I have traveled with a lap baby twice in the last two years, and I love it! The whole time I fly with a baby I have that whole 50% discount thrill going through me. 😉 Plus, it gives me special time to bond with that child without the distraction that 4 other precious children contribute to my mothering. Just me and my babe!
After my last flight, I realized there were some things I will never fly without, and I thought I’d throw the list out there for ya’ll in case you find yourself flying with a lap baby. I want you to enjoy it as much as I did!
1. Baby Carrier
There’s lots of great carriers on the market, I encourage you to find the best fit for you. But if you want to know what I love, it’s my Ergo. My first carrier was a Moby, and while it’s comfy, safe, and beautiful, it takes a while to get in place, and it can be hot wearing all that fabric. So when my girlfriends got together and gave me one for my 4th baby (great shower idea! Go in together on a nice carrier) I was super excited! It takes all of 20 seconds to get baby in (and even less time to extract them!) and I can have my baby close and my hands free.
When I fly with my Ergo, I use the front, zippered pouch for my phone, tickets, ID, and baggage claim receipts. It keeps everything handy and safe, like a fanny pack (except not–thank goodness!) When I’m not wearing the Ergo, I fold it and tuck it into my backpack or I use one of its straps to clip it around my suitcase handle.
The Ergo is comfy and safe for mamma and baby to wear for extended periods. (This is the model I have.) Wearing your baby streamlines you and your stuff for easier navigating and connections. One time I had to run the entire length of Concourse A in the Atlanta airport to make my flight, and if I’d been pushing a stroller, we would not have made it!
2. Umbrella Stroller
I know I just said that I prefer an Ergo to a stroller, but the reality is, I like having both. A stroller gives you a place to rest the baby if you get tired of carrying her, a place to put your purse, and–best of all, it seems to give you preferred treatment! This trip was the first one I’ve brought a stroller and it was amazing the extra help I was given compared to my last trip! I was given complimentary rides on those airport carts that go buzzing by, passengers and employees alike offered help, and I even got to load first—all because I had a stroller with me. It was worth it if I’d never unfolded it!
It’s up to you if you want a fancy one or basic. They make souped-up umbrella strollers now that have nearly all the features of a heftier stroller, but still fold quite compactly. I just bought myself a basic, simple stroller (from the thrift store–$5!) and loved how light and simple it was. I could push, pull, or carry it–all with one hand. It was really worth having it along.
3. Swaddling Blankets.
I’m obsessed with these swaddling blankets–I packed 8 for a 4 day trip. Why? Because I use them for everything:
- Burp rags—big and generous, you don’t have to worry about sopping your seatmate
- Nursing cover—big and generous so you don’t have to worry about shocking your seatmate ;)(I knot the corners of one side and put the loop over my neck)
- Play mat—folded in quarters they’re just the right size and thickness to give my baby a clean place to stretch her limbs between flights.
- Blanket—it makes a quick, light layer for chilly planes or drafty boardings.
- Fashion scarf—big and drapey, they look great if you have to sling it around your neck
- Carseat Cover—again, that whole big and drapey thing!
As each one got soiled, I stuffed it in my laundry bag. Thanks to their light weight fabric, they took up hardly any room in my luggage. We used the last one for the trip home and I was so grateful for all the clothes they saved from spilled milk, and for keeping Lainey warm in the chilly, mountain air of Utah.
4. Travel Pack of Essential Oils
I take this little mini oils case wherever I go, but was especially grateful for the aromatic qualities of the oils while flying. Compact spaces, my seat mate’s cologne, and the stress of making my next connection do not mix well. Having these lovelies with me helped me enjoy the trip more!
I like using the mini drams for the oil—it enables me to take a lot more of my favorites along without too much bulk. You can find mini oil bottles on amazon. My little travel case is from Young Living, but you can find similar ones here.
5. A Good Snack Bar
It can be tricky to find affordable, nourishing food while traveling. And nursing mammas shouldn’t skip meals or skimp on carbs! These bars saved me over and over on my trip, and my milk supply was strong the whole time. (I think I need to keep a batch on hand at home!) I’m not saying these bars are super nutritious, but they are better—and cheaper—than what you’ll find at the airport!
Peanut Butter Oat Bars
- 1 c. peanut butter
- 2/3 c. coconut oil
- 2/3 c. honey
- 3 c. oats
- ½ c. mini chocolate chips
Melt the coconut oil gently over low heat, then combine with rest of ingredients in a medium sized bowl. Stir well, then press mixture into an 8×8 pan. Refrigerate till stiff, then cut into bars. Store in fridge.
These are best when kept refrigerated, but I wrapped each bar separately in plastic wrap, so even when they were soft from a day of traveling, I could nibble the crumbly bits from the plastic and managed to keep hands clean and belly full.
So, those are my trips for flying with a lap baby—add your stories or tips to the comments to make this page a great resource for other moms!
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