My Top 3 Travel Sleep Tips for Babies

4-16 months

Jun 7, 2022

Are you taking your baby on their first long-distance flight or road trip and struggling with all the details? Let’s jump straight into these travel sleep tips for babies!

What to bring while traveling with your baby

Swaddle Blankets

I am going to be sharing some of my favorite finds for traveling with your baby. My number one recommendation? The swaddle blanket! You might have left this behind in their newborn days, but let me tell you what, there are like 10,001 snugly uses for this blanket. First of all, you can use it as a nursing cover. You can also use it as a snack wiper, cuddle blanket, and on the floor for a clean spot for your baby. Avoid bringing thick blankets with padding, they take up too much space in your travel bag.

Extra formula and wipes

Wipes are really handy to have around to keep you and your baby clean. I also recommend bringing extra formula powder with bottles. You don’t want to show up at the airport with delays and hit your last drop.


Always save room for more diapers than you think you’ll need! Tuck them in multiple spots so they are always accessible. While flying, have a diaper and wipe pack in the front seat pocket for easy diaper change trips.

Tip 1: Throw your schedule out the window

However you travel, by flight or car, throw that schedule out the window. It’s not going to happen. Travel day is ALL about survival. Your kid is going to sleep when they want to and where they want to. Don’t force it on them.

If you are in a situation where you could put the swaddle blanket over the car seat with a white noise app, then great! But if they just aren’t into napping, it really truly is ok. As a sixth bonus, bring extra snacks! They help stretch those cranky long waketimes.

Tip 2: Honor an early bedtime

My second tip for traveling with a baby is all about honoring an early bedtime. As soon as you arrive at your destination, go ahead and set up your baby’s sleep space and get everything ready. My husband is so good at this! As soon as we get to wherever we’re going, he beelines straight to the girls’ room and puts up the aluminum foil (to create a dark room) on the windows. After dinner and sometimes, a bath, we have everything set up for them to begin a shorter bedtime routine.

Have you tried a SlumberPod? These are amazing for sharing a room with your baby and keeping the room dark?

If your child is older, you can bring them in and let them help you put their ‘buddies’ on the bed and put up foil on the windows. If your child normally naps and didn’t nap at all during travel, then it’s best to get them to bed 15-20 minutes early. I promise this will be so helpful!

Tip 3: Jump into the New Time Zone

My final tip for traveling with a baby is if you are going somewhere domestically, just jump into the new time zone. If you wait for them to adjust, then you might spend your whole trip with wonky wake times. Your kids are likely going to wake early during vacation. Try to treat those early mornings as best you can with happiness and love.

Early morning weekends can be super common on vacation, especially if they didn’t nap the day before. Your child may be overtired and dealing with overstimulation. Offer a nap the following day where possible.

Traveling overseas? We have a whole blog dedicated to that written by a Little Z Mom! She took her little one overseas, and had amazing tips and strategies for us, especially about that whole bassinet on the plane. You’re going to want to read that here.

I hope you found this post helpful! When you can, ‘take the trip’ and make great memories with your family!

Sweet dreams. See you next time.


Travel Tips for Babies | Little Z Sleep

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