My wife and I took a roadtrip and thought that we were totally prepared. We brought bottles of pumped milk (stored in a cooler). We also brought a thermos of hot/warm water so that we can warm up the milk.

We figured that when our baby got hungry, we can give her a bottle. I did the driving, while my wife tended to the baby in the back.

About 30 minutes into the trip we heard the cry of hunger. We gave her a couple of ounces of milk after we warmed it up. All seem to be fine, until she got fussy and finally she had a big spit up.

We think that basically we couldn't burp her in the car so that's why she got fussy and eventually spit up.

Is there a better way to handle this in the future? I guess the proper thing to do would be to pull over at a rest stop, feed & burp the baby and then resume our trip.

Is feeding a baby in a moving vehicle bad practice?

3 Answers 3


While it might be useful on a long road trip to be able to do this, it is certainly easier to do this when at a rest stop - one of mine really needed to be burped after a bottle, and this worked best in the traditional 'over the shoulder' position, so we couldn't have done that safely when driving.

It also gives both the driver and partner time to work together to ensure the child is fine, and you get a break from driving for 15 minutes - which is always to be encouraged!

So I don't think it is 'bad practice' - it's just easier, more relaxing, and generally better to do it while stationary.

  • 100% my experience as well! Commented Feb 19, 2012 at 18:45
  • ABSOLUTELY without a doubt do i concur wholeheartedly with the :15 min break. I made a post in another thread about travelling with babies/children, and the value of a :15 minute stop is . . . invaluable. You know where you're going and you know how long it's going to take. don't be in such a hurry, you don't have to make time. And if you do have to make time, you should probably try to make alt arrangements for the baby.
    – monsto
    Commented Feb 27, 2012 at 18:11
  • Just wondering...if one is going to stop anyway, then my advice would be to just breastfeed the baby! I mean, if one is formula feeding, then bottles are inevitable, but in this scenario, the time and effort of packing bottles, expressing milk, preparing a thermos of hot water, and warming milk (well, actually, warming milk IMO isn’t really necessary anyway...) could be avoided by just popping baby on the breast. In my experience, it also reduces the need to burp as well. Some babies of course always need it, but some don’t. BF’ing also takes less time vs a bottle, with let-down’s help.
    – Jax
    Commented Nov 10, 2019 at 20:33

My husband and I visit his family in Wisconsin at least once or twice or year. Until this year, we lived in Tennessee and this was a 12+ hour drive which we dutifully did with our son/son and daughter until this year when we realized that driving from Georgia would add another 4 hours to the drive. So now we fly.

During that time, we ALWAYS stopped to feed our kids bottles. Our daughter absolutely HAD to be burped well during and after every bottle. No way was that going to happen while driving.

However, my sister-in-law, who lived in Minnesota, would frequently feed her daughter in the backseat while her husband drove on car trips and never mentioned having any trouble. It's not necessarily bad practice, it may just be a bad practice for your daughter.

If your daughter's old enough and the trip isn't exceptionally lengthy, you might be able to avoid the whole issue by driving after she falls asleep for the night. We still visit my parents frequently (who live 4 hours away), and this is what we do for our 18-month-old. Granted, we don't get to our destination until almost midnight, but she falls asleep almost immediately when we put her in the car and stays that way until we get there so it's completely worth it.


I believe this is bad practice of the child is 3 months or younger. Reason being is that sometimes they may choke and get milk down wrong pipe. When 3 months or younger they need to be tilted forward and patted on back to help clear airway. You cant lean forward when they in car seat. Yeah 99% of time they can clear themselves, but when that yound they need little assistance. My.opinion.

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