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Bus Travel with a Toddler

Updated: Feb 7

In a few hours, my hyperactive 2-year-old and I will be on a bus headed from NYC to Washington D.C. Just wanted to post a few quick tips for surviving a long ride with your little one.


My kid loves to eat, but he's also 2 and picky AF. This time around, I decided to pack a sandwich (PB & J), chips, fruit, fruit snacks, juice, water and cereal.  Will this be enough? God, I hope so.  Also, iPad (and headphones because I'm not an a**hole). I can hear the judgey comments now. "Too much screen time is bad, blah, blah." You try keeping a 2 year old entertained in a public space for 4+ hours. This is what works for us. Public temper tantrums will NOT happen on my watch. This keeps him calm. Sue me.


Pack light (or light adjacent). My backpack has all of our clothes and necessities. His has his snacks and his iPad. I also packed Pull-Ups and wipes. My son is potty trained and usually wears regular underwear, but on long trips accidents can happen. Plus he hates public toilets. Can't say I blame him.


DC is pretty accessible via public transportation, so I didn't see a need to rent a car. Instead, I opted to bring a stroller. His regular stroller is too bulky, so I bought a cheap Mickey Mouse umbrella stroller off Amazon. It weighs next to nothing and I can throw it underneath the bus during travel to and from DC. We plan to hit up the museums and I'm sure all of that walking will wear him out. Those of us with kids know how much it sucks to try and get around with a sleepy toddler. He's getting too big to carry, so stroller it is. I much rather carry that small stroller while he runs wild and then push him when he starts to tire.  That's all for now. DC bound in the AM. Wish us luck!

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