Make life easier
These are specially designed little tents made from a fabric that screens out most of the sun’s damaging UV rays. They are quick to put up when you’re on the beach or sitting in the garden, and offer a sun-safe, shaded place for your baby or toddler to sleep or play, with enough room for an adult to go in too, although you do need to keep a check on the temperature inside. They’re lightweight, and usually come in a carry bag.
Beach pods we like:
Tommee Tippee Beach Pod £49.95
Essential kit when on holiday – a changing bag is specially designed to carry all that you need to change a nappy, and more besides, when you’re out and about.
You can pack all sorts in and most airlines will let you take one on as well as hand
luggage so the more baby items you can cram in the better. It’s worth remembering
that while you may want to look chic and trendy, the more the changing bag looks like a
changing bag, the more likely you will be able to get it onto the aircraft in addition to
your hand luggage.
A backpack-style changing bag will leave you with both hands free for the buggy, your
own hand luggage and anything else you need to carry, although a shoulder bag can be
easily slung on the back of a buggy.
Changing bags we like:
Delta Combo carry cot, travel and changing bag £39.95
Caboodle Subtle Changing Bag £19.50
Mamas & Papas rucksack £40
Britax rucksack £34.99
Even if you use a disposal system or nappy bin normally, on holiday nappy bags will be a great boon.
They are a hygienic way to get rid of dirty nappies and very convenient when on the move.
Nappy bags we like:
First Steps nappy bags x 200 £2
Boots Nappy Sacks x 150 £3.70
Boots Nappy Sacks x 75 £1.90
Babies R Us nappy bags 2 x 100 £1.99
From around six months old, your baby will enjoy the experience of being in warm water,
and gently splashing around. Although there is a range of swimming aids available to help
keep your baby buoyant in the water, it is of course essential that you keep in constant
contact with your baby at all times.
- Swim seats – these are little floating seats, like a small supportive armchair to
sit on while in the water. They are a good introductory aid to the water, particularly for
a baby who shows reticence in going into water, but need to be used with extreme caution,
as misuse has led to fatal accidents. They should never be used in the bath, and when used in the sea or pool, only with an adult in constant contact. As they raise the baby out of the water, there is also the possibility of arms and torso getting chilly quite quickly.
- Arm bands – inflatable, plastic arm bands give support, but ensure your baby is well
immersed in the water which helps him get used to having water near his face. Arm bands come in various sizes, and some have double chambers with separate valves. Two chambers are probably better than one, as once your toddler is learning to swim, you are able to gradually decrease the amount of air while still keeping some buoyancy in the arm band.
- Arm disks – like an arm band, except that they have polystyrene disks inside, which can be removed one by one, as swimming techniques improve and water confidence increases.
- Buoyancy suits – these are like a swimming costume, with panels of polystyrene that can be removed one by one as swimming ability develops. A buoyancy suit puts your child in a more horizontal position that is closer to the correct swimming position. (Arm bands will tend to keep your child fairly vertical.)
Swimming aids we like:
Kooshies baby float seat £9.99
Kooshies arm bands £3.99
Boots baby water seat £10
Swimsuits and swim shorts with nappies built-in help to contain the inevitable accidents; they come in various sizes usually starting from six months. They are designed to be machine washed and re-used.
Swim nappies we like:
Bambino Mio Swim Shorts £9
Bambino Mio Unisex Swim Nappy £7
Bambino Mio Girls’ One Piece Swimsuit £12
Bambino Mio Girls’ Two Piece Swimsuit £11
Here’s a neat little product! Instead of packing your bag with bibs that will need washed on holiday or brought home with food on them, how about a pack of disposable bibs that you can use till they get too dirty then throw away?
Disposable bibs we like:
Boots disposable bibs x 20 £2.85
If you’re travelling in any kind of heat, you’ll need something to keep milk or
just drinks cool. If you are lucky, some changing bags come with a bottle carrier and will keep drinks cool for a good few hours. If not, you can buy bottle carriers. Remember, if you use wide-necked bottles, to test them in the carrier first because some containers won’t take wide necked bottles.
Bottle chillers we like:
Babies R Us All Aboard bottle carrier single £2.99, double £4.99
Toys R Us Winnie The Pooh bottle carrier (double) £5.99
Perfectly Happy People hot and cold food bag £9.99
Avent twin bottle carrier £9.99
You know they’ll get messy!
You know you won’t have a hanky when you need one, so take our advice and tuck a packet or tub of wipes into your car or luggage and keep things as clean as you can! Look for those, like the Aromakids kind, that can double to cool down a toddler’s skin or wipe a baby’s bottom.
Wipes we like:
Ellie Smellie babywipes x 50 £4
Boots Antiseptic wipes x 24 £2.19
These are just great – choose the right one and you’ll have an in car toy box or storage item which can be lifted out without having to scoop up various things while carrying baby.
Like the changing bags, you can often get these onto planes alongside your hand
luggage, although you’ll be lucky to get a changing bag and car tidy on as well as
your own hand luggage!
Car tidies we like:
Metro in car toy box £11.50
Metro executive car tidy £11.50
Toys R Us car tidy £9.99
Perfectly Happy People car tidy £9.99
A baby carrier or harness, depending on the age of your child, will help you free up your hands a little when carting lots of equipment, so is perfect for holidays and travelling.
Babies are normally only comfortable in a front carrier up to the age of one, but while a more sturdy back carrier will be able to hold older children, it is consequently more bulky.
Once baby can walk, a harness or reins might be an idea, to stop them fleeing!
Carriers and harnesses we like:
Tomy Verona carrier £45 (front and back)
Chicco Trekking Complete Knapsack £60 (back only)
Clippasafe wristlink £4.00
Clippasafe Designer Harness £6.50
Baby Bjorn carrier (front only) £45.99
Safety First Tot-a-Long wrist link £1.99
Tomy Dream Rider back carrier £5