Tuesday, 18 May 2010
Tips for going on holiday abroad with a baby
A lot of people are starting to talk about holidays and so I thought I would write a post about my top tips for travelling with a baby under the age of one. Next post will be tips about travelling with a toddler (eek!)
Another reason for writing this post is to do my homework as I am currently receiving weekly instructions from fantastic fellow mummy blogger Erica at littlemummy.com who has a great mummy blogger e course which I’ve signed up for and this week’s lesson is all about links.
We went away to Cyprus when Pop Princess was 10 months and we were initially really worried with all the usual fears what would she be like on the plane, what if she was ill, would she eat anything, how would we make bottles up and so forth.
1. Book child friendly accommodation – sounds obvious but there are certain holidays and companies that really go the extra mile if you have children. After doing some research we decided to book The Almyra Hotel in Paphos. They provided a service called Baby Go Lightly which meant we were able to prebook all the baby essentials we could think of. Most were free such as activity mat, baby walker for the room, changing mat, baby bath, Avent Steriliser, arm bands and for a price you could also pre order things like nappies, baby food, wipes etc. We pre ordered all the free stuff and the steriliser in particular really was fantastic.
2. Do some research into your hotel, villa etc as in its location and where the closest supermarkets are, don’t make the mistake we made and take with you all the nappies and swim nappies you need as you can buy these when you get there. I emailed the hotel and they put my mind at rest and told me the supermarket which stocked pampers nappies etc was less than a 10 minute walk away
3. Look into what formula is available in the country you are going to before you go and take it with you if you have any doubts. Also what brand of baby food is readily available. Most have their own versions but you obviously won’t understand the labels. We took with us a few Orgnanix and Plum pots that weren’t too bulky just in case PP was having an off night and wouldn’t eat anything off the menus as she was only just having more lumpy foods.
4. On the plane most airlines let you take the buggy right up to the plane when you depart but it could be some time that you get it back the other end so be prepared to carry your little one for a short while. We found PP slept on the plane on the way out we were lucky and had seats with loads of leg room right at the front so she could sit on the floor and play with her toys. We took things like biscotti biscuits and rusks which she could nibble on whilst going up and down to help her ears with the pressure and tried to get her to drink milk or water on the ascent and descent.
5. Between 6 months to 12 months take toys that are light and compact like stacking cups, crayons if they are old enough, we took some of those wooden shape and animal puzzles as well as her favourite cuddly toy for night.
6. Pack a light tog gro bag, they come in 0.5 tog for really hot climates
7. Don’t forget trainer seat inflatable which are great for the pool and arm bands if they are not provided at hotel.
8. UV suits are fantastic in the sun and cover your little ones up and baby sunglasses like baby banz are a good idea too.
9. We bought a Shade A Babe which was fantastic as it not only protected her form the sun in her buggy but acted like a mosquito net for the evenings.
10. PP wasn’t crawling when we went to it was a lovely time to go as she sat and played mostly on the sun beds which were like big double beds! But we did put her in the crèche a couple of morning which was run by powder Byrne who are fantastic so do check the facilities and standards as soon as you arrive and again do your research on them before you leave.
11. In terms of making up bottles we used mineral water you just need to check the sodium level that it doesn’t exceed 200 mg per litre (NHS has good guide lines click here) and boil it in the kettle and make them up like you would at home. The hotel was great and a kettle was also waiting for us when we got there.
12. Don’t forget snacks for when you are there like biscotti biscuits, raisins, Ella’s kitchen fruit pouches are always good too – all great for the beach bag.
13. We had one visit from the doctor as PP had a temperature and was really cranky and as we were abroad I was even more paranoid so the hotel called for one for us it was really expensive and as it was there was nothing wrong with her as the next day she cut a tooth!! But make sure you have those European Health Cards just in case as well as Calpol in the sachets and thermometer.
I can’t recommend the Almyra Hotel enough we went in August 2008 and it was expensive but it was a hassle and stress free holiday and as we were quite nervous about going abroad with a baby it really did make the holiday staying somewhere where all your needs were met. They had thought of most things the children’s menus were split into pureed meals, lumpy meals and then toddler meals and if your child was eating normal food they served a kids buffet earlier in the evening. They even had a massive awning over the main pool so the little ones were kept out of the sun!
The prices have gone up incredibly high since we went so we probably can’t afford to go again now we have 2 children. Hopefully my tips will help anyone going abroad it won’t be nearly as bad as you think and you will have a lovely time with a bit of forward planning. Please leave any tips you may have in the comments below.