Planning a holiday with your little one


With summer approaching, you're probably planning your first holiday away with your baby. This can be quite daunting as you need to pre-plan everything more so than usual. You need to think about all of the things you may need over the duration of the trip, particularly if the journey takes longer than planned.

Here's some tips, tricks and a checklist which should make your planning a little less stressful.

Planning & booking:

When planning your holiday, you may wonder if you're crazy travelling with a baby, but unlike toddlers and children who can come with many challenges, babies are portable and don't usually mind being taken out and about in their prams or slings, or sleeping in a travel cot. Especially smaller babies that aren't yet crawling, you'll know that they're still in the same spot you left them.

Firstly when planning your holiday, make sure you've organised your little ones' passport in plenty of time as they can sometimes take a lot longer than expected, especially in summer. If you have an older child too, make sure it's still in date in regards to how many months are left on the passport, some say 3, some say 6. If your baby has a different surname to you and you're travelling without the person who they are named after, make sure you take the extra documents you need.

As adults we don't tend to be too concerned about holiday insurance, but with a baby it's vital. If they react to some food, or develop a horrible heat rash for example, you want to be covered!! You can also apply for a free European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) for each member of your family. Make sure you check if your destination requires certain vaccinations and immunisations too, and do your research on them, weigh up the risks for the recommended ones.

If you do have older children then you may not have a choice, but if you can help it, try and book outside of the school holidays. It will not only be cheaper, but less crowded which you will be grateful for with a little tot. If you're using public transport to get to and from the airport, I'd avoid rush hour whenever possible too.

When looking at accommodation, make sure it caters for babies before booking. See what facilities they have available and if they provide things such as travel cots. This means you'll only have to pack what you need. Make sure you double check and confirm this before travelling too!

Packing:

It's a big job trying to remember everything for yourself, let alone for a baby too! You not only have to make sure you don't forget anything, but you also have to make sure you have enough of everything! Pack everything you usually would in your suitcase and daily changing bag, but lots more of it. It's up to you what you take, and how much you take. As a parent you'll know best but here's a checklist of the things you may not have thought about:

- Nappies. This one seems pretty obvious, but you will need to work out how many you use a day multiplied by the number of days. Then add on at least a days worth, just in case. (Remember to pack some swim nappies/pants if swimming is on the agenda).