My husband and I didn’t wait very long to start traveling with our kids and have had our fair share of travel highs and lows since they were infants.
Travelling with a breastfed baby was a bit easier for us than a bottle fed baby (we have one of each) as there was less to pack and less to clean. After a few trips with our son (he was bottle fed) we learned how to make bottle feeding work for us while away from home.
If you have a bottle/formula fed infant, here are 7 tips to make exploring the world with them easier:
1. Use Disposable Bottle Liners
Disposable Drop In Bottle Liners are useful when you don’t have access to sterilizing equipment or a microwave. Liners means minimal cleanup time and packing less bottles for your trip.
2. Choose the Right Formula
While it is easier to prepare a bottle with premixed formula (ready to drink formula found sold in cans, bottles or tetra paks), luggage weight restrictions may make it difficult to pack ready to drink formula for long trips. It might be easier to pack a can of powdered formula than premixed formula in this case.
We’ve traveled with both. Tetra paks work well for weekend road trips or short getaways while a can of formula was more than enough for a week-long vacation.
For families traveling out of country, definitely make sure to pack formula for your trip – you don’t want to risk not being able to find it when you get to your destination. Canadian moms and dads, some formulas sold in Canada are not available in the U.S so make sure you double check what’s available before your trip.
3. Pack a Sectioned Formula Dispenser
When our son was on formula, we used a sectioned formula dispenser and filled each compartment with a pre-measured amount of powder and kept it in our diaper bag during road trips or carry-on bag for flights.
When it was time for a feed, we didn’t have to worry about measuring powder and would simply empty one compartment into a bottle.
We also used formula dispensers for storing infant cereal as well while we were out during meal time. Munchkin Powdered Formula Dispensers are our favorite as it’s easy to open and clean.
4. Clean with Sterilizer Bags & Bottle Brushes
If you have access to a microwave at your destination, pack microwaveable sterilizer bags. They’re great for cleaning bottles, nipples, pacifiers, sippy cups and breastpump accessories and take up very little space in a suitcase or bag.
We have traveled with Medela Quick Clean Micro-Steam Bags on all of our family trips to Disney World as the resorts and baby centers in each of the theme parks have microwaves for guests to use. They make sterilizing all the bottle parts a cinch!
To clean the hard to reach nooks and crannies, we also travel with this OXO Tot Straw and Sippy Cup Top Cleaning Set. It’s small and costs less than $5!
For families using premixed formula (ready to drink) or pumped milk, keep the bottles cold in a cooler bag and a few lunchbox ice packs.
6. Pack Extra
Pack a bit extra formula or milk for your trip in case of travel delays. Pack extra bottle nipples too in case one rips or tears during your trip.
7. Put Everything in Your Carryon
If you are flying, try to pack as much bottle feeding supplies as possible in your carryon – liners, formula, bottles, cooler bags so you’re not at risk of losing it if the airline loses your luggage. Even though we are past the bottle feeding stage, my go-to carryon bag is the Skip Hop Duo Signature Diaper Bag – I love that it doesn’t scream “baby” and it has so many different pockets.
Do you have any travel tips to share for parents with bottle fed babies?