Traveling with a baby or toddler is never easy. I know my baby always gets super fussy after long trips in the car or spending too much time waiting at the airport terminals. You know how tough it can be worse still if you have to breastfeed and pumping while traveling on long trips.
Some people get offended when you flash out your boob. Then, you will be told to cover up. But, some kids don’t want to be covered up. They will cry to the top of their voices. Therefore, here are a few hacks to solve the problems of breastfeeding and pumping while traveling.
How To Ease the Embarrassment of Breastfeeding in Public
Nursing your baby shouldn’t be shameful. To begin with, it is not illegal to breastfeed in public. Yes, it will turn off some people. But, it shouldn’t stigmatize you in anyway. If your baby is still young, you could have a cover. Those who are older will throw the shawl away. Don’t worry about that, it’s normal. You can find a designated place for them. There are a number of options to choose from. You can go to a less crowded park. Here, you will be comfortable.
Moreover, if you are in a mall try the fitting room. Better still, the sitting area would be great. Some shopping malls have lactation areas. At the restaurant, you can find a table that looks private. You can opt for a corner table. This way, you are not in the middle of prying eyes. Again, this is to keep you at ease. Remember that it is not mandatory to cover yourself.
What To Pack:
To get the best out of your travel time, you should pack some items. Pick out your best diaper backpack so that you can fit so much more into them. They should have handy pockets on the outside to completely organize all your essentials:
– Nursing Cover: For those nursing stops where you might get out of the car. I always used a muslin blanket for breathability.
– Breast Pump: You probably won’t get very far without this.
– Pumping Bra: If you don’t make stops to pump, this is a must.
– Nipple Cream: Don’t start the trip off wrong with cracked nipples. OUCH! Apply after every nursing stop or pumping break.
– Nursing Pads: Using a nipple pad like LilyPadz silicone nursing pads can help to prevent leaks between nursing or pumping and offer a protective barrier.
– Batteries/Car Outlet Adapter: If your breast pump takes batteries, bring fresh ones. Also a backup pair, just to be sure.
– Storage Bags: Spring for a good quality bag to prevent leaks. Don’t cry over spilled milk!
– Icepacks/Insulated Bag: Freshly pumped breast milk can be out for 6 hours at room temperature. If you plan on traveling longer than that you will need to keep it cool.
– Medela Pump Wipes: These are amazing on longer trips. Just wipe and go!
How Do You Prevent Breast Leakage?
A breast leakage can be embarrassing. It is, however, a natural thing to experience. It can intimidate you when you least expect it. If you are wearing white cloth, it can stain. Additionally, you will feel awful. Changing your clothes will be impossible. Who do you leave your baby with? If you are alone, your day gets ruined. Also, you can get overwhelmed. The feeling is unpleasant, and you can’t wait to get home. It can get worse when people start staring at you.
Despite that, there is a durable solution to this problem. You can deal with the issue by wearing breast pads. You should do this on a daily basis. There are quality LilyPadz nursing pads. They are standard nursing pads. They are lightweight and comfortable. You will not feel as if you are carrying a log. Also, they won’t be evident on your bust. They are made of thin silicone. It works by attaching directly to the nipple. Then, it wards off any leakages. The nursing pads then, contain the milk in your breast. You will be saved from any wardrobe malfunction. Furthermore, your breast milk will not leak in any way. You can have high spirits all day long.
How To Pumping While Traveling?
If you are pumping while traveling by car and are a passenger, this will be very easy. Just make sure you are wearing your nursing bra and pump as usual. You can pump with an electric pump or hand pump without any troubles this way.
If you are driving and can’t afford to make many stops or there are lack of stops, this will take a little more practice. Before you leave the house you will want to pump first. You will also need to have your nursing bra on and your pump already in place before leaving the driveway. All you will need to do is turn on your pump when needed. At the next stop, remove the pump and store your fresh milk.
When pumping and traveling by plane, a little bit of timing is needed. Pump before leaving for the airport and after getting all checked in, you might want to pump again. Pumping before longer flights will help with the uncomfortably tight spaces in the airplane. If you are not comfortable, you won’t be able to pump as much as usual. You can use a cover if you’d like to help with privacy.
How To Milk Storage On The Trip?
Freshly pumped milk can last up to 6 hours without being refrigerated, or 4 hours in hotter climates. If you suspect the weather to be hot or for the trip to be longer than 6 hours, you will need to safely store your milk. Getting a nice insulated bag with a couple of frozen icepacks will keep your milk fresh. You can use a lunch box or a special bag made for breastmilk storage. Just store your fresh milk directly after pumping into storage bags, and pack them so that as many bags are touching the icepack as possible. This should work for both car trips and airport security approved.
All in all, traveling should be fun. Even though you have a baby, you shouldn’t feel disturbed. Instead, you can have memorable experiences with your child. You can breastfeed him or her when they are hungry. It shouldn’t be at the convenience of other people. With the tips above, maximize your traveling time You can prepare yourself by wearing comfy clothes.
If possible, you can feed your baby just before take-off. They tend to sleep a lot on the plan. This will keep them satisfied all through. When they wake up, they won’t cry too much. After that, you can enjoy and rel. during your vacation.
Author：Kate M. Boynton
Kate is a mother of three, blogger and a travel lover. She helps other moms by sharing tips, actionable breastfeeding hacks and buyer’s guides on MustBestMom.com. The opinions shared here are that of the writer.