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Transporting a new(ish) born to a wedding

(72 Posts)
Teapig Wed 23-Jan-13 20:49:31

This probably isn't the right place to post, but wasn't quite sure where to post. I'm a first timer due in April and am wondering if it's at all possible to get to a wedding in June.

The wedding is in Manchester and we're just outside of London but don't drive. We'd love to go and see that side of the family but thinking it might not be possible sad DH is learning to drive but it seems unlikely he'd pass by then.

So, my question is has anyone done a journey like this before with a 2ish month baby? I'm thinking it's just not possible on public transport - nowhere to change baby apart from yuky toilets, too much stuff to stransport - we'd need to take car seat so we can be driven to and from wedding, moses basket for our hotel room, nappies, steriliser I guess. The list seems endless and impossible.

Thought I'd ask in case anyone has a solution I'm overlooking. Thanks!

TwitchyTail Wed 23-Jan-13 21:59:11

My sister and her husband took their 3-month-old on a 12-hour flight. Apparently it was fine - and much easier than the same trip when she was 8 months old, fidgety and active.

The London to Manchester train is very fast, I've done it several times. If I had to make any journey on public transport it would be that one.

I think it's definitely do-able. Just plan carefully and leave lots of time. Can you stay at or near the venue to eliminate need for car seat? Or look into taxis that provide this? Someone will have a moses basket or equivalent you can borrow - heck I'm in South Manchester and have a spare one going!

ISeeSmallPeople Wed 23-Jan-13 22:01:45

Pre book a cab to the London station.
Same other end.
If you book train now, you should get cheap first tix for train to have more room. Get seats near the disabled seating, so if no disabled passengers you can leave the pram up there.

wanderingalbatross Wed 23-Jan-13 22:05:17

You can co-sleep from birth if you like, but make sure to look up how to do it safely. And try it out in the comfort of your own home first as you probably won't sleep well the first few times. But definitely get a hotel cot too as you might not get on with co-sleeping

KatherinaMinola Wed 23-Jan-13 22:12:36

Yes, you can co-sleep at that age - just don't drink (one glass of champagne would be OK).

I forgot to say that it was a wedding I went to too. I didn't find it tiring, although my child wasn't a sleeper. I actually relished my first chance to get dressed up, talk to some grown-ups and show off the baby - always a hit at a wedding - so I think that kept me going.

I think you will be fine. Just pack very light.

CrackleMauve Wed 23-Jan-13 22:19:13

The London to Manchester train is a Pendolino, aka the wobbly train, aka "the best baby sleep inducer in the world, ever". True fact.

It really isn't that hard to transport a baby that age. I took my 8 week old daughter on two trains to Gatwick and then a flight to Scotland all by myself. If you can stick car seat on pram that works really well. It also means on the train you can detach the car seat and use it as a sleeping place. Or carrycot would work for that bit too.

Do look at Family & Friends railcard. Although you don't need to buy a ticket for the baby, it can be worth getting a railcard and buying a reduced child ticket so you also get the discounts on your tickets. I have saved a fortune on rail travel doing that. And you have the advantage of getting that extra seat reservation so you have extra space.

You don't really need masses of stuff for that age. Couple of outfits, some nappies. Babies that age are comfiest in sleep suits and they take up no room t all. They don't really care about toys or anything so you don't need to take much of that. If you are formula feeding that adds to it. If you aren't, then luggage is a minimum. And definitely ask hotel for a travel cot, we've never needed to take one with us when we've gone away.

I would actually rather do a train journey than a car journey with a baby of that age. No getting stuck between service stations with a screaming baby in the backseat while you sob in the front. It is the best way to travel.

lightrain Wed 23-Jan-13 22:19:58

You can use the travel cot bit of the pram instead of Moses basket.

CrackleMauve Wed 23-Jan-13 22:21:22

Oh and a sling would be handy for the getting across London bit of the journey. Means one person can have baby in sling while the other manhandles the pram.

lightrain Wed 23-Jan-13 22:21:51

Oh, and just buy some Milton tablets for sterilising (if you do end up formula feeding). They are very small and you simply add to cold water and leave bottles overnight (or at least a few hours) to sterilise. No bulky steriliser or electricity needed.

Kiddicare have travel cold water sterilisers in the sale for around 4 pound iirc but you could just take a large food tub or ice cream tub (large enough to fit a couple of bottles) and some Milton tablets.
As others have said buy nappies there just take enough for travel.
The pram will be a life saver for sleeping. My niece was only 10days old at my wedding, my SiL travelled by car for 8 hours. They were very tired but it was so good to have them there. My niece spent most of they day in the pram sleeping. I did ask for a chair to be placed in a quiet room next door to the meal so my SiL could go and feed if she wanted some space and not having to go up to room so worth speaking to the bride or calling the hotel and explain the situation.

munchkinmaster Wed 23-Jan-13 22:36:28

Surely you could just dump Milton in hotel sink and wash hands etc in bath?

Teapig Wed 23-Jan-13 23:11:21

Thanks ladies!I'm feeling much more positive and quite excited about getting dressed up and showing off our LO.

From everyone's comments this is what I think I'd need to take:
Pram with cot attachment - baby can sleep in pram cot, our bed or hotel cot so need for moses basket
Sling
Changing bag with changing mat, nappies, wipes, formular if BF isn't working
Milton tablets/cold water sterilisers (thanks for the Kiidcare tip little)
Couple of changes of clothes

Not needed:
Moses basket - co sleep or use cot from pram
Towels - ok to use hotel towels
Supplies of nappies, formula etc - just take what we need for journey and buy supplies there
Car seat - we could get taxis with car seats, or we could fit the car seat on the pram and take it but then we wouldn't be able to manage the travel cot and I think that might be more useful

Is there any issue with a 2m old sleeping in a hotel cot? I thought you had to have a new mattress and sheets at that age?

Thanks so much for the advice ladies! I'm feeling much more positive that we can do this now.

Happypiglet Wed 23-Jan-13 23:32:26

Yes babies that age can sleep in hotel cots but if you are taking your pram carry cot then use that. It's more like a Moses basket and will smell 'normal' to the baby! you can take a Moses basket sheet for it if you like.
I went to a wedding with four week old DD. It was easy really.
I was BF but ready made formula is your friend if FF!
Your list sounds fine. I took DD to the wedding reception in evening in the sling and just held her during the day do.
It'll be fine.
Much harder to d o that sort of journey with older kids. I took my three then aged 5,3,1 on this sort of journey....now that was interesting!

domesticslattern Wed 23-Jan-13 23:46:57

Just wanted to echo mincepies post. It's lovely to work out the practicalities and, yes, it will be logistically possible. But see how it goes when baby comes and do not beat yourself up if you do not feel up to it when the time comes. Mincepies mentions that at that age her baby had not slept more than 45 mins since birth. It is worth stopping to reflect on that statement! You may be utterly crazy and hallucinating for lack of sleep, knocked sideways by the experience of new parenthood, recovering from a c section or stitches or mastitis or god knows what. Or you may - and we hope this!- be finding everything is going swimmingly and you are keen to get out and you find junior quite portable (yes yes to trains being better than cars for that kind of journey).
So, in a nutshell, hope to go but play it by ear nearer the time, would be my advice. Good luck!

DeathMetalMum Thu 24-Jan-13 07:09:30

I have been on the train you would be travelling on a number of times since dc1 was born (opppsite direction and one or two stops less) but it was quite an easy journey, no changes or anything.

It will most likely be the virgin run train you get. You can contact them by phone to book your tickets and they will offer easy access seats where there is space close by for pushchair storage.

Whenever we travelled with dd before she was one we took our own sheets with us. Only needed a bottom sheet anyway as we used sleeping bags but we figured this would help her settling same smells etc.

If you are worried about the cot idea in the hotel have you considered asking some family to let you buy a travel cot and send it to them. It will be usefull if you visit them again.

Good luck train travel before dc's can walk is not too bad.

HandMini Thu 24-Jan-13 08:47:16

We did a wedding when DD was three weeks old - train London to Newcastle, hotel walkable from station, co-slept in giant hotel bed. Took buggy and clip-on car seat, didn't bother with Moses/cot, took a few changes of baby clothes AND two dresses for me (a godsend as DD weed on the first one while I was doing a cackhanded nappy change in the loos).

In terms of wedding itself, I went to the wedding, took DD back to hotel for a sleep / feed / recovery, then rejoined in the evening (missed the meal / reception). I would really recommend not pushing yourself to do the whole thing if its a long day...have some time out.

I won't lie, it was a bit of a palaver and stressful, but we were so glad we'd done it / introduced DD to friends and family and for me as a new mother, the best thing was that I felt much more confident to do stuff afterwards, I just felt like, if I can do that, I could do anything and consequently got out and about a lot more. Good luck.

csmm Thu 24-Jan-13 09:59:40

Trains are the best way to travel with tinies. The toilets aren't too skanky if it's during the day and have fold-down changing tables. You can also walk up and down the train with the wee one if they're unsettled. I would take a car seat, if only so that you don't have to carry them all day at the wedding (and they can sleep uninterrupted when need be). I took my DS for an extended stay away at 2 months and tbh he slept in a drawer lined with a few sheets - at that age they really don't need much and don't know any better. And if you're BF then you don't need sterilisers, though if in doubt a bottle of Milton doesn't take up much room.

We're expecting DC2 in May and my brother's wedding is 10 days after due date. We're in Scotland and the wedding is just north of London, but I'm damned if I'm missing it if there's any way I can get there (that is, provided this one's a bit more punctual than the last) smile

Teapig Thu 24-Jan-13 10:04:24

Thanks so much for the advice handmini, it's making me realise that while it could be a challenge it's not impossible and it could actually be easier at that age than when our LO is less portable.

deathmetalmum, thanks for the tip about phoning Virgin and seats that are accessible, we'll definitely do that.

domestic, I totally hear you on the see how it goes front. It feels very odd to be thinking through these practicalities before LO is here and as a first timer I have no idea how it will be or how I'll feel by then. I think we'll plan to go but will be up front that we can't guarentee as it's impossible to plan.

The fact that we can stay where the reception is makes me think it might be doable.

Oooh, getting excited now about the idea of getting LO a little outfit for the wedding! Doubtless it will be covered in wee/poo/sick before long wink

MightBeMad Thu 24-Jan-13 10:15:24

You don't need a travel steriliser - just a sink and some Milton tablets - much lighter/more space efficient! It will totally depend on how you are feeling physically and emotionally, but I'd say don't rule it out, as long as you are doing okay post partum and baby has no significant issues it is totally possibly to do and might make you feel very heartened that you can still do these kids of things with a baby! BUT, equally, don't put unnecessary stress on yourself. If you are finding it tough or are the kind of peron who is going to get very anxious about it then give yourself a break and don't go.

Congrats on your pg btw and good luck!!

MarthasHarbour Thu 24-Jan-13 10:29:03

yeah scrap my previous advice about washing and sterilising the bottles in the hotel kitchen. i completely forgot about milton tablets <d'oh>

take a little bit of washing up liquid, wash and rinse the bottles in the bath, then stick some milton tablets in the sink. get some ready made formula so no worries about making up the feeds. and if you BF then get a decent dress that you can bf in.

we bought a beautiful suit for DS for a wedding when he was 8 weeks old - he ended up in his babygro smile

i liked handmini's post, shows how it can be done smile

I am in South Manchester too so if i can be of any assistance, as i said before, then PM me

TurkeyDino Thu 24-Jan-13 10:34:31

I did a train journey Durham to Manchester for a wedding when DS2 was a week old. And DH couldn't make it so I was on my own. I took a large Tupperware with bottles and Milton tablets and a small washing up liquid for bottles. Backpack with our stuff (dress/shoes/makeup/nappies/wipes/baby clothes.)

We borrowed a travel cot at the hotel. It wasn't too bad at all and I had 2 train changes, if you can get a direct train it will make things much easier.

You can do it! Good luck x

TurdusMerula Thu 24-Jan-13 11:44:45

We did a similar journey at a similar age, and it was fine (though not a wedding, so less luggage in terms of smart clothes!) Sounds v doable if you're all feeling well and up to it - esp with staying at reception hotel, so you can sack off to bed at 8pm if you want.
We used a borrowed travel cot as a barrier next to the bed to stop dd falling out, so I'd definitely agree you should ask for one, even if you're cosleeping.
Only thing where I'd differ with previous posters is re pram - they're such a pain on the underground, so may be worth considering taking just a sling? depends on your/dc's preferences at the time.
I'm due dc2 in April too. great time of year to have a baby smile

MarthasHarbour Thu 24-Jan-13 12:11:05

bloody 'ell turkeydino <high fiiiive>

grin

Teapig Thu 24-Jan-13 16:54:28

Hats off to you turkeydin0, that's quite a feat on your own.

Thanks for the advice on Milton tablets and using a travel cot to stop DC from falling out. It's great to know that a lot of people have done similar and it's worked out well. I won't pressure myself though.

Thanks so much for your advice martha and for the offer of assistance. I love Manchester, I'm quite envious of you living there.

havingastress Thu 24-Jan-13 16:59:57

It's totally do-able...but..I'm 11 wks pp and the thought of going to a wedding now fills me with dread!!! Nothing fits, my body has been ravaged, I'm tired and still not 'quite myself' (oh, and my amazing DD has been sleeping through the night 6hrs+ for 5 wks or so grin you might not be so lucky, so bear in mind you might be sleep deprived and exhausted to boot! )

Do you have to confirm now? Honestly, I would wait and see how you feel after the baby. Nothing is how I thought it would be!

Congrats!

havingastress Thu 24-Jan-13 17:01:14

OH and outfit for your baby? Trust me. Baby will be in a babygro and probably have a non matching bib on grin

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