LY's maiden trip to New Zealand at 1 yo

  • Sunday, September 03, 2017
  • By Iva Wen

Shortly after LY turned 1, we brought him to New Zealand. I thought it would be easier to bring him out when he was 1 than younger days but I was wrong, in fact it would be better to travel with him when he was much younger, best time would be just before he knows how to crawl/walk. 


Incident 1: LY learnt to walk when he was 10 month old, so by 1 he already pretty good in walking. He knew what he's capable of and what he could do. He didn't want to be restrained, he hated being buckled into his car seat. He was not like that when he was in Singapore so I did not expect all these, I was not prepared at all. In New Zealand, from city to city the driving journey is always minimum 2 to 3 hours. It was a total disaster, he kept crying even vomited out all his milk and we had to pull aside, drag out luggage and get him changed. 

Incident 2: LY hated high chair, he didn't want to sit in there. He started taking solid food since he was 6 months old, I thought we could just order kid's meal (pasta, steam vegetable and etc) and gave it to him. Since he was not happy with high chair, he also refused to eat. He lost weight after NZ trip since he didn't eat much (been drinking milk instead) most of the time. 

Incident 3: Sleep disturbance. LY couldn't sleep well when he traveled with us. He woke up every 2 hours at night in tears, cried out loud. I felt he actually suffered more than he enjoyed this trip. 

After these, I learnt how to make him sit in the car quietly and how to make him eat together with us. Good lesson learnt in NZ. 


Happy baby, happy mum. Planning is very important if you don't want your happy holiday mood spoiled. 
  • Choose a night flight or a flight that corresponds with baby nap time.
  • Book your bassinet early. It's limited. It was a full flight from Singapore to Christchurch, many young babies on board, I saw one grandpa holding his grandson in his arm the entire journey, without bassinet. 
  • Plan a more relax or flexible itinerary. Stop for break every 1-2 hours or limit the longest drive for the day not more than 3 hours. Babies are creatures who love routine, so try to plan your itinerary which your baby can eat, nap, play and rest as usual. This will make your life easier, trust me.
  • Request a crib when you book your accommodation. Bring a potable one if it's not available.
  • Don't forget to include car seat into your car rental request. 
  • Go airport earlier so you can prep your baby for the long haul flight. 
  • Find out if the local supermarket sells diaper and milk powder which your baby is used to. I didn't bring much milk powder from SG and I bought a new tin from supermarket in NZ. 
Packing list
  • Your baby favorite toy or best is, buy a few sets of new toy specially for the trip. Surprise your baby if they are well behaved
  • Bring baby snack or your baby favorite fruits on board, not only to keep them occupied, munching food also help to equalize the air pressure in ears. Note that fresh fruit is not allowed to bring into NZ so try to finish them before touching down. 
  • Your baby favorite pillow or blanket or something your baby can't sleep without it. Try your best to recreate the same sleeping environment for your little one. 
  • iPad loaded with your baby favorite songs. I know some parents may not like this idea, but this is the only thing can get LY buckled. I only learnt this after came back from NZ, I didn't prepare anything in NZ. Not to forget iPad/ iPhone car holder.
  • Medication in case baby happens to fall sick
  • Extra sets of usual baby stuff such as diaper, clothes, milk powder and etc.
  • Noise canceling earmuff. My boy is a light sleeper, so I thought it would be good to have a set of this. 
  • Warm clothing, dress the baby like an onion so it's easier to adjust according to the weather change. Hat is important as baby tend to lose heat from their head. 
The flight

LY did pretty good and cooperative. The outbound flight took off at 7pm and LY usually sleeps at 8pm everyday. We managed to eat our meal peacefully and catch some sleep while he had a straight 6 hours sleep. We were not as lucky on the way back from NZ as it was a morning flight and LY only nap 3 hours. 

Do remember to ask for hot water as soon as you settle down. Don't wait until your baby start crying for milk, it might be too late since air stewardess is going to take some time she can attend you. 

The trip

Most of the time were stressful. I took it too easy, and yes, served me right. I should have prepared. But it's ok, this taught me how to handle that little rascal better in future trip. 

I hope he will remember the mini apple he plucked from tree fresh and the lovely animals he met in the farm. 

Interested to visit New Zealand? Check out my itinerary and click here to read day 1, day 2, day 3, day 4, day 5, day 6, day 7, day 8, day 9 trip report.

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