Baby And Toddler Travel On A Budget

11 March 2013

If all this snow, and it is chucking snow down as I write this, hasn't done it for you then perhaps the fast approaching school holidays will. Let me put this simply for you. If your children are under school age then  make most of that fact NOW. Holidays in school vacation time are expensive. And you'll have little option but to pay more especially as the government is getting even tighter about taking term time holidays.

But you can take a few tips from us to make sure you save not just on what you spend on your holiday but what you take with you too. Read on to find out what you really need, and what you can live without.

Travelling with children, particularly babies, isn't unfortunately all about which resort you're going to. You also have to figure out what you're going to take. When I first travelled with my son he was just two months old. I had a huge wheelie suitcase, almost entirely filled with things for him. Going on the plane I had a change bag, and another wheelie cabin bag. Again entirely filled with things for baby.


At the age of two months, and again at three months, I found the Samsonite Pop-Up bassinet was perfect. It was tiny, light, and so easy to set up. As I was staying in a mix of places - hotels, friends, family - it was also adaptable to my needs.

Kerry-Anne however took her 3 month old baby off to Malta and just adapted a drawer from the hotel's dresser. "I took it out, and had a large fleece that I used for his naps at home. I put towels underneath to add a bit more softness".

On the other hand, Tom and Cherie asked me "why not just pop baby in the bed with you? It isn't like you're going to be getting up to anything with the baby in the room with you anyway."

Hotels generally provide travel cots, but it is a good idea to call ahead. Linda told us that "we were staying at quite an expensive hotel in Malta. Even so I checked the hotel's website and saw a note that travel cots were limited and must be booked in advance. So we did that, and when we arrived there was a couple very upset at reception as they hadn't done this, and there was no cot for their toddler."


If you're still sterilising bottles, take a few disposable ones with you. These can be bought from places like the larger Boots stores. Handy if you get stuck in an airport without feeding facilities, or on an airplane.

I bought a travel steam steriliser when son was little. It was just big enough for two bottles. We were going to Canada and it was utterly useless. I hadn't thought to take into account the difference in voltage!

I did have Lindam steam steriliser microwave bags. Now, these are a godsend. But if you're going to be staying in hotels you'll have to hand them over to staff to put in the microwave for you. This involves a little bit of trust that they'll follow the instructions!

If you're using formula, see if your baby will drink the pre-made cartons. This will save you having to fuss about with finding sterilised water etc.

Getting about

You really don't need to bring absolutely everything that you would have at home. For just a two week or less you will be surprised at what you can do without.

A stroller probably isn't one of them though. If this is the first of the folding ones you're buying (sometimes they're called umbrella style strollers) then consider whether or not you really want to take it on holiday with you.

It might get bashed about in the hold, for example. And what if the airline loses it?

Rachel opted to buy a new, cheap stroller when they went to Morocco for a 5 day break. "We picked up a stroller for £30 in a sale, and took that with us. It got a bit bashed about negotiating the bazaars in Morocco, but it didn't matter."

PlayPennies mum Emma swears by reigns or harnesses, even if you wouldn't use them at home. Sounds very useful to us especially if you're going to a foreign city where there's likely to be a lot of crowds.

TOPICS:   Nursery Furniture   Newborn

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