Travel Tips from a Special Needs Mama

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Hey friends! How’s it going? It’s a freezing day in North Carolina, although not TOO freezing because there’s no snow. Bummer! I was hoping to see snow our first year here. Maybe next time! Both our boys haven’t seen snow and I’ve been dying for it to happen.

Today I wanted to share some useful tips for traveling. We’ve had to travel quite a bit with little Jaxson in tow. It’s been very stressful! I remember we had taken our oldest to Sea World in 2017 and as we were leaving we got into a fender bender. The car took off! Not only did we get in a fender bender, the guy took off, but Jaxson CRIED literally the entire drive home from Orlando to Pensacola–roughly 7 hours depending on the traffic.

It was the worst drive EVER. Jaxson puked in his car seat too, so that wasn’t very pleasant for everyone involved. Yikes. So, without further a do, here are some of my useful tips for traveling!

Tip #1

Make a list for your trip in advance. Nothing is more frustrating and stressful then trying to grab everything you need for the trip last minute. I like to make a list of things Jaxson and JJ will need on their trip from snacks, blankets, medication, clothes, anything and everything! Making a list is a MUST. That is why I’m providing you with a FREE travel list to help make your trip that much less stressful!

Tip #2

Check it twice. Do I sound like a Christmas song right now? I may but it’s another great tip! Go over your list carefully and make sure you aren’t missing anything for your children. Maybe have your friends or family help you look over the list for you to ensure that you aren’t looking over anything vital for the trip!

Tip #3

Snacks, snacks, snacks. I always buy enough to feed an army. I rather have too much then not enough snacks for the kids. I usually pack the kids some gold fish, almond milk that doesn’t require refrigeration prior to opening, bananas, and baby pouches. I’ll also ensure that I pack enough baby bottles for Jaxson. The cool thing about his baby bottles is that you can sanitize them individually, it’s pretty awesome. I don’t have to lug around the munchkin bottle sanitizer from the house!

Tip #4

Sensory Toys or tablets. Definitely top of our list because it makes the trip more bearable. JJ has the Kindle Fire Kid’s Edition and we pay monthly for FreeTime where you can download unlimited games on the device (just make sure you have extra storage!). Now that Jaxson is getting older we have been letting him use it instead of JJ, he seems to enjoy using his iPad Mini for fruit ninja or YouTube.

We also pack a small bag of Jaxson’s favorite toys to keep him busy if he’s done with the tablet. Currently he likes to play with JJ’s cars and make car noises, and his train.

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Tip #5

Portable DVD Player & Movies. We were gifted with a portable DVD player when JJ was just a year old and it has been a God send. We charge it up the night before and plug the AUX cable into it so that they can hear it throughout the vehicle. We bring their favorite movies as well: Nightmare Before Christmas (they watch it year round), Monsters Inc., Finding Dory, and Wreck it Ralph!

Tip #6

Power Inverter! This is a must! It’s great to have one because you can plug in the portable DVD player to charge it when it does, their tablets, etc. I was even using it when I was exclusively pumping with Jaxson. That way my husband didn’t have to pull over to let me pump somewhere. They can be a little expensive but trust me, it pays for itself in the long run!

Tip #7

Back extra clothes, diapers, and more. Yes! Pack all the extra clothes. Jaxson got car sick and frequently spit up/threw up in his car seat. That meant having to frequently stop, clean, and change him. You can’t forget diapers either, I’ve made a mistake going five minutes down the road without a diaper and guess what, Jaxson pooped. Could you imagine that happening while you’re on the interstate? With ZERO stops? I don’t want to imagine that, that sounds stressful and no fun.

PACK DIAPERS!

Tip #8

Pack extra water. I drink water like it’s running out of style, so we frequently bring water with us on the road. You should definitely pack a 24-pack of water in your car. It can be useful if you’re formula feeding, or if it’s late and nothing is open, etc. It’ll help with making less stops at a rest area or gas station.

Tip #9

Bring cash. Definitely bring cash with you. You don’t want to find yourself stranded with zero cash and the credit card machines aren’t working or they don’t accept credit cards. Always, always bring cash.

Tip #10

Cooler for medication. This is a must. Jaxson takes omeprazole once a day and it requires refrigeration. I usually bring a cheap lunch box and add some ice or ice packs to keep it cool until we get to our destination. I will do that with Jaxson’s almond milk too, he doesn’t tolerate cow milk so it’s a must to have in the car. You can keep other things in the cooler as well, i.e. yogurt, caprisuns, and wine (sike!).

I hope that this will help you and your family on future travels across country.

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Click to download!

Travel Checklist for Babies and Toddlers #Checklist #Travel

Another tip would be to notify your special needs child’s doctor that you will be going on a trip! You want to make sure that you take the proper precautions while traveling, have enough medication to last your trip, and equipment for your child.

I wish you all a safe and uneventful drive to your destination. Good luck!

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10 Travel Tips #Toddlers #Babies #SpecialNeeds #Roadtrip #Checklist #Printable

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2 Comments

  • Reply Sheila

    This is a great list for any parent of a baby. I know even when I am traveling alone, I make a list and check it twice for me so it would be doubly important to make one for baby. My niece just had a baby so I could pass this along!

    January 23, 2019 at 1:17 pm
  • Reply Sonila

    What a great travel list for any mom with little kids!!!! Great job Jennie

    January 23, 2019 at 2:16 pm
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