Here’s How Travel Helps Students Decide their Career Path

Here’s How Travel Helps Students Decide their Career Path

What’s the best way to learn about life and also yourself? Long-term travel. I’m the best example of this and here’s my story.

I’m an Economics honors graduate from Delhi University. I was stuck in the most boring profession but I found my calling only after traveling for a year.

What long-term taught me in just a year, no amount of schooling or college degree was able to teach me.

It showed me the world while it helped me see myself more clearly. It taught me exactly what I wanted to do in life and what I did not.

So, in your everyday life, you’ll encounter people in different careers. Some are rich and enjoy what they do, while others live paycheck to paycheck and are still happy.

Is Sri Lanka safe for solo female travelers - Sri Lanka travel tips
Is Sri Lanka safe for solo female travelers – Sri Lanka travel tips

Even with extensive knowledge of well-paying professions, why do you think choosing a profession is difficult? Regardless of each one’s standard of living, you might never know your right career unless you understand your strengths.

In some instances, a few students consult career coaches in person or online when choosing a profession. If you consider all these factors, you’ll acknowledge how several factors might influence one’s decision to enter an occupation.

However, what options are available for students who want to be healers but doubt their academic strengths? Or for an Economics graduate (like me) who doesn’t want to sit with numbers and International policy, but be creative instead.

Have you ever read an autobiographical book, Gifted Hands: The Ben Carson Story by Ben Carson and Cecil Murphey? If you have, you’ll appreciate the fact that you can be anything you want in this world.

Imagine the success of this neurosurgeon at a time when online services for offering custom materials for doing a laboratory report or even a movie reflection essay were unavailable. Against all odds, Ben Carson, M.D. led more than 60 surgeons to surgically separate conjoined twins in 1987.

So, what is limiting you to be successful in any career? Although you might have decided on your career, what might make you stick or change your profession?

The impact of traveling on students’ career choices

Learning about self

Benagil Cave Guided tour: It is a 2-hour kayaking tour that leaves from Benagil Beach. Benagil Kayak Rental: If you have enough kayaking experience, then you can rent the kayak and do it yourself. But be careful of the rocks at the entry of the cave. SUP to Benagil Cave Beach
SUP to Benagil Cave Beach

The most important factor in picking a career path is knowing yourself. After all, you don’t want to be stuck in a profession that you hate. The best situation would be to find a way to make money doing what you love doing.

For example, if you did some adventure sport like kayaking or SUP, you could do an adventure course or a mountaineering course and turn it into your profession.

Or you realize that you can create an app or a digital product – that’s an amazing way to make money too if your app hits off.

Noticing human resource deficit

View from Staalmeestersbrug, Amsterdam
View from Staalmeestersbrug, Amsterdam

Depending on your growing and educational environment, you might have more than one career choice. For example, you could have decided to be either a medical doctor or a pilot after graduating. As such, you not only took but also met the minimum scores on cluster subjects for these programs. Others can call this strategy “casting your net wide.” However, once you finish high school, you can get an opportunity to travel to another country. Will this shape your career choice?

While others want to “live and die” in their country, others aspire to relocate to a new place. For example, you might dream of living in Europe and raising your kid here. Once you visit this continent, you will realize that it has a high human resource (HR) deficit in health care or software engineers, environment engineers or language experts. As a student with a few career choices and ready to join college, you will be highly likely to pick one of the programs that corresponds to the manpower shortage that you noticed. 

Interacting with professionals in your field of interest

Exploring the Historical Lecce city in Puglia, Italy
Exploring the Historical Lecce city in Puglia, Italy

What happens when you want to pursue a career without many professionals in your country or locality? For example, you might want to study for a bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering. You even went the extra mile to the extent of surpassing minimum cut-off points.

However, you don’t know what the career entails or have even seen an organization hiring someone with similar or related academic qualifications. In such a case, you can’t find someone who can mentor you. As a consequence, you enter up forgoing your career path.

Fortunately, as you travel, you meet an expert(s) in this field. Through interaction, you rejuvenate your passion for aerospace engineering. What’s more, you can get connections to places where you can get an attachment or internship. If you’re lucky, some mentors can recommend you to future employers. Interactions with experts can happen on airplanes, trains, hotels, or entertainment joints. You’ll realize that you tend to share hobbies with individuals interested in or working in aerospace engineering. Therefore, traveling might be an opportunity to access a professional network in your field. 

Spotting emerging careers

azulejos in Porto
Me admiring and photographing Azulos in Porto

Without exposure, you might think that traditional courses are still “hotcakes” everywhere worldwide. However, you can’t disregard the significance of this profession if you deliberate about their roles during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, during the same period, the world appreciated the role of other professionals, especially IT specialists, in implementing virtual medical services and e-learning. What lessons can one learn from this?

When you travel the world, you can appreciate how technology has transformed the way of life. For example, Sweetgreen, Wendy’s, and Chipotle rely on robots to perform repetitive tasks such as delivering and frying tortilla chips. If you visit these restaurants in the United States, you can become curious about how to develop and operate this machine.

Upon realizing that you might want to pursue a degree in mechatronics engineering control and instrumentation or Artificial intelligence.

Ideally, traveling helps you view the world differently and consequently choose a profession that might quench your curiosity.


In retrospect, based on Mark Twain’s quote, “Travel is not only good to see new things with your eyes, but also to broaden your horizon and open up your mind to new experiences and perspectives,” you’ll change your perception about some career as you explore the world.

For instance, understanding how professions impact varying aspects of life positively by applying knowledge learned in researching and inventing, you won’t hesitate to study a different academic program other than your initial choice(s). You should always be flexible in your career choices as you understand the world better.

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CapCut’s Creative Suite: Revolutionizing Video Recording and Quality

CapCut’s Creative Suite: Revolutionizing Video Recording and Quality

Introduction

In today’s fast-paced digital age, the importance of video content has skyrocketed. From social media platforms to educational websites and even personal vlogs, video recording and sharing have become an integral part of our lives. However, many individuals, especially beginners and enthusiasts, have struggled with subpar graphics and pixelated videos.

It is in this context that CapCut’s Creative Suite, an online video editor, has emerged as a game-changer, providing a solution that enhances the video recording experience. In this comprehensive article, we will explore the impact of CapCut’s Creative Suite on video recording and how it has made people feel more comfortable while ensuring that poor graphics and pixelation are no longer a problem. CapCut has also developed an online photo editor to ensure that users can edit photos along with their videos with ease.

The Digital Video Revolution

CapCut Video Templates
CapCut Video Templates

The Pervasiveness of Digital Video

The digital era has ushered in a profound transformation in how we consume and create content. Video has become the dominant medium for communication, information sharing, and entertainment. Whether it’s a short clip on social media or a full-length documentary, videos have a way of engaging and captivating audiences that no other medium can match.

The Importance of Quality

While the popularity of video content has soared, the demand for high-quality videos has also increased. Users, whether they are content creators, educators, or businesses, want videos that are sharp, clear, and visually appealing. Poor graphics and pixelation have been persistent issues that have deterred individuals from achieving the quality they desire.

The Evolution of Video Recording

Early Challenges

A Historical Perspective In the early days of video recording, the process was indeed a cumbersome and expensive endeavor. Access to video recording equipment was primarily limited to professionals with specialized knowledge and resources. Amateurs, enthusiasts, and beginners faced numerous barriers, making the prospect of creating high-quality videos seem like a distant dream.

Back then, video recording equipment was not only expensive but also physically heavy and bulky. Devices such as VHS camcorders and reel-to-reel cameras required users to carry around substantial equipment, making it impractical for capturing spontaneous moments or on-the-go recording. Additionally, recording and storing video footage was a logistical challenge, often involving physical tapes or reels that were subject to degradation over time.

The technical know-how required for video recording was another significant hurdle. Understanding aspects like exposure, white balance, focus, and audio quality demanded a level of expertise that discouraged many from attempting video recording. Without access to professional training, aspiring videographers were left to navigate complex settings and manual adjustments, often with unsatisfactory results.

Furthermore, the inherent limitations of early video recording technology were evident in the quality of the footage. Low-resolution images, limited color accuracy, and difficulties in capturing low-light scenes were some of the prevalent issues. These limitations not only affected the overall quality of videos but also restricted the creative possibilities for aspiring filmmakers and content creators.

Rise of the Smartphone Era 

Democratizing Video Recording The turning point in the evolution of video recording came with the advent of the smartphone era. The integration of high-quality cameras into mobile devices revolutionized the way people captured and shared video content. Suddenly, millions of individuals around the world had a video recording tool right in their pockets.

However, while smartphones democratized video recording, they also introduced their own set of challenges. The convenience of mobile recording often came at the cost of stability and video quality. Shaky footage became a common issue, especially when recording on the move. Low-resolution videos, often plagued by pixelation and poor graphics, remained a concern, particularly in low-light conditions.

CapCut’s Creative Suite 

A User-Friendly Solution Amid the smartphone era, with its newfound accessibility and challenges, CapCut’s Creative Suite emerged as a web-based video editing toolkit that aimed to address the issues faced by users of all levels of expertise.

The suite recognized that while smartphones provided an easy means of recording, they did not guarantee the quality and stability that users desired. CapCut’s Creative Suite, accessible through a web browser, was designed to be user-friendly, making it a valuable tool for both beginners and more experienced users.

By providing an affordable and accessible solution, the toolkit significantly lowered the barriers to entry for video recording and editing. It offered a user-friendly interface, allowing individuals to navigate the world of video editing with ease. The straightforward layout, coupled with clearly labeled tools, ensured that users could create high-quality videos without the need for extensive technical knowledge or professional training.

As the toolkit continues to evolve, it is expected to play a pivotal role in shaping the future of video recording, with advancements in AI, feature expansion, and an unwavering commitment to user-centric development. The revolution sparked by CapCut’s Creative Suite is a testament to the relentless pursuit of high-quality video recording that empowers users, making them feel at ease while ensuring that poor graphics and pixelation are no longer a problem.

The Impact on Video Quality

Eliminating Poor Graphics

The tools provided by CapCut’s Creative Suite are highly effective in addressing issues related to poor graphics. Video creators no longer need to worry about blurry, pixelated footage. With a few simple edits and enhancements, they can transform their videos into visually appealing content that engages their audience.

Enhancing Video Clarity

Enhancing video clarity has never been easier. CapCut’s AI-driven enhancements are designed to automatically identify and rectify issues that lead to pixelation and lack of clarity. Users can now enjoy the benefit of producing videos with professional-quality visuals.

Stabilizing Footage

Shaky and unstable footage has been a common concern for amateur videographers. CapCut’s Creative Suite includes tools that offer video stabilization, ensuring that recordings are smooth and professional. The elimination of shaky footage significantly contributes to improved video quality.

Boosting Viewer Engagement

The ultimate goal of any video creator is to engage and captivate their audience. CapCut’s Creative Suite empowers users to create high-quality videos that boost viewer engagement. Videos that are sharp, clear, and free from pixelation are more likely to be watched, liked, and shared.

Conclusion

CapCut’s Creative Suite has risen in the digital realm as a beacon of hope for individuals seeking to enhance their video recording experience while leaving behind the problems of poor graphics and pixelation. This web-based online video editor, with its user-friendly interface, professional-quality editing tools, and AI-driven enhancements, has made video recording a comfortable and enjoyable endeavor for users of all levels of expertise.

As CapCut’s Creative Suite continues to evolve, it is set to play an even more significant role in shaping the future of video recording. The revolution sparked by CapCut’s Creative Suite has opened up new horizons for video creators, enabling them to record and share their stories with unprecedented clarity and visual appeal.

In the world of video recording, CapCut’s Creative Suite has ensured that the days of poor graphics and pixelation are no more, making way for a future where video quality knows no bounds. The ai background generator, a cornerstone of the suite’s success, has demonstrated the potential of AI-driven enhancements in transforming video quality and ensuring that the visual narrative remains captivating and engaging.

As users continue to embrace this innovative solution, the possibilities for video recording are limitless. CapCut’s Creative Suite has set a new standard for the industry, where accessibility, quality, and user-centric design are at the forefront. In the quest for outstanding video quality, CapCut’s Creative Suite is leading the way, providing individuals with the confidence that their video recordings will be nothing short of exceptional.

PS: Drifter Planet contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase through these links, we will earn a little commission at no extra cost to you.  We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

15 Things I learned about German People after Moving to Germany

15 Things I learned about German People after Moving to Germany

I love German people, they are really the best. But it took me a while to understand them because they are culturally very different from the country where I initially lived (India), or the country that I first traveled to for work (USA), or people from other countries that I met while traveling.
It took me a few years of living in Germany after I started understanding them. There were quite a lot of things that I didn’t notice in the first years but more things became visible after a few years of living here.
Don’t get me wrong – most of the below points don’t make anyone better or worse. I’m not saying that they are the best or the worst – these are just my observations about how Germans are different from the rest of the world. I have grown to love most of these things about Germans, and you will too if you live here.

1) Germans Love Rules (Even The Ones That Seem to Hate Them)

I can not write an article about Germany and Germans without the #1 point being about the rules. I have said it before and I will say it over and over – Germans really do love their rules.
Now it is pretty normal that you’d meet a German who would say that they don’t like rules but don’t be fooled. If you spend time with them, you will see that they actually follow every single one of them. The same people will also go out of their way to remind someone of the rules if the other person is doing something to beak them.
They can’t help it because the rules are ingrained so well in their minds they subconsciously follow them. They like how the system runs so efficiently when they all follow the rules.

2) A True German Can Open A Beer Bottle with Just About Anything

Hamburg's Astra beer

Drinking Astra Beer in Hamburg, Germany

It is really a true German skill when one can open a beer bottle with just about anything. Who needs a bottle opener when they have a bunch of random things that work just as well?

Cigarette lighters are the most commonly used but I have even seen plastic bottles, remotes, phones, or keys being used in place. Wondering if I can do it too. I try from time to time but my success rate is 30%.

3) Unfit Germans are Rare ‘Cuz Germans love to “Make Sport”

CCO via Pixabay

This section isn’t just about how Germans are but also how they talk. The German language is interesting and I love it when they translate it directly into English and say they’re “making sport”.
Yes, and Germans ARE sporty. They are a country of physically active people as compared to many other countries. It is hard to meet a German who isn’t in any kind of a sport and even those rare ones are super active in every way. People of every age like to ride bicycles, and almost everyone here likes to at least run, swim and ski. It is hard to find a fat person here.
I’d also like to add that I’m a Yoga teacher and I am always in awe of how fit my German Yoga students are as compared to the ones from other countries.

4) Germans are Highly Efficient

You may think that I’m, talking about the German workers here. Sure – they are known to be efficient but this is bigger than that. They are efficient on so many different levels for every random thing that it is as if they are robots. Be it time management, packing, designing systems, or organizing, the Germans are incredibly efficient.
It is as if the knowledge of how to do even the most random things in the most time-saving manner with maximum results has been passed down from generation to generation. If you live in Germany, you will see an example of this daily.

5) Germans are Supermarket Ninjas

CCO by Pixabay

There seems to be an important life lesson that others have failed to receive except the Germans. German supermarket cashiers are known to scan the items at lightning speed and a typical German will pick them all up one by one at that same super-fast pace and yet efficiently stack them neatly in their carts or bags.

One can easily spot a newcomer in Germany because they are the only ones who can’t match the pace while stacking the shopping in neat piles in their carts.

Yes, Indians are spoiled and we have the supermarket staff doing this stacking for us but I’m not alone in this observation, my American, Australian, as well as other Asian friends who live in Germany, have also noticed it.

6) Germans Know Their Alcohol Good

In a country where drinking in public is allowed, you’d think that you would often see crazy drunk people walking around but that’s not usually the case.

They can legally drink from the age of 16 and they know how to handle it. They can drink down just about anyone without looking drunk, except maybe a Russian or a Polish. (Haha)

If there’s one thing that Germans love more than rules it is maintaining social decorum. Believe it or not generation after generation they have been conditioned to behave well in public, hence they do even on alcohol.

Just to clarify, I’m not talking about the general “drunk-happy” people, but “out-of-control-crazy-drunk” – the kinds who yell around on the streets for nothing. Actually, you will see the latter quite often in New Delhi (where I come from) and without even alcohol. Haha

The only times when you’d see someone who’s out of control drunk is when there’s the carnival or a soccer match.

7) Germans mostly wear Black, Grey or White

CCO via Pixabay

When I first arrived in Germany, I realized that without even trying I ended up being the most colorful one because of my clothes. I’m not just talking about normal supermarket visits but also special events where I’d notice that most of the people actually wore muted colors.
If you’re a German and you’re reading this, then maybe you will shake your head in disbelief. But I have a question for you, what color are you wearing right now? If it isn’t black, grey or white then it is most likely another form of muted color.
Of course, there are exceptions to this. If you walk around in an arty city (like Hamburg) then you will actually see people wearing different bright colors but still not too much like the locals from the warmer countries do. More exceptions would be music festival people, the pseudo-hippies, or the frequent backpackers.

Older Germans Love Jack Wolfskin and Younger Ones H&M. Yes, it actually does work like this with the majority of the Germans, it looks like a dress code.

8) Germans and their English

Germans can speak decent English, but many of them don’t know that they can. If you are in Berlin or Hamburg, English is widely spoken but let’s talk about the rest of Germany.

A majority of Germans hesitate when it comes to speaking in English and they say “Oh sorry, my English isn’t good”. But in reality, they can speak basic English pretty well.

You see, Germans are inherently perfectionists. If they do something, it has to be perfect and “correct” and the same applies to the language They would rather not speak in English than make a tiny grammatical error. They have been taught English in their schools, many of them listen to English music and English is definitely a part of their life more than they realize it is.

On the other hand, I have met a few native English speakers like Americans or Australians who sometimes speak grammatically incorrect English more often but they don’t care. Even many of my Indian people do the same but their confidence level is crazy good.

Dear Germans, we don’t care if you make a grammatical error from time to time. Speak more English with newcomers please because your language isn’t the easiest to learn.

On the other hand, I absolutely love how Germans completely convert their language into English sometimes and say something that means something else. Actually, most of us who are not native English speakers are guilty of this, but since this article is about German people, I’d mention some of my observations here.

I love how Germans use the verb “become” for “getting it”, for example – “Oh did you become a letter today?” – just because there is a verb called “bekomme” that means getting something. Certain German words are so similar to English words with different meanings. For example, pepperoni in the German language is chili pepper, whereas “Pepperoni” means an American salami. Imagine my surprise when I visited a vegan restaurant in Germany that was named Peperoni.

9) Most Germans Think Ginger is “Spicy”

Ask any Asian what they think spicy is and they’d say chili. Ask a South American or a Mexican, they’d say habanero. Even Italians, Americans, Australians, and Brits can handle spicy food. But Germans, of course, are a little different than everyone.
An Asian would never find ginger spicy, because that is the base of 80% of our food. No, we don’t overuse it but it is there in a small quantity in most of the things we eat. In India, we even put it in our chai.
During my first months in Germany, I asked someone if they wanted to try Indian food. They said yes but not spicy, so I offered them a bite. It was actually very funny for me when they said — oooh, the ginger is spicy. No, that’s not just one person but many other Germans too think ginger is spicy. Hilarious!

10) Germans Don’t Like Small Talk

If you’re a German then maybe you don’t know the meaning of small talk, because you are just not used to it. Small talk doesn’t have a purpose. It is actually a waste of time but is done to break the ice, even if you know the other person.
For example, if you were in America then most likely even a work colleague would say something random and unimportant to start the conversation – like how was your weekend, etc. After 1-2 minutes, the work colleague would actually come to the point and say that they need your help with an Excel sheet or something.

If you invite a German friend to visit you at 5 pm, most likely they will come 1-2 minutes before and wait outside and then ring the doorbell at exactly 5 pm. Isn’t that adorable? Well, it is a little freaky too. How are they so time efficient and how do they plan everything so perfectly?

So, do you know any German people too? Share this post with them to make them smile. Pin the below image to save the post.

15 Things I Learned about German People after Moving to Germany

What’s it Like to Live in Germany – the Good, Bad and the FUN

What’s it Like to Live in Germany – the Good, Bad and the FUN

It has now been close to five years that I have been living in Germany. The last five years have been extremely eventful. I have learned a new language, lived with Germans, made many friends, traveled within the country, celebrated many festivals, taught Yoga in a studio here, and done much more than what can even be put on a list like this.

There have been moments when I have been bewildered by German rules, excited at the start of spring or snow season, and hated everything when I missed my home country too much – but most of my moments were spent enjoying the joy of living in this country.

Berlin's S-Bahn and U-Bahns are awesome

Berlin’s S-Bahn and U-Bahns are awesome

If you’re on this page, then most likely you are considering moving to another country. Is Germany the country for you? Read on to see my experience of living in Germany. 

Germany is a Country Full of Rules

Every country has rules for everything, but not everyone follows them. In many cases, the people aren’t even aware of the rules in the first place. Things run very differently in Germany. In fact, things run exactly the way they should. 

There is a reason why public systems or many other processes run very efficiently in Germany. It is because the people have a very high regard for the rules and hardly ever break them. There is a process for everything and it is black and white hence highly efficient. If only every other country functioned like this, the world would have been very different. 

If you break a rule in Germany, then it is very likely that a fellow resident will point it out to you instead of turning a blind eye. Take it with a smile because they are just trying to help you.

Mountains, Castles, Forests: Germany is Insanely Pretty

Posing Outside Disney’s Cinderella Castle – Burg Eltz, Germany

Germany has the Alps, the North Sea coast, the Baltic Sea coast, insanely beautiful national parks, and stunning castles. Germany has the best of nature and the most interesting cities. 

If you’re looking for stunning castle destinations then Burg Eltz and Heidelberg will steal your heart. For me, the stunning beauty of the Externsteine (in Teutoberger Wald) and the legends associated with it were mind-blowing.

If you like big cities then you’re going to love Hamburg and Berlin. If you want to see beaches then you will love Reugan Island on the Baltic coast and North Sea destinations. 

Everyone is aware of Bavaria’s beauty – the clear lakes, Bavarian Alps, and lovely small towns. But honestly most of the small towns all over Germany are lovely because of an “old town”, castles, protected forest areas and more.

Germany’s Trash Management is Crazy Awesome

Yeah so almost every developed country and some developing countries have a trash management system that starts with people segregating their trash, but things are a little too extreme in Germany. 

Broadly speaking, all households need to sort out their trash into bio, plastic, paper, diaper, glass, old batteries, old electronics, paint, and drink bottles. Yes, you need to segregate trash in these categories in your house.  This is a very broad bifurcation because there are many “if”s and “but”s to this segregation in terms of rules. 

There are recycling boxes for old clothes and shoes in many parts of the city so you can get rid of everything that you don’t use as long as you plan accordingly.

I don’t know if there’s any country that beats Germany in terms of trash management but I have heard that the Scandinavian countries are pretty good too.

Clean Air and Forest Reserves

Germany is so green

Germany is so green

I love how Germany as a country protects and preserves the environment. The country is full of forests. There are plenty of nature reserves and they aren’t just close to small towns but also big cities. Yes, you could be living in a busy city on some 4th floor of an apartment building but you may still be able to find a small forest reserve nearby where you can go for a run and feel alive in nature. 

Everything is Closed on Sundays (+ Holidays)

In most of countries, offices are closed on Sundays but the big shopping areas are open because that’s when a lot of people finally get the time to step out and buy things. Of course, things are very different in Germany. Here everything is shut on Sundays. Really, everything.

It took me some time to get used to the fact that there is one day in a week when almost all the shops are closed. Sometimes there is a holiday that’s on Monday or Saturday, so one has to be prepared for two days of supermarket closure and buy the important things from before.

This required a bit of planning from me in the beginning because in India the stores are open literally every day, even on Diwali. Yes, this is one of the things that I miss about living in India.

Drinking in Public is Normal 

Drinking in Public in Germany is very normal

Drinking in Public in Germany is very normal

Yes, shockingly you can drink beer in many public areas in Germany, including trains. No, that doesn’t mean you see wasted people everywhere.

German people know how to handle their alcohol well because beer is a very important part of their culture. They seem to respect the social decorum and you’d hardly ever see anyone overdoing it unless it is a special occasion. But yes, occasionally you will see people who are drunk as hell. 

No Work After Hours: Work-Life Balance is Super

Do you have a 9-5 job? It is highly likely that you don’t leave your workplace at exactly 5 everyday. It can be 5:15 on some days or 4:50 on others. Even after you leave work, it is likely that on some days your team or colleagues will call you or email you about some important work. It is very normal to work after the hours in most countries. It sucks!

Having experienced corporate life in India and the US, the German way of working came as a pleasant surprise to me. If someone’s work ends at 5 pm here, the person WILL leave at 5 pm, and not a minute after that. No boss will call or email after work hours or on a weekend. That just doesn’t happen in Germany, unless it is a highly exceptional case. 

This system really works well in Germany because Germans are highly efficient during their work hours. They really do work like machines because being efficient is in their blood. 

Silence on Buses or Trains

Berlin Train Station

Berlin Train Station

Things may be different in bigger cities that are international, but when you travel within a smaller city or a town, you will notice how silent the public places are. Coming from India, this was a big change because on a train in India, you’d normally hear a few people talking excitedly and loudly, a group laughing, somewhere a kid whining and his mother yelling.

Most of Germans don’t talk loudly and if they are in a public place, they observe an unwritten but mutually understood rule that they’d lower their voices to a level that no one else can hear them. 

I do remember traveling with a group of blogger friends on a train in Berlin and all of us were from different countries. Someone from the USA, someone else from the UK, a couple from Spain, and me from India. Yes, all from the countries where people talk loudly. Of course, we were the loudest group on the train but we weren’t even talking loudly.

Getting a Doctors Appointment Isn’t Always Easy

This isn’t always the case but it happens a lot. Don’t be surprised if it takes you 6 months to get an appointment with a doctor. Because it is 6 months away, you are highly likely going to forget it and miss it. Good luck getting another appointment within the next few months. 

If you fall sick or need to see a doctor urgently then God help you! Once my daughter injured herself near her teeth and we called every single doctor for jaws and also dentists, but no one was available to see her.

Lovely Old Towns with Fachwerkhäuser

Typical Old Town in Germany with Old Towns with Fachwerkhäuser

Typical Old Town in Germany with Old Towns with Fachwerkhäuser

Most of the people who travel to Germany end up visiting the most expensive and touristy cities like Munich, Frankfurt, Heidelberg, Hamburg, or Cologne. No doubt these cities are lovely but so are the smaller towns. 

No matter where you live in Germany, you are never going to be far from old town areas and traditional timber-framed houses a.k.a. Fachwerkhäuser. Even my completely under-the-radar boring town has two breathtaking old town areas with some historical houses. Some of the houses are from as early as 1300 AD.

The old town areas are super dreamy and they will make you feel like you’re starring in your own romantic movie. You will most likely find old buildings, small shops with lovely but expensive handmade things, benches strategically placed in scenic spots, and an amazing atmosphere.

Talking about the timber-framed houses, yes – they exist in other countries too. BUT, as per Wikipedia, the country that’s most known for these kinds of houses is (drumroll) – Germany.

The Language

If you’re traveling within Germany then you will not really face a lot of language barriers. It is only when you start living in the country, you will realize that you will need to learn more than just the basic level German to do things here. I’m talking about paperwork, and visiting different government offices like the town hall, tax office, etc.

In order to live in Germany, most of the visas have a prerequisite of basic German language skills. Trust me, you NEED to learn the basic level of German, or else you will feel stuck.

If you know English, then learning basic German isn’t that difficult because many nouns and verbs are the same. What’s different is how the verbs are used and the endless articles. The good thing is, that German words sound exactly how they are written, which can’t be said about a lot of English words. The bad thing is that the German language is highly complicated if you compare it to English.

Honestly, it doesn’t matter if you slightly mess up the grammar. If you make an effort to speak a few sentences in German then the locals will highly appreciate it and help you.

Paperwork Never Ends

Get ready to drown in a lot of paperwork if you end up living in Germany. Yes, paperwork exists in every country but in Germany it seems to never get over.

If you live in Germany, you will notice that there’s something new that comes up every month that needs immediate attention. Hence, more paperwork. Thankfully, the paperwork in Germany is pretty straightforward because all the rules and procedures are always black or white. 

The Food in Germany

Food in Germany - Schnitzel

Food in Germany – Schnitzel

Potatoes, meat, eggs, bread, and dairy are things that truly rule the German food scene. If you eat in a restaurant in Germany, you will find very limited vegan food options unless it is an Asian restaurant.

In India and many other Asian countries, you will find an entire section of vegetarian and vegan dishes, even if it is burgers. I have spent 3 months in the USA and I always noticed a lot of veggie items on the menu too. In comparison, here in Germany, you will notice barely 1-2 dishes in the entire menu that are vegetarian and just one out of that would be vegan. 

However, when it comes to the availability of vegetables and fruits in the supermarkets, then Germany is awesome. Even the smaller supermarkets in small towns have German as well as a lot of international produce so you can find almost anything. If you love vegetables as much as I do, you are going to really enjoy cooking while you live in Germany. I didn’t know I could cook before I arrived in Germany!

Trains are Good BUT Expensive

German trains are awesome. They are clean, comfortable, 98% on time, and extremely fast. You can travel very easily within Germany and nearby countries on trains. But they aren’t cheap.

It is sometimes cheaper to take a flight than travel by train. In many cases, if you’re looking for an affordable train ticket, you may have to change trains a few times in your journey.

Bicycle Will be Your Best Friend

Cycling in Germany

Cycling in Germany in Spring

Forget driving, or buses but the best way of getting around in Germany is on a bicycle. The bike lanes are everywhere and in many cases, you can take an inside “walking / cycle only” path that’s more scenic. You can also take your bicycle on a train and travel to other places within Europe. San and I once also traveled to Amsterdam from our town in Germany on our bicycles.

Carry a lock, learn how to take care of your bicycle, and enjoy riding one. 

Tier E Scooters – Yay

This is a new point because E Scooters have recently been introduced. I used to complain about the lack of good internal public transport in smaller cities but everything changed after Tier was launched.

You can use an app called Tier and find a scooter near you and just ride it to where you want to go and leave it there so that another person can use it after you’re done. I love this! These scooters are very easy to ride too.

No, I’m not getting paid to promote them but I genuinely love this app and use it everyday to rent scooters. The scooters are environmentally friendly!

You Can Travel All Over Europe 

Us three with van and our camping spot - traveling with a baby

Us three with van in Croatia – we drove all over Europe with our camper van

I’m sure other Europeans who are reading this would just say – “yeah of course”, but for a non-European the ease of traveling within Europe is unbelievable. Yes, one of the best things about living in Germany is the possibility of reaching a new country in just a couple of hours. Not just by air but very easily by road or train without any need for visa paperwork. 

Depending on where you live in Germany, a few hours of driving can take you to Austria, Switzerland, Belgium, France, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Poland, or Czechia. If you take a flight, you can reach most of the European countries in just 2 hours. How awesome is that? San and I ended up traveling in most of Europe on our camper van while living in Germany. Check out our post about the most beautiful lakes in Europe.

Tap Water is Safe for Drinking

The tap water in Germany is safe for drinking even in big cities. It is the most controlled beverage in Germany and it should be. I wish it was the same all over the world. Everyone should have access to clean and safe drinking water from their taps.

Strangely enough, not many Germans that I know drink tap water. They buy bottled water or carbonated drinks and choose to drink that over tap water despite its consequences on the planet (and their health).

Tap water gets tested periodically to check the quality and as per many reports, it is as good and sometimes even better than bottled mineral water. 

BUT You Can Never Order Tap Water in Restaurants. Never.

For a country where tap water is safe for drinking, it is super strange that you can never ask for a glass of it in a restaurant. You are expected to order drinks with your meal and water isn’t always cheap. Also, bottled water creates unnecessary plastic waste. 

If You Ask for Water, You Will Most Likely Get Soda

For non-Europeans, water means just water. But that’s not the case with most of the Europeans. If you order water in a restaurant or ask for it somewhere, you will get a glass or a bottle of soda. In some places, they’re nice enough to ask if you want your water with or without bubbles. No, plain water doesn’t have bubbles, that’s soda. 

Highways have no toll.. and no speed limit

German highways are awesome. They are very well maintained, have resting stops every few kilometers, and are toll-free. The only time we remember ever paying toll was when we used a bridge that connected Germany’s mainland to Rugen island.

Guess what, Germany’s highways are world famous and some people come here from surrounding countries with their fancy cars. All because the highways (Autobahns) have no speed limit.

The School System is Very Weird

There are just a few things that I dislike about Germany and one of them is the school system. It is very weird and it feels wrong. There are separate schools based on the intelligence level. There is a school for very bright kids and only those who finish this school can go to college. Rest others have to go to a school that’s not for the smartest kids. If they fail, they get thrown into a school that’s for below average kids. 

I understand that this may be an efficient system for managing education but it is a horrible system for developing smarter well-rounded children. In real life, everyone has something to learn from the other. When children aren’t given the opportunity to study with those who are smarter than or not as smart as them, then they will miss out on some important life lessons.

Customer Service Doesn’t Normally Exist

You know what’s the only word that comes to my mind when I think of German customer service? It’s non-existent. Unlike Asia or the Americas where the service mantra is that the customer is the king, in Germany it is completely different. Apart from the Deutsche Post and DHL, if you seek help from anyone at any office at any time, they will act as if they are doing YOU a big favor or they will just say no.

You Get to Enjoy All the Seasons

Snowy Winter in Germany

Snowy Winter in Germany

You’re probably thinking – huh, so that’s in many other places. Yes it is but I felt a need to add this here because this is a very big deal for me. You see, while living in New Delhi (India), I thought I was experiencing every season but I realized what I was missing after moving to Germany. 

Because Germany is in the Northern Hemisphere, the winter is really cold with shorter days. It doesn’t snow throughout the winter but it does snow at least once or twice per season. When it does, the world turns absolutely magical and white. Because of the extreme winter, spring feels more alive and the sudden burst of color because of the flowers is eye-popping.

Spring in Germany - Rapeseed Flower Field

Spring in Germany – Rapeseed Flower Field

The summer is warm in Germany and sometimes the temperature can go till 35-40 degree celsius. Those are the times I miss an air conditioner but I made do with a fan here. Right after summer, the autumn season is pretty intense.

Honestly, my first Autumn experience was in Germany. I never realized I was missing out on Autumn beauty in India till the time I moved to Germany. Autumn in Germany is beautiful because there are so many trees everywhere. They all turn yellow, then red and then brown. It is insanely beautiful to see autumn foliage in Germany.

When it Snows, You Gotta Shovel the Sidewalk next to your House

No, I’m not talking about shoveling the driveway – that’s something you will need to do anyway if you want to take out your car after it snows. If you live in a house then most likely it would have a sidewalk for bicycles or pedestrians. In Germany, if anyone walks on the sidewalk next to your house and hurts themself badly if they slip on the snow then it is your responsibility. So, enjoy the snow but keep shoveling the sidewalk. 

Don’t get me wrong – this isn’t a rant about Germany but just an observation about how life is different here than my own country. I like the fact that the residents are accountable for the area around their house in the immediate vicinity.

Celebrations and Festivals

Carnival in Germany

Carnival in Germany

I thought India had too many festivals and celebrations but Germany isn’t any different. There’s something that happens every month in Germany. Everyone knows about the Oktoberfest? Well, that’s just one of many. There’s the Carnival that’s crazier than anything you can imagine. It is like a psychedelic festival where everyone dresses up crazy and participates.

My First German Christmas Market - Christkindlmarkt Wiedenbrück

My First German Christmas Market – Christkindlmarkt Wiedenbrück

Christmas time in Germany is like no other. Guess what, many famous international Christmas traditions actually came out of Germany., Santa Claus is from Germany too! Christmas festivities start in Germany at the end of November and last till Christmas.

There’s St Martin where children walk with lanterns. Apart from this, there are so many smaller monthly celebrations and some are region-specific. In my area, we celebrate Kirmes, Schützenfest, Medieval Fest, Plum Festival, and many wine festivals to name a few.

The only time of the year when I haven’t seen any celebrations is between New Year’s Eve to Carnival and that’s just one month. Carnival occurs in mid-February every year.

Germany Has Bad Internet

You will find it unbelievable but you will find better internet in most places in Asia as compared to Germany. This comes as a shock because Germany is a highly advanced and developed country but the internet situation has evolved in a strange manner.

You see, Germany has an Oligopoly market situation when it comes to the internal. That means, there are just a handful of providers that rule the market. The speed is slow, the service is horrible, and faster internet is obscenely overpriced as compared to many other countries.

Conclusion – Life in Germany – Yay or Nay?

I didn’t particularly love every aspect of living in Germany right away. It took me some time to adjust, and I kept comparing it to life in India. I missed the food, the color, the sensory overload, and my people from India. I don’t know how it happened but two years after living in Germany, I started to miss it while I was traveling in India. When I was at the airport, I felt an odd connection to people who were talking in German. This is how I usually felt when I saw Indians talking in India. 

So, for me, life in Germany is definitely YAY.

Attending Music Festivals with a Baby? We Did and So Can You! Here’s How

Attending Music Festivals with a Baby? We Did and So Can You! Here’s How

I wrote this post when I took my 8-month-old baby to music festivals. She’s now five and we have already taken her to so many more after writing this post.

My love story with San started at a music festival. Since then, we have attended many festivals together. There was even a year when we did 9 music festivals – all in different countries. We did the Boom Festival in Portugal, SUN Festival in Hungary, Modem Festival in Croatia, Lost Theory in Spain, Hilltop in Goa, and Dance of Shiva in Manali – just to name a few. (Here’s what happened when we did back-to-back music festivals)

Disclaimer: Just because we attend music festivals, doesn’t mean that we participate in intoxicants. We do it for our love of music and nothing else. Yes, we perhaps the most sober people in a festival with just a beer or two in their system.

Fast forward a few years, and we’re new parents! During my pregnancy, we decided not to stop what we loved doing together. It includes attending music festivals. Of course, it would only work when we take our baby to music festivals with us. It was going to happen sooner or later, so we decided to start early. Well, why not?

Our little girl was just 9 months old when she had already visited two music festivals with us. Her first festival was the Modem Festival in Croatia and the second one was Wonderland Festival in Germany. We took her back to a music festival almost every year during her toddler years, and now she’s 5.

Our festival experience has now completely changed, but not for the worse. It is definitely a lot of fun to attend a festival with a baby or a toddler. 

By the way, if you’re a new parent, then be sure to read our 35+ tips for traveling with a baby. It is a detailed post where I mention tips for flying with your baby, camping, managing food and sleep and so much more.

So you want to take your baby to a music festival too? Here are some of our top tips that will help you:

Pick the RIGHT Music Festival

Attending a music festival with baby
Attending a music festival with baby

Don’t just go to any music festival with your child, especially if it is the first time. Make an effort to pick the RIGHT one. Every music festival attracts a different kind of crowd, which depends a lot on the genre and location. Read this post to know what kind of music festivals we like.

A good music festival experience for you and your baby will be picking a festival that has much more than just the dancefloor. Many festivals feature a special area for children, a Yoga zone, and an art corner. 

Pick a genre that you enjoy and one that attracts people that are a little more relaxed. A heavy metal festival would be a bad idea but an indie rock festival would make a lot of sense with a baby. Similarly, jazz or reggae festivals will also work well if you’re taking your baby. 

We always pick psychedelic music festivals which normally have a chill stage with soft music and another stage with dark PsyTrance. We’d never pick a festival like Tomorrowland, or Coachella – that’s not at all our scene.

Pick a festival that you have already been to and you’re confident about managing your baby at that particular location. In case you haven’t been there personally, try to find others who have taken their baby to that particular festival. Ask them for their location-specific tips.

Going with a Partner is Easier than Going Alone

A beautiful family that we met in a music festival with baby
A beautiful family that we met in a music festival with a baby

I’m sorry to mention this to the single parents who are planning on going to the music festival without the baby’s other parent – it isn’t going to be so easy. 

Get a friend (or your girl gang)  to accompany you if you’re single. It takes a village to raise a baby, and you will surely need help when you take your baby to a music festival.

Baby Sleeping Arrangements in the Festival

The best part about music festivals is camping there for a few nights – which can also be the worst part for your baby if you don’t do it right. Sleeping (along with feeding) is something that you need to mindfully take care of so that your baby remains in a good mood and doesn’t make your life hell. 

Based on the location and the weather forecast, think and plan your sleeping arrangements from before. Here are a few options:

Consider Renting a Van

Us three with van and our camping spot - traveling with a baby
Us three with van and our camping spot – traveling with a baby

San and I have our own camper van. We have traveled a lot in our van with our little one and she’s now comfortable sleeping in it. 

I highly recommend you rent a van to make the festival experience more comfortable for yourself and your little one. (you can rent one for cheap). I saw a lot of people with rented vans at the music festivals that we went to. It is not expensive to rent vans and will be cheaper than buying all the extra camping gear for your baby. 

Consider Getting a Camping Bed

Did you know you can get a Foldable camping bed for your baby? It folds up pretty small but opens up to a big and comfortable crib. It makes an amazing bed for your little one on the go! This bed is an excellent option for those who are thinking of sleeping in a tent with their baby. Just make sure your tent is large and high enough for this.

Karma also has a bed like this in her grandparents’ house in Frankfurt and she is very comfortable sleeping on it when we’re there. A few months back, we thought of borrowing it for the festival but did not end up because Karma is now very comfortable on the van. 

Along with the camping bed, you will also need to get a mattress for it. If the festival location is cold, then you will surely need a thick and effective sleeping bag. No, blankets don’t work so well because babies kick them off. 

Consider Getting A Room

“No way, I’m not renting a room in a festival and missing out on all the fun,” says my husband. 

Do you think like that too? You have no choice but to change your mind if the weather isn’t suitable for camping with a small baby and you’re going there without a van. Get a room that’s very close to the festival location.

Of course, this is only recommended if it makes sense to rent a room considering the ease of getting to the festival from your room. If it involves too many changes – like walking, then a bus, and then a shuttle – then it isn’t worth the hassle.

Arrive Early

While writing this article, I asked my husband for his #1 tip for attending a music festival with a baby and he said to arrive early. Why? Well, it is a good idea to get your baby comfortable and used to the new festival environment before things start going crazy. 

Moreover, arriving early will help you find a good camping spot that’s close to everything but far away from music. It will also help you figure your way around before the area gets crowded with many people.

Make Sure You Carry Headphones

Babies have sensitive ears and they should wear noise-canceling headphones in the music festival, especially if they’re close to the dancefloor. 

It isn’t easy making your baby wear headphones if they have decided to hate them. It happened with Karma and she wore the headphones only in two instances after a lot of drama.

Every baby is different, so don’t give up. Let your child play with the headphones before you put them on. Be sure to take a look at my Music Festival packing list.

Prepare to Take Turns to Hit the Dance Floor

Us in a music festival
Us in a music festival

Yes, I get it – it is more fun to hit the dancefloor with your partner or better half. However, things change a little bit when there’s a baby in the picture. Someone has to be around the baby, even when he or she is sleeping. In this case, your choice would be to not go to the dancefloor after the baby sleeps, or take turns and enjoy the party. We did the latter.

We did take Karma to the dancefloor but only for a short time. For serious partying, San and I took turns hitting the dancefloor one by one.

What worked really well with us was an arrangement where one night he would stay at the camping area with the baby and I’d go out to party, but on the next night, it was his turn. Even though Karma slept by 7 – 8 p.m. every night, at least one parent was always next to her inside or outside the van.

Sleep Schedule – to Follow or Not?

Rocking my baby to sleep in a music festival in Croatia
Rocking my baby to sleep in a music festival in Croatia

Most babies have a fixed sleep schedule. Should you follow that schedule when you head for a music festival? I will share my experience and will let you decide.

Karma has a fixed sleep schedule and she usually sticks to it even when we travel. It is just the first day of travel that gets messed up, but on the second day, she returns to her normal schedule on her own. 

Before her first festival, I asked a few parents and one said I should just forget the schedule when I’m at a music festival with her and go with the flow. Yes, I did try that but it did not work for us. 

Karma always takes two naps a day but she did not on the first day of the festival, which caused her to be irritable. On the second day, I made sure she was comfortable (in her pram or on the mat) and in a silent spot during her nap time. I rocked her a little and she slept very easily. Because of this, my next few days were super easy. 

So yes, we did follow her sleep schedule at the festival. We did not follow it minute to minute but loosely. In all honesty, it was HER who followed her sleep schedule, not us.

Fast forward a few years, we obviously couldn’t take her for a festival for a year after her first birthday because of Covid but we went right after the restrictions loosened up.

When she was 3.5 years old, we took her to the same festival in Croatia and it was without a van. We bought the biggest tent from Decathlon that had two rooms and we were very comfortable in it.

Get Ready to Wake Up Early

Never have I ever woken up religiously at 7 a.m. at any music festival as I did with I went with my baby. Our little one woke us up in both in Modem Festival and Wonderland Festival. 

Babies normally wake up early, especially if they are in new surroundings with different morning sounds. Accept it with a smile and prepare yourself mentally to begin early.

Sleep Early or Don’t Get to Sleep at all

Our little baby in a music festival with us
Our little baby in a music festival with us

This is more like an extension of the previous point. Well, as I mentioned before – your baby will most likely wake you up early every morning. If you’re like me and you love to sleep, then you will have to sacrifice the party night on some nights and sleep early so that you don’t hate your life when you’re woken up at 7 am.

Pick your party night and sleep early on other nights. You need to rest too! After all, it is a vacation for you too.

Managing Food and Breastfeeding in a music festival

If your baby is younger than 6 months, hasn’t started solids, and is only on breastmilk, then managing food is going to be super easy. This is one of the cases where taking a 3-month-old baby to a music festival may end up being easier than taking a 7-month-old. Direct breastfeeding is the easiest form of feeding to manage when traveling. You don’t need to carry a bottle or worry about cleaning it!

Managing food when your baby is on formula, drinking milk from a bottle or solids is a little more work. You will need to carry the food, bowls, spoons, bottles, sippies, and what not. You will also have to ensure everything is always clean and sterilized. 

Most of the festivals have a place where you can buy fresh fruit, bread, milk, and cheese. Usually, 6+-month-old babies love bananas and 7+ months onward they love bread too. Even if your baby has just 1 or 2 teeth, they can eat and enjoy soft bread. Carry ready-to-eat or easy-to-make cereals that are specifically for babies. Buy the ones that you can just mix with hot water. TIP: Carry something that you know your baby loves to eat. 

In our case, Karma was 8 months old and we carried her favorite ready-to-eat porridge for dinner from Germany, which we kept in the refrigerator in our van. The brand is Hipp, which is easily available in most European supermarkets and DM. 

She drinks breast milk so I did not have to worry about the formula. Also, I bought bananas, fresh bread, and cheese for her almost every day at the festival.

Sling / Carrier / Pram

Baby sleeping in her pram in Slovenia
Baby sleeping in her pram in Slovenia

Should you carry a sling or a carrier or a pram? Many people swear by slings but a pram works wonders for us. It all depends on what your baby is most comfortable in, and is used to. 

I have met many parents who love carrying their babies in slings or backpacks or carriers because it keeps them close to the chest but my little one doesn’t like them. She doesn’t like staying in a carrier or sling for more than 30 minutes on a good day. On the other hand, she loves her pram and can also sleep in it. 

Personally, I prefer the pram because it is so much easier to manage than a sling. Pushing is definitely easier than carrying. I can take my little one around in her pram as well as carry her stuff under the it so I have my hands free. The one I have has enough space for her stuff as well as MY stuff. Moreover, it also acts as a high chair for eating and a makeshift bed on the go.

I have a compact folding one from Cybex, that I can open with just one foot while holding my little one in my arms. Pretty cool, huh?

Not just in festivals but I have taken this particular one on many flights. Because of its small size, I never have to check it in along with my luggage but literally take it to the flight entry door. 

Baby Festival Essentials 

Me with the Baby in a Music Festival
Me with the Baby in a Music Festival

In my post about tips for traveling with a baby, I mention you should travel light and not carry too many diapers. After all, you get them in every supermarket. But things are very different when you’re at a music festival with your baby.

Carry more than enough diapers because that’s something you will not get at a music festival (unless there’s a supermarket nearby). Not just diapers but bring enough diaper gear – like wipes, disposable changing mats, dry tissues, and diaper cream. 

Don’t forget weather protection such as sun cream that’s specifically for babies, sun hat, waterproof gear, thick jacket, gloves, socks, etc. 

We have a lot of other festival gear for our baby too – like an Inflatable Bathtub, travel potty, bath thermometer, and cute costumes. You probably don’t need most of these things. Neither do we, but it was fun to buy them and waste money. Yep, that’s what we do with our firstborns, don’t we?

Festival Bag Checklist – Keep a Day Bag Ready with ALL THIS

My best tip for enjoying a festival with your baby is always being ready to be on the move. Set up your handbag before the festival and just refill the basics every day and you’re ready to move without a delay. In our case, it was a small rucksack.

Pack all this in your day bag – at least 5 Diapers, 1 disposable changing mat, 1 pack of wet baby wipes, soft burping towels, solid ear-protecting headphones, a change of clothing for your baby in case of mess-ups, a picnic mat, 1-2 toys, a small blanket, 1-2 snacks, baby food, spoon, water sippy, sun hat, and sunglasses. Karma did not ever wear her hat or sunglasses, so I also carried a little umbrella for her. 

My bag also included my basics like a swimsuit, sarong, jacket for me, and my essentials. I always carry my camera too because I wanted to capture special moments of my baby’s first music festival. I did not end up using my camera on most days but it was good to use it twice. 

In short, you should have enough to change the diaper at any point, to make your baby get comfortable to sleep whenever he or she wants, and to feed the baby anywhere. Also, the idea is to carry just ONE bag that includes your and your baby’s stuff.

Sounds like a lot of stuff? Well, don’t forget you have a pram. Put all this in the lower part of your pram and keep your hands free. Be creative and hang a few things on the pram, like the toys and umbrella. 

Make Your Baby Meet Other Babies

Excited Babies meeting each other in a music festival
Excited Babies meeting each other in a music festival
Music Festival with babies - Go with your partner or your friend
Music Festival with babies – Go Make new friends

Festival babies should meet each other and be friends, no? Well, when you see another tiny human with parents, go ahead and say hello. 

Make your baby meet as many babies as possible and watch the fun. It is adorable to see how babies react to each other and are so curious. You never know, some of your baby’s lifelong friendships may begin here.

Moreover, you will also make new friends with similar parents who enjoy the same kind of things as you do – like music festivals. Do you know how difficult it is to find like-minded people and make friends with them when you’re older?

Spend Time in the Children’s Area

Toddlers and babies playing together in the Children's Area in a music festival
Toddlers and babies playing together in the Children’s Area in a music festival

Most of the music festivals have a children’s area. Find one and try to spend time there. The Children’s Area in a festival is an amazing space for your baby to play, meet other babies, and to get creative.

Back in 2016, I fell in love with the Children’s Area at Boom Festival (in Portugal). It is called Young Dragons and I saw children playing with bubbles, colors, and blocks. They all had their own workshops and cinema there! 

I remember thinking at that point that I would surely bring my child to music festivals with me. Little did I know that I’d be taking my own baby to music festivals with me.

My little Karma had a lot of fun in the Modem Festival’s Children’s Area. She met many other babies and got noisy with them. She also had her first little fight with another baby (aww). Sadly Wonderland Festival in Germany did not have a Children’s Area but we spent most of our time in the Chai Shop which was next to the Chill Out Floor.

ALWAYS Keep an Eye

Keeping an Eye on the Baby in a music festival
Keeping an Eye on the Baby in a music festival

This point is very obvious but I do feel it is my duty to mention it to all my blog readers. Being a parent, you must be habitual in keeping an eye on your baby by now. Festivals are no different. 

One parent or a close friend that you can trust should be with the baby at all times. Keep an eye on and make sure your baby is well-fed, hydrated, is wearing sun protection if needed, and is not cold or not hot. 

If you’re sitting on the grass, be mindful of where the baby is crawling and what he or she is putting in the mouth. People consume all sorts of drugs at festivals and you don’t want your baby to find a baggy with intoxicants and start eating it.

Stay Sober [at least one of you]

A music festival is a place where some people may want to get intoxicated, but YOU will have to do things differently. I personally attended many music festivals in my life and I was usually sober.

By now you must have mentally accepted the fact that your life is fucked and you can no longer do what you want. Haha, kidding. I mean, you now have the responsibility of your child’s safety, so come to terms with the fact that your music festival experience will be a little less drunk as compared to the others.

I suggest at least one parent or friend stays sober – whoever is watching the baby. Of course, a beer or two should be all right. As long as you’re in your senses and are confident of being able to watch your baby.

Take it Easy and Enjoy. It is EASIER Than You Think

Our baby enjoying a juggeling show in Wonderland Music Festival
Our baby enjoying a juggling show in Wonderland Music Festival

Yes, you’re at a music festival with your baby but you need to relax and have fun too. Taking care of your baby at a festival is easier than you think. There are plenty of distractions like interesting decorations, hula hoopers, jugglers, and most commonly people dressed in interesting costumes that will keep your baby busy. 

Get a picnic mat, lie down, and let your baby crawl around. Keep an eye on your baby from a distance and smile. Be happy, because you’re one of the very few parents who are showing the awesomeness of a music festival to their baby. Make the most of it.

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35+ Tips for Traveling with a Baby (inc Flying + Camping + Road Trips)

35+ Tips for Traveling with a Baby (inc Flying + Camping + Road Trips)

A few months back I shared my top tips for traveling while pregnant. This post is a follow up for those who want to continue traveling after their pregnancy and with their baby.

It has been 9 months since my little Karma has entered this world. In this short time, we have traveled extensively in and outside Germany. We have made quite a lot of international trips, crossed continents, visited mountains, beaches, national parks, busy cities and even took her to two music festivals.

Every single time I upload something on Instagram with Karma in a new country, I get contacted by new and would-be moms asking me how I do it. After traveling to India, Poland, Netherlands, Slovenia, Croatia, and Bosnia & Herzegovina with my little one, I have FINALLY decided to share my top tips for traveling with an infant.

Suggested: HOW to Attend a Music Festival with Baby – We Did and So Can You

I was earlier going to write a post with just a few important points and later create separate posts dedicated to tips for flying with a baby, campervan tips and more. Instead, I have written everything in just one post and create separate sections with sub-points for flying, camping, etc.

The below tips for traveling with a baby are segregated in multiple sections. The first section covers tips for flying with an infant for which I get the MOST amount of questions. The sections after that cover things like packing, planning, baby food, baby sleeping arrangements while traveling, road trips, camping and more.

Change Your Mindset

Change your mindset about traveling with your baby

Change your mindset about traveling with your baby

The first and the most important thing about traveling with a baby is changing your mindset. Sounds like some wise-ass bullshit? It is more than that.

Someone wrote to me on Instagram yesterday saying that I make traveling with the baby appear easy. Well, it is as simple as you make it.. Or as complicated as you unintentionally make it. 

If you think that it will be a lot of work and stress to travel with your baby even before you even try it, then it probably will be. It is simple – everything you do with a baby inside your house, you can also do outside. 

You will be surprised to know that babies adapt much better than you can imagine. Maybe they will cry on their first day but they will accept the new surrounding well on their second day. 

Tips for Flying with a baby

Flying with a baby can be a total nightmare, but there are things you can do to make it better. This below ten points will give you tips for flying with an infant, how you can make things better and have fun.

Avoid Layovers, Book Direct Flights

Direct flights cost a little extra but if you’re flying alone with your baby, I highly recommend you try your best to look for a direct one. Your peace of mind is worth every penny. This is especially if you’re flying alone with your baby. 

In case you’re traveling with your husband or another person, then go ahead and brave an indirect flight. 

Call the Airline and Ask for a bassinet. (and thank me later)

Bassinet for my little one on our flight from Germany to India

Bassinet for my little one on our flight from Germany to India

Call the airline in advance and ask for a seat with a bassinet. It will make your life very easy. Imagine spending the entire flight with the baby on your lap, versus a flight where the baby has her own place for sleeping and sitting.

The reason why I recommend you call in advance is because many airlines have limited bassinets. Karma had her own bassinet when we flew to and back from India. She spent a lot of time playing and sleeping in it. She wasn’t the only baby on the flight but she was one of the few that had a bassinet. 

Bring the Pram to the Airport

Flying with a baby is more than just the actual flying – it is also about moving from point A to B in the airport. For me, the flight was easier than the first hour after landing when I had to go through immigration. Go for an easy to handle pram that collapses easily and folds super small. I have one from Cybex, that I can fold and open with just one hand or foot.

To make your life simple at the airport, fly with a pram (or a buggy). I did that too! I had to call my airline in advance and find their policy about traveling with a pram. I was able to use the pram until the time I boarded my flight.

Baby Carrier or Sling

Baby carrier is a must have while traveling

Baby carrier is a must have while traveling

Baby carrier or sling will save your life when the baby refuses to go in the pram. Sometimes they need to be physically close to you, so wearing them on you will work well. There will be times when the pram will not be available to you and the sling will make things easier.

Even though I had carried Karma’s pram and used it till the time I boarded my flight in Frankfurt, I did not get it when I landed. I had to pick it up from the other checked-in bags. Thank God I had carried the carrier in my cabin bag, else, it wouldn’t have been possible for me to walk 2 – 3 kilometers inside the airport and go through the security and immigration with her on my lap as well as my cabin backpack.

I have a baby carrier from Chicco that can be used for small and big babies. I also bought a sling, but Karma rejected it completely. I know many other babies that prefer slings to carriers. You should try them both at a store, or order both from the internet and return what your baby doesn’t like.

Check-In Early (and also Board your Plane Early)

There is a reason why the airlines always request those who’re flying with a baby to check-in early. It is not just better for them but also better for you when you check-in and board before everyone else does. 

It is always good when your baby adjusts to the seat and the plane before other people arrive. When you check-in early, you can always ask for a seat with an empty seat next to you. Reconfirm at this point about the bassinet, baby food or any other requests that you may have.

Protecting Baby’s Ear While Flying

Flying with baby - tips

Flying with baby – tips

There is so much wrong information on the internet that things can be misleading. Being concerned about Karma’s ears before I was flying to India alone with her, I checked the internet to find out how I can help her avoid ear pain. 

Most of the websites mentioned I should breastfeed my baby during the takeoff and landing so that the sucking helps her ears. I wish it was that easy, but it is NOT ALLOWED to feed the baby during those times as per the safety rules. 

Babies are supposed to be held up close to the chest with their head over your shoulder and your hand behind their backs during take off and landing – it is mandatory. Please follow this rule for your baby’s safety.

In my case, the only things that helped were pacifiers and water sippers. No, I took the safety instructions very seriously and did not breastfeed my girl during take-off and landing. (And it isn’t anatomically possible to do so when you’re supposed to hold the baby’s head over your shoulders.)

Karma has Chicco dummies pacifiers and water sipper. She doesn’t ever take dummies but thankfully took it when our flight took off. I’m happy that I sterilized them and carried them in my hand bag before boarding. During landing, she was close to my chest and was sipping water from her sippy.

 

Please note, that it appears that the airlines no longer allow breastfeeding during take off and landing. There were two incidents where a 4 month old and later an 11 month old died on a flight. It is highly advised by certain medical practitioners not to feed during take off and landing and not to use the bottle. Moreover, always make sure you burp your baby and even more so on a flight. Here are some more safety instructions while flying with a baby by medical experts.

Change your Baby’s Diaper Before the Flight

Just a few minutes before you have to board the plane, change your baby’s diaper. You will not be able to change the diaper during the takeoff, which sometimes can take 15-20 minutes.

Changing Diapers on the Plane

Ask your flight steward to tell you which toilets have diaper-changing tables. Most planes have small (and pretty useless) diaper tables in their already cramped toilets. There won’t be space for you to carry a diaper bag. (I have a detailed point later in this post about ditching diaper bags).

Carry the basics – diaper, disposable sheet, wipes in a small waist pouch so that you can easily manage the stuff in a small airline toilet. Carry a small toy or something that can keep your baby’s hands occupied during the process so that you can be quick. I normally let Karma play with my long necklace, she loves holding the colorful beads in her hands.

Whatever you do, DO NOT FLUSH THE DIAPER DOWN THE TOILET. Believe it or not, someone did it on an American Airlines flight and people were told to pee in a bag because toilets were sealed off!

If the airplane doesn’t have a diaper table, then be prepared to change the diaper anywhere. Ask the airline staff for their best recommendation. When you absolutely have no choice, then you will have to change it on your tray table.

Breastfeeding on the Plane

Don’t be ashamed to breastfeed on an airplane. It is natural and your baby needs his or her meals. Breastfeeding on an airplane is more discreet because the person in front of you won’t be able to see you unless they turn. The person behind will only be able to see your back. The only people that will be able to see you are the flight stewards. Moreover, you will probably get the seats that are right in front because you’re traveling with a baby. 

If you’re regularly breastfeeding your baby, then I highly recommend you invest in at least a couple of comfortable nursing tops and scarves. Wear it on the plane for discreet breastfeeding so that you’re comfortable. 

I have said this before and will say this again, make sure you burp your baby after breastfeeding especially on an airplane to avoid the risk of SIDS.

Let Your Baby Charm the People Around You

When your baby is in a good mood, try your best to let him or her charm the people around you. After all, they may have to listen to her cry (or maybe that has already happened). Your baby’s smile will let you earn some brownie points, it will help you move faster in queues and people around you will suddenly become nicer. Your baby won’t be a small baby for more than 12 months, so use their charm well.

Pick Your Destination Mindfully

Me and the Baby in Bosnia

Me and the Baby in Bosnia

Pick places where you will feel relaxed. Sometimes big cities can stress you and also your baby. While natural sites like lakes, rivers, mountains, beaches can relax your mind. When you’re relaxed, even your baby will. 

When I say pick your destination “mindfully”, I mean pick a place where you can imagine yourself having fun with your baby. There should be enough interesting things for your baby to see around. I don’t mean children dedicated places, but a place that’s not dull for your baby. 

Be realistic and don’t expect to reach places that you have to visit at a fixed particular time. If you’re visiting a highly touristy attraction, then most likely the best time to avoid the crowds will be in the early morning. If your baby doesn’t let you leave at that time, then consider skipping that attraction entirely.

Choose Your Method of Traveling Wisely

As per my experience, the easiest way of traveling with a baby is on a train. Babies sleep well on trains because of the swaying motion. Unlike car [or bus], they don’t need to be confined to a seat. 

Traveling with a baby in a car is easier than by air. Road trips are easy and fun because you can stop when you want to. The only thing that can get a little difficult on a road trip is the time when your baby gets sick of the seat.

Vaccinations

Us with Karma in India - she got vaccinated before the trip

Us with Karma in India – she got vaccinated before the trip

Keep your baby up to date with vaccinations. If you’re leaving for an international trip, check with your baby’s doctor about the necessary vaccinations. Traveling to another country with your baby without vaccination can be life threatening. Please be smart and don’t risk your baby’s life because of some anti vaccination bullshit that exists on the internet. 

Ditch Big Diaper Bags 

Typical diaper bags are big, bulky and useless. You don’t need them. All you need is a disposable waxy sheet on which your baby can lie down, baby wipes and a few diapers. I was able to fit these things in my small waist pouch! 

Ditching the diaper bag may appear to be a counter-productive tip, but it will save time and make it easy for you to move around quickly. Just put the necessities in your own small handbag. Of course, it will work better if you carry a small bag for yourself (hehe). 

Travel Light

Many people told me to carry extra baby clothes, extra diapers, and extra everything. That turned out to be the most useless tip for traveling with an infant. I did carry extra everything but realized how it slowed me down, even though my suitcase had wheels. 

Maybe I overdid it but I did carry 20 onesies but used just half of them. The only things I wished I had carried enough were her bibs because she’s a messy eater. 

The thing about carrying extra diapers is that it is possible to buy diapers everywhere. Carry enough for a few days but you can always buy more at your next destination. 

To be on the safe side, check about the stores and supermarkets, closing days and times. For instance, if you’re traveling in Germany, the supermarkets aren’t open on Sundays so you can’t buy diapers. 

But hey, I have visited a lot of countries with Karma and also a few remote locations, I found diapers everywhere. The only place where I didn’t find was inside a music festival, but I was fully prepared for this. Anyway, festivals are a different ball game and I will write a separate post about taking your baby to a music festival.

About Packing Toys

Carry 4-5 baby’s favorite toys that are small, but don’t overdo it. Carry something that your baby can chew on, a toy with music, a soft book that can keep her occupied for long (Karma has one from Fisher Price and Lamaze) and just something small that he or she likes to hold and play with. 

Be smart and carry the toys that can be attached on to the car seat, pram, or the bed. It helps if you carry toys that can be washed easily. Be aware that battery-operated toys and extra batteries can sometimes not be checked in.

Be Prepared to Breastfeed Everywhere

Me Breastfeeding my baby in Amsterdam's Waterloo Metro Station

Me Breastfeeding my baby in Amsterdam‘s Waterloo Metro Station

Believe it or not, I have breastfed Karma while hiking in the Himalayas, on a train station in Amsterdam, many restaurants all over Europe, and I’m sure more places that I can think of.

Regular breastfeeding is not just good for the baby, but is good for you too. It is the most natural thing and you should not be ashamed of feeding your baby anywhere. It helps if there’s a private spot available so that the baby doesn’t get distracted. Wear a nursing top, poncho or a long scarf to be discreet.

Be Prepared to Change Diapers Everywhere

You may not always find a diaper changing station, so be prepared to change anywhere. As mentioned in my “ditch the diaper bag” point, carry a disposable mat, a few diapers, and wet wipes. 

A disposable mat doesn’t need to be disposed of after every single use. We only dispose of the mat when the baby pees or poops in it. This mat will help you set up your diaper changing spot anywhere – even on the ground. You can buy them in bulk. I bought around 100 but I haven’t even used half of them.

Go Slow

A golden rule of traveling with a baby is realizing that they have their own needs and you can’t travel at a crazy fast pace as before. 

If you’re the kind of person who likes to visit 10 attractions in a day (even if they’re next to each other), then you will have to relax and take it slow because you have no other option. Pick one or two things to do in a day and do them with a lot of love. 

There will be times when you think you’re done and ready to leave on time, the baby will poop or puke right before to make sure you’re late. Accept it with a smile because there’s nothing you can do about it. 

Consider Renting a Car 

Look for options to rent a car on your travel destination, it will make things very convenient for you. Ask for a car with a baby seat. This way, you will open more possibilities for yourself and will be able to travel at your own pace in your own (rented) car.

Car Travel with Baby OR Tips for Traveling with a baby on a Camper van

Our camping spot in Croatia

Our camping spot in Croatia

Travel Car Seat

Invest in a good and comfortable car seat for your baby. You will have to change it depending on their age. A seat for a newborn baby is different as compared to a 6-month-old. Sounds expensive? Look for a second hand one.

There are many things where you can save money, but your baby’s car seat should not be one of them. Safety and comfort are extremely important and are worth the money.

Pram will save your day – Take it Everywhere

Karma in her pram in Amsterdam

Karma in her pram in Amsterdam

Prams are awesome and will save your life. Babies love to be pushed around in their prams as they gaze around. The best part is that they can also sleep easily in their prams as you take them around. 

Get a pram that is foldable and compact so that you can keep it in the boot of your car or travel with it on a bus or airplane. Attach a few of your baby’s favorite toys on the pram, preferably something with music or lights.

Driving Through the Night – Yay or Nay?

Before we started traveling with Karma on our camper van, many people mentioned that we should drive through the night during her normal sleeping hours. 

It sounded very easy but it did not work. We tried it many times. Each time she slept but woke up after a while because she wanted to change her position. I do know that she moves around on her bed a lot even though she sleeps through the night. 

So, the tip about driving at night during the baby’s sleep time did not work for us. Also, when you drive through the night and reach your destination in the morning – you would at some point need to sleep – right? Considering the best situation that your baby actually sleeps while you drive, how will you sleep after reaching your destination if your baby is awake after sleeping through the drive?

Try to Reach your Camping Spot or Destination before 5 PM.

Try your best to reach your camping spot or hotel at least 2 hours before your baby’s bedtime. This way, you can settle her sleep environment, bathe the baby, get food for yourself, etc – before putting him to sleep.

I have intentionally used the word “try” instead of “do”. I understand that the most desired situation may not end up being the actual scenario. Heck, even though we knew that our life’s easier when we find a spot for our van before 5 pm but we did not end up doing it often.

Baby Travel Sleep Options

Baby sleeping in her pram in Slovenia

Baby sleeping in her pram in Slovenia

Sleep is the most important aspect and when it’s nailed, everything falls into place. When your baby is well-rested, he or she won’t be fussy but instead will smile and make you happy.

Sleep Schedule

Try to build a fixed sleep schedule for your baby before you travel. The schedule should have at least two naps during the day and the exact same bedtime each night. If you work hard enough to fix a sleep schedule from day 1, then getting them to sleep while traveling will be much easier. 

Build Sleep Association Before the Trip and Bring The Items Along

It helps if you try to build your baby’s sleep association with a few items. This can be a “sleep toy”, a sleeping bag, blanket or even white noise. Carry them all, it will help your baby sleep faster.

Sleeping Spot and Sleep Environment 

Create a comfortable sleeping spot and environment before their sleeping time. If you do so, then they may fall asleep on their own when their sleep time approaches. Even not, help them a little by rocking them. 

A comfortable sleeping spot doesn’t necessarily have to be a bed, but their pram or car seat or even a picnic mat on the ground can work well.

Ask Your Hotel for a Baby Bed 

Even though we did not stay in luxury hotels, our request for a baby bed was always fulfilled. We booked an apartment in Croatia and a homestay in Bosnia through Booking dot com, and to our surprise, they put a baby bed in our room as per our request. It made things very easy for us. 

…or carry a camping Baby Bed

 

Yes, I did tell you to travel light but this point can work if you’re traveling in a car or a van. Nowadays there are plenty of awesome camping beds on the market that can be folded up small. They are very good to use as travel baby beds.

No, we did not feel the need to carry one because our van has two beds. Karma sleeps on the top bed.

Do Everything You Can to Help them Sleep

I’m all in for teaching your baby to fall asleep on their own, but things are a little different when your traveling. You see, you’re taking the baby out of their usual sleeping spot and imitating it somewhere else. Your baby may need some time to adjust. During this time, don’t hesitate to help them by rocking, feeding or holding them.

Rocking my baby to sleep in a music festival in Croatia

Rocking my baby to sleep in a music festival in Croatia

Normally my little one sleeps on her own on her bed in Germany and doesn’t need a lot of help from me. While traveling, she slept on her own only when we were moving in a car or train or so. At other times, even if I was outside I made sure I held her and rocked her a little during her nap timings. The first day (or even more) weren’t easy but later she slept during her earlier timings.

When your baby’s stomach is full, he or she will sleep better and deeper. Check the next point for food tips on the go.

Baby Food, Snacks and Fluids

If Your Baby is Smaller than 6 Months

If your baby is less than 6 months and is only drinking from the breast, then your life is going to be super easy. If your baby drinks from the bottle, then there is going to be more work for you as you have to sterilize the bottles, prepare the milk and give it to the baby at the right temperature.

If Your Baby is on Solids

Feeding Karma her mixed veg puree in Slovenia

Feeding Karma her mixed veg puree in Slovenia

If your baby has started solids, then try to carry premade puree bottles or easy to prepare porridges. I carry both – normally I just have to add water and milk to her porridge mix. Always carry snacks that your baby loves, like bananas or baby cookies. You don’t have to carry a lot, just carry enough for the way and the next few days. Most likely you can usually buy these things at your travel destination.

I normally buy Hipp’s food for my little one. She loves the Good Night porridge, Multigrain cereal, and Mixed Veg soup. They’re organic and the quality is excellent. 

Moving over to snacks, usually bananas will solve every problem. Carry a few and also buy them fresh at your destination. I also carry Bebivita Baby cookies that Karma loves.

Keep Your Baby Hydrated

When it comes to fluids, please remember it is very important to keep your baby hydrated while traveling, especially when they start eating solids. Before solids, the breast milk takes care of everything and babies normally don’t need water. 

Carry a water sipper that your baby is comfortable using. Wash it regularly and keep changing the water. Give the sipper to your baby often. 

Pack some Snacks for Yourself

Make sure you PACK A SNACK FOR YOURSELF too. Traveling with a little one requires you to be at your most energetic self, so don’t let yourself stay hungry for long.

The More, the Merrier

San's friend with our baby

San’s friend with our baby

Those who know me well will be shocked to see I’m saying this. The thing is, I love traveling solo or just with San. I hate to travel in a group. However, when you travel with a baby, things are so much easier when there are more people. 

Consider asking 1 – 2 or your close friends to accompany you if they’re free. When there are more people around to play with your baby or to carry him or her for a while, you will finally be able to relax and enjoy a few minutes of peace.

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