In part I of this Minimalist Packing series, we explored the essentials of traveling with an infant. If your little one has graduated to toddlerhood, congratulations! Some parents would argue this is the most difficult age to travel with your kids.
Not to worry, we’ve got another set of minimalist packing tips to help you on your next road trip or flight with your squirmy, impatient bundle of love.
As with the infant list, a car seat is recommended on flights. Unlike traveling with an infant, any child over 2-years-old must have his/her own seat when flying. You may opt for a stroller this time around with a heavier child that’s harder to carry but still tires easily. Aside from these, we’ve got your essential gear listed below.
What to Pack - Your Kibou
Pro Tip Reminder: Your Kibou doesn’t count as a carry-on AND it’s the perfect size to travel down the aisle and into the miniscule airplane bathroom for those urgent potty emergencies. Keep the most essential of items by your side hands-free whether you’re on the move or sitting in your seat.
- Baby wipes
- Hand sanitizer
- Credit cards
- Driver’s license or passport*
- First aid kit
- Wireless headphones
*If you’re little one is no longer in diapers, the back pocket is a perfectly sized safe spot for Passports
What To Pack – Your Bag Within Reach
This is the bag that you’ll wear or stow in the seat in front of you. You may be using a tote as a combo purse/diaper bag, a backpack, or wearing a Kibou around your waist. Whichever bag you’re using – this has the things you need to access quickly.
- Sippy cup (you can fill after going through security or on plane)
- 1 new toy (the “newness” will enthrall your little one for longer)
- 2-4 Pull-Ups
- Small first aid kit
- Phone charger
- Ziploc bag for soiled items
- Wireless headphones for yourself so you can listen to a podcast hands-free
- Optional: Your phone with their favorite video downloaded or a tablet with games like
Pro-tip: Netflix and Disney+ allow you to download your child's favorite shows/movies onto the tablet before your trip so they can access anything they want without WiFi on the plane.
What To Pack - Stowed Carry On
You may opt not to bring the extra carry-on, but toddlers are still prone to making messes and throwing unexpected tantrums. On long trips, it’s best to be prepared.
- Extra change of clothes (including socks!)
- Extra snacks
- Extra Pull-Ups
- More toys and books new and old
- Kids' sunglasses
- Tylenol/Motrin or other medication
- Bag for soiled clothes/other messy things
What To Pack – Checked-Baggage
The good news as your child gets older is that the list of things you need to pack gets shorter. You’ll see some repeats of essential items from the infant list, but the feeding component becomes simpler as your child grows.
- Enough clothing and shoes for the duration of your stay (less clothes if you’ll have washer/dryer access)
- Dirty clothes bag (if you’re unable to wash)
- Travel-size toiletries (i.e. shampoo/body wash and lotion)
- More Pull-Ups
- Seasonal Necessities (like swim diapers and swimming vests)
- Baby monitor
Enjoy Your Family Vacation
We hope you’re able to travel somewhere fun this summer with your little ones in tow. These travel hacks will make your life simpler, concentrating only on the essentials and leaving out the extras that make travel more cumbersome. Less stress means you can focus on making memories with your family.
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