Sure, travelling is fun. But when you’re traveling with a little one, things can get a little tricky. Whether you’re travelling by car, train, cruise or plane, if you have a toddler, then a car seat may be quite essential for your trip. But travelling with a car seat may not be so simple when attempting to catch a flight or a train. Things can get a bit messy when you try to carry the seat, your luggage and most importantly, your toddler. But not to worry, if you plan ahead of your trip, and brush up on all you need to know before travelling about moving around with a car seat, you will be better prepared and able to have a good time on your travels.
- Getting a car seat transporter
You’ve booked your transportation tickets. Your luggage is ready and you’re all set for travel. You’ve now got to think about how you’ll move around with your car seat, your suitcases and your infant. Investing in a travel car seat cart can save you so much hassle. The cart will work as a transporter on wheels wherein you can place the car seat, and move around in airports or stations pretty easily.
Some car seat transporters can also come in the form of a backpack. These are usually padded from the back and lightweight for parents to be able to carry their hands-free, while managing to hold their luggage and toddlers. You may want to consider investing in one of these if you’re planning a long trip, which involves taking the car seat from one transportation vehicle to another, or includes walking some distance.
- Taking the car seat on board your transportation method
There are a few things to consider before taking a car seat with you on board a plane, train or cruise. Ask yourself, will your infant really feel comfortable sitting still in the car seat during the whole trip? Or will you go through a lot of trouble for them to end up in your arms eventually? If you think that your infant will feel more relaxed in their car seat, and that it may even help them sleep better for the entire duration of the trip or at the very least, most of it, then you need to bring it on board.
You would need to check with your transportation provider if there are any rules or guidelines regarding taking the car seat with you on board. You will usually be allowed to take them with you on board most planes, trains and ships, but there may be specific guidelines regarding weight and size which you would need to familiarize yourself with. Make sure to check before travelling to avoid any disappointment.
- Checking in your car seat
If you’ve made the decision that your infant will not likely be using the car seat on board the vehicle, then you should consider checking in the car seat until you reach your destination, and can then use it upon arrival. Checking in the car seat with your luggage, especially at airports, can make your life much easier. All you’d need to carry around now would be your toddler. And the great thing is, on most flights checking in a car seat, along with your luggage, is free of charge. So, you’d be saving money and energy.
- Getting a car seat protector
Checking in a car seat with your luggage can make your life so much easier when travelling. But you’ve got to consider the risks that come with it. Many people complain that checking in a car seat damages the plastic, and sometimes even breaks the whole thing. And it can take a long time for the transportation provider to reimburse you. To avoid this risk, you can invest in a car seat protector and pack the seat tightly in before checking it in.
- Planning your commute
This is perhaps the most important step you need to know before travelling with a car seat. Planning ahead and knowing exactly what your itinerary includes with the commute, will make it easier for you to decide how to deal with the car seat. This will in turn save you the last minute hassle many parents have to go through.
Taking a family trip with your car seat-using infants can be quite stressful. But forward planning and familiarity with travel procedures can save you so much trouble. Make sure you know all you need to about your transport provider guidelines so you can decide whether or not to take your car seat on board, and ensure you get the most out of your trip.