A lot of “travelling with baby” articles talk about how to get through the airport with your toddler. But there’s not quite as much information out there about how to travel with a newborn – especially if you have to do it alone. A lot of people are going to just say “don’t,” but we know that life happens.
A newborn on the plane is easier than it sounds: at that age, you can just hold your kiddo in your lap. However, travel accommodations off the plane are going to be a little harder. Your primary stroller could be as much as 26 pounds if you have something like a Bugaboo Buffalo (keep in mind that most lightweight umbrella strollers aren’t appropriate until 3 or even 6 months, after your baby has developed some neck control). Combine that with your luggage and diaper bag, and that’s a lot of weight to worry about.
So here are some good options for getting your newborn around a new city.
The Maclaren Quest is unique as an umbrella stroller because it is actually approved for newborn use, since the seat can recline completely flat. The seat folds up as well, and underneath there is a small mesh pocket that is clipped up to the frame, creating a safety barrier that keeps your newborn secure and happy. This stroller weighs only 13 pounds, so this is something you can fold up and carry on your back when not in use.
So it’s not out yet, but we’re all getting super excited about the new 2016 version of the Babyzen Yoyo. For starters, this is the only umbrella stroller that you can fold up and store in the overhead compartment of an airplane! The new Infant Safety pack is going to allow for your kiddo to face you, plus soon there are going to be car seat adapters for both Cybex and Maxi Cosi car seats. If you’ve got a while to wait before a journey abroad, this stroller is going to be a big hit in 2016. Here’s a video demo of the new features:
(In the meantime, if you’re traveling with a kid over 6 months old, the current version of the Babyzen Yoyo is an awesome choice!)
With a baby that small, particularly when shuffling around the airport terminal, a lot of my customers prefer to go hands-free, and wrap carriers are great for newborns. However, those already familiar with the Moby Wrap and the Ergobaby Wrap know that putting either carrier on in public is a bit of an art. A piece of fabric that long is bound to drag on the floor as you’re putting it on and off, which is not ideal in a busy downtown area.
The Baby K’tan, on the other hand, mimics the basic shape and feel of a wrap with two smaller, separate pieces, so nothing drags on the ground as you put it on. It’s super fast and easy. The only downside to the Baby K’tan is that it is sized, so it could be possible that you and your partner are two different sizes, but if it’s just you using it, then it’s a fantastic product for on-the-go moms that want to be hands-free and close to your baby.
This one is a little outside the box. The Doona is a relatively new product with us: it’s a car seat that turns into a stroller, perfect for newborns. This makes air travel super easy – just wheel your baby through the airport in the Doona, wheel it right onto the plane, fold in the wheels, and install the Doona car seat into a seat on the plane (it’s aircraft-approved). Granted, it’s only going to last you a year as a stroller, but if you’re flying a lot, it could be a lifesaver!
Most of the big stroller companies have travel bags: big padded bags for your primary stroller that will protect it under warranty in case the airline gets a little rough with it. If you have a lighter primary stroller (for example, the Bugaboo Cameleon is about 21 pounds), you could potentially load it up in the bag to use when you get off the plane. Depending on the stroller, you wouldn’t need to worry about a travel crib either, since with the super portable Bugaboo Stand, the Bugaboo bassinet is safe for overnight sleep – you can just put it on the stand next to your bed in your hotel room. The UPPAbaby Vista bassinet is also safe for overnight sleep.