I always bring extra duvet covers and use them without the duvet as wraps or as hanging shades. My favourites are by Aiayu, Camcam, and Kongesløjd, all of which are organic brands.
Can you even leave the house without them? Wet wipes are always practical, but I only use them when I don’t have access to water. And it’s a must that they are eco-labelled and asthma allergy certified. The certifications are infinitely important to me because they provide security and assurance that I won’t be exposing my baby or others to unnecessary chemicals. My favourite wet wipes are by Derma. I also bring large cotton napkins for head-to-tail cleanups. They are made by Levevis – and naturally they are eco-labelled.
A baby monitor with long range so baby can have peace and quiet – and so can you, perhaps with a little cocktail on a gorgeous terrace. I’m not a big fan of baby monitors otherwise, because I think that little ones will make enough noise for you to hear when they need attention, but I give in on holiday because it makes it a little easier to get some quiet adult time.
Sunhat with a brim
I adore the little sunhats from the Danish company Marmar. They come in super-cute colours for girls and boys and feature a chin strap that fastens with a button. It’s light, not hot, and most important of all: Alfred can’t pull it off.
Sunscreen, of course!
Watch the kids carefully when they play in the sun, and it’s better to apply too much sunscreen than too little. Keep baby in the shade as much as possible – which is easy if they aren’t crawling or walking yet – but I use sunscreen on Alfred just to be on the safe side.
Body Balm is a miracle product for baby. It’s perfect as after-sun care, and protects against dry or irritated skin. Balm is also good for diaper rash and as breast care for mum. And it’s wonderful to soothe mum’s bronzed body after a lovely, languid day in the sun.
A soft snuggle-toy or cloth is a must. It’s practical and provides baby with something to snuggle and a feeling of security. When I had Isolde over ten years ago, I was lucky to find a much-loved snuggle toy for her. A small, soft teddy bear head with a soft cloth as a body. Isolde still loves it and always has Puffer along on her travels, and she uses it as an eye shade to sleep on the plane. So when Alfred was born, I rushed out and bought two (one in reserve is always a good idea). You can find them in all baby shops and some toy shops, which is great because they can sometimes disappear overboard from the edge of the pram.
Probiotics for the stomach. They provide fantastic stability and good gut flora. Available in capsule form which is very convenient, allowing you to open a capsule and mix in some of the powder with the baby’s milk in case of upset tummy. Thermometer – always good to have just in case, and it takes up no space at all. I swear by the rectal thermometer and apply a little Body Balm on the tip before inserting to make it easier. Panodil/Paracetamol – as suppositories. Again, just in case.
And mosquito spray! I use it only after we’ve been stung, because I really am opposed to the toxic commercial sprays. That’s why I have always used the natural spray from Intelligent Nutricien, though it does contain essential oils which I like to avoid. However, I do prefer it to the synthetic counterparts.
Avoid plastic and harmful chemicals from disposable bottles, but always have fresh water on hand for your baby. Especially in the heat. Little ones get dehydrated very quickly, and I find that the nursing schedule can be a little off when you’re in a new place. I really like the glass water bottles by BKR - and love 'Rudolph'-like colours.
I use eco-labelled diapers and you cannot find them in southern climes. So I bring my own along from home. They do take up some space, but after you use them you’ll have lots of room for your purchases on the way home.
The just in case-stuff
Laundry detergent – I think it’s practical to do a little laundry during travel. Unfortunately, not many countries have fragrance-free laundry detergent, so I like to bring some from home so I can always do a quick wash in the sink. The ones I use are always eco-labelled and allergy-certified without fragrance. And if you forget, you can use Acai Body Soap in a pinch.
Travel insurance + European Health Insurance Card – it just has to be done and hopefully you won’t need it.
Vaccination card – after long consideration, I am in favour of vaccinating children, and I am sure of my decision. We don’t have the same vaccination systems around the world, so if you bring along the card it’s easy to see which vaccinations your baby has had, and avoid unnecessary extra needles.
Clothes pegs – for hanging laundry or creating shades out of duvet covers and sheets.
And that’s everything you need, packed and ready. Bon voyage!
Warm regards, Andrea (and Alfred)
Have we missed anything? Send us your tips for packing baby’s suitcase – sharing is caring!