This time last year we were in Boston, half frozen but loving every minute. We actually flew out to New York on Boxing Day and spent almost three weeks in America over the festive period. It was the trip of a lifetime but that east coast winter is not to be messed with, especially if you have young children with you. Luisa was 1.5 and, thankfully, resigned herself to spending most of the day in her pram. There was a tonne of snow whilst we were in New York, that combined with the crowds made it really unsafe for her to be toddling around.
In a few weeks we’re actually going back to the USA, this time it’s just the three of us off to Philadelphia for a week. If the current weather holds up we’re looking at another very cold trip! Currently we’re expecting temperatures between 5 and -3 degrees most days. Nothing we can’t handle but it’s important to be prepared as when you’re a tourist you spend a lot of time outdoors sightseeing. The cold can catch up with little people quickly so I thought I’d share some things we learnt from our trip last year and how we’re preparing for this one.
What to Pack
- Layers are absolutely key, you need to be able to bundle your small people up and strip them down as you go in and out of attractions.
- Natural fabrics like bamboo and merino wool are worth investing in! They might be pricier but they make the best base layers.
- For babies and small toddlers who’ll happily sit in the pram go for a cosy snow suit, one with detachable feet and mittens is best in my opinion because it will last longer as they grow.
- Tights keep little toes warm and they’re harder to loose under a hotel bed than tiny socks!
- A good rule of thumb is to make sure your kids have one extra layer on than you but you’ll know if they need more – we found that most days in New York Luisa needed 3 plus a cosy-toes and blanket on her pram.
- If your toddler is on the move or your kids are older consider proper ski trousers and coats. They’ll have much more freedom to move and can easily strip them off to reveal a ‘normal’ outfit for going into museums and shops.
- For little ones traveling in prams definitely buy a cosy toes. We have a universal, all weather one from Mothercare that I can’t fault – shop here.
Winter Itinerary / Routine
If your kiddo is bundled up in their pram you’ll want to make frequent stops so they can stretch their legs and join in the fun. We like to plan out our day with a series of ‘main’ or must do activities and then keep a little mental note of places along the way that would be fun for Luisa if we needed to make a stop. This means that you’re less likely to go somewhere rubbish for lunch because your toddler is at the end of their tether and needs to run around and eat right now.
Extra Tips for Winter Travel
The wind and cold can be really harsh on everyones skin, especially kids. We found it made Luisa’s eczema flare up which was far from ideal! Even though it’s the winter I recommend going for a moisturising suncream and lip balm to avoid chapped lips and stingy cheeks. I actually wrote about winter sun protection in a lot of detail following our trip last year, you can read that post here.
If you’re going on any chilly trips this winter I hope that was helpful, I’d love to hear more about your travel plans so do leave me a comment or come and chat about it on social media.