How to plan days out for babies

How to plan days out for babies

Where to go, what to take and other top tips for going out with a newborn

In Newborn

At a glance

Look for family-friendly destinations

If you feel you might need help, ask someone to come with you


Use a checklist for packing and planning

Don’t forget a change of clothes for you and baby

Going out with your new baby can be daunting, whether it’s the first trip to the shops or the first holiday abroad. But once you've been out a few times, you'll soon find it becomes easy.

When can you take a newborn out?

You and your baby can go out as soon as you feel up to it. There’s no reason to wait, it just requires a bit of advanced planning and preparation. If you’re unsure about anything speak to your midwife, health visitor or public health nurse.

What are good places to go with a newborn?

At this age, your baby isn’t fussed so just go where you want to go.

  • Go for a walk, to the park or to the shops
  • Meet friends in a café
  • Try mum and baby classes and groups advertised online, in local community centres or in doctors' surgeries
  • Your health visitor will have suggestions for suitable places to take babies in your community too

Checklist for day outings with baby

  • Check if there are baby-changing facilities nearby
  • You could ask your partner, a friend or family member to go with you if you need help. This will also give them a chance to bond with your baby
  • Pack your changing bag with nappies, cotton wool, changing mat, wet wipes, bibs, a muslin square and spare clothes
  • Don’t forget your purse, keys, fully charged mobile and a change of top (in case of any spills or leaks)
  • If you're breastfeeding, pack breast pads and you may want a scarf to make feeding in public more comfortable
  • Keep expressed milk in a sterilised bottle in a cool bag and use within four hours
  • If you're formula feeding, you'll need a flask of boiled water, a sterile container of pre-measured formula powder, and sterilised bottles and teats. To make things easier, you could also use a ready to feed formula
Baby in buggy ready for a day out

How to get around town

  • If you’re using public transport, avoid rush hour so you're more likely to get a seat and there'll be more room for both of you
  • Consider investing in a good baby carrier or sling. Just ensure you’re using it correctly so it provides good head and neck support for your newborn
  • If you're travelling by car, use a new, correctly fitted car seat. Make sure it complies with European Standard R44.03/R44.04 and regularly check your car seat is suitable for your baby's weight and size

“Bring babies’ blankets from home for a familiar feel wherever you stay.”

Holidaying with your baby

Soon you’ll probably start thinking about a well-deserved holiday with baby. The younger they are the easier it is, although that’s also when it’s most intimidating.

  • Choose a family-friendly destination with shopping and medical facilities
  • Avoid destinations that are very hot or require immunisations or anti-malaria medication
  • Make sure you are all fully covered by travel insurance
  • If flying, reserve an on-board baby cot or a bulkhead seat with more legroom
  • Try to coincide your journeys with your baby’s usual nap or sleep time
  • Pack a basic first aid kit that includes infant paracetamol and antiseptic wipes
  • Take a car seat for your baby or toddler. If you hire a car or travel by coach, ensure it is fitted properly
  • In your hand luggage, pack plenty of nappies, wipes and a change of clothes for both you and baby, and read the airline’s guidelines on taking feed on board
  • If you are bottle-feeding, ensure you have enough feeds for the whole journey including any possible delays
  • Your new baby’s skin is very fragile, so avoid direct sunlight 'til they are six months old. Protect them with a wide brimmed hat and use a recommended sunscreen of SPF 15 or higher regularly, especially if they’re in a paddling pool or just out of the sea. Make sure the sunscreen protects against both UVA and UVB rays
  • Don’t travel if your baby is unwell. If in doubt, ask your GP

“My sling was a life (and arm) saver for getting through the airport.”

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Important advice to mothers

The World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends exclusive breastfeeding for the first 6 months of life. SMA® Nutrition fully supports this and continued breastfeeding, along with the introduction of complementary foods as advised by your healthcare professional.