Excess Baggage: Unessential Baby Gear - My Family Travels

Before you pack the formula, stroller, and diapers, read this article by Family Travel Forum.

One bag, two bags, laptop or not, who’s worried about carry-ons? Since you’re probably already toting a diaper bag, porta-crib, car seat, stroller, toy bag, and other accouterments of infant travel, excess baggage is your future. Wouldn’t it be a relief to leave that duffel bag of disposable diapers and that wine carton filled with formula at home?

Welcome to the global era! With international marketing alliances and worldwide manufacturing plants, Pampers, Huggies, Luvs and other popular brands are now available in many countries around the world. Dodotis in Cairo? Mamia in Rio de Janeiro? It’s still a disposable diaper. A Kimberly Clark spokesperson did admit that due to “the numerous manufacturers overseas and the different materials that are used, it makes it hard to classify their product as our brand.” However, using an older model or a less absorbing local brand is a small price to pay for leaving a 30-lb. duffel of future landfill at home.

Before you wean that baby onto cow’s milk, rest assured that it may be less readily available than the infant formula you use back home. At Mead Johnson, manufacturers of Enfamil, Roland Tuley advises travelers, “there may be slight variations in the formula sold. Enfamil is sold as Enfalac in many markets, and [if a market carries both products] Enfalac will be the more similar to Enfamil in the U.S.” For information on the many countries where this product is currently available, he suggests readers call 800/BABY-123 and speak with a specialist.

The Ross Division of Abbott Laboratories, makers of Similac and Isomil, gets calls from nervous travelers all the time. “It’s more helpful for consumers to speak with our customer service representatives directly,” urges Diane Wilson, Director of Global Development. “They can find out what’s available in each country, under what brand name, and how it might be different from the product their baby currently uses.” To inquire about pediatric products worldwide, call Ross at 800/986-8510 in the US, or 614/624-3422 from outside the US. Ms. Wilson said that parents who call a few weeks before departure may even be able to request that their preferred specialty product, if not locally available, be shipped to an affiliate office for their use.

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