Return to Index
Breastfeeding While Traveling: What You Need to Know
Immunizations and Medications
Precious Cargo: Carrying Baby
- Carry your baby for a long period of time
- Allow for unrestricted nursing
- Maintain skin-to-skin contact with your baby
- Protect your baby
Milk Output: Stay Hydrated
- Talk to a travel doctor or a travel specialist about which immunizations you and your baby will need. She will take into account the baby’s age and the types of diseases you may be exposed to before deciding whether to give a travel-specific vaccine or to accelerate the administration of your baby's normal childhood vaccines.
- Be sure you know how to manage diarrhea—for both you and your baby. Breastfeeding reduces the risk of diarrhea for your baby, but it does not eliminate this disorder. You should know how to prepare and use rehydration solutions. Be sure to be especially careful about washing your own hands.
- Talk to your health insurance company about out-of-area coverage and purchase additional travel insurance if needed.
- If you are supplementing your baby’s feedings, bring powdered formula and mix it with boiled or bottled water, or use a premixed canned formula.
- When traveling by plane, breastfeeding during take off and landing will help equalize the pressure in the baby’s ears and reduce the risk of ear pain. Also, since breast pumps are considered personal items, you may pack a pump as part of your carry-on luggage and store it beneath your airplane seat.
- When traveling by car, take advantage of the car’s sleep inducing abilities and drive during the baby’s usual sleep times or at night. Make frequent stops along the road to breastfeed, stretch your legs, and get the baby out of his car seat.
Centers for Disease Control http://www.cdc.gov/
Vaccines and Immunizations Centers for Disease Control http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/
Public Health Agency of Canada http://www.phac-aspc.gc.ca/
Proper handling and storage of human milk. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. . Available at http://www.cdc.gov/breastfeeding/recommendations/handling%5Fbreastmilk.htm. Updated March 4, 2010. Accessed September 11, 2012.
Travel recommendations for the nursing mother. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/breastfeeding/recommendations/travel%5Frecommendations.htm. Updated April 21, 2010. Accessed September 11, 2012.
Churchill RB,Pickering LK. The pros (many) and cons (a few) of breastfeeding. Contemporary Pediatrics. 1998;12:108-119
Howie PW, Forsyth JS, Ogston SA, Clark A, Florey CD. Protective effect of breast feeding against infection. BMJ. 1990;300:11-6.
Pregnant Travelers. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Available at: http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/yellowbook/2012/chapter-8-advising-travelers-with-specific-needs/pregnant-travelers.htm. Updated October 26, 2011. Accessed September 11, 2012.
Breastfeeding. The National Women’s Health Information Center website. Available at: http://www.womenshealth.gov/breastfeeding/. Updated August 1, 2010. Accessed September 11, 2012.
Vaccine recommendations for infants and children. Traveler’s Health, Centers for Disease Control, National Center for Infectious Diseases. Available at: http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/yellowbook/2012/chapter-7-international-travel-infants-children/vaccine-recommendations-for-infants-and-children.htm. Updated January 25, 2012. Accessed September 11, 2012.
What are the LLLI guidelines for storing my pumped milk? La Leche League website. Available at: http://www.llli.org/faq/milkstorage.html. Updated July 28, 2012. Accessed September 11, 2012.
- Reviewer: Brian Randall, MD
- Review Date: 09/2012
- Update Date: 09/11/2012