Welcome to the 21st century, where nursing mothers don’t necessarily sit on the sidelines while the rest of the business world passes them by. These days, women continue to be hands-on CEOs, dedicated CFOs, and vital members of business teams doing international deals even after they’ve given birth and continue to breastfeed their infants, sometimes for a year or more. This, in turn, means that they may well be called upon to journey to a far-off destination to seal a deal while they’re still on the nursing clock.
The solution? Travel with your baby. Yes, it can be done! Here are a few pointers to help you on your way if you’re planning to undertake a business journey with a small child or infant:
Depending on the length of your journey, you always have the option of preparing by pumping and stockpiling milk and leaving your child with a carer while you keep up the pumping schedule on the road. If, however, you feel strongly about keeping your child nearby, get ready for a few admin hurdles that can also be overcome with proper planning.
Whether you’re travelling to a conference where you’ll have to attend workshops and sit in on discussions, or heading to a foreign country to deliver a presentation all by yourself, there are going to be certain portions of time when you are going to need an extra set of hands. If your spouse or a caregiver your child knows can travel with you, that would be first prize. Alternatively, arrange to meet a stand-in child minder on the other side, who will be able to accompany you to meetings and take care of the baby while you do your thing.
Before you go ahead and book those tickets, get the green light from your hosts. It’s a brave new world out there and most businesses and/or conference organisers should be willing to accommodate your wish to bring along your child. However, it’s always best to inform them of your intentions to ensure that they are happy and able to do so, and to prepare them before you arrive bassinet and muslin feeding-cover in hand.
It has to be said that travelling with an infant or small child is always going to be harder than travelling on your own. However, with proper planning you can make the process as comfortable as possible for all parties involved. Keep an eye on the blog in coming weeks and months for more insight into streamlining corporate journeys when you have unique challenges along the way. In the meantime, feel free to get in touch with our team of passionate corporate travel planners who take great pride in tailoring fuss-free business trips that allow travellers to work effectively and maintain a satisfying world/life balance.