General Question

zina's avatar

If you're considering bringing a young baby to a foreign place (with both parents), what resources do you want to make sure are available?

Asked by zina (1634 points ) July 18th, 2008

From 2 month old to 1–2 years old. Certain doctors / medical facilities / medicines, foods, other objects (clothing, blankets, bottles, toys), people who speak your language, communications technology, fellow tots to bond with?, friends / babysitters…. ?

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

7 Answers

rowenaz's avatar

Medicine that the baby will need – Baby Motrin is my favorite for fevers. A few little objects that are “home” for you baby, like baby carrier, or blanket. Dry formula single packets, for emergencies. Personally, I always felt that as long as I had one other person with me, all was well.

janbb's avatar

Cheerios! My brother once came to see me in England when I was there with my son who was a one year old. I asked him to bring some Cheerios for him and the lady getting off the plane ahead of him had a big bag of Cheerios too!

Seriously though – I think snacks and drinks that are familiar as well as a favorite stuffed animal or two are the main things. (My boys had very well travelled bears.) In addition, bringing or having access to a car seat and stroller are important, as well as any medicines you might need. Basically, you want your child to feel comfortable and safe. Having both parents there is a major plus.

If you’re talking about a very young baby, you porbably need whatever equipment and medicine will make you feel the most secure and comfortable. Enough diapers for the flight are essential!

zina's avatar

I should clarify that I mean to stay for a year or two.

Thanks for the ideas so far!

janbb's avatar

Zina,

That clarifies things more. I think if you are going to be in a country for a year or two, you will probably want to slowly acclimatize yourself and the baby to the prevailing customs and foods – that is if they are not unhealthy or alien to your beliefs. You’ll want to make sure that the water supply is safe and if not, might want to bring filters or something. Also, find out about the milk and/or formula supply. Other than that and things that will make you more comfortable like carseats and strollers, I think you can adapt a young baby to the prevailing culture. You might want to know some of the customs ahead of time; such as whether it is acceptable to breastfeed in public, take babies to restaurants, etc.

It would help to know what country you are considering. If it’s the UK or France, you’ll be fine. (Sorry – that sounds very Euro-centric – it’s just those are the foreign countries I know well.)

zina's avatar

A couple different possible plans involve San Cristóbal de las Casas, a small city in Chiapas, México (very likely), and/or Budapest, Hungary. Possibly, when the kids are a little older, France, but I’m less concerned about that. I’m also thinking of it for my friends, one pair who have a 3-month-old in a small town in Germany, another who are considering travel.

I’m currently in San Cristóbal (where I’ve spent a month before, and have a couple more weeks this time), and keeping my eyes open for resources – and thinking about what to look for. Drinking water is an issue (and thus uncooked veggies that have been washed), although there’s plenty of bottled water, ability to boil it, etc. I’m unfamiliar with the health care system, so I’m asking around about that (and taking note of pharmacies, clinics, etc that I see in the neighborhood). Not having had kids yet I’m just not totally sure what to ask about. Being fluent in Spanish is very helpful, but I don’t know all the terminology about babies/medicines, and I imagine that in an emergency it’d be very useful to be able to communicate in English. For Hungary, I lived there for 6 months last year, so again I’m familiar with it but wasn’t necessarily looking for these things. That’s more challenging because I’m only a beginning Hungarian speaker, although more people speak English, and I have many friends/family there who I could ask about things. Again, it’d be helpful to figure out exactly what to ask.

zina's avatar

Anyway, the point of asking the question is to make sure I take full advantage of this opportunity to see what’s here, both the obvious (clean water, a doctor), and the less obvious (specific medicines, how much does a babysitter/daycare cost?, specific kitchen appliances I’m used to like blenders for baby food, the telephone/internet system, transit to the nearest airport, etc). Much of that would be difficult to figure out from a distance, and of course is very subjective, so it’s great to see it all with my own eyes. This way I can be a little more prepared on the decisions (like when/how long to come), and what to bring with us when we return with the tot!

Megan64's avatar

We took our twins to France to live for a year when they were 2.5 years old. We lived a better quality of life when we were there than we do here. Free good education, practically free healthcare, the list goes on. Try leasing a furnished house in the off season (then you get all of that stuff – blender, crib, etc.) and stay through the tourist season. Sometimes you can get a deal for being a long term tenant. A suggestion might be to do this experience with another couple/family so you can share expenses, trade child care and have social support.

Answer this question

Login

or

Join

to answer.

This question is in the General Section. Responses must be helpful and on-topic.

Your answer will be saved while you login or join.

Have a question? Ask Fluther!

What do you know more about?
or
Knowledge Networking @ Fluther