Remember the days when you used to spend ages packing for your holiday? You’d bring 8 pairs of shoes and enough outfits for at least a month and would be the one chucking stuff out at the Ryanair check-in because you couldn’t afford excess baggage? Yeah well this time around you’ll be lucky if you remember to pack enough knickers for yourself and will probably wear the same old pair of flipflops for the entire two weeks because now you have a baby to pack for.
Babies need so much stuff and they take such a bloody long time to pack for. There are also so many questions to ask yourself…How do I sterilise bottles on holiday? What if I run out of formula? Is it OK to use the hotel water? It’s enough to make you want to have a Staycation.
Anyway, never fear because Upfront Mama’s here to help you through with the ultimate baby holiday list. Study it, tick each thing off and then relax in the knowledge that you have everything you could need for every eventuality.
Here goes…..this list is for a two week holiday abroad in a hotel. If you’re staying in a villa then there will obviously be more equipment to hand.
If you’re not breastfeeding the whole milk thing can be very stressful when going away. Don’t worry though…with the help of some handy sterilising bags and pre-made formula, everything will be fine!
1. Call the hotel to check that they have a kettle so that you can boil water for making up formula. Depending on where I was I’d probably buy Evian which has the lowest salt content of all mineral waters and boil that rather than using tap water. I’d recommend packing a travel kettle so you know that you’re covered.
2. 10-15 cartons/bottles of pre-made formula for when you’re on the plane/ out and about. You can order these in advance from Boots at the airport and pick them up when through security. However, bear in mind that the 100ml rule doesn’t apply to babies so you should be fine getting through security with food and milk for your little one.
3. Either enough pre-made cartons (70?) or enough powdered formula for two weeks. Two containers of powder will probably be enough. (Perhaps 3 to be on the safe side?)
4. Cold Water Disposable Sterilising Bags – These are amazing as all you need to do is fill them with cold water and they are good to go. Each one lasts for 24 hours so I’d buy two lots to be on the safe side.
5. 4-5 sterilised bottles. Boots do these pre-sterilised Tommee Tippee ones. (My friend bought a whole load of them for her holiday so she wouldn’t have to worry about sterilising when away but I rate the cold water bags).
6. Expressing equipment.
For Weaning Babies:
We began Poppy’s weaning journey in France and it was great fun. With a combination of sucking on various fruits through her Nuby Net and the godsend that is Ella’s Kitchen, the whole process was pretty effortless.
1. Baby porridge
2. S*&! loads of Ella’s Kitchen pouches
3. Some weaning spoons
4. A bowl or two
5. Perhaps bring along a Nuby Nibbler Net if you trust the fruit where you’re going. Poppy particularly loved tasting delicious French melon in hers. (why does fruit always taste so much better abroad??)
1. If you’re going somewhere that’s guaranteed to be boiling then make sure you pack a 0.5 tog gro-bag. I love the little boats on this one. Obviously if your room will be air-conditioned then you’ll want to bring a 1 tog or even 2.5 tog depending on how cold it is. If you’re not a gro-bag kinda person then I’d recommend bringing a blanket and a large muslin which can double up as a light-weight sheet.
The general gro-bag guide is:
2. Bring a thermometer that doubles up for the room and bath. I love this one.
3. Hopefully there will be a travel cot in your room (always call the hotel and check) but if not then you need a Koo-Di Pop-Up Travel Bubble in your life. They are light, portable and my friend absolutely swears by hers.
4. A portable blackout blind. I absolutely love ours and use it whenever we go away.
5. Baby monitor.
1. Dioralyte for rehydration in case of sickness/upset tummy (always seek medical advice)
2. Baby Calpol
3. Baby Nurofen
5. Medicine syringes
6. nail clippers/scissors
7. Teething gel/granules
8. Suntan Lotion. My absolute favourite is Mustela Very High Protection SPF50 +. It’s perfect for fragile and sensitive skin and perfect even for very young babies. Excellent stuff and Escentual.com have a third off at the moment.
9. Insurance details and find out details of nearest hospital and GP (This is only for neurotic Mamas like myself).
1. 1-2 packs of nappies. I’d buy the rest when you get there.
3. Sudocrem/ barrier cream
5. Nappy Bags
6. Changing Bag
Baby will probably spend most of the holiday in body suits or just a nappy if it’s seriously hot but if you’re anything like me you’ll take loads and loads of clothes because you can’t resist. I think the below will see you through the two weeks though.
2. Swimming nappies
3. All in one swim suit x 2
4. swimsuit/swimming trunks x 1
5. short sleeved body suits x 14 (if you’re not planning on doing any washing)
6. A few rompers
7. sleeveless body suits x 5
8. lightweight cotton dresses/playsuits for girls and shorts/t shirts for boys. H and M do really cheap and cute summer clothes for the little ones.
9. Some warmer bits for cold evenings etc. A couple of cardigans, some sleep suits, a few long sleeved vests and a jacket should do.
9. Baby sunglasses (you probably won’t use them much but they make for very cute photos)
1. Car-seat if one won’t be provided at the other end. If you’re hiring a car and getting a seat with it then speak to them in advance and make absolutely sure that it’s suitable for newborns/very young babies. We encountered problems with this is France and ended up having to buy a new one whilst we were out there.
2. Either purchase a lightweight buggy or take along your travel system. If going for the buggy option then I’ve heard great things about the Maclaren Quest. It reclines, is comfy and most importantly is suitable from birth. If you have a Bugaboo then it might be worth purchasing a travel bag for it.
3. Sunshades for the hire car
4. A large muslin for providing shade when out and about
5. A sling. My favourite by far is the Ergobaby 360.
Other useful bits and bobs:
1. A large blanket for playing on
2. A popup beach tent – a total godsend when there’s no shade in sight and also makes a fab play area.
4. Favourite toys and books
5. Baby wash, sponge, massage lotion etc
6. A mosquito net for the buggy
7. A rain cover for the buggy
8. This genius electronic mosquito repellant
9. IPad for emergency entertainment on the plane
And Last But Not Least….What to take on the plane:
1. Enough cartons of formula to last for the flight, taking into account delays etc or take along powder and the stewards will be able to make up your baby’s milk in the air. If you are taking powder then I recommend buying one of these to pre-measure your formula or you can buy these fiddly but really handy Tommee Tippee Containers that slot into your bottles.
2. Dummy x 2 – sucking a dummy or feeding at takeoff and landing should help relax your baby and combat ear pain.
3. Calpol (I recommend giving a dose of calpol around an hour before the flight to also help with ear pain at takeoff/landing.)
4. Nappies, wipes, nappy bags, portable changing mat, nappy cream
5. Enough bottles to last for the journey. You could buy some pre-sterilised ones (see above).
6. Books and toys
7. A couple of muslins. One large one to use as a cover if breastfeeding or as a lightweight blanket for baby.
8. Favourite blanket
9. Teething granules
10. A baby travel mattress. I never bought one of these but it looks bloody brilliant for longer flights.
11. Change of clothes x 2
12. Sunhat and cream for arrival if it’s going to be hot.
Finally….here’s the latest blurb from gov.uk about what you can bring through security for babies. The good news is that you are exempt from the 100ml limit :0)
“You can take liquid containers larger than 100ml through security if they:
- are for essential medical purposes
- are for special dietary requirements
- contain baby food or baby milk
You can also take liquids bought at an airport or on a plane (eg duty free) through security if:
- the items are sealed inside a security bag when you buy them
- the receipt for the items is sealed in the security bag and visible
You must not open the security bag until you reach your final destination. Airport staff may need to open the items to screen the liquid at the security point.”
PHEWWWWWW!! Have I left anything out? I hope not. This list is probably a bit excessive but will hopefully cover you for your holiday. Have a fab time xx
Ps: If you like Upfront Mama and would like regular updates and to join a lovely community of fellow Mums then it would be fab if you’d like my Facebook Page. Oh and if you love a good list check out Everything You Could Ever Need For Your New Baby xx