6 Ways to Survive a Road Trip With a Baby

Parenting & Family / Tuesday, May 22nd, 2018

I’ve been a little MIA this week, and for a good reason (I promise!). My little family moved across the country from California to Tennessee in 4 days, WITH our 3-month-old daughter and 3-year-old dog.

Yes, I’m exhausted.

We planned as well as we possibly could with a baby en route. My husband created an itinerary for us that mapped out how long each day would be so that we would never be in the car for more than 9 hours at a time. Of course, it was a rough draft since our daughter pretty much ran the show.

In the end, I was VERY proud of my little one (and dog, too!). She did better than I expected her to. That being said, I’d love to share some key tips on going on a road trip with an infant!

6 Ways to Survive a Road Trip With a Baby (1)

Take Breaks

Our little one was okay with taking breaks every 2 hours to stretch, have a diaper change, and get some fresh air. She definitely let us know if she needed breaks sooner than that- but it was rare. Imagine being crumpled up in a car seat for hours and hours on end!

PS- There is no shame in changing your baby’s diaper on a tailgate. You go, mama! Oh, and keep a pillowcase or sheet under your baby in their car seat! I’m so glad I thought of this before we left the house. The last thing you want miles away from running water is a blowout on the side of the road!

Have the Baby Survival Kit on Hand

I made sure to have a little basket accessible that was packed with:

  • diapers
  • diaper cream
  • wipes
  • 4-5 burp rags
  • PLENTY of little toys
  • hand sanitzer
  • pump, bottles, nipples and bag
    or formula pre-packed into bottles if you’re not breastfeeding/supplementing
  • baby’s first aid kit with nail clippers
  • extra blanket
  • change of baby clothes
  • tiny plastic trash bags
  • chapstick (for mama; you’d be surprised how much this comes in handy!)

Keep Baby Company

Okay, I have to admit: I don’t know HOW I would have survived the trip if my mother-in-law hadn’t have come with us. I drove most of the way there and she was able to sit in the backseat with my daughter. Ditch your co-pilot!

If you’re travelling alone, may the force be with you. I admire you so much. Just be sure to have a backseat mirror installed 🙂

Get Your Playlist Together

I don’t know about you, but my baby does so much better in the car when there’s music playing (and so do I). 3 days before our departure, I added hours of music to my Travelling to Tennessee playlist. Fleetwood Mac makes everything better.

No Bed? No Problem!

Maybe I’m weird, but I didn’t know that you could request hotel cribs! Not all hotels have them, of course. If you can’t get your hands on one, request two roll-away chairs. I pushed them together and used her big changing mat as a mattress. If you bed-share, you can push a chair up against the the side of the bed. Easy peasy.

Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff

As a parent, you know that stuff happens and not everything goes according to plan. You will have unexpected stops. Embrace the time with family and try to relax. I know, easier said than done. But it really does help going into this with an open mind and good sense of humor.

Sure, it’s daunting travelling with a tiny human, but you got this, mama!

hotel baby


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