Must Haves for Roadtripping with Baby
We officially survived our first trip as a family of three! If you’ve been around for a while (pre-pandemic), you know Michael and I love to travel! We’re excited to get back to traveling, this time with Weldon in tow! We roadtripped from New Orleans to Orange Beach, AL for a few days at the beach. The usual drive from New Orleans to Orange Beach is roughly 3-3.5 hours. With Weldon, it took us around 4.5 hours. Not bad! I had a little bit of practice from when we moved from Shreveport to New Orleans a month or so before our trip. A much longer drive. So I felt confident Michael and I (and Weldon) could handle the 4.5 hour trek.
I wanted to share my roadtrip essentials for baby with you in case you’re a new mom too and have upcoming summer travel plans! Keep in mind, although Weldon was around 5 months old when we traveled, his adjusted age is around 2 months old. So if you’re comparing notes for your travel plans, these are essentials for 2ish month old babies.
Before I dive into the products, a bit about logistics. We decided to leave after Weldon’s 9AM feeding. He’s usually happiest and most content in the mornings.
I fed him at 9AM, we let his food settle for a bit, played for a few minutes to get some energy out, and were on the road by 10:30AM. Weldon usually does pretty good in the car. He napped for about an hour before he started getting fussy. He eats at 12PM so that was expected. We knew we would have to stop at least once to feed him and for him to stretch and change his diaper. From my prior roadtrip experience from Shreveport to New Orleans, I knew that his stops require about 45 minutes to an hour. Knowing this ahead of time takes the rush out of things. Michael and I knew from the start we were adding on at least an hour to the usual 3.5 hour drive.
For the actual ride, you don’t need much! Remember, Weldon is 2ish months old so he doesn’t need a lot of entertainment. Nor does he need snacks.
The MVP of all outings, but especially roadtrips is this travel sound machine. We have two. It’s loud, portable, and small. It’s helpful to keep a battery pack and cord handy to charge it up whenever needed.
Another sound device we love is the baby shusher. It mimics your own SHHHH sound. It’s on a timer and meant to help calm babies down and get them to sleep. It works wonders for calming screaming Weldon.
I always like to keep a couple of swaddles handy. My favorite swaddles are by aden + anais. They’re 100% muslin cotton – soft and breathable. I threw the swaddle over his carseat to create a canopy that helped block out some of the sun, which in turn helped him sleep! I kept one side open so I could keep an eye on Weldon. They’re also great to use as a blanket if the car is a little chilly.
I brought one toy in my diaper bag for backup. Weldon fussed for a bit right before we stopped for him to eat and before we made it to our final destination. I used the toy for a few minutes to entertain him. Obviously this will vary depending on the age of your baby. Thankfully, this go around, Weldon didn’t require much entertainment as he slept most of the drive.
I’m not sure if this is a residual effect from the Covid-world we’ve been living in, but I prefered to keep Weldon in the car during our stops and not bring him into any gas station or restaurant bathrooms. With that said, I made sure my diaper bag was well stocked!
First off, I love the Dagne Dover Large Indi Bag! It’s been a great bag to easily carry all of Weldon’s stuff + my wallet and other necessities. It comes with a water-resistant, washable zip bag that I use to hold all of my diaper changing necessities. Diapers, wipes, and diaper paste. It also comes with a mesh changing pad that comes in super handy as well! I also have this portable changing pad from Amazon that I used during our road trip as it’s a bit bigger than the Dagne Dover one. I lay it on the back seat during our stops with Weldon for a quick and easy diaper change.
That’s it! I know as Weldon gets older, he’ll likely require more in terms of entertainment and snacks to get us through long car rides, but if you’re traveling soon with a 3 month (or younger) old baby, you really don’t need much to make a roadtrip work! I was definitely anxious about getting on the road with Weldon, but it all worked out fine and was well worth the effort for family time at the beach! We’re already looking forward to our next getaway!