Ask The Readers: Tips for Traveling With Toddlers?

So, I don’t have any deep thoughts this morning as most of what I’ve been thinking about is an upcoming trip and how we are going to make it smooth and entertaining for two toddlers. Any advice? Mainly, these are the specific things I’ve been thinking about…

  • Easy to pack, exciting, lightweight snacks for the road
  • How to entertain a 2 and 3 year old during a three hour plane ride
  • What toys/activities to pack that won’t take up much luggage space, but will keep toddlers entertained for an entire week
  • OR what cheap but entertaining toys to buy once we get to our destination
  • Tricks to hauling carseats, strollers, backpacks, and kids along through an airport
  • And any other tips for traveling one might have…

9 thoughts on “Ask The Readers: Tips for Traveling With Toddlers?”

  1. That'd totally work for the car, but we've got a flight too and one of our toddlers is gonna be to big to fit in a carryon bag and stow in the overhead. darn.

  2. I just had this brilliant idea (all on my own I swear), how about buying some toys at a thrift store at our destination. Then donating them before we return home?

  3. Talk with Beth on this one . . . she travelled with both our boys on the plane when we moved to British Columbia a couple years ago while my brother and I drove our moving truck (though Nils was pretty little then). She did "presents" for Anders on the plane (I think she wrapped them in see-through paper per regulations). He got stuff like a toy airplane/other Hot Wheels type cars, a coloring book, etc. Just cheap small things. Part of the fun was something new & something to unwrap. He has a couple of these tins with little magnets than can be re-arranged to make pictures (kind of like old-school Colorforms).

    An umbrella stroller is the only kind allowed for the airport, if I remember correctly. We checked-in our car seats so we didn't have to deal with those (but that was before everything cost to check-in).

  4. Little presents sound like a great idea, I think we are going to do that. I think we might bring a backup movie for the laptop just in case. They've never watched a full length movie so it'd probably be mesmerizing, but I'd rather not start now either.

    We'll see how it goes!

  5. Ahh. Movies. We didn't have that option, so I forget about it. We did, in moving to Minnesota from BC, hook up the laptop in the car. Nils doesn't get into it too much, but Anders will get sucked in. Shorter things like Veggie Tales or The Muppet Show I think were slightly better than longer movies.

  6. Hmmm… we've (for better or worse) been through quite a bit of baby/toddler air-travel over the past couple years. I don't have any spectacular recommendations, but here's what comes to mind…
    – Checking-in car seats does not count as something that you have to pay for (at least on every airline we've flown). Not sure if you'll be checking any seats, but we always borrow a car-seat cover/bag since those things can get demolished when checked-in.
    – I always gate-check the stroller and use it as a makeshift luggage cart to get to the gate.
    – I've seen some people use a collapsible luggage cart in airports for the car-seat + child, which I think makes a ton of sense. You secure the car-seat to the cart (something like this: ) and have the kiddo sit in it as usual while you haul 'em around with ease. I'm looking to do this on our trip next month with our two year old
    – Entertainment? No idea 🙂 I was gifted an iPod touch recently, so I'm planning on a mixture of home movies and pics to get us to the other side…

    Good luck!

  7. great idea on the carseat bag. I have no idea what that looks like but I'm gonna throw a laundry bag over them now that you mention it, hopefully that will help the straps not get ripped off or something. And we are planning on using a stroller/luggage carrier. The hopes is the kids will ride in our backpack kid carriers to the gate and we'll be all good.

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