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What to pack when travelling to Bali with kids? I remember the first time we were packing for Bali and I was nervous about forgetting or not having the right things packed. We survived and once we arrived I realised that we could buy most things over there that we needed. There are a couple of must takes like sunscreen, swim nappies, medications and night nappies. I always take these with us as they can be more expensive to buy in Bali if you do find them.
One option for bigger items like strollers and portacots is to hire them when you get to Bali. Bali Baby Hire is one company and even though I haven’t used their services before, I used to take our own Mountain Buggy Nano Stroller and Baby Bjorn travelcot, friends have and they thought it was great!
Listed below is things that you may like to pack. It will vary depending on your kids ages and as they grow older, the less you can pack!
You may like to just take hand luggage but I’m really not great at packing that light! Things to be mindful of are liquid restrictions and no sharp objects like scissors. You may also have to buy things when you arrive, Carrefour on Sunset Road has the best selection.
Change of clothes
I always take a change of clothes in our hand luggage with the kids! Goodness only knows what kind of mess can happen at the airport or on the flight but a change of clothes for the kids and at least a t-shirt for us is a must. This also helps if the airline loses your luggage.
A flight would be very long if we couldn’t take a fully charged iPad. How did we travel with kids before them?? Hats off to the parents who did or still do!! Also put in a charging cord as most planes have a usb charging dock to ensure they don’t go flat. Headphones are a must and we use the Moki brand that the kids love using. We also love the Junior Flyer logbooks as a way to keep the older kids entertained on the flight. Another book that is perfect for travelling to Bali with kids is My Awesome Bali Adventure and My Big Adventure Bali book. It is a fantastic travel journal for kids when they are in Bali and you can find our full review here of the book.
Lots of them!! Having food and drink for kids on the flight is a must. We usually pack an empty water bottle and then fill it up once through customs. Be aware that in Bali they will do another bag check just before you board the plane so any fluids that are purchased after customs will be confiscated.
You will need to get your water bottle filled on the plane which I have never had any trouble doing. If you have a baby and you are concerned about how much formula is ok to take on board check out this link that explains it here for Australians. Other countries check your relevant authorities websites.
You can bring enough formula onto the plane that you need for the flight and any delays. This includes heated up water in a thermos if you need it warm. Security allow you to take more on for babies and toddlers, the 100ml rule doesn’t apply for the water for formula.
Pack Nurofen or Panadol in your hand luggage. We learnt this the hard way on our trip to Bali in 2016. As we navigated immigration and after we had checked in ALL our pain relief, Mason hurt his elbow. I think it was a pulled elbow which is common in young kids but I had nothing in our hand luggage to help him!!
Luckily near our gate was a lovely Australian mum who had some Panadol on her and very kindly gave some to us. Within half a hour, he was running around again. Always pack something and I have taken 200ml bottles in my hand luggage previously, you may want to get the 100ml bottles to be on the safe side.
Dummy/earplanes for ears
Pack these in for the kids when the plane is taking off or landing. Kids ears can be very sensitive to the change in pressure so always handy to have. We have also travelled with Earplanes for Charlotte as she has issues with one of her ears and the ENT doctor recommended them.
Likewise if anyone gets air sick pack something like Kwells or essential oils are helpful too. If your bub uses a dummy, I recommend you pack a few extras just in case as there is nothing worse than losing it and having to go searching in the shops for a new one. The same goes for bottles just in case you lose them and bub will only take one type of bottle.
A must when travelling overseas but also a reminder to have 6 months validity on on all passports from the day you fly into Bali. They won’t let you fly into the Bali if you don’t have validity so make sure you check. Also make sure that your passports are in great condition with no tears in the pages or water damage. The Bali Airport immigration have been very strict lately.
A pen as well for any forms that need to be filled in and a family sized passport holder to keep all of your important documents in the one spot.
Large cotton wraps/blankets
I find these ever so useful and can be used as pillows, blankets or to contain any dirty clothes. A plastic bag is also a great thing to pack as is a small travel pillow. Travel towels can also work really well as they are light, compact and dry quickly.
I used to take enough nappies for at least 12 hours as delays can happen with any airline. Wipes are always packed even if the kids aren’t in nappies still. I highly recommend taking Huggies nappies as even though they are more expensive they seem to work the best.
We always used to take our Mountain Buggy Nano Stroller on the plane as having Mason contained was a must! We never had troubles taking it on the plane as hand luggage but we always have the stroller in the carry bag to board the plane and when checking in. A carrier can be a fantastic way to carry bub around while having your hands free so definitely an option for babies and infants.
Other products you may consider taking in your hand luggage that we haven’t personally used but come recommend by other families:
- Plane Pal (inflatable cushion for the kids during the flight, check with your airline to see if they accept these)
- Trunki (ride on carry on luggage for kids)
- Baby City Tour Stroller (this is a cheaper option for a stroller to take on board as hand luggage)
CHECKED IN LUGGAGE
If you choose to take checked in luggage like we do you can include the following things in your packing. Again this has changed over the years but different things will be helpful at different ages.
So an addition to our family holiday to Bali in 2017 was using packing cells for the first time. I must say I was a slightly amused how they would help my packing but I loved them! I could allocate a cell to swim gear, clothes for each person and overall they made our holiday so much easier!
Often bigger resorts will have international power points but it’s always worth at least packing one adapter just in case. The ones needed come with two round prongs. A powerboard is helpful to charge many devices at once. We usually have 2 phones and 2 iPads so a powerboard comes in handy. We recommend this universal travel adapter as it can be used anywhere in the world.
Dresses, shorts and bathers are a must when travelling to Bali. We usually pack about 5 days worth of clothes as the laundries are so cheap and easy to find. We take a couple of big cotton bags and after we have filled it with 3-4 days worth of clothes we take it to a laundry and they usually have it ready to be picked up by the end of the day.
We also take 2 sets of bathers so when one pair is drying there is still another pair to wear. Be sure to put in a hat each as well. Try not to pack too many clothes as less is best.
I love taking Charlotte’s Saltwater sandals and a pair of sandals for Mason. Then it’s usually a covered pair of shoes like their Walnuts. For us I always take my runners as I love going for a walk each morning, then a pair of sandals and thongs/flip flops as well.
I always pack 2 Huggies nappies per day (or ones you use at night at home) Nappies are easy to come by in Bali and I tend to buy the Mama Poko ones for day use once I arrive. They tend to not be as absorbent as Huggies so having some packed in our luggage is great. It can also be harder to find nappies rather than pull ups. Pull ups are extremely common in Bali even for younger toddlers. Carrefour Supermarket on Sunset Road has the best selection if you are searching for different types of nappies.
Wipes are also easy to find but if your bub uses particular ones as they are sensitive to different sorts make sure to bring them too. Makes for lots of room in the luggage to bring home your shopping ;-)
This was a must for us when the kids were younger. So easy to set up and as portacots aren’t counted in your luggage weight on most airlines, you can also put nappies, wipes etc. in the middle of the bag with no cost to you.
I always pack a couple of cotton bags, like from Cotton On, for when we go to the supermarket or out shopping. Plastic bags are a huge issue in Bali and the rubbish can be quite confronting at times. Try to reduce waste by using your own bag and you might like to consider packing things like metal straws.
We have a hard drive with our movies loaded onto it for times when we just need to chill in the hotel room or villa. Most TVs have USB points.
If you have a fussy bub or one just starting solids be sure to pack squeeze packets into your luggage. They can be harder to find in Bali and are great to have when out and about with the kids. We also love Mini Muncher products to order for the kids when we arrive in Bali, check out my review post for all the details.
Like wise if your bub is on formula it is best to pack a tin if that’s the only sort they have tried or like. Getting stuck with no way to feed milk to your baby is stressful and even though formula can be purchased in the bigger supermarkets there is no guarantee that the sort you want will be available. You can take food into Bali but you just need to declare it when you arrive.
We always pack Nurofen, Panadol, Zyrtec and Ethical Nutrients Travel Bug. The travel bug is to help keep Bali belly away. It is kept refrigerated before you travel and then can be kept out of the fridge for up to 4 weeks. You take it once a day and the contents of the capsule can be dissolved in milk or water for younger kids. The kids haven’t been sick for our 4 trips to Bali except for a quick vomit from becoming car sick. Last trip I suddenly felt ill and vomited but felt better and ate 2 hours later, the next day I was fine. Probiotics like Yakult are also a great idea and are readily available in Bali. We are also going to test out Travelan next trip that is similar to Travel Bug as I have heard great things about it.
A small toiletry bag with all your medicines kept together is a great idea and we also add in ear drops, gastro stop, bandaids, mosquito repellent, hand sanitiser and an antiseptic cream to help with things like burns/bites. You can buy a lot of this in Bali so can find it if need be but the last thing you want to be doing is shopping for things like this if you need it desperately! A product that is fantastic with kids is Parakito Mosquito Wristband. A great non-toxic way to protect the kids from bites.
The usual suspects like toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, moisturiser, lip balm, brush, sunscreen, baby shampoo and Milton tablets. I use Milton tablets in the bath to help sterilise the water when the kids have a bath. I have check previously with Milton and half a tablet can be put into the bath water then wait 15 minutes and it’s ready to go. For all the Mum’s out their make sure you take tampons with you as they can be hard to find in Bali and are very expensive!
A must have, as you will be in the pool a lot, is to bring things like inflatable baby rings/wings or a Wahu swimming vest depending on your kids age. If you are in Australia Clark Rubber also have a huge range of Wahu products. These have always been fantastic to take and don’t take up much room in your luggage.
A lot of villas and resorts will have floaties to use or hire plus you can buy them in places like Bintang supermarket Seminyak or Hardy’s Sanur. Not always the cheapest and sometimes you just can’t be bothered to go shopping! Googles are also handy to take as they aren’t always that cheap in Bali.
Out and about essentials
We always take vomit bags for the car trips around Bali. Both kids have had a good old vomit while traveling in cars in Bali so they are the first thing I pack! I also use the wraps that we take on the plane in the car that can act as sun shades, pillows or even towels to wipe up any mess! Another thing to consider is taking a car seat. They can be great to take on the plane for younger kids, check with your airline, and handy if you are going to have your own driver for the whole trip. Check out our post on Bali drivers that we recommend.
If you have a bub in a stroller you should pack a pram fan plus a mozzie/sun net.
So there is my Bali packing list of what we have taken with the kids. As they get older we can pack less and less which is fantastic!
Our friends at Smith’s Holiday Road have some great tips on what to pack if you only have hand luggage so check out their blog post here. I’m yet to fly with the kids with only hand luggage, I must try it one day!!
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