It’s not easy traveling with a baby, especially when you are flying. There are lots of lines, waiting and sitting for long periods of time. Not really baby friendly, to say the least. So I make sure we pack all the essential supplies to avoid getting sick during our travels. I hope that, with the tips below, you will learn to conquer your travel fears too.
Before you Leave
I typically spend a few days before a trip getting everything in order for my trip. Trying to be careful to not leave that crucial item behind at home.
Things you should pack in your carry on:
- Nasal spray
- Bulb (Our favorite is NoseFrida)
- Rectal thermometer
- Head Scan thermometer (this is helpful if you are on the go and need to check quick)
Germ Fighting toolbox
- Travel pack of Lysol wipes or zip lock with a few from you Costco sized container.
- Antibacterial gel (germ-X, Purell)
Blankets (bring a few)
One of the most important items to pack because it serves as a protective barrier and a source of warmth and comfort for the baby while traveling. I make sure to cover the baby’s face to shield her from touching infected airport surfaces and coming into contact with other peoples’ sneezes and coughs around us. On the plane, it can also become quite chilly so I make sure she stays warm and cozy wrapped in her blanket.
Change of Clothes
Make sure you pack an extra outfit for Mom and baby for those unexpected accidents.
If you are traveling somewhere for more than a week, just bring what you need for a couple days. You can always visit a CVS after you land to pick up more. Diapers tend to take up a lot of space, and with the cost of checked bags, it’s just not worth it.
- Diaper wipes
- Diaper Rash Ointment (Our favorite is Burt’s Bee’s)
Toys and Snacks
- Some favorite toys your baby loves to keep her content and distracted from touching all surfaces at the airport and plane.
- Snacks (we love Puffs and finger foods that are easy to feed).
Planes get a once-over straightening-up between flights and usually a more thorough cleaning overnight or between long international flights (Cripps). Airplanes are normally only given a thorough cleaning if they are terminators. A terminator is an airplane that will stay the night at an airport and be flown the next morning (Brockman). Every 35 to 55 days, depending on the aircraft type, planes get a “deep cleaning” that includes washing the ceilings, sidewalls and the seat-bottom cushions (McCartney). On non-terminator flights, the “turn time” between flights is too short. Therefore, the cleaning crew does not get the chance to clean the depths of the seat-back pockets, armrests, touch screens and tray tables (McCartney).
Here are some tips after you board
- Wipe down the seats, screens and table surfaces with lysol wipes (Cripps).
- Wash your hands often and thoroughly with warm water and soap. And of course, wipe baby’s face, hands and mouth frequently (Cripps).
- Before and after you eat, remember to either wash your hands or use antibacterial wipes.
- Try not to use the airplane bathroom, if possible. You are better off using the bathroom in the airport, right before you get on the flight.
- Chose an aisle seat (nothing is worse than being crammed between two people sneezing on you). It is also easier for you to move around and nurse with the baby.
The key to traveling for my family always depends upon the things I packed in my suitcase. With the right supplies in hand, there is less stress, headaches and hopefully, no sneezes. Heck, you may even enjoy your vacation after all.
Brockman, Joshua. “Should You Worry About Getting Sick From a Plane Flight? Maybe.” The New York Times, The New York Times, 6 Feb. 2018, https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/05/business/airplanes-cleaning-illness.html
Cripps, Karla. “What Are the Dirtiest Places on an Airplane?” CNN, Cable News Network, 7 Sept. 2015, www.cnn.com/travel/article/airplane-airport-germs/index.html.
McCartney, Scott. “The Trouble With Keeping Commercial Flights Clean.” Google, Google, 17 Sept. 2014,