A couple of weeks ago my parents paid for Elaine and I to visit them in Colorado. Since we live in Brooklyn, this involved air travel. Elaine is not yet two, so she travels for free if she sits in my lap. Traveling with a one year old is challenging enough, but bringing your cloth diapers on the trip can pose another challenge. Here are some things that I learned from our recent trip, though it wasn’t the first time I traveled with cloth diapers.
Packing Diapers Can Be Pricey
…if you have to pay for your luggage. It is really helpful if you choose an airline with no baggage fees. We flew Southwest, which allows two free checked bags per person. Cloth diapers can take up a lot of room, and it was nice to be able to designate a suitcase for them without incurring extra charges.
It is a good idea to travel light, and for the cloth diapering parent hybrids make an excellent choice. We don’t have many hybrids in our stash. Let me tell you – pocket diapers take up tons of space! While they are the easiest and quickest to put on your baby, it may be wise to choose a hybrid option so you don’t have to pack as many diapers. If you just need a couple of covers and a few inserts, you will save space and weight in your packing. Additionally, with a hybrid system like the Flip diapers, you can even choose to take disposable inserts with you for travel and/or use at your destination.
Bring Your Detergent!
Unless you are visiting a fellow cloth diaperer, you will probably not find a cloth diaper-friendly detergent easily accessible. I chose to pack a couple of Rockin’ Green sample packages of detergent. Since I did not bring my entire stash of diapers, I washed every other day. This is more frequent than I normally wash, so I packed extra detergent just in case.
I Missed My Diaper Sprayer!
On this trip I realized just how much I depend on mydiaper sprayer! Elaine had several days of loose bm’s upon arrival, and every diaper was a mess to “dunk”. I didn’t want to end up with staining, but I didn’t like to swish the diapers either! If your destination is family that you visit often, consider donating a diaper sprayer to them. It will make your visits easier!
Bring That, Just in Case
I didn’t really pack for anything outside of my “normal” diaper routine. However, with Elaine’s messy diapers came a horrible, and I mean horrible rash. She cried at every diaper change, and could barely stand for me to touch her diaper area, much less wipe it clean. I had not packed many stay-dry liners. This was a mistake. Since I brought my diaper rash cream, I should have brought more liners…just in case. Luckily my mom had some fleece in her sewing basket, and I whipped up several homemade liners. With the change in diet and routine that every trip brings, you never know how your baby’s “system” will react. Be prepared…just in case. I learned that it would have been better to be safe, but I ended up sorry.
Use Disposable Wipes
I try to use as many reusable products as possible in our home. Cloth wipes fit right in with cloth diapers. However, for the short time that you will be away from home, I would recommend (from personal experience) using disposable wipes. I had to bring along the ingredients for my wipe solution, in addition to my cloth wipes. And with Elaine’s rash, I ended up buying wipes anyway to make sure they were extra gentle and mild. It was much easier to have one less thing to attend to when I wasn’t in my own environment.
Don’t Overload the Diaper Bag
I packed way too many diapers in my diaper bag for use en route. I was afraid of missed connections or delayed flights, and I didn’t want to be stuck without recourse. However, when we arrived I discovered that I had not even used half of what I packed. So don’t go overboard. I would include one diaper for every two hours that you will be gone, and add 1-2 extra for peace of mind. It should be plenty. I ended up carrying around a lot of weight that was unnecessary!
I hope these tips help. Every time I take my cloth diapers away from home, I learn something new. What have you learned from traveling with cloth diapers? Leave a comment – there are many readers who can benefit from your experience and tips!