Remember all the stuff you carried around when your child was an infant? Double or triple that load. Now you’re approaching the amount of toys, snacks, clothes, and gear you’ll need to keep your toddler comfortable and entertained. Here’s a checklist of things you’ll need on the road, plus tips for easy, efficient packing.

 

Checklist

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  • Diaper bag
    (Bring extras in case of emergencies or delays)
  • Wipes
  • Changing pads
    (You can buy disposable changing pads at supermarkets or reusable ones at baby stores)
  • Blankets
    (Bring a few for comfort, shade, and warmth)
  • Plastic bags
    (Carry a few medium-size bags for storing soiled diapers, clothes, and shoes)
  • Disinfecting hand gel
  • Small bottles of toiletries, such as your child’s shampoo
  • Toddler toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Tissues
  • Toys and books
    (Your child’s favorites, plus some new ones to give as surprises along the way. Bring sturdy toys without parts that are easy to lose)
  • Your child’s lovey
  • Clothes, socks, and shoes
    (Packing one or two outfits per day is a good guideline. Denim and dark colors are good for hiding dirt and stains. Prepare for weather changes by packing clothes that can be layered. Don’t forget the jammies!)
  • Bathing suit
    (You never know when it will come in handy. Remember to pack a swim diaper too)
  • Outerwear
    (If there’s a chance you might need them, don’t forget warm coats, hats, mittens, and boots)
  • Washable bibs
  • Sun hat and sunscreen
  • Sippy cups, canteens, or water bottles
    (Encourage your toddler to drink plenty of liquid to prevent dehydration, especially when flying. It’s a good idea to have extra water on hand for everybody)
  • Lightweight plastic feeding set with utensils
  • Portable highchair
  • Snack food
    (Don’t forget high-energy snacks for yourself too!)
  • Night-light
  • First-aid kit
    (Be sure it includes pain reliever and supplies for treating minor injuries)
  • Laundry soap
  • Socket protectors (or painter’s tape)
    (Use these to childproof rooms at your destination)
  • Portable crib or play yard
    (You’ll need to bring along one of these unless your toddler sleeps with you, or you’ve arranged for a crib at your destination)
  • Car seat
  • Collapsible stroller
    (Can usually be gate-checked if you’re flying)

 

Packing tips
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  • Start preparing to pack a few days before you travel. Keep a running list of things to bring, or set out items on a table or dresser as you think of them
  • Pack an extra outfit for yourself in your carry-on bag just in case
  • Prevent leaks by packing medicines and toiletries in resealable plastic bags
  • Don’t forget chargers and cords for your phone and other devices

 

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