Instructions for Taking Breastmilk on the Road

2023-01-20 04:25:23 - Drany Macley Drany Macley, the senior editor of, brings extensive journalism background and over eight years of experience in travel writing and editing to the site, offering practical insights and first-hand knowledge through articles on innovative hotels, backed by a BA in Journalism from Ithaca College.

March 10, 2022 March 10, 2022 / Tobias Carlson Tavia

I've successfully breastfed for over a year and a half across more than ten countries. Allow me to assist you on your next journey. Here I am in the streets of Pompeii, Italy, nursing my 6-month-old baby.

You've come to the right place if you want to know the most efficient means of transporting breast milk. How to ship breastmilk, take breast milk on a plane, and other options for traveling with breast milk are all covered in this comprehensive guide.

Many times I have had to travel while packing breast milk in a checked bag or on my person. Our two children benefited from and still benefit from breast milk. Unfortunately, there were occasions when we anticipated needing a supply of milk upon arrival (for a babysitter), but did not have sufficient time to stock up. If you are a breastfeeding mother who needs or wants to take a trip without worrying about your milk supply, I have compiled a list of helpful resources and suggestions for you to follow. Breastfeeding mothers can relax about the logistics of travel. How to ship breast milk, pack breast milk for travel in checked luggage, and drive with frozen breast milk are all covered in this article.

Mothers who are breastfeeding have been sending milk to their children for years. It's not brand-new, but there also isn't a ton of material on it. If you will be away from your baby for an extended period of time due to travel, or if you just want to have a supply waiting for you when you get there, consider the following methods for shipping breastmilk.

  1. As for FedEx, they have a real Mommy program Pre-ordered and delivered refrigerated containers can be stocked with milk bags before being dropped off at a FedEx location for overnight delivery. Read on for the full scoop!

  2. Milk Stork is a business that specializes in transporting breast milk. They will send you shipping containers to stock up and send off. They take care of everything, and all you have to do is schedule the delivery of empty boxes and then drop off your filled boxes to be shipped overnight. Find out EVERYTHING about it right HERE

  3. If you're a military mom or have ever experienced a long deployment, you need to read this incredible piece written by the Military Working Mom. Packaging milk correctly is covered, as well as how to comply with international laws. Look at it RIGHT HERE!


It's easy to feel lost amidst the maze of rules and regulations surrounding flying while breastfeeding a baby. But I'll do my best to simplify the process of flying with breastmilk by outlining the fundamentals involved. Please note that the majority of this guide is geared toward domestic U.S. air travel with breast milk.

Latham was only 5 months when we went to Eastern Europe for 15 days. We brought thawed milk on the plane in a bottle as well as nursed. (Devin Castle, Slovakia)

When we took a 15-day trip to Eastern Europe, Latham was just 5 months old. The flight attendants were very accommodating, allowing us to bring a bottle of thawed milk and nurse our baby throughout the flight. The Devin Castle in Slovakia.

Can I fly with breast milk? Yes

Whether the mother is traveling with her child or not, she is permitted to bring "a reasonable amount" of breast milk through security in the United States per TSA policy. My husband and I flew from Nashville to Miami without our baby and I brought about 60 ounces of frozen expressed milk in my carry-on. Here, in black and white, are the precise regulations.

  • Keep in mind that not all TSA agents will be familiar with the regulations regarding breastmilk, so you will need to play the role of expert.

  • You may bring your breast pump and all of its components on board the plane, as they are considered medical devices by the Transportation Security Administration.

  • If you're flying with breast milk, a TSA agent may ask to check it. Refusing to let them open it may result in further scrutiny during the screening process. The decision is entirely up to you. A security agent once tried to open all of my baby food pouches as part of the screening process, but I refused and instead requested a full body pat-down. According to TSA guidelines, you must "inform the TSA officer if you do not want the formula, breast milk, and/or juice to be X-rayed or opened." You or your traveling guardian may be subjected to additional screening procedures, such as a pat-down and the inspection of other items in your carry-on bag, while the liquid is cleared. ”


I've put the frozen milk in an ice-packed small cooler and checked it along with the rest of my luggage. Domestic flights ensured that the milk would arrive completely frozen. Then I could store them in the freezer and use them as future nannies. Transporting a large quantity of milk in your carry-on is much riskier than this. If you properly store and transport your breast milk, it will be fresh and ready for the baby upon your return.  

  • You will need a way to keep your breast milk cool for the duration of your trip if it will be more than 24 to 36 hours. I suggest maintaining a constant cold temperature in a milk storage cooler with dry ice or gel packs.

    • Note that "when [dry ice is] in checked baggage, the package must be marked "Dry ice" or "Carbon dioxide, solid" and marked with the net quantity of dry ice, or an indication that it is 2 pounds or less." 5 kg (5 Under five pounds Extra safe ice packs (blue ice, gel packs, etc.) are a good idea in case of emergency. The dry ice can be supplemented with According to the FAA

  • My milk stays cold in a small cooler bag with regular ice packs for trips of 8-10 hours or less.  

  • When flying, how much breastmilk can you bring? Checking a bag containing frozen breast milk is permitted without restriction.

  • The milk should be double-bagged, as suggested. I store mine in the standard gallon-sized plastic milk jugs, stack them, and then store the stack in a gallon-sized ziplock bag. This is to ensure that my bag and the cooler are not ruined by milk leaking out of their storage bags.


my newborn son of 5 months, and I, are touring Europe for 2 weeks. In order to share the nighttime wake-up duties with my husband and to provide him with bottled food during our travels, I packed a hand pump. Because of the potential for him to be too preoccupied to nurse during takeoff, I also packed some pumped milk.

I took my 6-month-old daughter on a two-week trip to Europe. I had to bring bottles of milk onto the plane because she was such a fussy nurser that she wouldn't stay latched. This time around, I brought an electric pump with me.

Bringing breast milk onto an airplane is not permitted in all countries. In 2016, we saw a woman forced to dump 500 ounces of breastmilk at Heathrow Airport because she did not have her baby with her. She packed more than three ounces of milk (over 100 milliliters) If you do not have your baby with you, the European Union prohibits you from possessing more than 3 ounces of breastmilk in a CLEAR breast milk storage container. Learning the international regulations is crucial. This breastfeeding mother could have saved time, effort, and money if she had known how to freeze, prepack in ice, and check all of her milk.  

If you are a U.S. citizen traveling internationally, you must comply with TSA rules regarding breast milk. Please research the laws of the country you will be departing from regarding flying with breast milk.


Pumping on a long drive from Prague to Krakow, so the baby could eat on the ride.

The long drive from Prague to Krakow necessitated frequent pumping stops so that the baby could continue to receive nourishment throughout the trip.

According to me, this is the most convenient method for transporting a large quantity of breast milk. The two methods I recommend for driving with frozen breast milk are:

  1. Invest in a compact, plug-in automobile refrigerator. Milk should be kept in a temperature-controlled storage facility.

  2. Pack some ice or dry ice into a big cooler and bring it along. The milk will remain solidly frozen so long as you keep replenishing the ice as necessary.

In the event that you are stopping for the night in a hotel during your trip, bring the milk inside with you and, if possible, store it in the hotel's freezer. In the event that your room lacks a refrigerator, the hotel staff will be happy to freeze your breast milk cooler for you.


Nursing Charletta on a train in Germany

Germany train nursing Charletta

There's no need to cancel your trip because you're breastfeeding. While I was a nurse, my husband and I visited 10 different countries. Breastfeeding made traveling easier for me because we didn't have to lug around heavy bottles of formula. There is no hard and fast rule about how to transport breast milk while flying or driving; it all comes down to personal preference. Working mothers who must frequently be away from their breastfed infants may find that shipping breast milk is the most convenient and effective solution. I support you no matter what you decide.

There is nothing wrong with formula, I should add. Every parent knows that a well-fed baby is a happy baby. Our full backing is there for either option. **

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