There’s nothing more synonymous with summer than road trips. But long stretches of open road aren’t necessarily amenable to babies and toddlers. Corinne McDermott, Founder of HaveBabyWillTravel.com, offers her expert tips on how to road trip with your baby—and have a good time, too!
Keep him company.
With AAP guidelines suggesting that babies under the age of two stay rear-facing for as long as possible, that means that your little one will spend the bulk of his trip facing backwards. So stick the map in the glove compartment (for a while, anyway), and join your baby in the back seat, advises McDermott.
Try to stick to a schedule.
If your baby is a stickler for his morning nap, make sure that you try to keep to his schedule as much as possible. But you also want to be wary if your little one likes to snooze in his seat. “Be aware that if they tend to fall asleep in the car seat, that will likely mean they will be awake much later in the day than you (or they) may be used to,” warns McDermott.
Nurse as needed.
Even though you and your partner might want to push through the night in order to get to your destination on time, you’ll still need to be prepared to stop to nurse or change diapers as needed. “Take your time and don’t rush,” says McDermott. “If you’re trying to race against the clock, you will likely end up frustrated and stressed.” That said, don’t stop unless you really have to. After all, if the kiddos are content, just keep going as long as you can. You’ll all be happier to get to your destination sooner rather than later—when you can stretch your legs and spend some quality time together as a family.