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Advice for taking a baby abroad(20 Posts)
Just that really! I know things are a bit up in the air with covid etc. My DH and I are looking at going to Malta for a week in October. DD will be 11 months old. We are both double vaccinated so that's all fine.
We will leave booking it until a bit later on but hoping to go away for a week to a villa, just something lovely with a pool and an outside pretty garden for Al Fresco dinners. I know it might be silly to try and get away this year, but next year is really out of bounds for personal reasons, we have a lot of important things going on so we wouldn't be able to go away until 2023 earliest.
Would 11 months be good to take DH away? I was thinking October so it will be a bit cooler for her. She's bottle fed but will be introducing cows milk just after so I didn't know if I needed to bring formula or if it's worth trying her on cows milk, or is 11 months too early?
The villas we've looked at have their own cots. We would just take our own sheets so it smells like home etc. And then just bring the usual baby things and buggy etc.
Anyone been abroad with an 11 month old? Any advice?
You need to make sure the pool is really well fenced - babies ave a knack of learning to crawl at exactly the most inconvenient times
Yes it's fine to travel and fun, babies are adaptable! Try not to overpack just the essentials ( Snooze Shade) is brilliant, bring the formula that baby is used too ( can react differently to others) so one less thing to worry about. Milton tabs for sterilising and just go and enjoy yourselves! We usually bring own car seat as easy for cabs/Ubers and can always check in two items of baby stuff for free ( including airlines like Ryanair ) have fun!
My top tip is to order things to Boots at the airport, to pick up after security. Including sealed ready made bottles of formula and Calpol/Neurofen. Take loads of snacks - some Cheerios in a little tupperware are good and fun to eat for them.
You can take the stroller to the plane but they put it in the hold then so take a sling to carry her from the plane to baggage collection.
Will you hire a car? If so, hire car seats are expensive and not always good quality. It may be better to take your own.
The airline invite everyone with a child to come forward for boarding first - don't do it! Board as late as you can. You will have a reserved seat and boarding first means an extra 30 mins of restraining a baby on a plane
Just double check your health insurance and know the number you need to ring to get medical attention in case DC is poorly while you are there. Some insurance only pay out if you ring them first and go where they tell you to go.
I wouldn't rush moving her onto cows milk if you were otherwise planning to wait until 12 months - just take plenty of formula. If she doesn't take to it or gets an upset stomach or anything, you don't want it to be an extra stress just before your holiday.
With the cot, I would definitely take your own mattress (or a travel cot!). We took ours away at 6 months and the quality of cots provided varied quite a bit, some with quite old, thin mattresses.
Another thing to bear in mind is that most airlines let you take 1 or 2 pieces of equipment (travel cot, pushchair etc) in addition to your luggage allowance, so might be worth checking out what they offer so you know what you can bring. And you can sometimes take an additional piece of hand luggage (changing bag) for the baby too.
Other things to remember - loads of suncream, Calpol, plenty of spare clothes, good travel insurance.
Ah thank you everyone!
Our travel cot is very light too, so we will definitely bring that as she sleeps very well in it.
Will buy her regular DMA and buy plenty of cartons for the journey. Cheerios in tupperware is such a good idea too.
Thank you for all the advice! Will definitely do all of the above. And I didn't even think of doing a boots order. I'll make sure I do that with the essentials, million tablets, milk, suncream, calpol etc.
Will bring own car seat too.
There's so much to bring with a baby isn't there! Will check airline re what's included.
If you dont already have one, consider hiring a sling for your trip. Invaluable in the airport when you sometimes dont get the pushchair back til baggage reclaim, and also on the plane. Can be useful if you go to an old town with cobbles too.
Another for ordering baby bits from boots at the airport! Saves a lot of space!
Nappies, formula, steriliser fluid, cream, nappy bags, snacks, medication (Calpol etc) baby wash, travel wash.
100% a snooze shade! Best invention ever for holidays. And a portable fan that clips on pram etc battery powered from Amazon.
Toys and snacks for the plane. Depending on travel time we timed bottle for take off to help ears.
Once your there we bought an inflatable boat and put water in it beside us and let him sit in the shade with toys in it.
Plenty of day time clothes and they get thick of sun cream.
Take your own cot mattress to
On a plane?! No!! You don't need to take bedsheets either!!!
Just basics! Don't forget a great toy for entertainment in the plane, especially one that isn't noisy.
Do you have a baby carrier? Those are brilliant. You won't have the pushchair when you leave the plane.
Besides, you're not going to the end of the world. Malta is a pretty civilised place
Beware of plane snacks. They had to carefully inpect our baby smoothie squeezy bottles (you know the ones I'm talking about)
Both of my girls were walking by 11 months so be prepared for that.
Oh I didn't even think of that!!
I've managed to find a villa that has one of those mesh type fences around the pool which would be ideal.
Also your username made me chuckle!
yup, perfectly fine.
we've done travelling with much younger too (planes, cars, ferry).
depending on country if tap water is iffy you might want to buy bottled water (not mineral!) to make up formula feeds.
Cow's milk might be tricky as milk tastes different in every country so your LO might not be willing to drink what's available locally.
stick to formula
Not to put a dampener on things, but manage your expectations - the first few trips we had with DC were hard and disappointing and had none of the spontaneity and peace I wanted! People sometimes say 'same shit, different place'.
Look carefully at images of accommodation and think about practicalities. We tried to avoid open plan places after spending a whole holiday helping DD climb stairs over and over because they were in the living room with no door to block them off. At 11 months you have to imagine DC will be cruising or toddling, sharp corners, ornaments, dangling leads etc are a pain. Or if the garden, are there any terraces with a drop etc?
Also check if the pool is heated, we had a late Oct trip to Portugal where they said the pool was only heated from Nov, it was pretty cold and DD didn't like it!
It's a good idea to take some new toys and have a few plans prepared for trips out. DC might be happy to just loll around at the villa but if not, it helps if you have a plan b and c.
Oh, and I always put a folded towel or blanket on a cot bed (under the sheet) to soften up the mattress.
October can be really cold and rainy. Need to note that as Malta is an Island the ‘sea breeze’ can totally put a dampener on things if you want a warmer holiday. I would personally only holiday there when it is warmer May - Sept is actually lovely. It rarely feels as hot as the temperature gage says it is.
oh and I quite agree with @Crowsaregreat
don't expect it to be magically amazing!🤣
as I say a hoilday is not a holiday but a change of scenery!
oh and find out contact details of nearest hospital or A&E and out of hours service.
We first took DS abroad (Italy) when he was 3 months old and DD when she was 4 months (USA). It would never have occurred to us to take our own mattress, let alone a travel cot! We always just used whatever travel/cot was provided and it was fine.
One thing I did find indispensable however was my Baby Bjorn carrier, mostly for the airport/plane when I needed 2 hands.
I also used to aim to give them a bottle/boob on takeoff although invariably I would think we were about to take off, give bottle/boob to baby and they'd happily drink, and finish, and we were still sitting on the tarmac!
Enjoy the holiday and try not to overthink it!