Taking Baby to Hawaii Tips
Maybe your friends are getting married on the beach. Maybe you’re taking that dream vacation that you’ve always wanted.
Whatever your reasons for traveling to Hawaii, there are a few things to keep in mind before you take your baby with you.
Babies can have just as much fun digging in the sand as adults, but they also have special needs that you’ll need to consider if you want your trip to be a no-fuss, no-stress affair. Taking precautions now can save you a lot of headaches tomorrow!
Are you ready to hit the beach? Here are just a few tips for taking your baby to Hawaii.
1. Pack plenty of sunscreen
One of the first rules of taking your baby to Hawaii is making sure that their soft, delicate skin is protected from the sun. Before you start slathering on the sunscreen, however, ask yourself the following questions:
- Are they old enough? Sunscreen isn’t recommended for babies under six months old. It’s okay in small doses, but it shouldn’t be your primary method of sun protection for a very young infant. Hats, umbrellas and long sleeves are better choices.
- Is it meant for infants? If your baby is older than six months, buy some baby-safe sunscreen. It’s made with ingredients like zinc and titanium dioxide that are gentler on the skin than other brands.
- Will it guard your baby against both UVA and UVB rays? Some sunscreens will only block one type of UV light and not the other.
- Does it contain unnecessary chemical additives? If your sunscreen is packed with artificial chemicals, it might be doing more harm than good. Some additives can actually make your skin more susceptible to sun damage.
2. Have a menu in mind
It’s hard enough to balance your baby’s nutritional needs at home. Just imagine the stress of trying to do it in the aisles of a Hawaiian grocery store with nothing but your smartphone to translate saimin and manapua!
For this reason, it’s a good idea to plan your vacation menu in advance. You can look up restaurants in the city that you’ll be traveling to, and you can either call or check their online menus to figure out where their meals fall on the food pyramid.
If you’re taking your baby to Hawaii before they’ve hit their “solid foods” stage, you can find most major formula brands in recognizable stores like Walmart and Target. If you’re breastfeeding, most airlines will allow you to bring it on the plane in your carry-on luggage as long as you clear it at inspections.
3. Invest in waterproof baby supplies
You might already know this if you’ve spent time at the community pool, but if you’re taking your baby to Hawaii for their first real swimming experience, you’re going to need waterproof baby supplies. Here are a few essentials:
- Waterproof diapers
- Disposable tidy bags
- Wet wipes
- Towels for changing and drying
You might also want to look for supplies that are sand- and wind-proof in addition to waterproof. For example, a beach play pen can keep little fingers and toes away from sand fleas!
4. Try not to disrupt their sleep schedule
Some babies will sleep on the plane if you keep them awake before a long flight. Others will just be tired, cranky, restless and vocally annoyed that you’ve disrupted their routine. Unless you already know how your little one will react, it’s probably a good idea not to change their sleep schedule.
What do you do if you have no choice but to catch a red-eye when taking your baby to Hawaii? The easiest solution is a collapsible sleep carrier that you can stow in the luggage compartment when you’re on the plane. You might also invest in hats, shades or car seat covers to simulate darkness if you’ll be traveling across time zones.
No matter what you decide to do, the most important thing is that you recognize the importance of your child’s need to sleep. It can take days for a baby or toddler to recover from jet lag, and you don’t want that shadow hovering over your entire trip!
5. Prepare for diaper disasters
There’s nothing like a sandy diaper to make you realize that you should’ve brought a changing pad to the beach! You’ll also want to avoid embarrassing mishaps on planes, buses and cruise ships. Here are a few tips for taking a baby to Hawaii without suffering any poo-filled pickles:
- Pack a diaper bag that’s fit for Armageddon. It’s better to be overly prepared than not prepared enough.
- Invest in a pop-up sun tent. Not only will they offer shade while you’re on the beach, but they’ll also give you a private, sand-free place to change a dirty diaper.
- Bring some air freshener. There are travel-size bottles that will fit right into a diaper bag, and you won’t have to feel guilty about stinking up the bathroom at a museum or movie theater.
6. Wear your baby
“Babywear” is a great way to keep your hands free for vacation fun without having to leave your baby strapped in a stroller 24/7. You can find all kinds of slings, wraps, harnesses and carriers to keep your child snuggled to your chest or back while you roam the islands.
Some babywear is even designed for storage in addition to transport. The compartments are usually small, but you’ll be able to fit in some wipes or tissues for emergencies.
Another benefit of babywear is that it reduces the need for hefty luggage items like walkers and strollers. If you just carry your baby everywhere, you won’t have to worry about buying, renting, transporting and keeping track of a bunch of different items at once.
Consider babywear if you’re taking a baby to Hawaii. It might not be the most fashionable thing out there, but it can be quite convenient for moms and dads on the go!
7. Look for baby-friendly attractions
Taking a baby to Hawaii is great for broadening their horizons, but you don’t want to scare or overwhelm them with large crowds. You also don’t want to be turned away at the door of a fancy exhibit because they don’t allow sticky fingers next to priceless artifacts.
Before you put something on your itinerary, make sure that it’s appropriate for your littlest traveler. You can even search for baby-friendly beaches or kids’ luaus if you want to be extra sure of things like safety and accessibility.
Your baby doesn’t have to miss any vacation fun. You just have to plan your activities carefully when you’re taking your baby to Hawaii!
8. Consider renting instead of buying
If you’re splurging on a once-in-a-lifetime tropical vacation, it just doesn’t make sense to spend a lot of money on baby equipment. It will only fit your little one for a short time, so even if you do decide to revisit Hawaii at a later date, it’s not like you can pull an old carrier out of the attic and re-use it.
The solution for this is renting your baby equipment instead of buying it. There are whole companies that specialize in this, so it’s just a matter of finding a good one.
A baby gear rental company will let you borrow all kinds of carriers, car seats, high chairs and strollers. They’ll often provide free delivery or transport. Rent what you need and send it back when you’re done. It’s that easy!
Taking your baby to Hawaii doesn’t have to involve exorbitant luggage fees. If you’re careful and frugal, you can manage your expenses in a way that leaves you plenty of money for shaved ice.
9. Keep your baby entertained
You and your spouse might be awed by the sight of a dormant volcano, but to your baby, it’s just a big rock. You’ll need to keep them busy while you’re enjoying the grown-up attractions of your trip.
Here are a few suggestions:
- Pack your car seat. It can keep your baby contained while you’re wining and dining, and they can play with hanging mobiles, stuffed animals or gummy rings from the safety of their seat.
- Avoid toys that flash lights or make noise. These might bother other tourists and travelers.
- Avoid anything with lots of little parts. You might think that crayons are essential when taking your baby to Hawaii, but it’ll be a downright miracle if you don’t lose half of them by the time that your trip is over.
- Load up a tablet with kid-friendly movies and games. This is more for older toddlers than very small infants, but even a baby in a car seat can be mesmerized by dancing cartoons.
These are just a few tips for taking your baby to Hawaii. It can be a magical experience for the whole family, but you’ll need to plan things carefully before you start dreaming of blue skies and pink umbrella drinks. Use these tips to make sure that everyone has a good time, including your little one!