First-Time Parent? Here’s a Checklist for Car Rides

Are you a first-time parent considering bringing your baby on a road trip? If so, then there’s a possibility that you’re all over the place trying to make a list of what to bring on your trip.

First time parent

Bringing a fussy child with you on car rides is no easy feat; it’s challenging, especially for first-time parents.

Rest assured, you don’t have to look further since this page covers what you should bring on car rides!

Car Seats

Car seats are an absolute must if you’re travelling with a child. The type of car seat you purchase will depend on your child’s age, height, weight, and preference; ensure you get the correct measurements.

Car seats are an excellent investment, especially if you’re on the road with your child. So invest in high-quality seats and visit the Maxi-Cosi website for the best car seats in Australia.

Let’s look at the different types of car seats for your baby to decide which one you should purchase.

  • Baby Capsules: These capsules are used from birth up to approximately 12 months or until your baby has outgrown the height markers. They can be removed from the car and used to move your baby or attached to a stroller to create a travel system.
  • Convertible Car Seat: You can’t use this as a carrier, unlike baby capsules. However, since it’s convertible, you can use it from birth until your child outgrows the car seat. It can be typically used until your child reaches 4 years of age.
  • Booster Seat: Only used for kids that sit in a forward-facing position. This means they’re old enough to have long legs and tall height, and it can even work until your child no longer needs a car seat. Just be sure to check the state laws for this.

First time Parent Stroller

Do you plan to go on a weekend road trip with your child? If so, you’ll find that a stroller is an essential and valuable item to include in your checklist. A stroller can make your life easier when you eat at a restaurant or walk to the park, mall, or anywhere else.

With a stroller, you can feed your child more easily. Some restaurants and hotels don’t provide a high chair for kids. Luckily for you, a stroller comes in handy in situations like this. Sure, you can always bring an extra high chair for yourself, but that would mean extra packing and cargo on your part. Consider a stroller and save yourself from the hassle.

First time Parent Feeding Essentials

Another essential item to include in your checklist is feeding supplies. You can’t leave the house without them! If you plan on taking your child anywhere, especially on a car ride that’ll last more than an hour, you should consider packing the following feeding essentials:

  • Portable Electric Steriliser: This is great for keeping your child’s bottles clean and safe from microbes during a trip. It can kill harmful microorganisms, and all you have to do is pack it in the trunk of your car.
  • Bottles and Feeding Cups & Utensils: Where else would your baby drink and eat if you won’t bring their bottles and feeding cups? Some hotels don’t have utensils for children or feeding bottles, so you must bring your own.
  • Healthy Snacks: Pack healthy snacks for the road whenever your child gets hungry.
  • Bottle-Cleaning Gel: Bring the cleaning kit for your baby’s bottles if you spend more than a day on the road or in a hotel.
  • Silicon Bib: This bib, which catches the food when your child eats, will help keep the mess to a minimum, allowing food to all fall in one place. Plus, it’s made of silicon, so you can easily clean it.
  • Formula Milk: Be sure you don’t forget your child’s formula milk. Pack it in safe containers for easier access and avoid any potential contamination.


Car rides can be boring for kids, especially when they’re long. As such, you should prepare a variety of activities to keep them entertained while on the road. You can prepare books, toys, and games you know your child would enjoy. You can even prepare portable DVD players or tablets to give them something to watch during long stretches of driving.

Extra Clothes

Extra clothes are an essential factor for babies during a road trip. When packing, remember that they should be dressed in comfortable loose clothes during the summer. It shouldn’t be restricting their movement.

Moreover, the weather can change anytime while on a road trip. As such, you should pack enough clothes for your child to handle any situation, like if it suddenly gets chilly or worse, if you’re stranded for a day or two.

First time Parent Final Thoughts

The items mentioned above are a must-have for any to-go baby bag, so be sure to include them on your list. It may seem a lot, but these are the things that your baby will surely need on the road.

Remember that it’s always better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it. As a first-time parent, abiding by this mantra can make it easier on your part. So what are you waiting for? Prepare your gear and essentials for a fun road trip with your child!

About Rob Fraser 2489 Articles
Rob Fraser – General dogsbody & Director Rob is the founder of the business. He constantly mutters something about way too many red wines one evening being to blame. Often known for taking the 4WD in the driveway over the sports car, he has travelled pretty much everywhere in Australia and when he is bored goes for a drive. He first learned to drive on the farm in a left hand drive WW11 Jeep when he was 11, and was hooked on 4WDriving way back then. In addition to 4WD he is an avid motoring enthusiast and has maintained a strong interest in the industry ever since his teens. He has owned way too many cars in his time as well. Having previously lived at the top of corporate life he retired in 2000 and hasn’t put a suit and tie on since. Cars are his passion so why not have a business doing what you love he figures. He has towed either a caravan or camper trailer to most parts of Australia, has run guided tours for camper trailers’ and instructed drivers in off road towing.