“Travel now because once you have kids, those days are over.” These words were something that Zach Ruhl and his wife, Julie, heard all the time. Being avid globe-trotters, the fear of being unable to travel with a child spurred many questions in the Ruhls’ mind. On the other hand, they didn’t want to miss out on raising a family either.
The complications that come with raising a child and traveling didn’t evade the husband-wife duo. Still, they defied all odds and are now known as a family of three traversing by air and sometimes their campervan. Today, Zach, Julie, and their two-year-old Indie are the Ruhls of the Road – a blog inspiring people to traverse the world on a budget while not giving up on their family, career, or lifestyle.
Although traveling with a baby can be overwhelming, to ease first-time parents as they ready themselves to go on adventures with their kids, Zach and Julie share a few tips that help manage everything more easily.
Pack as light as possible
Whether traveling via plane, train, or car, Zach and Julie’s go-to tip for parents is to bring only what you need. In short, pack lightly. Prepare for the blowouts and emergencies, which are more than expected with babies, but do not go overboard. If you really need something, you can buy what you need once you reach your destination.
Always keep these essential items.
Yes, we told you to pack lightly, but ensuring you have the necessities, especially when flying or on the road, is also important. Zach and Julie advise couples to keep the following essential items with them at all times:
- Backup clothing for the mom, dad, and the baby
- Enough diapers to get you to your destination plus a days worth to account for delays (extremely vital!)
- Comfort blanket or toy
- Baby and sanitizing wipes
- Favorite snacks, formula/milk, or anything you need to breastfeed
- Basic first-aid kit
- A reusable waterproof bag
Bring your own car seat
Safety should be the foremost priority during travel. You never know the conditions or history of a rental car seat. If you are traveling by Road, Zach says it is important to bring and install your own car seat and keep your child rear-facing for as long as you can.
Plan an itinerary
Zach believes that fun and adventures don’t have to take a back seat when you become a parent, but a few rules change when a child is involved in the equation. Plan an itinerary to ensure your stops are baby-friendly when traveling with your children. And it doesn’t necessarily mean that you cannot be spontaneous; planning is just the way to ensure that you take it easy each day.
Take care of yourself
It goes without saying that self-care is of paramount importance. Zach and Julie greatly emphasize caring for yourself when traveling with a baby. If you are fussy, the baby will be fussy, and then you will become fussier – a never-ending, vicious cycle. Pay attention to your needs, rest, and sleep to guarantee a fun time for all.