The Simple Checklist: What To Pack For a Road Trip With a Newborn Baby

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My husband woke me up last Friday morning with a smile on his face and an important question in his heart, “Do you want to go to Telluride this weekend?!”.  Telluride, Colorado is about a six hour drive from where we live in Denver.  After rubbing my eyes and finally finding his smiling face in focus, I responded, “Sure!”.  And then spent the entire day planning and packing for our road trip.  I put together a checklist of all of our essentials that helped make our road trip with our two and a half month old baby, Lionetta, seamless.

TIP:  I recommend first checking with your pediatrician that your little one is safe to travel.  And also make sure you have an emergency plan in place and know of local hospitals at your destination and at sites along the trip.  

 

Here is what we packed for our trip!…

What To Pack For a Road Trip With a Newborn Baby

FOR THE CAR / EASILY ACCESSIBLE ITEMS:

BABY:

 

BREASTFEEDING MOMS:

FOR YOU:

  • Phone
    • Phone charger for car.  (Or an adapter if your car doesn’t have a USB port.)
  • Driver’s license, credit cards, insurance card, cash/coins (especially helpful for vending machines & toll stations)
  • Saved important travel & emergency information (screen shots &/or print outs)
    • Emergency phone numbers
      • Emergency contacts, pediatrician, local hospitals, etc.
    • Hotel phone number, address, & directions
  • Comfortable clothes and shoes for the car
  • Sunglasses
  • Hat
  • Water bottle or bottles of water to stay hydrated.
  • Snacks (especially anti-gas) & hydrating drinks
    • Some of my favorites: bananas, dried mango, nuts, & warm chamomile tea with fresh ginger and lemon
  • Lip balm, handlotion, hand sanitizer, & tissues
  • Soothing, upbeat music
  • Camera
  • Journal to document the trip

 

 

TO BE PACKED AWAY FOR DESTINATION:

  • Activity gym
  • Pack & play or in our case, SNOO
    • Another Option: If you’re staying in a hotel, you can call ahead to check and confirm you can get a crib in your room.
  • Sleep sack, white noise phone app, humidifier
    • If you’re staying in a hotel, you can also call ahead to check and confirm you can get a humidifier in your room.
  • Extra diapers & wipes
    • For this trip, I packed a new case of diapers that contained 44 diapers.  We used about half the pack over the course of our 4-day trip (averaging around 5-6 diapers per day).
  • Extra burp cloths
  • Clothes for day, pjs for night
    • I packed one outfit for each day and one pj for each night, plus an extra couple in her diaper bag as backup.  (Tip: If you’re planning on being on the go, look for outfits with zipper closures for quick diaper changes.)
      • Remember to pack socks for outfits that aren’t footed.
  • Bottles
  • Travel bottle brush set & drying rack
  • Travel size dish soap
    • If you don’t have travel size dish soap, I just squeeze some from your larger bottle into a ziploc bag or plastic container & double up the ziploc bag to avoid leaking.
  • Suitcase or duffle bag large enough for your & baby’s belongings
    • I like to try to bring as few bags/suitcases as possible, so it’s easier to manage and less to sort through at pitstops.
    • Fully stocked suitcase for you:
      • Clothes (layers)
      • Shoes
      • Accessories
      • Toiletries
      • If needed: extra contacts, eyeglasses (My eyes get extra dry when I travel, so I always make sure to grab my glasses to give my eyes a break from my contacts.)
      • Dirty laundry bag

 

newbornroadtripchecklist

 

Here Some Tips From What I Learned…

Feeding the baby was probably the most important thing for us to plan around for our road trip.  You’ll want to have a plan for feeding in the car and also feeding at your destination (especially if you’re planning on being on-the-go often).

 

For feeding the baby during the car ride…

For easier feeding, I like to feed my little one right before we head out by warming up stored breastmilk from the refrigerator or freezer.  Simultaneously, I will pump and bring the freshly pumped breastmilk in the car with us.  The freshly pumped milk should last 4-6 hours in the car (at room temperature).

Otherwise, I mostly pumped in the car and then used that milk to bottle feed at pitstops.  I bought a battery pack for my Medela breast pump that I used in the car.  Although, I wish I would have used higher-powered batteries or purchased the car adapter for my breast pump.  (I used regular AA batteries and didn’t have the best power strength when pumping.)

Also, if you’re changing elevation, having your baby suck on a pacifier during the drive can be helpful for his ears.

 

Diaper changes…

Surprisingly, many of our pitstops didn’t have bathrooms with changing tables or even a counter area to change our little one’s diaper.  It was also too cold to change her anywhere outdoors, so we made sure to have a clear area around our center console in the car for changing.  (Our Logan + Lenora changing pad is the perfect size for this!)

 

At our destination…

Being on-the-go at our destination in Telluride, I’m glad I packed all of my pump parts and lots of bottles because we definitely went through them!  I used the bathroom sink of our hotel room to wash my pump parts and bottles.  Packing the travel brush set/drying rack and dish soap made things easier for this task.

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I pumped as often as possible and stored extra milk in a cooler.  To warm up the cold milk I used the hot water from the Keurig machine in the hotel room.

 

Packing…

I recommend referencing my checklist by: items you’ll want easily accessible in the car vs. items that can be packed away.  It was really helpful to have my essential items easy to grab along the drive, so we didn’t spend too much time sifting through bags at pitstops.

 

newbornroadtripchecklist

 

Enjoy your trip!…

Traveling with a little one can be so much fun and you’ll make tons of memories.  So turn on some upbeat, soothing tunes and make sure to take lots of pictures to document your trip!

 

Here’s some footage from our trip to Telluride, Colorado…

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Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

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