Is it OK to Take My Baby on the Bus?
Depending on where you live, this might be a no-brainer and you ride the bus all the time. Or, you may have never even considered taking the bus, maybe because the last time you did was to school, and because cars are so much more convenient. Yes, you, and I and most moms drive a mobile diaper bag. If you are the second type, you should reconsider taking the bus with your baby.
I live in a small city where it works to drive my car to many places, but we like riding the bus too. I lived in London for several years and never got out of the habit of using buses and trains. It’s greener, often cheaper than the price of gas, there’s no hassle with parking. The negatives are waiting for the bus, limited capacity for lugging baby gear around and all the weirdos that seem to ride buses. I also lived in California, where people will sell everything before they let their car go, and I’ve seen some of the weirdest weirdos. My local Minnesota weirdos seem pretty tame in comparison to California and London’s finest.
Riding the bus is a great experience for babies and toddlers. My son has loved buses since he turned one. Before he could walk, I’d put him in his sling, and take him out on the bus. He loved to travel without being strapped into a carseat, he loved going forward and to look out of the windows. There are all those weirdos, I mean interesting people, to look at. Then as he got a bit older, he got really, really excited to discover that if you stick your arm out at a bus stop, the bus stops. He loves going up and down the stairs on the bus. And pulling the cord to stop the bus. He thinks he’s so smart that he can spot bus stops. (I do too.) Now he’s learning numbers, he loves to read the numbers on the buses coming up the road and trying to spot our bus.
Now I’m taking him, and Daycare Baby out on the bus together. He walks, I hold his hand, and Daycare Baby rides in the sling and just loves to look at all the interesting people.
The ideal transportation plan for us to combine riding the bus with driving the car when the bus isn’t convenient or it’s -20. As well as cost and environmental reasons, taking public transit is a good example to set. I don’t suppose that everyone will be able to drive a car everywhere they want once our kids reach driving age, so if they think riding the bus is normal then they’ll be one of the ones better able to cope. And your kids will likely think it’s a whole lot of fun too.