Secrets to traveling light with kids

travel light wingPlanning an upcoming trip with your kiddos? Traveling with little ones is stressful enough! Don’t waste time, energy and precious arm space hauling around all the “stuff” that kids require. We’re here to help you learn how to travel light and focus on what’s important during your journey – having fun and making memories with your kids!

Rent it

Did you know that most cities have businesses that will let you rent bulky baby equipment, like a pack-and-play, crib, stroller, car seat and more? Before you start packing all those heavy items, find out if you can save your back and just rent it while you’re in town!

Here are just a few to check:

Baby’s Away in 27 states including Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Michigan, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, Washington DC, Wyoming

Rockabye Baby Rentals in five states, including Texas, Florida, Louisiana, Alabama and Colorado

Rent the Baby Gear is an online rental business that ships your desired equipment, free of charge, to any location in the continental U.S. This is a great option for when your destination is a smaller community. Just be sure to place your order at least four business days before you need the items. When you’re done, just drop the rented items off at the nearest UPS location. Or for a $15 fee, you can have UPS pick-up your item(s) right at your doorstep.

Add it on

Renting a car for your trip? For a small fee, most rental companies will hook you up with a car equipped with a child safety seat that’s appropriate for your child’s age and size. Just be certain to check that it is installed properly before hitting the road!

Also, many hotels will accommodate families by including a crib or pack-and-play free of charge with a room. Just mention it when making your reservations because it’s often first come, first served.

Beg, borrow or buy

If you frequently travel to the same place, such as your parents’ house, consider investing in some economical basics that you can leave there, like a pack-and-play, high chair and baby gate. Garage sales and consignment shops are great places to score barely-used items at a bargain basement price. For less essential items, like bouncers, bikes for older kids or bassinets, ask your parent to check with neighborhood friends – they’re often thrilled to lend these items for a day or two!

Make do without

There are plenty of gadgets that help make raising kids easier but sometimes when you’re traveling, it’s freeing to ditch a few of them and improvise! Don’t get too crazy. It may not be wise to leave your child’s lovey, pacifier or diapers at home. But be reasonable and flexible. Half the fun of traveling with kids is getting out of your comfort zone while trying and seeing new things. So use a scarf or blanket that you packed instead of a nursing cover or let your little one experiment with adult silverware instead of toting tiny spoons in your carry-on bag.

Above all, have fun and remember – this is the age of Amazon, so if you find yourself in desperate need of something, you can probably have it delivered in no time!

-By Emily Shedek

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