We are traveling with our 10-months-old baby since the age of 7 weeks and this is our baby travel packing list. Currently, we are backpacking with baby through Asia-Pacific. This is all we have (not cheating!):
Here you can see
1 XL North Face bag (130 liter /8000 in3 and 16 kg /35 lb last weighted) ,
1 carry-on backpack by Dakine (30 liter / 1830 in3) and
1 baby car seat with retractable tires.
How we did fit everything in it? Our 3 rules:
- If you have to think whether you need something or not: leave it! You can get everything on the go in case you really need it.
- Try to take things with a multi-purpose (e.g. swimming shoes instead sneaker or swimming shorts instead jeans shorts) or made of very thin fabric.
- Whatever you take, you should use it at least once a week! It is so annoying packing, unpacking and carrying stuff you hardly ever use.
After 8 months of traveling, this is our ultimate packing list if you are traveling with a baby:
Choosing the main travel bag
First of all, the less bags you have, the better! Therefore, we decided to take a big bag with 8000 in3 / 130 liter, even though it’s not always fully used. Sometimes you have some extra diapers and other consumables you don’t want to throw away.
We chose the XL North Face bag because it’s water resistant, you can fully open it (almost like a trolly), you can carry or wear it like a backpack, it is quite light, foldable and very durable.
Choosing the carry-on backpack
We use the Dakine Apollo 30L Backpack as carry on and loved it so far for many many reasons!
At the (waterproof) front we put our phones and purse. At each side you have space for a 750ml water bottle – so one for the parents and one for the baby. On the top compartment we put our camera, so it can’t break in between the other stuff and it doesn’t get wet in case a baby bottle leaks. You can access the backpack from the top (as usual) AND from the side, which is great to get stuff from the bottom. There is also a compartment for laptops. Finally, you have lots of space inside for baby bottles, food, toys etc.
First of all, here are some baby basics. We buy baby clothes as our baby grows and leave the old clothes.
6 short rompers
2 long rompers
1 washable swim diaper
1 swim onesie with SPF 50 (ours is from Rip Curl)
1 sunscreen with SPF 50; try to buy one without Octorylene like this one:
1 baby mosquito repellent (we found one by Johnson’s baby in Thailand)
2 tiny cheesecloth for washing
1 baby sleeping tent & soft pad
Not in the photo:
Our baby first-aid kit, click here for more information.
1 washable silicone bib and
Diapers, swipes, disposable changing table pads.
The baby bed
We were thinking a lot where our baby shall sleep. It should be light, small, protect from mosquitoes, comfortable and safe. Finally, I am extremely happy with our solution. We found the perfect baby sleeping tent that you see folded (with the soft pad) in the above picture and unfolded below. It fulfills all our requirements and it is a cheap one 🙂
Usually, the soft pad is not soft enough, so we additionally use some hotel towels. Therefore, you don’t need to bring a big mattress.
Other baby sleeping tents: We actually ordered several tents and tried them out. The tents by Deryan / Baby Nook were too heavy,and too bulky. The Candide / Spring-auf Reisebett was not stable at all.
Baby & mobility
The most important thing for traveling is the baby carrier, as the streets are often bad. From what I’ve heard from families with toddlers: even they use the carrier.
Frist, we had the Marsupi carrier which is the easiest and most simple carrier. Unfortunately, we found it appropriate for up to 10kg/74cm. Now we have the Storchenwiege carrier which is very comfortable and still quite small.
Besides the baby bed we were researching a lot regarding the baby car seat. It was very important for us. Especially in developing countries the road accident rates are much higher.
Unfortunately, the are no „light car seat“ alternatives. BUT we still found a very convenient car seat: the doona. It is so special as it is the only one with retractable tires. Why not just taking a car seat with a frame? Because sometimes you might get very small taxis where space is limited. This one you can even take on a plane if you booked an extra seat for your baby. Also, carrying a car seat WITH a baby in it is very heavy – even on short distances. Moreover, you might use it as a stroller or a mobile sleeping bed if you would like to go for dinner in the restaurant. (We also have the sunshade-extension and a mosquito net for the seat)
If you are breastfeeding, you probably don’t need any of the stuff. We use formula milk. Hence, we need milk bottles and cleaning stuff. We found a very handy and super small vaporizer to sterilize the bottles.
4 Lansinoh milk bottles, 5 ounce / 160ml each (they were the only leakproof and durable ones so far). These bottles fit in the sterilizer.
1 sterilizer & food warmer by Nuby (we are using it since 4 months several times a day and are extremely happy with this device – despite its cheap price)
1 small bottle of dishwashing detergent + 1 sponge
1 milk container
1 single milk portion container
2 Mac books, 1 cable
2 kindles (nomad mum prefers the one with touch screen and nomad dad the one without)
1 Olympus OM-D Mark II. One of the best Mirrorless cameras and a great pocket alternative to DSLR.
1 Olympus lens 14-150mm f/4-5.6. We use it since 3 months and love the wide-angle pictures, as well es the extremely large zoom. It is equivalent to 28-300mm if you use a SLR camera lens. It is very compact and light, too.
1 GoPro Hero 4 (especially for underwater pictures)
1 x-mini speaker (we are not really satisfied with the sound but it is super tiny)
1 iPhone recharge battery
1 car mount for smartphone (we use google maps for navigation) + 1 car USB charger
1 umbrella with SPF 100 (we also use it as a sun umbrella for our baby)
1 travel towel (Only one because usually towels are provided everywhere. This one is also used as baby blanket.)
1 mosquito repellent without DEET
1 pepper spray
1 bag of other cables,USB sticks, converters
1 gym bag we use for short trips
1 red bag: this is our baby first-aid kit, click here for more information.
Nomad mum’s stuff
5 Playsuits / dresses
3 bathing suits (I wear them with shorts instead of a shirt)
2 bikinis (one is also used as a sports bra)
1 base cap
1 running shirt + shorts + iPhone running belt
1 leggings (I have no pants)
1 longsleeve pullover with zipper
1 extra light rain jacket
1 small bag with underwear
1 vanity bag
1 pair of flip flops (No other shoes! If you want to go for a run, you can do it barefoot on the beach. I am good at hiking with flip flops. If you still want to take closed shoes, I would recommend to take water sport shoes as you can use them for hiking, running, walking on stones through water)
(Yes, we were almost naked when taking these pictures 😉
Nomad dad’s stuff
3 swimming shorts (used as regular shorts, too)
1 longsleeve swim shirt (used also for cold weather)
1 vanity bag
2 base caps
1 long pants made of ultra light fabric
1 pair of slippers (no other shoes)