1. Plan for the Airport
2. Pack for the Immediate
Your carry-on luggage can make or break your trip in so many ways. You'll want to pack lightly but thoroughly, which is no easy task. I recommend packing all of your medications, one change of clothes for adults, at least one change of clothes for children, diapers, wipes, formula or special foods, snacks, lovies/comfort items, entertainment items (electronics and small toys).
I pack my carry-on luggage just like a theme park day-bag, so for more tips check here.
3. Special Considerations
I recommend bringing printed copies of your prescriptions (if you have them). Pharmacies aren't able to refill drugs across state lines without an actual paper prescription. This shouldn't be an issue if you make sure you have adequate medicine on hand. I usually travel with several extra days in supply, just in case we are delayed.
If you have a medical binder or electronic medical records, I recommend traveling with those. Should your child need medical care far from home, you will want hospital staff to have as much relevant information as possible. I suggest typing up a one-page sheet of the most pertinent information, a summary of diagnoses, medications, list of doctors with phone numbers, prior surgeries, etc. Print one copy for the front of your medical binder. Print a few extra copies for your purse, stroller bag, wherever makes sense.
Get an extra set of luggage tags for your wheelchair and for your carseat and label the tag EMERGENCY INFO. Inside, you should print the essentials: your child's name, age, primary diagnoses, blood type, meds primary physician and phone number, and emergency contact phone numbers (include people other than yourself, spouse, and fellow travelers).
Let's take the time here to briefly mention those pesky life and death documents. If you do not have a will (including special needs trust, living will, and power of attorney), get to a lawyer's office and get this done! I travel with copies of the living will and power of attorney.
When my daughter was younger and so much more fragile, I would find the name, address, and number for the nearest children's hospital, as well as the nearest emergency room to our destination. As she has gotten older and more stable, I merely look up the closest ER and the nearest fairly large hospital. When in a large metropolitan area (like our recent trip to D.C.), I just confirm the closest emergency room to our AirBNB or hotel and assume we will find good care in the city.
In order to recall this information in a hurry, save the hospital info in your contacts under favorites and print a copy for the front of your medical binder.
What are your tips for air travel? What have been some of your best (or worst) travel experiences?
We love to travel. Although our roaming souls often come back to the same places.