How to Pack for Sweet Dreams When Traveling with Children

The Struggle is Real

“Pack” has always been a four-letter word in my book.

I am forever struggling with the former girl scout in me who likes to “always be prepared” and my desire to pack light in order to avoid the dreaded baggage claim.  

Now that I have children the struggle is even more real.  Especially when it comes to packing “all the things” needed to replicate their home sleep environment while we are away to help them catch their zzzs.

Because if they aren’t sleeping well, I am not sleeping well and that’s not fun for anyone.

Packing Essentials

To help ensure that “no lovey is left behind”, I have put together a packing list that covers the essentials needed to create a comfy and cozy sleep environment for your children.  It also includes some of my favorite travel-friendly sleep related products too!

  • Noise Machine - My absolute favorite for both home and travel is the LectroFan Kinder. It is cordless, making it easy to pack, and is controlled via an app so that you can covertly increase the volume to drown out noisy hotel neighbors.  

The manufacturer is running a Black Friday BOGO deal so now is the time to buy (use above link)!

  • Lovey or blanket - I know this is a no brainer, but if I had a dollar for every time I forgot to grab my child’s lovey as we headed out the door I could buy a venti Starbucks.

  • Pack and Play - I like to bring my own to be certain that it is operational and because my children are somewhat used to it.  Start napping your children in it a couple weeks in advance so that it becomes a familiar space. It is even more important to bring your own when staying in a hotel as even if you reserve one that doesn’t mean it will be available when you arrive.

  • Crib/Bed Sheets - Bring your children’s sheets to make an new environment feel a little bit more like home.  Nothing is more soft against their skin then organic cotton. Check out these by Burt’s Bees Baby.

  • Black-out Material - The absolute most important preemptive measure to take while out of town is to cover any windows in the room in which your child is sleeping.  That way, they are less likely to realize that they are somewhere new when they wake briefly overnight or early in the morning. If do notice they are in a new place, that normally brief wake-up will likely turn into a full wake-up.

To cover the window simply bring some black garbage bags, black construction paper or aluminum foil.  For a quick and easy solution, check out these travel black-out curtains. Also, my clients currently loving this new pack and play tent.

  • OK to Wake Clock - If you have a toddler and are using an OK to Wake Clock, don’t forget to bring it.  It will give them a sense of security that the same rules that apply at home also while out of town. If you’re interested in learning more about toddler clocks, you should watch my IGTV episode that runs down a list of my favorites.

  • Toddler Pillow - It can be hard enough for adults to get used to a new pillow, let alone children.  So, don’t forget to pack their very own pillow.

I hope this list helps your child sleep just as well while out of town as they do at home.  If they are not sleeping well at home, let’s talk! You can schedule a free 15-minute discovery call here.