Essential Gear for Travelling with Babies and Toddlers


With the Eid break over, it’s now time to get ready for summer and the annual summer exodus, when many families resident in the Middle East take the opportunity to escape the heat and travel home to see loved ones or head off on adventures in cooler climes. Travelling with babies and toddlers can be a daunting task, especially if it is your first time travelling with children or your first time travelling with multiple children, or the scariest of all – travelling alone with multiple children!!  Being prepared both mentally and practically makes all the difference and having the right gear to hand can make or break your travel experience.

I’m Harkee, a British expat mother of two and parenting blogger at AS they grow. I’m delighted to have been invited by Just Kidding to share with you the travel essentials that I’ve relied on over the last 6 years of traveling with my young family (including 14 hour flights from Australia alone with two young ones that don’t sleep much!)  Many of these items can be used over a number of years so are a very worthwhile investment into both your travel experience and your sanity!

Baby Zen Yoyo

I will start with what I consider to have been one of the best travel investments I have ever made and that is a compact collapsable buggy that will fit in the airplane overhead baggage storage. Do not underestimate the value of being able to push your child through a busy airport right up to the airplane door and having that buggy right to hand the minute you step off the plane to make the dash to passport control and the luggage belt. No more waiting around with a tired, cranky toddler for your buggy to come off the luggage belt and wondering if it survived the journey. Babies might seem small but, when you have to carry them while trying to juggle multiple passports and lift suitcases off a moving belt, suddenly such small beings can pose a big difficulty. It’s much easier to have a safe place to strap them in where they can easily nap if they want to.  The Baby Zen Yoyo is one of the most well know airplane approved buggies and can also be used as a compact stroller throughout your whole trip. There are also various handy accessories available for it such as a ride on board for a toddler or child, car seat adapters and an insect shield perfect for those tropical holidays.

Mountain Buggy Bagrider

I also love the look of the new Mountain Buggy Bagrider which is suitable for babies from when they can sit confidently unassisted to around age 3, if that had been around when my kids were younger I’m pretty sure I would have bought it for transporting them through the airport and they would have loved it. I showed it to one of my friends and she bought it straight away so I’m looking forward to seeing it in action this summer – I have always found Mountain Buggy products to be sturdy and easy to manouvre and this seems to be the same.


Another essential bit of kit for getting a baby or young toddler around an airport is a baby carrier and I always travelled with my Ergo. When travelling alone with a newborn and a toddler it was a god send to be able to strap my baby to me and push my toddler in the compact buggy. Airports and airplanes can be busy, scary, overwhelming places for babies and toddlers and baby carriers allow a child to feel comforted by close physical contact with a parent while allowing the parent to keep their hands free to deal with everything that needs to be dealt with. Thick, comfy, adjustable straps, a head support for a sleeping baby and handy little pockets as well as different options for carrying position makes the Ergo carrier a safe comfortable ride for both the child and the parent. I used mine right into toddlerhood throughout airports, onboard planes for hours of walking up and down the aisles bouncing an unsettled child and of course at my destination as well. A baby carrier is particularly handy if you are travelling somewhere where you will be using public transport a lot as it can be more difficult hopping on and off buses and trains with a buggy.

Swaddle Designs 4 pack

The most multi-functional item I always travel with is a set of large muslin cloths. These have so many uses, from nursing cover to buggy shade, light shade, bed sheet or blanket, to mop cloth, burp cloth, changing mat and more besides. Airplane seats and blankets are usually cleaned with harsh detergents that aren’t particularly kind to babies’ soft skin. The one time I didn’t place a muslin underneath him, my son reacted to the seats and since then I’ve made sure to place the protective barrier over the seat or bassinet. The Swaddle Designs 4 pack of large muslins would be perfect for this.

Skip Hop Suite Diaper Back Pack

For my carry-on bag I always forgo a handbag or shoulder bag and opt for a backpack for both comfort and convenience. Ideally one with lots of pockets to separate the things you need, like the Skip Hop Suite Diaper Back Pack which not only looks stylish but also comes with a travel change mat, paci pocket, stroller straps, bottle bag and packing cube, all handy accessories for travel. As soon as the kids were old enough to carry their own little backpacks I got them one each for travelling and going out and about at our destination. They can fill these with their toys and entertainment for the flight and maybe a few snacks – just don’t forget to check what they packed – I remember wondering why my son’s bag was so heavy one trip only to discover he’d filled it full of wooden train toys!! Just kidding has a wide range of back packs so you can pick one suitable to the size of your child and their likes. My pick would be the backpacks from A Lovely Little Company for the many pockets, especially the side ones perfect for a water bottle, not to mention their cuteness!

 A Lovely Little Company Backpack

One of the things I get most anxious about when travelling with the kids is food. It was easier when they were nursing newborns but as fussy eating toddlers I always needed to make sure I had plenty of their favourite things to hand. Stacking pots like the Skip Hop Food Storage Tower are perfect for packing a variety of foods but also practical for snacking on the go. Pack some snacks for you as well – inevitably the baby will need all your attention just as the onboard meals are about to be served and you might miss out!

Skip Hop Food Storage Tower

As well as the gear there is also the basics you need to pack like wipes (I always packed an already open pack that was half used so it wasn’t so heavy to carry), nappies (I split these out into a few in the nappy pouch (or just a ziplock bag) which I can just grab and take to the loo and a back up stash in the bag to refill) and nappy sacks which can be handy not only for nappies but also any soiled or wet clothing. Talking of soiled or wet clothing, don’t forget to pack a change of clothing for you and your partner as well as the little ones as you are likely to be caught in the line of any fire!

Of course the most important thing to be sure to take with you is a bucket full of patience, a sense of humour and the knowledge that no matter how difficult the journey, you will get to your destination eventually and the family time out of the summer desert heat will all be worth it!!

Have a great summer everyone and safe travels!

Harkee x

Winter Travel Safety Tips

 Travel Checklist Before Hitting The Road

Britax Winter Travel Safety Tips

We know that you want your little ones to stay cozy during the winter months, but big coats can affect the fit of the car seat harness during travel.

Even though the harness may seem snug on your child while wearing a coat, in the event of a crash, the coat could compress, creating slack in the harness that allows your child to move about in the seat.

So how can you keep your baby safe and comfortable during this chilly weather?

Start with the Pinch Test

First, it’s important to know how to tell if your child’s harness is tight enough, whether they’re wearing a winter coat or a t-shirt. To make sure your child’s harness is snug enough, perform the simple Pinch Test before you start your travel:

  • Secure your child in the car seat and buckle the harness as usual.
  • Using your thumb and pointer finger, try to pinch one of the harness straps at your child’s collar bone level.

If you’re able to pinch the strap, the harness is too loose. You should not be able to pinch any excess webbing.

Check the tightness of the harness strap every time you buckle children into their car seats, especially when they are wearing heavy coats.

Check your child’s coat

Now you know what a properly snug harness looks like. You can check if your child’s coat is acceptable to wear in a car seat:

  • Secure your child in the car seat while wearing the coat in question.
  • Properly tighten the car seat harness around your child until the harness webbing cannot be vertically pinched at your child’s collar bone.
  • Remove your child from the car seat WITHOUT loosening the harness system.
  • Remove the coat and secure your child back in the car seat WITHOUT adjusting (loosening/tightening) the harness.

If the buckle and chest clip are still secure without the coat, and the harness webbing CANNOT be vertically pinched at your child’s collarbone, then the coat is acceptable. If the harness webbing CAN be vertically pinched, then the coat is too thick and should not be worn with the car seat.

Try some other options

If your child’s coat is too bulky when worn with the car seat, consider alternatives for warmth:

  • Preheat your vehicle.
  • Put a coat on your child backwards.
  • Drape a blanket over your child.
  • Consider a coat made out of very thin but warm material.

Blog published originally at Britax Tips and Advice

View our selection of the safest car seats at Britax Car Seats At JustKidding Middle East

Gifts For Mums, Babies and Toddlers: The Ultimate List

Ultimate Holiday Gift Gudie

The Ultimate Gift Guide

A list of gifting options with free delivery* and gift wrapping!

For new mums:

1) Medela Swing Breast Pump

Gift for mums: breast pump
Medela Swing Breast Pump

Being in the industry for more than 50 years, Medela is therefore a go-to brand for new mums. Further more raved by for its portability that it easily fits in a tote, it also is super easy to clean!

Because its extremely lightweight and uses both adaptor and batteries, its perfect for use at home or on-the-go.
You’ll definitely be crossing one off your mummy best friend’s wishlist with the Medela Swing and a big red bow.

2) SkipHop Diaper Bag


SkipHop Diaper Bags

From stylish to sleek to classy and trendy. Skiphop has a wide range of fashionable totes fit for every woman’s style and all while fitting every essential with her. We love the selection over at Skiphop.

They have both trendy styles and multipurpose functionalities (check out the SoFo bag backpack-shoulder bag configuration!)

3) Doona Car Seat and Stroller

Infant car seat and stroller
Doona + Car Seat and Stroller

It is just heaven sent that a car seat can also become a stroller in a push of a button and that’s all thanks to Doona! The perfect car seat for newborns up to 15 months old.

The much buzzed-about Doona Infant Car Seat and Stroller will make you any mom’s new bff.

4) Limited Edition Beaba Babycook in Rose Gold

Baby food maker
Rosegold Beaba Babycook

Nothing better says “You are extremely special” than a limited edition item. One of our bestselling innovations, the Beaba Babycook preps fresh baby food in just minutes!

On top of that, it comes in a gorgeously stunning rose gold color. Definitely will compliment any mummy’s kitchen!

5) JustKidding Gift Vouchers

European Baby Brands
JustKidding Babystore

If you have that one friend who is awesome, fun, really great but a bit indecisive and hard to read, worry not. We’ve got you covered! Why not get her vouchers for our JustKidding Babystore?

With the best European baby brands all under one wing like Bugaboo, Stokke, Uppababy and more, she’ll surely find something she would love!

For babies:

1) Oribel Wonderland

Play center and table for baby and toddlers
Orbiel Wonderland Activity Center

Educational and fun and even timeless, the Oribel Activity Center has several educational and sensory toys for baby. Furthermore, it converts into a table for future use!

Because it is a gift that will be around for years, it is a surefire gome staple. Always there to remind him as he grows who his coolest and funnest parent/aunt is.

2) MudPie Clothing

Christmas Gear for babies
MudPie Holiday Baby Collection

Fun and colorful, cheerful and festive, we absolutely adore the seasonal collections from Mud Pie. In comparison to what is in the market, the cozy, comfy Winter selections are extremely stylish and unique. It will truly make any baby the star of any party!

3) Sleepyhead


Baby bed

This baby bed is both a gift for mum and baby! The Sleepyhead’s tailor-made for baby design makes sure that wherever baby sleeps, he is warm, snug and cozy with its womb like shape and snuggly borders. It also is perfect during bottle feeding to boot!

For kids

1) Berg Go-Karts


Toddler toys
Berg Buggy Karts

Never has a child run out of energy all throughout the day. Because we always have those fun, active and sporty kids on our list, we definitely recommend the Berg Go-Karts.

Because they come in two styles, they are adorably styled perfect for both boys and girls aged 2-5 years!

Other than having easy steering control kids would enjoy, dads would definitely love the them because their EVA tires too because they never go flat!

2) CarGo

Car Seat and Travel Bag
CarGo Car Seat and Trolly

Every child loves to bring a few toys around. Be it at school or to a quick grocery run, always. Gift him the power to convince mum to let it all happen. Also a car booster seat, the CarGo is also a pull-along storage bag for toddlers to store snacks, toys and whatever his heart desires. All without mummy’s objections!

3) Nobodinoz Teepee

Teepee for toddlers
Nobodinoz Teepee

A play tent that fits up to three, the stylish and modern teepee doubles also as the perfect storage. Therefore, the gorgeous nursery piece is definitely something mum and toddler would be thankful for!

Perfect for slumber parties with friends or playtime with mum and dad. The Nobodinoz Teepee is a timeless gift for any toddler and child of any age and any style.

All orders from are eligible for free gift wrapping this holiday season! We also have free delivery to Riyadh, Dubai and Doha for orders above 150! Your festive Christmas shopping is just a click away!

A Middle Eastern Summer: Tips for Babies & Toddlers


Summer is here, and it’s here to stay! Summers in the Middle East last for months, sometimes even half the year. But fear not, with these tips in mind, it will just pass like a breeze. Just stock up on these summer essentials and your little ones will have the time of their lives!




  1. Stay Hydrated Intense summer heat may be too overwhelming for your little ones. When outdoors, make sure to keep them hydrated to help keep their body temperature regulated at all times. Always pack boxed juice drinks whenever outside or fresh bottled juices or water, which would be much better. Stainless steel bottles are great for keeping drinks cool amidst the heat.

    Skip Hop Zoo Stainless Steel Straw Bottle
  2. Eat Up If you’re not a fan of the thought of taking too many potty trips, fruits are also excellent sources for hydration. Watermelons, grapes, and oranges are ideal and easy to pack. A great hack to take your summer pack further up a notch is freezing grapes and storing them in insulated lunch packs and viola- mini fruit lollies/popsicles that are not just fun, cool treats but also 100% healthy.

    3 Sprouts Lunch Bag
  3. Dress Cool Light mesh fabrics are perfect for summer; thin layers lets you stay cool and lightweight fabrics are very breathable and doesn’t trap any heat, allowing air to circulate & move freely through the fabric. Cotton, linen or chambray onesies and coordinates are also other good options. Opt for colors that are bright or white as these reflect sun light while dark colors absorb heat.

    Jottum One Piece
  4. Sun Protection Use hats, umbrellas or canopies as a protective layer against sun rays. Choose sunscreen that is specially formulated for babies and kids’ sensitive skin and uses natural ingredients. Though SPF lotions and creams may be a good option, an added external protective layer is still best. Clip on umbrellas and detachable extendable sun canopies for strollers are a definite must have accessories.
    Stroller Summer Cover

    Naif Sunscreen (for the sensitive skin of babies and kids)
  5. Indoor Fun Beaches and pools aren’t the only destination for families to cool down. In the Middle East, the heat may be intense but we adapt tremendously. Indoor theme parks, forests and adventure zones are a widespread and with summer at bay, so are promotions for entrance fees and packages that are better than usual. Also, why not stay creative at home with fun educational toys? A toddler’s imagination can travel so far with playful bonding with their mums and dads or toddlers alike.

    Melissa & Doug Corner Kitchen

JustKidding Recommends: Top Car Seats for Newborns, Babies and Toddlers

Top Pick for Newborns
Newborn to 1 year


Pebble Plus

The Maxi-Cosi Plus is a best seller for its cocoon-type seat that gives a very comfortable and secure womb feel for your newborn baby




Top Pick for Babies
Newborn to 4 years


Britax First Class

Britax First Class features super comfy removable cushioning that lets the seat grow with your child




Top Pick for Toddlers
4-12 years



A wallet-sized booster that packs maximum safety that is 10x smaller and just as safe





Kidsriver Booster Seat

Most convenient way to make sure your child is safe at all times is Kidsriver Booster seat that easily adapts to any car seat







Kidsriver Alant

A full seat that gives your child maximum safety, the Kidsriver Alant makes sure your toddler is safe, secure and comfortable





Top Pick Innovative Car Seat
Newborn  to 1 year

Doona Car Seat and Stroller

The only car seat with integrated wheels, the Doona Car Seat and Stroller lets you convert your car seat into a stroller with ease



Eid Holiday Travel Essentials

Holidays are coming in a few days. Planning a fun road trip or jet setting for the Eid Holiday? With a toddler or child in your crew list, packing for a trip might be tricky. But no sweat, we’ve rounded up our best travel essentials to make sure you’re ready for your adventure.

1) Be ready for any kind of weather with stroller add-ons

Make sure your baby is protected from the sun’s rays or from rainfall by packing important accessories for your stroller. Be in the know from your flight details to pit stops to weather predictions. Pack your clothing according to the weather in the area and find the best activities beforehand.

2) Be safe and ready

Always bring a safety essential kit for your little one.Just Essentials makes this easy for you with its Safety Kit which already has the essentials for protecting your child from places that are not yet baby-proof and to prevent any accident that might come along. An added tip: When packing for your child, bring spares of the most important things just in case.










3) Stay organized

A trip with kids means bringing around toys, care essentials, snacks and many others. Be creative with packing a wide variety of different items together by using organizers which you can stick to car seats or strollers to keep things multi-purpose and convenient for travel. You can also opt to give your toddler his own travel bag or stroller. Make sure to pick one that is lightweight, comfortable and fun


4) Pack light

Bring things that are versatile, lightweight and compact. Thankfully nowadays, things just find a way to be smaller and easy to carry around. Take for example the Stokke Flexi Bath which folds flat ever so easily. Remember not to bring too many clothes, you can opt to have them washed and remember to keep the shoes to a minimum, or best stick to one pair to wear that is versatile. This tip applies for both mums and kids 😉








5) Snack or Rewards Bag

Babies, toddlers and tykes, love their playtime. Be sure to pack some fun toys and activities to keep them busy at all times. Packing an activity bag filled with fun toys to play with or books to read will keep them preoccupied during the trip. Is the long trip keeping them grumpy? Make sure to bring pocket sized snacks and drinks.


















6) Travel smart and stylish

Going on vacation is not an excuse to scrimp on style. Luckily there are changing bags and diaper bags are just oh-so-stylish as they are functional! With several pockets for storage and a wide variety of design for every taste, Elodie, Oioi, and Stokke bags are your definite must-haves.

Top Tips For Travelling With Children

travelling with children

It’s summer time again, which means a lot of families will be flying home for the holidays. It’s an exciting time of year, but not without its challenges, the first being travelling with children. No matter if it’s your first trip with your first child or your sixth with your sixth, we can all do with a few tips on how to keep the travel experience as streamlined as possible. Here are our 10 top tips for travelling with children.

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10 Ways To Travel Cheap With Kids

how to travel cheap with kids

Summer is around the corner, which means many of us are preparing for our annual getaway. But while the kids might be jumping off the walls with excitement there’s every chance you’re stressing about the cost. In between hotel bills, airfares and day-to-day spending money, it’s easy to blow the budget. Fortunately, family holidays don’t have to break the bank. Read on for our top 10 ways to travel cheap with kids.
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10 Tips For Travelling Alone With A Baby

travelling with a toddler

Summer is round the corner, which means a lot of families will be flying home for the holidays. If, like me, you’ll be travelling alone with a baby, you may be stressing about the prospect of flying alone with your baby. I know I am. However, I’ve come to the realisation that while it’s going to be a trip filled with crowds, irritated passengers and perhaps the odd meltdown, it doesn’t have to be horrendous. I’ve talked to friends, family and scoured the best parenting forums to come up with this list of tips to make the journey as enjoyable as possible. Happy travels…

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6 Expert Parent Tips – Car Seat Choices… Updated!

Tips for choosing a car seat

Since before Baby Boo was born I have been consistently baffled by car seats. From height and weight limits to installation and comfort, there’s so much to consider when it comes to purchasing one of those little padded thrones. As regular readers of this blog will know, when I was pregnant I wrote a list of tips to help parents choose the perfect car seat. I love a good list, and now that Baby Boo is moving up to a Group 1 car seat, I thought it was about time I revisited this topic. With this in mind I decided to call in the big guns and tracked down JustKidding operations manager and mum-of-two, Jacqueline Schrama, to get her top tips for choosing a car seat.

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