Cloth Diapers on Vacation :: Planes, Trains, and Automobiles

In two excellent recent guest posts, two moms have shared their experiences using cloth diapers while away from home.  With lots of families traveling in the summer months, here are a few of our tips for while you’re in transit. For ideas for washing when you arrive at your destination, check out this blog post from Karen, one of the N&G Mamas.

Regardless of what mode of travel you choose – air, land, or sea – storage is the biggest issue as you go. You obviously want to take as many diapers as possible while taking up as little space as possible! Good absorbency is also key since you may need to go several hours between changes.

Prefolds and pockets are a great way to satisfy both of these requirements, as are the new Flip diaper and the Babykicks organic fitted diaper. These various options take up the least amount of room, plus prefolds are very absorbent, especially if paired with a doubler, and pockets are very customizable in the amount of stuffing you put in them.

If you’re headed on a long plane trip, the Flip is a great option – the organic cotton inserts don’t take up much room or you have the option of using disposable, biodegradable inserts, in which case all you’ll have with you at the end of the day are the shells. Talk about saving space while still being environmentally-resposible!

If you’re traveling using a car seat, it’s especially important to have covers or diapers that have a good seal around the legs and back. The harness of a car seat tends to cram up against a diaper, so a well-fitting diaper cover ensures you won’t have any leaks over a period of several hours.

It can also be helpful to have a few diapers “locked and loaded.” When you’re on the go it can be hard to find a place to change  your baby, and it may be a juggling act even once you do find one. (Picture an airplane washroom or the floor on a jostling train.) If you have your diapers ready to go – prefolds folded inside a cover, pockets fully stuffed – your job will be much easier. Make sure your wipes and your wetbag are easily within reach before you start and the change should go as quickly and smoothly as is possible in such situations.

Oh, and one note about airplane trips – when packing your diapers, disperse them among different suitcases in case one gets delayed or lost. Then, take a few extra on the plane with you for the same reason. That way, you’ll never be without at least a few diapers on hand.

What to do with the poop?
If you’re in a washroom when you change, you can empty any solids into the toilet and then carefully fold and roll your diaper to contain any remaining mess. If you’re in a place where you won’t be able to get to a washroom for a bit, just roll up the diaper, put it in a small wetbag and empty the mess the next time you’re in a place where it’s easy to do so.

Don’t skimp on the wipes
Remember to bring an ample number of wipes with you in your carry-on or easily within reach in the diaper bag. These not only are great for bums, but they do double service to wipes hands, noses, and faces happy with ice cream. They can also serve as a great pick-me-up for you – bring a travel-size spray bottle with water and a bit of peppermint or lavender essential oil, spray some on a wipe, wipe your face with it, and you’ll be the most relaxed, confident, well-prepared mama on the road.

2 thoughts on “Cloth Diapers on Vacation :: Planes, Trains, and Automobiles

  1. Tracey

    My array of wetbags are a life saver when traveling. I have 3 small ones that fit one clean/dirty diaper each. I take all 3 on the plane/in the car with me so that each dirty diaper has its own little container. Then I have a really large one which carries enough dirty diapers for a couple of days until we can wash. It has a great hook to hang on the back of a door handle. And it zipper enclosure holds smells really really well. I also have a couple of mid sized bags that hold a few diapers or swim gear. I find it helpful when rooting through a suitcase to just grab one of the wet bags, already loaded with everything I need.

    1. Karen

      Awesome tips, thanks!
      I wholeheartedly agree that organization is king to keeping up with your goals for cloth diapering.


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