Essential kit for a family day out

Want to be one of those 'prepared for everything' mums? Here's exactly what to pack in your bag for days out with babies, toddlers and the family - and you'll never be scrabbling around for wipes again...

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Preparation is key:

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Having young children puts pay to the casual ‘rock up and see what the day holds’ attitude.  Taking out little ones who have shorts spans of attention, frantic bursts of energy all whilst demanding snack breaks and toilet trips means you need to properly think through your plans for a day out to make it as enjoyable and relaxing as possible.  So, before you set out:

  • Print out directions and plan your route on the GPS.
  • Investigate queue-busting options such as booking in advance or purchasing timed tickets for top fair park rides. 
  • Look for discount vouchers online, in newspapers or from supermarkets.
  • Print out a map of the venue, so that you can plan the day’s activities. 
  • Make your own packed lunch and remember plenty of snacks to save on costly restaurants.

Then, once you have planned your day, the next stage is to ensure you have packed the right kit:

Kit for babies:

  • Spare baby-grows or clothes which you can roll up into small bundles.
  • An additional warm layer such as a cardigan.
  • Nappies and wipes.  Nappy sacks for dirty nappies and / or clothes.
  • If you’re breastfeeding – you’ll just need a bib and a muslin. If you’re bottle-feeding, you’ll need formula in a pre-measured container and sterile water.
  • Hat and baby suncream.
  • A small toy – something that dangles and distracts.
  • Raincover for pram or back carrier.
  • Baby snacks such as small rice cakes.

Kit for toddlers:

  • Nappies and wipes
  • Lightweight, spare clothing which you can easily roll up.  Think about whether you need a whole outfit change.
  • Small toddler toys or books.
  • Disposable bibs for messy mealtimes.
  • Waterproof mac and trousers.
  • Toddler snacks such as small tubs of carrot sticks or raisins.
  • A beaker with a non-spill lid.
  • Hat and suncream.
  • Toddler-friendly plastic cutlery if you’re planning on eating out.  (Not all restaurants offer this.)
  • If you’re potty-training or newly toilet-trained, consider taking a pop-up travel potty.  Bring spare trousers and pants, along with nappy sacks to store damp clothes.

Essential items for your handbag:

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  • Wipes – yes always vital wherever you are (and also useful at removing makeup!)
  • Spare change for parking and snacks.
  • A book or small toy.
  • A small snack.
  • Antibacterial gel.
  • Essential first aid items such as plasters and calpol sachets.
  • Up to date photograph of your tots.

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