If you find it a tad difficult to sleep in a strange bed, in a strange place, just imagine how your baby feels sleeping in a hotel room! There are many factors that can regress your practically perfect sleeper when you’re on the road.
So here are our best solutions to help you maintain your sleep-bliss during your hotel stay:
1. Request a room that is NOT next to an ice machine, vending machine, stairway, or elevator.
This may be a tad more work for you to unload everything from the car, but it’s worth it when your baby is not awakened by the noises made by strangers’ foot traffic.
2. When making your reservation, request a pack ‘n play (some hotels call it a crib) for your room.
Why pack it yourself when almost all hotels have one available? But then again, if your baby is used to his own pack ‘n play or if you don’t like the idea of your baby sleeping in a used one, bringing your own isn’t such a big hassle. For one, they’re relatively lightweight and also you can guarantee that you’ll know how to work it — they can be seriously tough to figure out sometimes.
These are all highly portable and will really make your baby feel like he’s in his nursery. The soother will signal him that it’s time to fall asleep. Just so you know, most soothers won’t attach to a pack ‘n play so just put it on the floor or on a table near it. And don’t forget a couple of small board books to read during storytime — remember, it’s important that you’re re-creating your home’ bedtime routine for your baby.
4. Bring your baby’s sound machine!
It is SO important to pack this because it’s familiar, it’s part of his routine (or it should be!), and most importantly, it will deflect the other sounds that will be occurring inside and outside of the room! If you forget it, you can always download a white noise app onto your phone. Place it near his crib and turn up the volume up all the way.
5. Pack these bathtime/nightime essentials:
6. If your budget allows for it, book a suite so your baby has his own room.
When it’s not possible to afford that oh-so fantastic traveling-with-baby luxury, try one of our favorite hotel pack ‘n play sleep solutions:
- A) Make a tented space.
There’s usually an extra cotton blanket in a hotel closet (but you can always use one of the sheets from the beds) and toss it over the top of the pack ‘n play. You can also push the pack ‘n play up to the wall of an open closet and cover three sides of the pack and play by hanging the blanket up by the hangers — this will allow for plenty of ventilation.
- B) Use your baby’s carseat in the Pack-n-Play to fall asleep.
If your baby doesn’t like being covered up, you can try to put him in his carseat and then put the whole carseat in the pack ‘n play until he falls asleep. Just take him out of the carseat once he’s been asleep for a little while (like at his next feeding). It’s a good way to start your baby off but he needs to be taken out for the night.
- C) Use other spaces!
The pack ‘n play can usually fit in the hall way next to the bathroom, in a walk-in closet, and sometimes even in the bathroom (desperate times call for desperate measures!). Don’t be afraid to move furniture around to make it more ideal. Like place the pack ‘n play next to and behind a dining table so that you can drape a sheet over both — again creating the tent effect.
7. Pack your baby’s own small suitcase.
It’s just easier to have all of his stuff in its own place. We love a small suitcase with wheels like this one.
8. Have a plan and try not to stress out when your baby cries!
The more stressed out you are, the more stressed out your baby will become. Have a talk with your spouse pre-hotel stay about your plans and what you need to do when/if your baby doesn’t easily drift off to dreamland — because odds are, he won’t at first. See which strategy works that night. Odds are, one of them will…