THE WEEK BEFORE
Mom, Did you pack my DS???
--Inform school administration of kids being absent (if out of normal vacation times)
--Child's Birth Certificate and copy of their latest immunizations (just in case)
--Current photo of child
--Confirm appropriate bedding arrangements for children (standard size cribs are different in different countries; will you need a bedrail for children; is there a pack n play option)
--Set auto-response vacation message
--Put the Advice and Classifieds groups on "no mail" by sending a blank message
--Stop Mail-- you can do this via the USPS Website
--Put in your grocery delivery order so you'll have food on its way when you return
--Hold newspaper delivery
--Inform neighbors/ super you'll be gone (and make sure someone has your key!)
--Pay babysitter/nanny (if appropriate) ahead of time
--Get cat/dog sitter/kennel lined up
--Get plant sitters
--Plan on housecleaner while you're away
--Turn down thermostat
--Make copies of your passport(s). Leave with someone as well as take a copy for yourself (you can take your copy to the nearest gov't office to get a new one). Put them in "the cloud" or email them to yourself (safely)
--Copy down any credit card numbers (with expiration date), so that if they are lost or stolen it easy to cancel and replace.
--Email a list of your bookmarks (including your ticket company, airlines, Visa, Amex, embassy links, etc.) to yourself.
--Check TSA regulations for list of what you can't carry on-board:
--Buy extra quart sized Ziploc bags because ALL liquids must go through security in these bags. (NOTE: ONLY ONE Ziploc per traveler)
--Take phone numbers of pediatrician, other doctors, neighbors, friends, super, nanny and have them handy. (Email them to yourself too!) Think of whoever you might need to contact in case of an emergency or last minute need.
--First Aid Kit (band-aids, Tylenol, thermometer)
THE DAY BEFORE
--Close house windows
--Check on reservations and check in online
--Reserve Car Service (and make sure to take the Car Service Phone Number if you want to call them from the airport)
--Set DVR to record favorite shows
--If applicable, park car in a spot that will be legal throughout vacation
--Take Car, Plane, Boat sickness supplies (bonine, dramamine, sealable bags, extra wipes, change of clothes for parents and kids)
--Take EMPTY water bottles on the plane and refill on board
--Take EXTRA bags for garbage, barf, barfed on clothes, etc. Check our list of tips and tricks for motion sickness.
--NO on-board liquids more than 3 oz. unless medication (no sunscreen, etc.). TSA will confiscate and you'll be left without. (1/2 used 5 oz toothpaste are NOT allowed)
--Breast milk or formula is allowed, but you must separate and declare at checkpoint. Check TSA for more information.
--Leave your golf clubs, pool cues, swords, axes, hatchets, Billy clubs, bows and errors and spear guns in checked luggage.
--CORD for GPS (and the GPS)
--Take cell phone charger. (For international travel you can rent an international cell phone)
--Take laptop power cord (if taking laptop)
--Outlet adapter kit
USEFUL TIPS FROM AROUND THE WEB
This is a cool infographic about travelling with babies!
Photo credit: Tawny Rockerazzi