Whether you’re staying at your in-laws home or a five-star hotel, traveling for the holidays becomes a lot trickier with a baby on board. Any place that isn’t home can be exhausting -- for you and your little one. But it doesn’t have to be.
With the right tips and tricks, traveling with baby one can actually feel like the vacation it’s meant to be. You just need to know how to bring the comfort of home to the hotel room.
We asked Hadley Seward, pediatric sleep consultant and the founder of Bonne Nuit Baby, how to help your little one, and ultimately you, stay well rested no matter where you’re laying your head.
- Bring a few familiar items.
Most babies are flexible about where they sleep as long as it feels familiar. Bring your own crib sheet that smells like home -- bonus point if your little one has slept on it a few times so it smells extra comforting. For older kiddos, be sure to bring their loveys, blankies or favorite bedtime books.
- Use white noise.
If you’ll be sharing a room with your little one, using white noise continuously throughout the night will help everyone sleep more soundly. There are apps you can download for your phone/tablet or I like the Marpac Portable White Noise Machine. (Bonus: you can also use this on the airplane/train/car!)
- Get creative about sleep spaces.
If your baby usually sleeps in their own room but you’re all sharing one hotel room: get creative! Try to position the crib as far away from your bed as possible, ideally out of range of their inquisitive eyes. If your hotel has a large bathroom, that’s a great place for baby (leave the door open/cracked to ensure ventilation)!
4. Book a hotel that offers a quality crib.
I’ve been to so many hotels with dodgy, out-of-date cribs that look both unsafe and uncomfortable. Remember: you’ll both get more sleep if baby is in a safe, comfy sleep space. Aim to choose a hotel with high quality cribs. Top hotels like the Four Seasons and Viceroy hotel groups go above and beyond, offering bloom cribs for their tiniest guests.
- Balance sightseeing with down time.
I know, I know -- you didn’t travel all that way to be stuck in a hotel room while your baby naps! Don’t feel like you have to stick to a rigid sleep schedule during your vacation, but do try to build in time for your little one to catch up on sleep. When my kiddos were younger, we would aim for one nap at the hotel and the others on-the-go.