Over Father’s Day weekend, we took Maxwell (he was 11 weeks old!) to meet his great, great grandmother in Alabama! It’s a 650 mile road trip, y’all! Today I’m sharing some of the tips and tricks I learned for keeping Max (and Dad) happy on a long road trip!
This is a 2 part series:
1: Tips for traveling with babies on road trips
2: Tips for traveling with babies on airplanes
We split the 650 mile car ride into 2 days (about 6 hours each day). My grandparents live in Shreveport, LA which is about halfway to our destination in Alabama. I made sure Max was well fed and kept him up as long as I could before we started the journey. Once we were in the car, I would work on getting Max to sleep. He would sleep for one to two hours. In our 6 hour car ride, we stopped 2-3 times for a total of 45 minutes. When he was awake, I sat in the back next to his car seat, when he fell asleep I would crawl up front!
9 Tips for traveling with babies in the car:
1. Bring your breast pump and clean extra bottles: Your boobs will thank you! Since you want to keep baby in the car seat for safety reasons, you aren’t really going to be able to breast feed unless you stop. I have a Medela freestyle pump that allows me to pump in the car. If you don’t have this, no worries… you’ll just have to pull over and take a pit stop. Oh and you might want to bring a bottle brush too.
2. Bring tall skinny bottles filled with breast milk/ formula: The tall skinny bottles are easier in the car than the short fat ones because you can tilt them higher. I’ve also heard the bottles with the bend in them work well for this too. Basically, you just end up wasting less milk if you use these. I have a little cooler that came with my pump that is perfect for the car (You can see it here). It comes with an icepack that perfectly fits 4 bottles.
3. Bring a few little soft toys or rattles: Max is 12 weeks old and likes to follow the toys with his eyes. He also loves to be tickled on his head with soft toys or blankets. At some point you get desperate and start doing ridiculous things, ha!
4. Be prepared to stop every 2-3 hours: Baby wants to stretch his legs as much as you do! Oh and don’t forget to change that diaper! I think the seated position of the car seat makes the diapers explode faster!
5. Pack a separate car ride diaper bag: And make sure you have plenty of diapers (1 per 2 hours you will be traveling is my rule of thumb) and wipes and extra clothes. Or you can just let baby sit in his diaper with no clothes! We ended up doing that a lot since we forget extra clothes. Another essential diaper bag item is a portable changing pad. (We have this one, and love it!) It’s perfect to change him in the car or on a picnic table or where ever.
6. Have lunch and let baby stretch in your lap: We made sure to drive until Max woke up and that’s when we stopped and had lunch. I let him stand on me while we ate so he could stretch his little legs and get some exercise.
7. Rest stops are your friend: If you see a pretty rest stop, and baby is awake, just stop, and take some pictures and walk around! We took this selfie at a rest stop in Mississippi.
8. Roll down the windows: If baby is starts crying one of our first go to tricks his to roll down the windows and the sun roof. Max instantly stops crying. I think the likes the wind in his face!
9. Bring a pacifier: Max is not a huge pacifier lover, but every now and then he will take it and love it. It’s just nice to have one more thing to try and stop the tears! If you don’t have a pacifier try your knuckle!
And here is our 5 generation picture!
Lots more informative baby posts here:
15 tips for taking care of a newborn:
8 things people don’t tell you about childbirth:
Comments & Reviews
Natalie Frank says
Hi Jamie! Love your blog! And this post!
I am working on a post about traveling tips with infants as we just took a 12 hour road trip with our 4 month old. I like your “using the longer bottle” tip and will be including it in my post with a link back to your blog! We were using them already but I wouldn’t have thought to mention it and why it is helpful. So you will be getting credit where credit is due!
Follow me on social media so you can see when I post it 🙂 should be around this Tuesday that I finish it up to post! http://www.relentlessatheart.com I’d love for you to take a gander on over and check out my site in the meantime! Thanks!!
Jamie Dorobek says
Glad it was helpful and thank you for sharing 🙂
Some very wise tips for our readers at #HomeMattersParty . Your photos are adorable it looks like your trip was a great success. Love the 5 generations pic.
Thank you for this post! We have some trips coming up this summer, and I’ve been so nervous about them with our little one (even though they are not nearly as long as your drive!) I never thought of having long skinny bottles instead of shorter ones… That’s such a great idea!
I just wanted to tell you how adorable your little baby is! And I love your site!
My favorite blogger was in my state and I didn’t know it. Ahhh! So disappointed! So glad you had a nice trip.