically a professional at traveling with children now. HA – just kidding, but, I wanted to go ahead and share some tips for traveling with a baby that were shared with me and that I learned along the way! I hope this is helpful for any mamas who are traveling with their little one soon!

tips for traveling with a baby

Click here for a recap of our trip to Montana!

I am providing direct links to as many items as possible! I will let you know if it is exactly what we have or just something similar. FYI: I do earn a small amount of commission if you purchase through my links – thank you for supporting my small business in this way!

tips for traveling with a baby

What to pack for pumping / feeding / nursing

  • Electric pump — I brought my Elvie but was only away from him for one feeding on vacation so I never ended up using it. Just used the hand pump for quick relief.
  • Charging cords for your pump!!!
  • Medela hand pump – this thing is super handy to have when you don’t want to use your regular pump and just need quick relief. Fewer parts to clean because you can go from one boob to the other and it goes directly into a bottle. Definitely recommend having this!
tips for traveling with a baby; pumping, breastfeeding
  • I packed a Dr. Brown’s bottle brush for cleaning bottles. I knew there would be dish soap where we were staying but if you won’t have any at your destination, you might pack some.
  • Bottles – depending on how many you think you will need. I packed two in case, only used one for his one feeding of pumped milk. We just use Dr. Brown’s bottles.
  • Freezer storage bags if you will be storing any milk + a Sharpie for labeling
  • Wipes for your pump parts if you’ll be pumping on the go – linked
  • Boppy / nursing pillow – used on the plane and for nursing throughout the trip. Even if you aren’t nursing, I would definitely recommend this for the plane! Made it so much easier and comfier to hold him in my lap to sleep on the plane. 
tips for traveling with a baby, breastfeeding

What To Pack For Baby: Transportation


  • Baby carrier – we love this one!! It’s super affordable, very supportive – I had no issues wearing him all over the airport and on hikes for extended periods of time. You can have baby face toward you or away from you.
  • Car seat – we brought our normal car seat, which is part of the travel system we have
  • Padded car seat carrier (linked below) – I’ve heard that car seats can get pretty banged up if you don’t have a nice carrier for it, so we figured this was worth it! It was also nice that it’s a backpack. Worked well for us! Pro tip: any extra stuff you can’t fit in your suitcases, stuff in this thing!!! It checks for free. They never looked inside or said anything to us about it – I just threw some extra diapers and baby clothes in it.
  • Compact travel stroller – we LOVED our Zoe Stroller! Would highly recommend. It is so lightweight and was so nice to have in the airport and hotel. Easy to push with one hand and fold up with one hand while holding baby in the other! Even has a cupholder, and an awesome sun shade.
tips for traveling with a baby; stroller

What To Pack For Baby: Sleep

This is post-side lying nursing in bed – he doesn’t sleep with us. Just FYI. ; )

What To Pack For Baby: Clothes

  • I packed at least two outfits for each day (and then some….)
  • This will of course vary depending on the season you’re traveling in, but for Montana in July I packed mostly short sleeved onesies. I also packed some long sleeved zipper onesies in case it was cold overnight for sleeping.
  • Bibs – if your babe is teething, a “happy spitter” (spits up a lot, like Rhett, haha), or drools a ton, bibs are essential!!! Rhett is rarely without one.
tips for traveling with a baby
  • Hats with UPF to protect their face and ears if outside – both hats Rhett wore on our trip linked below!

What To Pack For Baby: Health/Hygiene Items

What To Pack For Baby: Toys

  • Crinkle toys
  • Teething toys
  • Some people also suggested a “new” fun toy to give them on the trip to keep them entertained.
  • We had a little light up Tucan one that played music that we used a bunch throughout the trip.

travel tips

  • Pack back up outfits for mom, dad and baby in the diaper bag / carry-on in case of a big spit up or blowout during travel
  • Wear baby in baby carrier to go through airport security. Quick and easy and in our experience they didn’t make us take him out.
  • We also went through security once with him in the Zoe stroller and popped him in and out pretty quickly, but wearing him was still easier.
  • We were told we would need his birth certificate, but no one ever asked for it at the airports. I guess it doesn’t hurt to have just in case! 
  • Several moms recommended having a big Ziploc bag at the top of the diaper bag with a few diapers, wipes, hand sanitizer & a spare outfit so you could quickly pull it out for changes and have everything in one spot, especially if you have to change baby on the plane. I agree this was super convenient throughout the trip! 
  • I just put my ID, credit cards and some cash in a tiny little zipper pouch and kept that in the diaper bag for the week so I wasn’t hauling around a purse also. 
  • Nurse baby (or give bottle/pacifier) at takeoff and landing to help their ears adjust and not pop – the act of sucking/swallowing helps with this! I always nursed him at takeoff, but usually didn’t at the landing and he did fine. Also, if your baby falls asleep nursing/eating during takeoff, LET THEM SLEEP! Haha, I made this mistake on the first flight. I tried to have him switch sides to keep eating just to even out my boobs, but then he wouldn’t go back to sleep and I regretted it! It was worth it just to wait and feed on the other side later for our other flights! 
  • Also, if you are nursing, try to get the window seat. There was one occasion where Ethan and I were going to be separated and people were super nice and willing to move seats so we could be together, and I was always by the window. I didn’t even cover up – don’t stress about feeding on the plane. If you’re by the window, really no one can see you! And if they can, you’ll probably never see them again so who cares, LOL.
  • Try to drop expectations / routine on vacation. I know it can be so hard, especially for those of us who are very type A and like our routine / structure with naps, feedings, etc., but just know that things are going to be a little all over the place on vacation, and it WILL be okay – promise! You and your baby will adjust and do great!
  • If you can’t find any nursing rooms in the airport, ask someone! At the airport in Salt Lake City, we discovered that all of the women’s bathrooms had a private lactation room! This was so so nice! There is also the Mamava app where you can search for nursing rooms wherever you are!
  • A lot of people also recommended @babyquip where you can rent baby equipment in different cities you’re traveling to! 
  • Use your baby carrier to wear baby when you are boarding and getting off the plane

Travel Q&A

What did you check vs. carry-on?

Ethan and I both just brought backpacks as carry-ons and checked everything else! We checked two large rolling suitcases, as well as the car seat and pack & play. We got a tag for the stroller at the gate before boarding the flight, and then you just drop it at the door as you board, and they put it underneath for you! When we got off the plane, it was waiting for us right by the door again. Super easy.

In my carry on, I had the big Ziploc with the diaper supplies (a few diapers, wipes, hand sanitizer, a few disposable changing pads, and someone suggested also putting a spare outfit in that). I also had 1-2 extra outfits for Rhett, some backup leggings + a top for myself. A thin swaddle blanket, teething toy, back up pacifiers, pacifier wipes, a few snacks + gum + chapstick, my little zipper pouch with my ID/cards, and his birth certificate. Ethan also had some extra diapers + burp rags in his backpack.

Naps and Night Time Sleep for Baby?

Naps were pretty sporadic on our trip and a lot of times he would nap in his car seat when we were going from one destination to another. His bedtime would depend on what we had going on that night, but sometimes we were still able to get him down for bed close to his usual time. For all sleep (when we weren’t in the car) he’d sleep in his pack and play in a sleep sack like he normally does.

Most days he had shorter, more frequent naps than he does at home, but it all worked out! He actually slept pretty well overnight, except the first few nights because he was super congested and sadly had a little cough too. Thankfully it got better and overall he slept well on the trip.

How To Fly With Breast Milk

I actually did not fly with any breast milk since I nursed him for the whole trip. I am linking to a blog post here all about traveling with breast milk (including by plane) that you might find helpful!

Does baby have their own seat or sit in your lap?

Babies under age two fly for free. You do not need to purchase a ticket for them if they will be sitting in your lap. I kept Rhett on my lap for all flights using my Boppy and that worked well. However, I will say, planes are SO SMALL AND CRAMMED. It wasn’t the most comfortable thing in the world, but it would’ve been way worse without the Boppy IMO.

Tips for room sharing in hotel with baby

We just had Rhett’s pack and play set up in our room with the Boppy, had his noise machine going, and had the monitor set up as well if we were ever in another room while he was sleeping. Super easy! Like the old days of having him in his bassinet in our room. 🙂

I hope these tips for traveling with a baby were helpful for you! Please let me know if there was anything I missed or that you had additional questions on! If you’re traveling with your baby soon, don’t stress! Have so much fun and go with the flow! It’s SO worth it to start seeing the world through their eyes and going on adventures with them. 🙂


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  1. This is awesome and so helpful! I am looking at that stroller and the car seat case as we speak!
    The large ziplock bag with wipes and diapers is super nice to take to the beach as well! I added a paci and a small sunscreen to mine. You don’t end up with a sand filled diaper bag! I swear that makes traveling so much easier!

    1. Ah, yes – so smart! We are going to the beach in a few months with Rhett so I’ll definitely have to utilize that trick again! So glad this was helpful!!

  2. Thanks for sharing! Did the boppy count as a personal item? I was looking at getting the boppy anywhere pillow with straps so it’s easier to carry in the airport. Thoughts?

    1. Hello! Yes, I had no issues bringing the Boppy with me on the plane. I kept it on my lap the whole time and no one ever said a word to me about it! Also, I don’t personally think the straps are necessary. If you have a rolling suitcase and turn it around to hug around the handle, it stays on there just fine!!

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