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Read about our trip to London with our 10 month old baby. We are sharing our amazing tips and how to travel London with a baby. You will not only succeed but have a great time!
Last January we were able to Travel to London with our 10 month old baby. I had to navigate taking the plane by myself and then throughout the day while my husband was at his work conference. We were able to site see quite a bit in the 8 days even with a baby. Read my tips of how I survived the flight, travel, and trip to London below.
Basic Travel Tips for Baby
- Bring at least two changes of clothes and a plastic bags. I thought having an extra outfit would be enough but on our flight home my son went through his outfit twice leaving me wrapping him in blankets and his coat. Also the plastic bags can not only be use for soiled clothing but also garbage like half eaten apples. (I’m not speaking from experience haha)
- Bring toys if your baby is older as mine ways. Flying to London was a long trip so you need to keep baby entertained. And when you are at a museum baby will need something to keep him/her busy.
- You do not need a car seat. We didn’t bring our car seat to London because we didn’t need it. The baby will sit on your lap on the airplane and then while you are in London I highly advise you bring a stroller and ride the tubes. Its quick and not to highly priced.
- Bring a lightweight but durable folding stroller. We brought this one! This is definitely a must for us. You may notice that most of the photos we had our little chap in the stroller. Not only did that make it easier for us to keep him close and confined, but as we went in January, it made it so he was warm and dry. Plus it saved our backs while carrying other bags and souvenirs and was a great place for baby to nap. Also you can check the stroller at the gate when flying so it will be brought to you as soon as you land.
- This brings me to my next tip, buy a stroller cover. We found this plastic one on amazon that fits most strollers. We actually did not use it much for the rain. But we used it ton to keep our baby warm. With the cold weather and wind it was a great barrier to keep him snuggled up in a blanket and also away from germs.
- Plan as much as you can. Plan for where you are going and what you are doing and then you will know what to pack for baby. You can also find baby friendly info on most websites as well. We just sat down the night before and planned our trip.
Since I would be flying by myself to London with our 10 month old toddler I did a lot of research and brought reinforcements for the trip. And to help you out here are some of the most useful tips that helped me out.
- You will need a passport for your child no matter the age. These take months in advance to arrive to be sure to get one asap. If you are in a pinch you can pay for an expedited passport, but even ours took over a month to arrive and we were biting our nails on this one.
- Plan to pay a fee for your child when you buy an international ticket. Even if you have your child on your lap, when you fly internationally you will pay an international tax and usually 10% of the adult ticket price.
- Don’t be afraid to ask for help. The flight attendants were amazing when I needed to use the restroom or when my son was teething. They held my baby so I could use the restroom. And when we teething they actually had lots of different medicine on hand. So teething, vomiting, whatever, ask for help. And if a nearby passenger is friendly, you can ask them too. I had someone near me hold my baby while I looked for his food.
- Walk it out. If your baby can walk like our 10 month old could, walk your baby up and down the aisle now and then. Most people smiled and thought it was cute, baby got to stretch their legs and you did too.
- Baby friendly airports are definitely a thing! The airport in Las Vegas not only had a Mamava, a nursing pod, but a play area for my son to move before we boarded. While in the airport waiting feel free to ask about these awesome amenities.
- Do you need a bassinet? Some international planes have built in bassinets usually along the partitions. When you are selecting your ticket you can usually see on the map of the plane where they are and select a seat right behind it.
- Be smart about where you buy your seat. Going along with #3. My first connecting flight did not have a bassinet so I opted for a window seat so my little could look out the window. But also going along with #3, if you think you will be up and down a lot maybe a aisle seat is better for you.
- Bring a bottle and treats and lots of them. Be ready to keep that baby as happy as possible and fed. That being said in all my flights the attendants were more than happy to bring extra treats for baby if you find you are in a pinch.
- Suck it! Just kidding. But not kidding, Going along with #7, bring something for baby to suck on even if it is candy (depending the age) when you take off and touch down. I nursed my son. As the altitude climbs and lowers we all need a way to relieve the pressure build up in our ears from the change of the air density. Babies can become fussy if they do not have a way to “pop” their ears and the sucking motion helps that just like chewing gum.
Taking Baby Around
Navigating London with a walking but not so fast 20 month old I learned a lot of tricks that made it really do-able. Here are my tips for taking your baby around London.
- Carry. I know I just went on a rant about a stroller earlier, but depending on where you go, there will probably be some times when you can not bring a stroller. We had a baby carrier at the bottom compartment of our stroller at all times just in case.
- Use the buddy system if you can. There are a lot of stairs in London and not everything has ramps. My husband and I got really good at lifting the entire stroller up and down flights of stairs in order to get places. But once we got inside it was worth it to have the stroller.
- Be prepared. Getting around London means a lot of walking outside. Dress yourself and your baby with layers so while your outside your comfortable and when you are inside you can take off or add layers. If it is winter, a thin but warm blanket can come in handy. We ended up using one of my wool scarves for most of the trip and it was fantastic to wrap around his legs.
Taking the Tube
Taking the tube all around the city was really a fun experience. London has an amazing train system that is very effective. Trains come almost every few minutes at most of the inner city stops. Here are some tips on taking the tube with a baby.
- Go to the largest and emptiest spaces in the train. There you can park your stroller or have a place to nurse easier or have more space to put your backpack down.
- Be ready. You will need to get on and get off fast. If you haven’t taken the underground before, know it is a fast stop and they do not wait for you. This is what makes it so efficient. Because of this be ready on the platform as soon as the doors open to get on. And pay attention to the stops when you are on the train. Get everything ready and packed up a stop or two before your destination so when the doors open you are ready to hop off.
- Mind the gap. There is a fairly decent gap between the train and the platform, hence the phrase, mind the gap. Be ready with your stroller to lift the front wheels to get on the train.
- Avoid rush hour. For the most part we traveled the train mid morning after the morning rush and later at night near 9 or 10 at night. But there was a couple times we were moving from one location to another around rush hour and the trains and platforms were VERY full making it inconvenient and uncomfortable to use stroller. So we had to unload everything off the stroller.
- Use the ramps and elevators for the stroller. You may have to go out of your way but check the underground map to see if your station is a handicap friendly station.
- Be prepared to carry that stroller, like I mentioned earlier at some stations. Some are not handicap friendly with ramps or elevators.
We wanted to make the most out of our trip so we really packed in a lot of destinations. I’ll be sharing later this week a list of all the places we went along with a free printable London map for kids and adults who love hand drawn goodies. If you have any tips of how you’ve survived with a little one, comment below.