Maltese shopping with Bibi

Hello!

Today’s post will be directed to moms, daddies, aunts, uncles, grandmoms, grandpas who will soon take their Toddlers to Malta for holidays 🙂 It’s obvious, we want to pack everything needed for our Child, because we don’t know if we would find currently needed things in the shops abroad. However, our luggages don’t have an infinite bottom, so we must limit our packing to the standard 20 kg. This entry is written to help you with this task. I took the “Trolees” market in Bugibba under the workshop.

Znalezione obrazy dla zapytania trolees market bugibba

Baby jars and other meals

It doesn’t matter, if you feed your baby with ready meals or you try to cook and blend every dish, having previously purchased all the ingredients in special eco shops. Sometimes you need to heat the baby jar – it happens. In Malta the situation is similar to most of European countries. The most popular brands are Nestle and… Heinz 😉 There are smaller and bigger jars, adapted to age (below the age of one – eg. in Poland we can buy meals for babies after their first birthday as well). There are typical vegetarian lunches, there are various kinds of meat (even lamb, but this one I had to dilute with water, because it was very hard and dry), fish and also deserts, egg custards, fruits… Singly or in two-packs. The ingredients are rather simple.

Jars – Savoury
Source: nestle.com.mt

 

 

The only thing surprising me in the Maltese shop was, that the jars were 90 g (around 1), or 250 g (2 euro). The wasn’t any middle one weighing 200g – optimal for my Daughter that time. In this case, I had to give her two little meals or wondering, what to do with the rest of bigger lunch.

 

 

Oh, wait! There was something else… Desserts in packages! There weren’t only fruits there. They were also vegetables and even fruits mixed with veggies! Just look 🙂

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The most common brand of baby porridges in Maltese markets is Nestle Cerelac in metal packages. They cost around 8 euro. They’re milky, so you just need a water to prepare. The taste is very pleasant and have a soft consistency. We’ve chosen the taste of tropical fruits 🙂

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The number one in Malta was definitely the spring water with the taste of peach and apple by Heinz 🙂 The price is 2 euro. Firstly, I bought it for myself to try. It’s tasty, but not sweet, so you aren’t that thirsty anymore – Bibi liked it a lot!

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Hygienic articles:

Generally, it’s the same situation like in every European country. You can easily find diapers from the most popular brands such as Pampers or Huggies. 40 pieces package number 4  costs from 10 to 13 euro – depending on the type. You can also buy orange Pampers Sleep and Play for 8 – but the capacity is smaller, than Active Baby. There’s a possibility to buy swimming diapers as well – Huggies 12 pieces cost between 5 and 6 euro (don’t use it as daily diapers – they don’t keep any pee at all). Baby wipes are around 1,50-2. I took a baby olive and rush cream from Poland, so I don’t remember, how much they were 😉 I recommend you to take changing pads with you – it’s difficult to find them in Malta.

Beside this, you can buy in Trolees: Chicco teats in double packs, pacifier pendants and anti-colic bottles.

What should you pack?

Changing pads – it was impossible to buy them in the market. We also didn’t find any hospital pads as an alternative. Shop assistant recommended us to go to pharmacy, but there aren’t as many pharmaceutical points as in Poland 😉

Clothes for EACH weather – I packed not only T-shirts with short sleeves, summer  dresses and shorts, but also warmer pajamas. Although afternoons outside were pretty hot, evenings were a bit cold for us. Why? Because the material the blocks are built from and also the floors covered with tiles make it quite chilly in the apartments. “Heating season” lasts maybe a few days, so from time to time, the house is warmed up by air conditioning. Don’t forget a cap as well!

Baby carrier – it’s useful during trips to islands. Areas are mountainous and here and there, so maybe you will want to leave a stroller in the apartment. Infant carrier can be very helpful.

Sun lotion 50+ – must have in Malta. Toddlers have much more sensitive and prone to burn skin than older children or adults.

Baby float – useful during water games. With proper supervision, your Baby can have as much fun in the water as adults. We’ve bought for Bibi a pontoon with a visor and ringing balls – like in the picture below 🙂

float

Today the currency of 1 EURO is:
4.15 PLN,
1.23 USD,
0.87 GBP,
1.17 CHF,
4.63 TRY,
35,85 UAH.

This is the last article from the Maltese cycle. If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment. After a short break I’m planning to start a Turkish plot. You can start following blog or like my fanpage on Facebook – then you won’t miss any article 😉

Polski

 

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Extreme and Sea Adventure from the mom’s point of view

Hi!

I’ve promised you a few times to compare ships swimming around Maltese islands, so I won’t be surprised if you already lost your patience 😉 That’s why I’ve finally done this today!

Going to Malta you’re problably planning to visit Gozo and Comino. Maltese entrepreneurs know this very well, hence we can see the rain of travel agencies offering boat trips to the mentiones islands. There are boats of two companies departing from Bugibba: Extreme (belonging to the Captain Morgan corporation) and Sea Adventure. We decided to check both – with Extreme we went just to Comino, and Sea Adventure we used during the combined trip with Gozo. Both trips were nice, but which boat is better for traveling with a small child? Let’s see!

 

EXTREME

Extreme

For the beginning we decided just to visit Comino to enjoy the landspace of Blue Lagoon longer. Extreme seemed to be a good option for us, because it was cheaper than other cruises (around 20 euro/person – infants enter for free), free drinks and meal were provided (which was tempting for us – always hungry people 😉 ).  How was it in the reality?

Extreme ship came one hour late (according to the offer it starts at 10:00 AM – it arrived at 11:00) and it was quite small. Boat departed not only from Bugibba, but also from Valetta and other ports. Perhaps organizers didn’t predict such interest, because it was very crowded in the ship. We barely sailed from the shore, I had an emergency situation with my Bibi, so I had to change her diaper. There wasn’t any changing table, so we had to do this on the standard table – which was quite inconvenient for us. As organizers promised, people could drink in their bar for free, which was very nice itself. However, breastfeeding women and people leading healthy lifestyle could take only water. There wasn’t any juice or tea. Bar offers mainly carbonated and alcoholic beverages.

The messages from the megaphone were broadcast in Maltese, English and German. Unfortunately, due to considerable distortions, we hardly heard anything. Because of this we almost missed the second fulfilled promise of Extreme – lunch 😛 It turned out that the food was served not on the island (where the stalls with food are), but on the boat – just a bit later. My Husband realized it after some time – we got a pasta, ham, tomatoes and salad 😀 Well, our fault – we could have asked.

After four hours of relax, we were coming back to Bugibba – the return took place without any adventures. The only thing I could complain about it’s the time of arrival to Bugibba. We came one hour later, than it was written in the plan (that means, two hours in total were taken away from us).

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Is Comino the place to visit with baby? Of course! However, you need to think about how to take your baby when you go up (you’ll need to climb a bit, because the terrain is slightly hilly). 3in1 stroller we had, caused some inconveniencies. Here you can think about three options: 1) Take a child seat, and leave the rack possibly on the ship (is you take 3in1 stroller with car seat). 2) Take a sunshade stroller with you (in this case there must be another person with you to help bring the vehicle up). 3) Take a baby carrier with you (possible connection with the second option). These inconveniences will be gone quickly, when you get to the place, see the beautiful landscapes and swim with your baby in crystal water (I recommend you to buy baby float) 🙂

This trip is perfect for people, who are tired of intensive sightseeing and just want to have a splash in a clear water or relax in the different kind of beach. The seaside is a bit small, so I rather recomment to go there out of season, eg. in June or September. You can meet various small beach companionslizards, fish, crabsChildren can get to know them in the company of adults 🙂

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Sea Adventure

Sea Adventure

Planning a trip to Gozo, we chose the Sea Adventure company this time. Expedition combined with Comino and Crystal Lagoon costed us about 25 euro per person (same policy towards infants like in Extreme 🙂 ).

This time there weren’t any delays and we came back on time as well (not earlier, not later). The boat was bigger and definitely more adapted for families with small children. Lunch and free drink weren’t provided here (you could buy burgers and something cold or hot to drink in their bar). However there’s guaranteed changing table and a small playground for toddlers. Furthemore, you can go down the stairs and watch the Maltese underwater world 🙂

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Firstly we came back to the Blue Lagoon and we spent there a little over an hour. Then we went to Gozo. There was a waiting bus, which took us to the capital city of the island  – Victoria (other name: Ir-Rabat Għawdex). We had less than an hour to explore, but our time was even shorter due to the Bibi’s lunchtime. Heating the baby jar in any bar and feeding our Daughter took about 20 minutes. Afterwards a quick passage through the bazaar (with more time you can make your wallet much slimmer –  keeping in mind the convincing skills of Maltese sellers 😉 ) straight to Cittadella. A lift is available at this tourist attraction, making the visit of families with infants and wheelchair users easier. This, you can say, a city in the city is a big treat for archaeologists thanks to the the monuments hidden there. Moreover, the Citadel peak guarantees us views of the city. If we had more time, I’d would surely write something more 😉

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We came to bus with hanging out tongues. From the parking area in Victoria we went to the small, but cute Xlendi Bay. It’s not the most comfortable place to swim, because the entrance to the water is stony. However,  it’s worth visiting. There aren’t many beaches in Europe with azure water, where you can admire architecture on one side, rocky hills and caves on the other side, and behind your back you have a restaurant at your disposal. As for water games – we managed with Bibi 😉

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Warning! In March 2017, the famous Azure window collapsed. I’ve written about it in the previous post, but I’m going to remind it here as well, not to plan a trip there while staying on Gozo island. Travel offices don’t always mention it, which led many tourists to disappointment.

After two hours of rest, the driver drove us back to the port. But it wasn’t the end of the journey! On the halfway to Bugibba, the ferry stopped for a moment at the Crystal Lagoon. Fans of diving had half an hour to show their skills. For obvious reasons, babies and small children can’t take an active part, but Bibi could watch Dad’s performance from the window at the bottom of the ship 😉

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If Parents aren’t sure about their swimming abilities, they shouldn’t allow their bigger children to jump from the ship. One of boys started drowning during this stop and his parents couldn’t help him. My Husband pulled him out of the water – I’m very proud of him!

A trip to Gozo island can be a nice option for babies as well. Especially, when they’re more than half a year old and like walks – if it’s not too hot obviously 🙂 Tourist attractions of Victoria have an elevator, and the city itself has quite wide sidewalks. Furthermore, on Maltese excursions we spent more than half the time in water. With proper protection and toys, baby can have as much fun in water games as parents 🙂

 

To sum up:

If you travel with a little child, I definitely recommend Sea Adventure. The ships of this company are much better adapted for the youngest tourists thanks to changing tables, small playgrounds, underwater windows (an alternative to make baby busy) and friendly animators 🙂 Extreme is better option for students and childless adults, who wouldn’t enjoy the company of shouting toddlers at the Sea Adventure 😉 You can buy the tickets in special offices at the port or in the Internet. I’m attaching the links both to Captain Morgan and Sea Adventure.

In the next entry you’ll get to know about shopping stricte for babies, whether you’ll find everything you used to buy in your country and what you’d better buy before holiday 😉

Polski

Malta – sightseeing with Baby

Hey hey!

In the last entry I wrote how to get to Malta and how to move around 🙂 Today I’ll show you a few suggestions of places to visit in Malta exploring with a small traveler.

1) Popeye’s Village – do you remember the cartoon about the sailor Popeye? 🙂 Do you know, that the movie based on it was filmed in Malta? It’s worthy to go there especially, when you travel with a small child. You can meet the characters from the serial occasionally getting a chance to take a part in making a short film with you in the lead role 😀 In Popeye’s Village you have a possibility to organize Birthday party for your Celebrity. On the official webpage you can choose a package. Each option provides food and drinks, film set and fun on the special playground. Furthermore, Parents can enjoy the beautiful views 🙂 HERE you can check, how to get to village.

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2) Malta National AquariumI don’t know what about your kids, but my Bibi loves aquariums 😀 She likes coming to glass and talking (or rather babbling) with fish. That’s why we took her there on Birthday morning. Oceanarium is located in Bugibba, so the way from appartment took us 10 minutes by walk. On the official website it’s written, how to get there from different cities. Entrance ticket for adults costs around 14€/person, for children up to 12 years old is 7€, infants and children till the age of 4 enter for free. Toddlers surely will enjoy the variety of fish. Look at the photo of Bibi!

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I also recommend the recently opened Water Park situated nearby aquarium. It’s opened in season (June-September) between 10:00 AM and 7:00 PM. You can find there attractions for babies too 🙂

3) Ferry trip to Gozo and Cominoit was our one of the most exciting excursions. Travel offices offer options: just Comino or Comino with Gozo (in this case you relax shorter on Blue Lagoon, but you explore two islands in one time). We tried both offers, but I will write about it in the next post. Boats are well prepared for the youngest travelers. Blue Lagoon offers clear water, great natural landscapes and sometimes company of small sea animals 😉 Gozo in turn contains beautiful monuments, shopping on old bazars and relax on the beach with a view of architecture and rocks. Warning: Last march the Azure Window collapsed, so don’t believe travel offices still using this tourist attraction in their adverts.

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4) Valetta and Mdina – these two cities I can recommend for walking with a baby stroller. Malta is a place full of beaches and hills, so you won’t see much greenery there. In Valetta we have two (or even three) options for walks. The first one is near the port with a beautiful view of the city (the main photo of this entry is from there). Travelling by bus you must exit around three-four stops before the terminal station. Second one is the park in the heart of Valetta, where there’s not only a lot of greenery and beautiful views (eg. on port), but here and there we can see nice monuments 🙂 And if you’re hungry or just want to take a bit of city life, you can use the third option – Main Square. During our sightseeing it wasn’t so crowded there. Last two options are situated close to the bus terminal station.

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Mdina in turn is a very charming castle town full of quiet and romantic streets (but in South-European version, not Prague). I haven’t met any person, who didn’t like this place yet! Furthermore, there’s a park and playground close to the bus terminal station. HERE you can find playgrounds near your place of stay.

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5) Mellieha and Golden Bay – Malta is the country full of beaches. Tourists have a huge selection of places, they can swim and sunbathe. However, many of them are stony, so walks and relaxation may be limited for babies, because they have a sensitive skin. Golden and Mellieha beaches are wide and sandy. There is also no big difference in temperature between water and air. Just don’t bring your child’s electronic toys there. Sand is so powdery, it even got into our closed bag. It took us three days to extract the sand from our Bibi’s phone toy to unlock the sprinkled buttons 😉

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We enjoyed Malta a lot and we’ll come back there for sure! At the next visit we’re planning to see, among others, Marsaxlokk and dolphinarium. If you recommend some other places to see with baby in Malta, feel free to leave a comment 😉

 

How to communicate in Malta? There are two official languages in Malta – Maltese and English. You can communicate in English actually with everyone 🙂

Polski

 

Malta – what and how?

Happy New Year! I hope, everyone is in a good mood 🙂

As I’ve promised before, today I’m going to write about Malta. Bibi spent her first Birthday there, that’s why I have a huge sentiment to this place 🙂 However, to find any nice place to explore with your Family, you must firstly get there, right? That’s why today’s entry will be about how to get to Malta and how to move around the island 😀

1) How to get there?

We went there by WizzAir airline from Warsaw. We departed with Bibi on Saturday at 6:20PM and arrived three hours later. I’ve chosen this option, because it was a direct flight, inexpensive (a little over 140 euro with checked luggage), and furthermore the time of departure suited me. Unfortunately, Polish Airlines LOT and Air Malta didn’t have any direct connections between Poland and Malta. However, Air Malta offers flights from and to many European destinations and three Middle-Eastern countries (such as Italy, Germany, Turkey or Tunisia). I could have chosen RyanAir as well – however, the distance from the airport, departure time (eg. RyanAir departed very early in the morning) and also price decided on the final choice. You can also check the offers from the national airlines of your country – they sometimes organize some discounts.

wizz

WizzAir is a typical lowcost, that’s why I didn’t have many expectations towards this air carrier. Don’t expect free sandwiches, tea or any gadgets for infant. For a checked luggage up to 20kg you have to pay around 35euro/flight. However, it wasn’t a bad journey. The plus of this airline was, I could check-in even four weeks before journey. I could choose any place during reservation and (by a nice coincidence) we had a whole row of three seats for ourselves 🙂 On the boarding card the entire preparation process is nicely described. (Do you remember the post about packing baby bag? I reminded you to print a boarding pass. WizzAir is one of those airlines, where you need to have printed card not to pay extra.) Moreover, cabin crew was very helpful, passengers too and it wasn’t too tight between the rows 😉 Buying ticket you can also order special minibus for around 6€ taking you to your place of residence (but we took a taxi, because I was going the same direction with my Husband and our friends who arrived a bit earlier).

2) Traveling around Malta:

Maltese and tourists move around the island mainly by buses. I recommend you to buy a Tallinja Explore electronic card you validate at the entrance (the price for adults is 21 euro, for children up to the age of ten – 15, infants travel for free). You can buy it in special kiosks, mostly situated on terminal stations. Warning: these cards sometimes get demagnetized (my Husband already experienced it), so it’s good to keep a bill, because it can be useful when you want to exchange it. Planning trip around Malta I recommend you to use Malta Bus Journey Planner 🙂

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Honestly, in Malta we experienced the first Bibi’s journey by bus 🙂 Previously I had prejudices for this mean of transport. There was no way to travel by bus, when my Daughter was still using gondola stroller 😉 Fortunately, traveling by Maltese bus lines isn’t so stressful. Maybe, because parents with babies in public transportation is almost a sanctity and passengers take the principle of privileged seats seriously. A place for strollers will be always free for you there, so that you can safely attach your baby vehicle to the belts. If not, the driver will do all of his best to make it 😀

3) Trips around islands:

Staying in this little country, you should go to the other two islands – Gozo and Comino. You can use various cruise offers and go by boat. We had an opportunity to use two ships – Extreme and Sea Adventure. They’re both good, but which one is better for parents with babies? I’ll compare then in the separate post, otherwise this entry would be definitely too long 🙂

extreme vs sea adventure
Sources: Facebook and Travel Grip

4) Taxi from and to the airport:

I don’t have much experience with Maltese cabs, but my Brother-in-law ordered a private taxi for us. The way from the Luca Airport to Bugibba was 24 euro. What’s  interesting, on the way back to airport we were accompanied by exactly the same driver 😀 Unfortunately, we lost his number already, but the most popular corporation is Malta Transfer.

 

When to go to Malta with a little child? I think, the best time for a trip to Malta is May-beginning of June. The weather is already warm, but you don’t feel this hot temperature yet. Later, you can start your holiday plans in September. Why? Because in the middle of season the temperature is almost unable to survive for the average North-European person and traveling in such a heat wouldn’t be a pleasure for you. Furthermore, in July you can often find jellyfish. Because of them, swimming in Blue Lagoon was forbidden this summer for some time.

Polski

Wishing You a Happy Christmas…

My Dears.

Today many people in the world start celebrating Christmas. Although I’m just making the first steps in blogging, so I don’t have thousands of followers yet, I’d like to wish all the best to Everyone, who is reading this…

It doesn’t matter, if you spend this time at home or somewhere on holiday, may these days will be full of joy, peace, delicious meals and especially – people closest to your heart. I’m wishing you to feel satisfaction from your chosen life paths. And this First Star, which will shine in the sky soon, may blaze your trails. If you’re currently somewhere on the way – I wish you to have as fast and convenient vehicle, as the Santa’s sleigh 😀

This Christmas we will spend at home and finally with the whole Family. Althouth Bibi is celebrating already the second time, it is going to be the first X-Mas Eve, she will try some traditional meals (unfortunately, we need to wait a bit for dumplings with mushrooms – but the red borsch, why not? 😉 ). It will be also the first time, when my Daughter breaks the rustling packaging with a small gift. Finally, my Turkish Husband will have an opportunity to see, how Polish X-Mas looks like. I’m looking forward to all of this! It’s just a pity, there won’t be any snow in Poland, but it doesn’t have to be perfect to be magical, right? 🙂

And after Christmas I’m inviting you to see the entry about Malta – the place, where Bibi spent her first Birthday 😉

Polski

Our bitter-sweet flight with UIA

Last weekend I had a look at a post on one Facebook group related to flight tickets. A young woman has found an inexpensive ticket Istanbul-Warsaw led by Ukrainian International Airlines with a short transfer in Kyiv. It caused a big discussion, because many members strongly advised against this travel option. Others, however, said, this flight is pretty fair and they have good memories. They gave other air carriers, which, according to them, are much worse than Ukrainian airlines.

Lot UIA

I reminded myself our last flight from Istanbul to Warsaw, we just experienced with МАУ (ukr. Міжнародні Авіалінії України). The journey wasn’t without adventures 🙂 It took place this year, on Tuesday 19th September. That month, beside urgent flight to Poland, we had plenty of expenses. We had to consider lower prices. Ukrainian Airlines seemed to be the most logical choice for us – one-way ticket for three people (me, Bibi and my Husband) with checked luggages up to 23kg costed us not much above 250 EUR and the waiting wime in Kyiv was less than three hours. Here I will write my thoughts from the young mom’s point of view.

7:30 AM – we are waiting in a big queue for check-in at the Ataturk Airport in Istanbul. The customer service is asking how old our daughter is. Bibi was already after her 1st birthday, so the man is informing us, the stroller will be waiting for us in Warsaw and we don’t have to take it in Kyiv. Boarding passes are given to us, label hanged on a seat-stroller… They just didn’t give us the confirmation with the stroller’s number we used to receive on previous journeys.

9:35 AM – we’re departing on time. When we are in the sky, I want to change Bibi’s diaper in the restroom. Unfortunately, I couldn’t wash my hands, because there was no running water at the tap. I needed to use antibacterial gel 🙂 Stewardesses are diverse – mostly kind and helpful  (especially mrs Olena I wanted to send warm greetings to 🙂 ), just one of them was a shrew. Fortunately, Bibi falls sleep straight after toilet, because it’s tight between the seats. She sleeps the whole flight. The only thing from „catering” involved in the price of ticket is a water (my Husband is adding, they’re giving chocolates on Vallentines ). The cup of tea costs 2 euro, and sandwiches 5-6€.

11:50 AM – we’re at the BORYSPIL AIRPORT IN KYIV. Just in case, we had a look at the jet bridge to check if our stroller isn’t there. Probably the staff of Ataturk airport was right and we are really going to receive it in Warsaw. Ukrainian airport made a very good impression on us and I can admit, this place is friendly to parents. There is a playground full of pillows, there’s a TV with cartoons, there are cafes with delicious desserts (in one of them I heated the jar for Bibi), but I liked the most the nursery room 🙂 Look how cozy!

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Furthermore, we took a part in a competition for Ukrainian-speaking passengers organized by Tickets.ua. I needed to answer three questions related to travels (eg. What would you take going to uninhabited island?), take a photo from a machine and then put on FB with a proper hashtag. The main prize was 3000UAH for any flight ticket. We didn’t win anything, but anyway it’s a nice initiative 😉

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More facilities of the airport you can find on their official webpage.

2:50 PM – we’re flying from Kyiv to Warsaw. Bibi sleeps the whole journey again. Everything is the same as the flight from Istanbul. The only difference – clogging ears are more and more disturbing me. As we can see, my Husband (who already has an experience with this airline) didn’t exaggerate saying, in case of UIA pressure changes are more acute, than in other airlines. We’re landing in Poland on time.

4:00 PM – Chopin Airport in Warsaw. We want to take stroller and get into passport control as soon as possible. We’re looking at the jet bridge – there’s only navy blue seat stroller which doesn’t belong to us! We’re reporting problem to kind stewardesses, who are asking the baggage officer to check, if the lost item isn’t inside the plane. Unfortunately, he didn’t find. We’re passing through passport control quickly (comparing to previous ones, in an express way ) and we’re going to the luggage belt – as the cabin crew recommended. Luggages came, stroller didn’t. We’re looking at the tape with excess baggage – baby car didn’t appear. When Kyiv disappears from the screen, we’re going to report the problem to the complaint office. The employee, although he’s surprised, doesn’t make problems due to the lack of a trolley order number. He’s giving a form to us – we must write our personal data, weight and a visual description of our Bibi’s vehicle. He’s also saying, it’s been already the third problem, reported by the passengers of  МАУ.  This is the end of search and the journey! We’re coming back home.

Fortunately, our stroller has been found in Kyiv the very next day 🙂 On Thursday morning it came home by courier.

TO SUM UP:

 

Who is Ukrainian International Airlines for?:
+ For Parents, who have at least crawling babies. The airport in Kyiv is very well adapted for infants in this age. Only a few of these facilities are useful for newborns, who are much less tolerant of air pressure changes (in case of babies younger than 6 months old I definitely prefer direct flights).
+ For people living in Ukraine. UIA has a big offer of inexpensive direct flights to many destinations in the world.
+ For passengers, who need to concern on price while booking and they take a checked luggage.

What should you pay attention to?:
– Unfortunately, the opinions of passengers about the frequent loss of luggage is true. The way from airport to car with two suitcases, baby’s bag and infant on your arm is more than challenging.
– Cabin crew from our flights didn’t speak English fluently. There was even one stewardess communicating only in Russian! (sic)
– It’s not the airline for exclusively breastfeeding moms. Firstly, these women need valuable food and at least one hot meal per day (I’m talking about the comments, that they can make sandwiches for themselves before journey). A transfer flight may be inconvenient for them, because brunches and lunches at this airline are small and quite expensive. Secondly, narrow spaces make a childcare (such as breastfeeding in a sling or changing clothes) even more difficult. In this case, I have better experience with Greek or Serbian airlines.

What is your experience with Ukrainian Airlines? Share your thoughts in a comment 🙂

Polski

Preparations for Holiday – packing

Hello again!

As I’ve promised before, now I’m gonna write what to pack into the bag of our Toddler for the best preparation for a flight and not only. Remember, the price of ticket for the child under the age of two often involves the additional checked luggage up to 10 kg.

But now let’s  concern on the hand luggage for our Baby. I will divide its potential content for three cathegories: documents, must have things and additional useful stuffs.

1) DOCUMENTS:
Here the preface is probably unnecessary – if you take your ID card and driving licence with you automatically, the more we need to have the necessary documents during a vacation trip:

a) Passports of you and your Children (or ID cards for EU citizens travelling in Schengen area) – these are the first documents you HAVE TO pack! As I mentioned before, in most of countries we can’t add children in our passports anymore – they need to have their separate travel documents. You can ask your local office about the principles of making toddler’s passport.

b) Multilingual Birth Certificate – as I’ve written in the previous post, border guards don’t have to ask you for this paper, but it’s good to have it anyway. Just in case.

c) Personal Child Health Record and other medical documents – it is also worthy to make International Certificates of Vaccination I mentioned in the previous post. And be sure to print out the confirmation of the insurance you have purchased or (in case of EU countries) take the EHIC card

d) Printed boarding pass – I know, I know… In most cases passport is enough during check in. However, many absurdities already took place in the airport (such as lack of reservation in the electronic database), so have this paper just in case. Maybe you and your Toddler will avoid additional stress because of it.

 

2) MUST HAVE!!!
Some time ago we could hear about mom-celebrities, who complained on their blogs and Instagram profiles, that one totally expensive airline didn’t give them wipes/diapers/sleepers, while another one (as expensive as previous airline) already gave them that. Well, I confirm, that AEGEAN provides pocket wipes for toddlers and Turkish Airlines used to give baby meals or coloring books. However, they’re bonuses, not top-down guidelines 🙂 Must have in the hand-bag of Baby:

a) Diapers – quantity depends on the duration. For three-hour flight I used to pack around 10 pieces.

b) Wipes – I don’t know what about you, but I always take one-two packs of pocket handkerchiefs (up to 15 pieces) and standard one (between 60 and 90 pieces) into checked luggage – they will be useful for the first days as well. It’s a good idea to buy a package with a plastic closure – wipes will stay wet for longer 😉

c) Baby Changing Pads and diaper bags – usually you can buy them in popular drugstores.

d) First aid kit – with bandages and currently needed medicines (eg. against teething or colics) if they don’t cross 100ml. Note: to take syringes and prescription medicines into hand luggage you will need a certificate from a doctor.

e) Water bottle – drinking water from bottle brings relief to baby during takeoff and landing (air pressure increase). YOU CAN take on board: bottles with water, milk or baby porridge and also jars with soups / purées. Moreover, you can ask stewardess for pouring water into the bottle.

f) Food (if you aren’t exclusively breastfeeding)  – depending on the current baby’s nutrition, it’s good to take baby porridge, modified milk or baby jars. You can take those stuffs on board – I had 190g meal a’la Gerber in my hand-luggage and I crossed the control without any problems 🙂 You can ask cabin crew for heating a jar for your Toddler. I also recommend to hide some favorite baby soups into checked-luggage. Firstly, on holiday you won’t be always in a mood for cooking 😉 Secondly, the choice of flavors abroad may be different than in your homeland. I realized it during my stay in Turkey, but I’ll write about it in separate post.

g) A set of clothes for a change

 

3) USEFUL THINGS: 

a) Toys – they’re useful, when a child needs to divert attention from pressure changes during takeoff and landing. Furthermore, wouldn’t you get bored sitting a few hours in the same place? However, don’t be surprised when your Toddler will consider booklets as more interesting 🙂

b) Pacifier and pendant – pacifier works here like a chewing gum – helps to unclog baby’s ears. However, I added it to „useful things” list, because not all parents use this type of sedatives. I recommend to buy pendant – pacifier won’t fall down with this.

c) Nursing sling – it was often useful for me. Nursery rooms may be occupated while your Baby is hungry/has clogged ears/ needs closeness and immediately wants your breast. I don’t think, any of you would like to show your  bust in public place 😉 This item will provide you the minimum discretion (doesn’t concern infants after the 7th month – then sling gives the opposite result 😉 ).

d) Bibs – preferably cotton ones, with a foil cover underneath. Then the food won’t leak and won’t stain the clothes 🙂

e) Measuring spoon and a baby teaspoon

What would you like to add? Share your experiences in a comment 🙂

Polski

 

Preparations for Holiday – formal part :)

Hello Dears!

Today I am gonna write what every travel portal should start with, I mean the proper preparation for journey with Baby. Before you go to exotic countries, you get vaccinated, you buy the proper insurance, you read how to behave in the specific place or you pack everything according to the weather forecast. Baby is exactly like a journey into the unknown. You never know what can happen, that’s why we have to prepare ourselves for any eventuality. I realize, during my voyages with Bibi many things will surprise me. Then I will say what I already know 🙂 I am going to start with (important) formalities and in the next post I will write about packing Baby’s suitcase.

1) Birth Certificate of Baby (preferably multilingual) – Although, during journey, no one has asked me about this document yet, every border guard will confirm, you should have this paper with you. For example, if mom has different surname than father and their child, and she’s travelling with baby by herself, birth certificate can help her dispel any potential doubts of men in uniforms. This document whereas helped me in Greece, when I wanted my Husband to go with us through the passport control in the Schengen queue. 🙂

2) Vaccinations, medical examinations etc. – We can pack everything what needed is, but we all know, that sudden flu or toothache can spoil the best planned trip. The more so with the baby. First thing to do is checking the toddler’s health book, if there aren’t any vaccinations or examinations awaiting. In case you travel out of Europe, it’s good to pay attention, if you have to get vaccinated for diseases in specific country. I can recommend the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention webpage. You can choose your destination and optionally the purpose of your journey (here you can obviously select: Traveling with Children). Furthermore, there’s information about medical preparations and the diseases bothering people such as Zika. On the official website of the World Health Organization you can additionally get to know about International Certificates of Vaccination. Except English version, WHO provides info in Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian and Spanish. Visit your doctor approximately one-two months before your holiday.

3) Insurance – If we get the mentioned toothache, we wouldn’t like to spend the rest of holiday with an empty wallet, right? (we need to save some money for diapers) 😉 If you’re a citizen of European Union or EFTA country going to another EU state, usually European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) is enough for you and your Children – don’t forget to mention them during application. The official webpage of the European Commission explains very well how to receive the card in every member country and the conditions of use . If you visit non-EU and non-EFTA country, you will need to buy private medical insurance in one insurance- or travel agency in your state of residence. The non-EU citizens travelling to member countries can obtain EHIC only if they’re covered  by  a  state  social  security  scheme  in  any  Member  State of the European Union (for example by employer or spouse).

4) PASSPORTS AND VISAS – I remember, in my very first passport there was a page, where you could add your children under the age of 16 travelling with you (my Friend used to go on holiday with her father on this principle). Nowadays, in most European countries children have to receive their separate travel document (and even babies must be given their own biometric photo). Ask your local passport office about the required documents, but for sure you will need to prepare the Birth Certificate of your Child, their biometric photo, ID documents of both parents and fulfilled application form. If you apply for infant’s travel document, note that their appearance changes very fast. Even though their passport is valid up to 5 years, you will need to make a new one after one-two years.

Note: If you need to apply for visa of the destination country, your Child must receive the separate one – even if the policy of your homeland allows you to add kids into your passport.

5) Pack the suitcase of you and your Toddler properly! This topic deserves a separate entry which will appear soon. See you later! 🙂

Polski

Just to say “Hi”…

Hello!

Do you remember, while learning for exam  period you were able to find so many “responsibilities” which effectively distract you from opening your notes? Cleaning the whole apartment? Cooking for the next week? Watching missed seasons of „The Bold and the Beautiful”? 😉 I also know those little excuses making me postpone the most of my plans “for tomorrow”.

After giving birth to my Daughter the bad habit from my student times returned with a vengence. Bibi was my excuse for everything. For leaving a huge mess in my house (Bibi will wake up soon), for giving up the journalistic course I didn’t even start (I don’t have time because of Bibi), for extending our first flight abroad (isn’t it too early for Bibi?), and finally to start this blog (Bibi made me tired, I will have some rest)…

Comparing to exam period, travelling and blog aren’t obviously a bad obligation 🙂 However, just like learning, they are a challenge. Challenge showing if you’re able to overcome your internal blockades and give some effort to change your life, achieve something great and move forward. And no, my Dears, your children aren’t the blockade. The blockade are all the fears coming from your imagination. This is  the storm of advices from people “who know everything”. And finally, this is getting used to your current situation. Switching from childless mode to parent mode takes a lot of time and effort. Sometimes you just don’t have enough power to make those first steps again (but with your Baby this time). However I needed to cure my Baby Blues and plenty of conversations with my beloved people to realize it…

This time it’s the end of excuses! Thanks to my Husband I’ve finally moved my bum. When Bibi was three months old, I took her passport, we went to Turkey (the motherland of my Spouse) and… We stayed there longer 😉 And then another flights began. Now it’s time for blog! My Husband is currently playing with Bibi and I am writing.

What will be this blog about? About children and travelling. About shopping, nice places to see, airlines, and sometimes just about the thoughts of a young Mom 🙂 I hope, I’ll convince you, with a little effort your Baby can become a great travel companion. I warmly invite everyone to my blog – also childless people 😉 I am sure, everyone will find something for themselves.

 

Finally, I have started it! Now it’s gonna be only better 😉

Polski