I have always lusted relaxed vacations with my husband. But ever since we became parents travelling with a baby made me fret. But we finally took the plunge and decided to join our cousins on their trip to Goa.
We traveled to Goa by air (as we were hitching on the group a day later) and had a road trip back home.
Here is what I learnt from my first holiday as a mommy…
To be prepared is half the victory.
Planning a trip with a baby has its share of prerequisites. Take ample time to explore the options available and decide on a baby friendly destination, hotel, restaurants and other child friendly activities you can explore on your vacation. For instance, staying in an apartment instead of a lavish hotel allowed me to cook for my baby as per my convenience. It is always advisable to think and rethink before you make the bookings and prepare a to do list for your vacation.
A happy baby and a comfortable baby would make a happy and comfortable you.
Travelling by air
Our first travel by air together was pleasant and joyous. We had an afternoon flight to board and left home in the morning. My little boy ogled at the crowd, the luggage trolleys, the people around and the flashy lights. Thanks to the well kept baby care area at the airport the diapering and feeding needs of my baby were taken care of comfortably.
Here are tips to make your flight with an infant or a toddler hassle free
* Even if your baby is less than 2 years and would share your seat, she would need a ticket.
* Some airlines realise that baby’s cannot travel light and have extra luggage allowance while some don’t. So make sure you check the airlines policies thoroughly as per your requirements.
* Carry a diaper bag with all the baby stuff to cater to baby’s timely needs throughout the flight.
A diaper bag must consist of a pair of clothes, diapers, wipes, baby food, feeding essentials, nursing cover, napkins and toys.
* Ask for as much assistance as you need.
* Feed your baby or use a pacifier while the plane takes off and lands. The swallowing will help avoid ear popping.
My baby was wide awake through he flight hence the three of us enjoyed our uninterrupted time together.
Baby is on a vacation too.
Babies grasp a lot more than we think they do. To my surprise, my baby was aware of our endeavor and enjoyed it too. I decided to make the most of this trip and gave him a detailed description of everything he saw. He heard from me a narrative about everything from the airport to the hotel, from the people to the cars, from the beach to the fort. And his responsive cooing and excitement, assured me he was all ears for what I spoke. Whether you are on a long vacation or a short stint to the outskirts of the city, make the most of it for you baby. Don’t miss the opportunity and provide an enriching and entertaining experience to your little baby.
Make flexible plans.
When you are travelling with your baby, allow her to lead the show. Making rigid and fixed plans will leave you and your baby tired and stressed. We reached our hotel in Goa at 5 in the evening and only left for a walk on the beach followed by dinner at 9. So what may appear as lots of hours wasted, are actually an investment for lesser but better time spent outdoors. Allow your baby to catch up on some much needed rest and sleep. You may miss out some events on your itinerary, but make the most of whatever you do.
Having lesser expectations helps
While Goa is renowned for its wild night life, what I did know was that having partying desires with a baby would be silly. While the group went clubbing all night long, my husband and I decided to stay back and drive through Goan streets with the kids. When the mommy in me takes a front seat the party animal in me, the naughty girl in me, the fun lover in me are compelled to take a backseat.
Holiday in a different city means having to walk a lot. I couldn’t have imagined my trip without my carrier. I wore my baby through the flight, at the apartment, on the beach, on the streets, while he slept, every time, everywhere.
What I do know is babies grow up sooner than you realize.
Make memories for life.
Although a vacation with a baby may sound tiresome. But these few trips you make with your toddler make fond memories for a lifetime. So click pictures, take videos, make notes and have a wonderful time together.
I would love to hear how your first trip with your baby was. I am sure one you would remember forever.