Why Am I Still A Nursing Mom? Reasons Why Breastfeeding Makes Traveling Easier.

Why Am I Still A Nursing Mom? Reasons Why Breastfeeding Makes Traveling Easier.
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Why Am I Still A Nursing Mom? Reasons Why Breastfeeding Makes Traveling Easier.

Wait… what? Your baby is walking, talking, she has almost all teeth and you are still breastfeeding? Why are you still a nursing mom?

It’s good to be a nursing mom.

I hear questions like this literally EVERY TIME I tell someone that I am breastfeeding my 1,5-year-old daughter. A few days ago my brother told me that I should change my Facebook profile picture that states that I am still nursing Mia because it’s disgusting and I really shouldn’t be proud of it. That makes me think… maybe something that is natural for me isn’t so obvious for everyone?

No matter if you are a nursing mom or you don’t even have a child, please read this post carefully. There are some things that we all need to know about breastfeeding. 

If you are here just to read breastfeeding travel tips or find out what are the best breastfeeding accessories, check out the Table of Contents above. Click on the title that interests you, and you will be directed to the corresponding paragraph.

Basic Facts About Breastfeeding

Even though I have nothing against formula and I think it’s totally OK for mom to choose the way she is feeding her baby, we can’t really say it works the same as breastfeeding. If you think that nursing is only about feeding you are simply wrong. There is so much about breastfeeding than that!

Breastfeeding:

  • is the best way to calm the crying baby down
  • helps a baby to fall asleep
  • is an instant humor enhancer (seriously, you can turn a devil into an angel in just a few minutes)
  • boosts baby’s immune system
  • satisfies all of the baby’s emotional needs (being close to mom, her smell, her touch, etc.)
  • is a natural medicine (it was proved that mom’s milk reliefs pain when the baby is suffering)
  • is the best remedy for the sleepless nights

My Breastfeeding Journey

I must admit, nursing is a time for me as well! I can relax with no regrets.

If you could name every problem that you can possibly face while breastfeeding, I bet I had them all. No milk, then low milk supply, oversupply, damaged nipples, and so much more. Now, after 15 months of nursing, I can proudly say that I have won the battle to feed my baby naturally. It wasn’t easy, it was really difficult. I’ve been crying so many times but I’ve always known that I want to give her the best that she can possibly get.

In the beginning, my goal was to breastfeed for 6 months. Then I was sure that we will be done by the time she turns 1 year old. Now, I have no idea when my breastfeeding journey will end, I guess it all depends on Mia.

Why am I still a nursing mom? I just want to make my baby happy. Her laugh and smile when she realizes it’s a time for breastfeeding can’t be compared to anything else. She is instantly satisfied.

Nursing Mia during our trip to Krakow when she was just 1 month old.

Secondly, it’s something really intimate between me and her. When she is looking me straight in my eyes, I feel love, and I know she feels it too.

Breastfeeding a toddler is a choice of mom. I know that Mia won’t remember this in the future. But I will. She will never again be so tiny that I could hold her entire body in my arms. Sometimes when I am nursing her I think about the time that flies so fast. It was like yesterday that I was pregnant. And now Mia can walk and talk. I am her entire world right now. But I know it will end up soon. That’s why I want to make the most of the time that she is still a little baby. To keep these moments in my heart because they may be one of the most precious things in my life.

I am living the life of no regrets and my rule is to experience all the things that woman can. That’s why I’ve always wanted to be a mother, to give birth to a child, and then start breastfeeding. Even though I dream big and I am traveling the world, I never forget about my biology. It’s great to know what my body can do! It still surprises me that I can keep another human being alive. 

Why Breastfeeding is Awesome For Traveling?

No Problems With Sleeping No Matter Where You Go

No matter if you are sleeping in a new bed every night- as long as the baby has a mom next to her, it’s calm and happy. The older the kid is, the more it will react to changing the environment. Nursing makes a baby feel secure.

We’ve been with Mia to many countries. She has zero problems with falling asleep and waking up at nights, as long as I was breastfeeding her. She felt like she was still at home. Baby breastfeeding to sleep definitely makes traveling easier.

Nursing makes traveling easier! If you are breastfeeding in car, be sure to stop the vehicle. Continue driving after your baby is back in a car seat.

Moving Around is Easy

Every time we are flying with baby, I am breastfeeding on plane. I’ve been also nursing on a hop on hop off bus in Madrid, in a taxi in Thailand, on a ferry in Malta, and virtually everywhere else she wanted to.

I found breastfeeding on airplane the most useful. It helps the baby with the popping ears and makes it fall asleep fast. Trust me, sleeping baby is the best thing for parents on a plane!

Baby’s Immune System Is Stronger

Imagine traveling to the country with the diseases that are not present in the place that you live in. You are worried that you are putting your baby in danger. While breastfeeding won’t prevent your kid from getting sick, it will boost its immune system. The brilliant thing about mom’s milk is that it’s changing according to the baby’s needs.

It’s Easy

You don’t need ANYTHING to feed your baby. You can do it everywhere, anytime you want. If you are co-sleeping with a baby, all you need to do at night is to uncover your breast. That’s it! Bed breastfeeding may help you sleep all night long. 

Nursing helps in traveling light.

It Helps You Travel Light

No bottles, pacifiers, formulas, sterilizers. You don’t need to pack any additional accessories to feed your baby. All that it needs is a mom!

It Helps You Travel on A Budget

Breastfeeding is cheap! It costs nothing, so it’s perfect for those traveling on a budget.

You will save about $1,700 dollars in the first year of your baby’s life if you decide to nurse.
How awesome is that?

You Can Do It in Public

 Danielle LaFee from Piece of Cake Parenting blog says:

Danielle LaFee with her baby.

I used to feel super self-conscious breastfeeding in public so every time we traveled as a family, I would pack up supplies to bottle feed my baby. I am so glad that I learned how to feel more confident breastfeeding in public because breastfeeding while traveling makes life so much easier! Here are a few ways that breastfeeding while traveling has made things easier for our family:

You don’t have to pack bottles: I don’t know how they do it, but babies come with a lot of things. If we were traveling all day, we had to pack several different bottles, which quickly took up way too much space in our diaper bag. Now that I breastfeed while traveling, all we need is me!
 
You don’t have to worry about water or formula: Several times we were traveling and we couldn’t find a good water source for our baby’s bottle! Either the water looked too dirty or was super cold. Breastfeeding while traveling means that we never have to pack tons of formula or look for clean/warm water during our family trips. 
 
You don’t have to wash dishes! This is probably my favorite part about nursing during vacations. It is so time-consuming washing all of the little bottle parts and finding places to set them up and dry overnight. Life is so much easier for us now that we don’t have to worry about all of this every time we travel!

It Deepens Your Bond With Baby

Katalin Waga from Our Life Our Travel thinks breastfeeding makes a journey easier, too:

Katalin Waga with her baby.
When my son was born in Finland, in the country of the famous baby box, I didn’t know much about breastfeeding, only that I want to do it. Luckily I’ve received all the help and information about nursing already at the hospital so nothing could stop us. It was the best decision not only for our bonding, the ease of feeding and putting him asleep but for our extensive travels as well.
We never needed to worry about running out of formula or the availability of hot water. We just looked for a quieter spot where I sat down and nursed him. The ‘meal’ was always ready and delicious. It was a huge advantage especially during the first year when he barely ate any other food so we could rely on breastmilk as the main source of nutrients.
We visited over ten countries with him in two years and I cannot imagine doing it in any other ways.

How Long Should Moms Breastfeed?

There is no simple answer to that question. It all depends on a mother and a child. Whether it’s 6 months, 1 year, 2 years, or even 4 years of breastfeeding, it’s totally ok. 
Here’s what Barbara Rodrigus from Travel Gear for Kids says:
 
Barbara nursing her daughter.

In 2 days I will be nursing my daughter for 3,5 years now and I dread the day we’ll stop as it is the most convenient thing when travelling. I’ve never used any breastfeeding article (apart from a nursing bra and pads in the first months), which makes that we don’t have to drag along extra luggage when we’re on a trip. Yay, more room for souvenirs!

Apart from saving space, it is indispensable to avoid (or tone down) a tantrum or soothe pains. At home too, but especially while travelling, breastfeeding is such a great asset for keeping your toddler distracted and calm.

With nursing comes sleeping, which is so easily done when you’re out and about. Breastfeeding in flight or during a long bus ride? Just latch them on and they’ll fall asleep like they always do. It doesn’t matter that the environment is new and weird. This goes for sleeping at night as well. Ok, it’s a new bed, but Titi and mommy are the same, so all is well.

Another big plus of long-term breastfeeding has to do with eating. When you’ve got a picky eater or a kid that rather draws than eats in their portable high chair, it can be so reassuring to know that they will get a big portion of what they need through their mommy milk.

All these benefits apply for babies and young toddlers too, but in my experience, travelling with older toddlers and preschoolers might be the most challenging period. They will start to realize much more about their surroundings and about the things you will do on a day (which are not always the things they want to do!). Breastfeeding will help so much in grounding both your kid and yourself. Take a moment and connect, calm them down, get them to talk about the problem rather than shout. It’s amazing how much that breast can still accomplish, even with kids older than 2.

Traveling With Breast Milk

It’s quite obvious that mom’s milk is the best what baby can get. Some mothers don’t want (or simply can’t) nurse and they decide to switch to exclusive pumping (eping). It’s basically giving the kid the breast milk that was pumped before. Eping is a life-saver if you go traveling without baby while breastfeeding. All you need to do is leave enough milk at home and keep pumping while you are away to maintain lactation.

How to Travel With Breast Milk?

One of the awesome things about eping is that dad can feed a baby as well.

Traveling with breastmilk is quite easy, all you need to have is breastmilk cooler to make sure the milk is not spoiled. Although I’ve been bottle-feeding Mia for a short period of time, I found Medela Breastfeeding Ice Pack as the best thing for transporting breast milk. It’s small, portable, and it keeps the milk cool for a long time. You can use it as well if you are traveling with frozen breast milk.

When it’s feeding time, you need to put the bottle in the hot water. You can either:

  • ask for a bowl with hot water in a restaurant, and put the bottle inside the bowl
  • use your own accessories– take a thermos and a bowl with hot water with you
  • go to the bathroom, and keep the closed bottle under the very hot running water for a while

Keep in mind that mom’s milk is ok to drink for up to 4 hours after pumping. You may not go through the entire cooling-and-warming process at all, as it’s ok for baby to drink the milk in room temperature.

How To Fly With Breast Milk?

You are allowed to bring breast milk on plane. According to TSA guidelines, there is no limit to the amount of milk that you can bring onboard. You may be asked to open the bottles or let them be screened by X-Ray.

When it comes to flying with breast milk or any other baby food, the amount can be greater than 100 milliliters (3.4 ounces). You are also allowed flying with breast pump and all the other baby accessories.

What To Wear When Breastfeeding?

The beautiful thing about breastfeeding is that you can do it everywhere. Even if you are on the way to the top of the mountain.

The rule to comfortable nursing is simple: you need to have fast and easy access to your breasts. 

Best Breastfeeding Clothes

When Mia was 3 months old, we were flying with her for the first time. It was a trip to Corfu, Greece. I was really excited and I wanted to make sure everything will be ok.

Medela Tank Top

I bought many clothes and accessories that turned out to be unnecessary. In my opinion, it’s not worth to buy breastfeeding t-shirts or hoodies. A simple top and a cardigan will work just fine. The only piece of clothing that I can recommend and I am still using it today is Medela Tank Top.

Why I love it? It’s universal. You can wear it during pregnancy, when you are nursing, and after you finish breastfeeding. It’s made of wrinkle-resistant fabric which makes it great for traveling.

In my opinion, Medela not only produces awesome nursing accessories but also the best breastfeeding clothes. I am not sponsored by them- it’s my honest opinion.

MissTalk Nursing Tank Top

Mitchelle Merencillo Bražinskas from MamaBuzz Blog recommends MissTalk Nursing Tank Top:


As a breastfeeding mom, convenience and comfort is a must.  Nursing while traveling is easier for me as it’s readily accessible and requires less preparation.

With this, I highly recommend having this all-in-one Nursing Tank Top with Sleep Bra for Breastfeeding.  This is a great item to wear while traveling on the road for a couple of reasons: it’s easy to use, has an adjustable shoulder strap, it’s wire-free, soft and seamless. Aside from its comfort, it is easily manageable with the open and close one-handed nursing clips making your feeding less of an effort.

This Maternity nursing tank top also has rounder cups and higher sides to maintain privacy on you.  As mentioned, the top has a built-in wire-free bra for added support and it also comes in different colors to suit your style! I usually use it when going for Mom and Baby fitness classes as it has a good fit. It comes in different sizes and packages of 2 or 3.

If you want convenience, style, and comfort while nursing, this tank top is a must-have for you. 

Best Breastfeeding Bras

A bra is one of the most important things when you are nursing. For me, the most comfortable are models with drop-down cups. I believe every nursing mom that travels should have at least 3 breastfeeding bras:

  • everyday nursing bra – a comfortable model that you can wear everywhere;
  • nursing sleep bra – if you don’t want to worry about sagging breasts in the future, you should wear a bra always, even at night;
  • sexy nursing bra – who says you can’t be sexy while breastfeeding?

Best Breastfeeding Accessories

Burt’s Bees Cloths

Recommended by Mary Beth from a Reluctant Mom

breastfeeding mom smiling
Mary Beth with her son.

Whether it’s a road trip or a long-haul flight, I like to travel light. That’s why I’m so happy breastfeeding worked for us – because it doesn’t require any stuff! No formula to make, no bottles to have to deal with, it’s pretty much an accessory-free way to feed a baby.

That isn’t to say I don’t use a couple of things, though. For example, burp cloths are a must. By definition, “traveling light” means you don’t really have a ton of replacement tops, so you can’t afford to get spit up on them! Luckily, burp cloths are small and compact, so store easily in the diaper bag. We went full hippie and put organic Burt’s Bees cloths on our registry, and love them.

Breastfeeding during travel has so many benefits for my son, too. He can feed on demand without having to wait for me to prep anything, so I rarely have to deal with a fussy baby on the road. When flying, I can easily keep his ears equalized by nursing him during take-off and landing. I’m so happy we stuck with nursing for so long – it makes traveling with a baby so easy!

Travel Breast Pump

‘Magic Bottle’ Bumblebee

Recommended by Marta Wlodarska from Backpackers.wro

Marta Wlodarska with her son.

We are a family of backpackers and our little son joined us seven months ago. Due to the fact that we have been traveling with backpacks for 10 years and always prefer to remove something from the luggage than to put it in, breastfeeding is the best option for us. We are very lucky to have the possibility of breastfeeding for the seventh month now. 

We avoid additional accessories such as powdered milk or bottles and we can feed the baby literally at any time, without asking anyone, for example, to heat up the milk. The only thing we always have with us on the go is the best manual breast pump for travel. Our son seems to like traveling a lot and usually sleeps longer than at home. In order to avoid the accumulation of milk in the breast and no inflammation, which once happened to me, I use the breast pump as a preventive measure.

Freemies – On The Go Breast Pump

Recommended by Kate from Tear Free Travel

Kate with her baby.

For our family, we found that breastfeeding made traveling with a baby super simple early on. In fact, I think 3-6 months is the best time to travel with a baby as you don’t need to worry about food for your little one at all if you are nursing. By 3-6 months most babies have some semblance of a routine established, making it a nice time to enjoy a vacation with family. Although I found nursing on vacation to be the easiest, I did occasionally pump while on vacation so that I could make use of some babysitting time from my parents!

I LOVE the Freemies pumping accessory for pumping on vacation (or anywhere!) Freemies are a really innovative pump collection cup design that allows you to pump with your shirt on right in public. I have pumped with these babies on in the library, at Starbucks, while driving and of course, on vacation. These pumping accessories were such a lifesaver for me as it meant I didn’t have to leave what I was doing to go pump. Freemies are compatible with a variety of breast pumps, I used the spectra S1 which is an amazing and super powerful pump that is still portable enough to bring when you travel. 

Medela Swing

Recommended by me and Lisa van den Berg from FlipFlopGlobetrotters

Lisa van den Berg with her son.

When our little boy was 3.5 months old we decided to spend a few weeks in Egypt. I had low milk supply due to him being born with a c-section. So at the 3 month mark I started pumping full time. Which was a total pain while traveling! I even ended up having to pump on the plane as I couldn’t go too long between. 
Luckily my best travel breast pump, Medela Swing, worked on batteries as obviously there’s no power outlet in an airplane bathroom. It definitely wasn’t comfortable, but doable. When our son was 10 months old and didn’t need that much milk anymore I started breastfeeding him again. And I was happy I did. Because when he was 17 months old we decided to travel around South East Asia for a year. He was still nursing at the time and it was the perfect way to get him to sleep… in a car, on a bus, on a train, on a plane and in all the hotels and Airbnbs we stayed in. It was comforting for both of us and definitely made traveling a lot easier.

I can totally relate to Lisa! Mia was born with a c-section too, so I struggled with low milk supply as well. Medela Swing was a life saver for me and my lactation! For me, it’s the best breastfeeding pump.

Breast Milk Cooler

Recommended by Melissa Smuzynski from Parenthood and Passports

Melissa Smuzynski with her daughter.

Traveling with an infant can be hard. Despite being the tiniest travelers, they require more stuff than the rest of the family combined. But if you are nursing, at least feeding your baby while traveling is easy. In fact, breastfeeding can make traveling with a baby much easier. No bottles, formula mixing, or sanitizing. No need to make sure you bring enough formula for your trip, either. Because you can feed your baby anywhere at any time. However, there were times when I was nursing my daughter that I preferred to give her a bottle while we were traveling.

Whether you are leaving the baby with grandparents for a few hours or simply want to have a couple of alcoholic drinks on a trip without feeling guilty, there may be times you will want or need to bring expressed breastmilk with you. Fortunately, flying with breastmilk does not have the same restrictions as other liquids. Separating expressed milk from other carry-on items and keeping it in breast milk travel cooler bag will not only make passing through airport security more efficient, but it will also keep the milk chilled longer.

Travel Breastfeeding Pillow

Boppy Nursing Pillow

Recommended by Julie Laundis from Wandering Sunsets

Julie Laundis with her daughter.

Nursing has made traveling with our 5 months old daughter a lot easier, especially during flights. Nursing avoids the hassle of washing and sterilizing bottles which can be really tricky in countries where the tap water isn’t safe to drink. It also really helps keep our newborn calm during takeoff and landing and minimize ear pain. Whenever I sense that she is getting overwhelmed or overstimulated, I can quickly provide comfort and calm her down. My favorite breastfeeding accessory for travel is the Boppy nursing pillow. The Boppy fits perfectly in a plane seat and you can use the armrest to really lock it into place. The Boppy is the perfect spot for baby to nurse and nap during the flight while keeping some of the weight off of your arms. If the baby begins to stir and wake up, you can easily nurse him/her back to sleep. We also used our Boppy a lot at our hotel to nurse almost hands-free! I definitely recommend getting 2 Boppy covers and bringing one with you on the flight to have a backup!

I’ve been using this baby breastfeeding pillow myself and I absolutely love it! I can’t imagine flying with an infant without it. When Mia was 6 months old, we took a long, overnight flight to Thailand. This breastfeeding travel pillow was a life-saver for us. I know regret that I didn’t buy it when I was pregnant. It makes sleeping easier when you put this pillow between your legs.

Neck Pillow

Recommended by Kelley Gudahl from Sailing Chance

Kelley Gudahl with her daughter.

We traveled a lot with our daughter when she was an infant. In fact, I credit our frequency with the fact that she is a relatively good traveler even in toddlerhood. Being able to nurse her was imperative to our ability to keep traveling as new parents. We couldn’t rely on formula as she had a severe dairy allergy for the first few months of her life, so breastfeeding was the only way we knew she’d be getting all the nutrients to grow her into the little chunker she is today. 
It would calm her in an instant and was her constant in an unfamiliar environment. At home, we used the Boppy for positioning support, but in a desperate moment during a crying spell on our way to Italy, I shoved my neck pillow under her and haven’t looked back! I love it because it is multipurpose and takes up significantly less space than a larger feeding pillow. When I don’t need it for nursing, I just slip it around my neck and catch up on a little sleep. Nap when they nap, right?

Inflatable Nursing Pillow

Recommended by Chelsea Sipe from Pack More Into Life

Chelsea Sipe with her son.

As a new mom and travel blogger, I knew we would have frequent trips with our son. When I started working on my registry, I wanted to add a few items that would make travel a bit easier. One of those items was an inflatable nursing pillow. I loved how compact it was and the ability for it to come along with me anywhere! With all the gear that we already planned to carry with us, it was nice to have something that could inflate and then be packed away. 
I loved using the breast friend at home, but it was too bulky to travel with. Luckily, they make an inflatable version. It was a lifesaver on flights when my son was a baby and young toddler. He could nurse and then fall asleep on the pillow during the flight. Then once we arrived, I used it for the middle of the night feedings. My son had the comfort of his routine and my arms weren’t killing me, win-win! 

Breastfeeding Covers

Nursing Poncho

Recommended by Betty Boiron from Mombrite

Contributed by Betty Boiron from Mombrite
Betty Boiron with her kids.

Breastfeeding while traveling can be difficult, but it can also be a life-saver. I can’t count how many times I managed to calm my overtired baby down just by nursing. Instead of the traditional apron-style nursing cover that can be easily pulled off by your baby (I lose track of how many times I accidentally flashed people next to me), go for the poncho nursing covers

They provide 360 degrees coverage around your entire body waist-up so you don’t have to worry about exposing your back. It’s nearly impossible for your baby to pull these off of you. Moreover, if you want to take a break from breastfeeding and pump instead, you can easily slip your pumping gear underneath the poncho. Do make sure that you get a lightweight, breathable nursing cover so that your baby is not drenched in sweat underneath the poncho. Most of these poncho style nursing covers also are multi-use, meaning you can use them as a canopy over the car seat, stroller, the shopping cart, or the high chair. During the colder months, you can also wear it as a fashionable infinity scarf or shawl – no more stuffing your nursing cover in your diaper bag!

Multipurpose Nursing Cover

Recommended by Elaine McArdle from Show Them The Globe

Elaine McArdle with her baby.

Having both breast and bottle fed two little adventurers I find breastfeeding makes travelling so much easier. It requires no preparation and it’s often a great way to quickly settle my baby. I don’t have to pack bottles or formula or search for gallons of bottled water to prepare bottles and sterilize them in off the beaten track destinations!

My favorite breastfeeding accessory is a nursing cover and there are so many things I love about it! It looks great, is lightweight and has multiple uses as a breastfeeding cover, a car seat cover and a stroller sunshade.

As a nursing cover, it was invaluable on a recent trip where we visited some conservative countries. It was important for me to be discreet and the nursing cover allowed me to breastfeed without worrying about offending local culture. It works great as a car seat cover, especially when passing through airports and flying with a baby as it provides some protection against germs. I’ve also used it as a sunshade for the stroller when the sun surprised us on a tour of Robben Island in Cape Town.

The nursing cover is now one of my travel essentials and one of the first things I pack in my cabin bag for every trip!

Bonita Bluum Nursing Cover

Recommended by Nadine Maffre from Le Long Weekend

Nadine Maffre with her son.

Although I believe that women have the right to feed their children wherever, and however they please, I personally felt more comfortable using the best breastfeeding cover when my son was young. Attitudes to nursing in public vary around the world, and it saved me from having to research the cultural norms or making a faux pas in every country we visited.

I also found it would help keep my son focused on feeding instead of looking around at all the interesting things to see! It’s super easy to travel with, as it folds up light and takes up no space in your carry-on or backpack. I could even fold it up and wedge it into the pocket of my baby carrier! I used mine on the airplane too – not just for feeding, but to help dim the lights when it was time for my little one to sleep – kind of like a little breathable tent!

Muslin Swaddle Blanket

Recommended by Mikhailla Fitzgerald from Wholeheartedly

Mikhailla Fitzgerald with her daughter.

As a mother currently still nursing my 14-month-old it is through various interstate and international trips that I had chose to continue nursing. This being that transit through airports and feeding in third world countries is of ease knowing I don’t have to worry about where we can access fresh drinking water or food when I am able to conveniently breastfeed wherever, whenever. I have found many perks in breastfeeding while travelling and that also being during flight take off and landing and also comforting my child on a flight to ease into sleep while in the security of my arms. It has made travelling both easy and worry-free.
In my 14 months of nursing I have utilised many different accessories to assist in making feeding convenient and comfortable but the one product I have continued to utilise week after week, wherever we go and with a multi-functional use is a large 120cm x 120cm swaddle. The one I use here has acted at times as a pram blanket, sun cover, picnic blanket, and breastfeeding cover. I have found having a breastfeeding cover especially important internationally as you don’t always know the laws and expectations of feeding in public in other countries but having the large size of the swaddle giving it that dual purpose means I don’t have to pack a lot of different items wherever I go.

Nursing Necklace

Recommended by Alexis Robinson from Mamma in Pearls
 
Alexis Robinson with her daughter.
Traveling can be so hard on little ones but nursing when we traveled made things easier as it was always something we could count on to relax both of us.  It was also a great way for both of us to take a break to reconnect.  With so many fast changes and a different schedule, it made the transitions easier for my baby.  I was so glad that we had nursing as a way to make trips less stressful!  We had our first big trip when my daughter was around 7 months old – right in the middle of that phase of being distracted by EVERYTHING.

Throw in the distractions of flying and being somewhere new and it was sometimes a struggle to get her to nurse for longer than a few seconds (hello pop on pop off frustrations!).  I found that a nursing necklace was super helpful to keep her focused and latched through a feeding, even on the airplane!  It gave her something to focus on and something to keep her hands busy during nursing sessions no matter where we were.

Lanolin Cream

Recommended by Frankie Thompson from As The Bird Flies Blog

Frankie Thompson with her son.

As I write this, I’m on a week-long holiday in Greece during which I am breastfeeding my six-month-old boy. It’s great how easy and convenient nursing can be while traveling – I never have to think about preparing bottles for him – and I also know he stays hydrated in warmer weather. I also nursed my first son until he was 14 months and during that time we went on nearly ten overseas trips together, and of course, breastfeeding helped during those journeys too, especially on the plane when the baby needed comfort or help to equalize the pressure in his ears. Rightly or wrongly, breastfeeding has also come in handy when wanting to help my sons get to sleep while we’re on our travels, though of course, this all means sometimes I don’t get much of a break as I have to stay close to my baby, but most of the time this is fine with me! 

My favorite breastfeeding must-have is lanolin cream. I credit this with making nursing a lot less painful at the beginning with both my boys and also helping soothe any dryness that may arise on my nipples. I also use it as soothing cream on my boys’ dry skin or nappy rash so it has many uses and it lasts a really long time.

Nursing Pads

Recommended by Emily Cole from Kids and Compass

Emily Cole with her son.

Travelling can be stressful for parents and small children. Changes to normal routine, unfamiliar sights, sounds, smells; all of this can unsettle babies and toddlers. This makes parents more stressed, which in turn unsettles the child even more… until meltdown! 

Breastfeeding was my go-to way to avoid extra stress (and the meltdowns) when travelling. Children don’t just feed for nourishment, they feed for comfort. So when I travelled with my babies if there was any sign of them getting upset they got fed. This would invariably stop the meltdown in its tracks and would usually get them off to sleep too. It even works with toddlers. I found breastfeeding especially useful on aircraft. The sucking motion prevents painful ears on takeoff and landing (baby sat on me with a lap strap so it was easy to feed) and helped to soothe baby during the flight.  

I didn’t use much equipment when I breastfed. However (TMI) I had a lot of milk and I was prone to leaking for many months so I always used breast pads inside my bra to save any embarrassing patches on my clothes. My favourites were by Lansinoh nursing pads, but any brand will do! 

Carriers

Maya Wrap Ring Sling

Recommended by Rebecca Carr from Innate Moves

Rebecca Carr with her baby.
Breastfeeding has many benefits most of us know about. Of course, it’s great for bonding and the health of our babies, but it can also be much more convenient. While traveling, nursing is definitely a convenient way to nourish your baby since it doesn’t require anything you don’t have attached to your body already!
When my little ones were babies I always used baby carriers, as opposed to infant seats or strollers, to carry them.

Not only does it make airports, strange cities, and site-seeing more convenient, but it makes feeding them a cinch. For young infants, I recommend the Maya Wrap ring sling. It’s made of wonderfully strong cotton weave, making it comfortable. Maya Wrap ring sling one of the more versatile carriers, as you can slip it off or on and wear your baby either lying or flat on your chest. It’s easy to use the tail of the sling to put over baby’s head if you like privacy while nursing, or for when they fall asleep. 

Free-To-Grow Tula

Recommended by Diana from The Elusive Family

We are using FTG Tula as well! Mia loves it.

Nursing while traveling has turned out to be one of the easiest ways to take care of a baby. When we travel with our baby, there are only two things we need, our most reliable diaper backpacks, and our baby carrier. That’s it.

We live in Europe and whenever we travel, whether on a train, plane or boat, the second the baby is hungry, there is absolutely no issue with me being able to simply breastfeed right then and there. 

Europe is extremely breastfeeding friendly where it is normal for women to breastfeed out in public with no cover or need to cover up. We have nursed atop castles, on small rowboats, on buses, planes, and even on carnival rides without issue. One accessory that I cannot do it without is a baby carrier. Baby carriers are a lifesaver when we travel as the baby can sleep and I can nurse easily. The Free-To-Grow Tula is one of those carriers as it has the ability to adjust to your babies and your needs. With padded shoulders and a wonderfully ergonomic positioning system, it is such a comfortable carrier. In adjusting the straps, you can adjust the baby’s positioning making it easier to breastfeed on the go.

Best Breastfeeding Chair

Recommended by Lisa Hoad from The Family Ticket

Lisa Hoad with her son.

I have 2 children my first who was bottle fed and my 2nd born who was breastfed. My one regret was not seeking more help for my first. If I had known how much easier being on the go all the time while breastfeeding was then I’d have persevered. At the beginning, I was shy and worried about all the usual things. If I was doing it right, was my son getting enough, Would people judge, etc. After a few weeks and practically every breastfeeding accessory I could get my hands on I started to relax. I no longer worried about what people thought and it was when this happened I realized how much easier it was to breastfeed. 

No longer did I need to worry about having sterile bottles, A formula dispenser, Being close to hot water to heat the bottle up, how long I could keep the milk for once I had mixed the water and formula and possibly one of the worst…… The night feeds. I remember waking and having to go downstairs to boil the kettle while my son cried wanting milk. With breastfeeding, I felt I could get out more. I was my son’s personal vending machine. Milk on the go at the correct temperature without having to worry with all the bottle faff. Once I had cracked the breastfeeding I started to really enjoy the simplicity of it all. Simple and rewarding yet still hard and demanding. My absolute triumph in the whole breastfeeding journey was the night feeds. No longer would I need to run downstairs and put the kettle on. Instead, I would pop into the nursery with my son and make myself comfortable in one of the best breastfeeding chairs. This is without a doubt my most prized possession (not counting kids because they aren’t possessions). It helped me and my son stay relaxed and its something I’ve said I will never get rid of. As a nearly 3-year-old he likes to use it as a rocking chair for him and his teddies. Its become a bit of a keepsake in the house and we’ve all grown attached to it. 


Breastfeeding May Not Be For Everyone

Breastfeeding is not always easy but it’s definitely worth an effort!

If you are in a small percentage of the lucky women who gave birth, and then started nursing without any problems, then good for you! For me, breastfeeding was not that easy. It was painful and it still requires some commitments.

One of them was getting up at night- since Mia was born (January 2018), I haven’t had a single (!) night without waking up at least once. If we decide to use formula, I and Patryk could easily change the guard.

Secondly- I really love to party! Because I am breastfeeding, I can’t drink alcohol. Right now, when I am only nursing at night, I can have a drink in the early afternoon. But it’s just one drink, I can’t really have more. It may sound funny but for me, a party girl, it’s true renunciation.

Breastfeeding definitely teaches one to be more selfless. So does parenthood in general, I guess. 

I am really proud that I am still nursing my baby. It’s hard to say when our breastfeeding journey will end but I know that it will make traveling a bit more difficult. We will need to find different things to calm Mia down, to put her to sleep, to make her want to stay in my arms and cuddle. It won’t stop us to travel the world though!

End of breastfeeding will also mean that she is growing up and she is becoming more independent. We can’t wait to be able to talk to her about something important. To hear her insights about the country we are currently visiting. Parenthood definitely is a journey and we couldn’t be more proud to call Mia our daughter.

UPDATE: October, 25th, 2019 was the time I’ve last nursed Mia. The weaning went surprisingly well. Again, my baby breastfeeding pillow was very helpful! I simply didn’t take it on our week-long trip. When Mia asked for the titi I gently told her that we don’t have a pillow so I will tell her a bedtime story instead. I repeated it every day until she stopped asking. We spent more time cuddling. I made sure to give her all my attention so that she feel loved and taken care of, even without our daily nursing routine.

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Disclosure: Yay for transparency! Some of the links in the article are affiliate, which means that if you book something by clicking on them, we will get a small commission with no extra cost to you. Your support helps this blog going.

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