20 hour road trip with baby: Here are our practical tips

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I have a friend, Sarah, not to name her, who went on a road trip 16,500 km from here with her infant aged 8 to 20 weeks. It would be a lie to say that I was not greatly impressed when she told me all that! For a girl who had realized that it had been two weeks since she had left home after the birth of her youngest child, let’s say that I thought it was good for her to have taken the gamble of traveling with a little one. baby.

Ilyan, my twin sister, also did it quite often with her son, since her in-laws live on the North Shore. We can even say that she has become an expert in road trips. For my part, I often took my son to tour the Book Fairs throughout Quebec. It proves that anything is possible when you are well prepared!

So, after virtual consultation with our TPL Moms, today we present to you our ultimate list of tips and preparation for traveling with a baby.

What to pay attention to:

  • Check the car before leaving. It’s always harder to wait for a tow truck with a baby than alone;
  • Don’t drive tired, a new parent is always more tired than usual, so it’s better to take longer to get to your destination than to have an accident;
  • Schedule driver changes once in a while;
  • Check the child’s car seat to make sure everything is safe and away from dangerous objects;
  • Put objects in the rear trunk so that they do not move towards the baby during turns, etc. ;
  • Put the heaviest objects in the suitcase or closest to the floor of the car and make sure that everything is well maintained;
  • Plan plenty of stops to change diapers, give drinks, and keep gas stations and highway stop tunes in mind. 
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Preparation and luggage:

  • It is better to plan more than not enough if you know that you will be going to an area where it is difficult to have access to the basic needs of the baby and the parents. Especially diapers and infant formula or expressed breast milk;
  • Make a list of all the things to bring and check it two or three times before leaving;
  • Bring a travel bottle warmer, no-rinse soap, a mirror that fits on the rear headrest and sunshades to stick on the windows;
  • Provide more clothes for the child and plenty of wet wipes;
  • Have change for vending machines and trolls free ;
  • Make sure everyone is clean and basic needs met before hitting the road;
  • Bring basic medication, health insurance cards and a copy of travel and car insurance. Keep them handy. 


  • Leave either very early, even at night to take advantage of the fact that the children are sleeping, or just before the siesta;
  • Have an adult behind who can, for example, give a bottle of milk on the way or adjust the comforter or the sauce. During the journey, he can play with the child or comfort him;
  • Check the temperature, start the car a few minutes before departure in the middle of winter, take off the coats once the temperature is pleasant;
  • Stock up on snacks and beverages for adults, pouches of mashed potatoes if the child is starting to introduce food and previously boiled water for bottles;
  • Make sure to put the bag “in case of emergency” also called the diaper bag at hand;
  • Plan the first stop in advance;
  • Watch the temperature of the day following the route and the traffic;
  • Have an adult playlist during naps and one for children while he or she is awake.
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Along the way:

  • Stopping every two hours to take a 30-minute break with the child out of the shell for proper training;
  • Put the baby in a baby carrier during breaks and take the opportunity to stretch their legs;
  • Pick up as you go and put things in different bags (one for rubbish, one for dirty dishes, etc.);
  • Repeat to yourself that you have to go at the baby’s pace;
  • Book hotels as late as possible to follow the needs of the child and always have one or two spare plans;
  • Refuel often;
  • Have a pair of sunglasses for maximum visibility.
  • Keep someone outside informed about your movements and your schedule.
  • Take as many photos as possible because you are creating a magical moment that will be remembered by the family forever; 

What are your tips for traveling with a newborn? Have you ever taken a road trip ?

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