Here are our 10 Top Tips for Flying with Babies!
We first flew with our three mini travellers when our eldest was 18 months and the twins were 6 months old. We went to Bordeaux in France and we survived. The airline staff might have looked at is incredulously when we checked in, but we did manage it! So how did we do it, how did we survive Flying with Babies?
We packed a very large picnic the night before for us and all the girls. It is harder than you might think to buy food at the airport that your 18 month old might eat and I really didn’t want to run the risk of not being able to buy formula at the airport for the twins! I also decided that having food packed for us would reduce the stress levels in the airport. You can’t believe how hard it is to buy plain sandwiches for kids in the airport or on the plane. Depends how fussy yours are, but my eldest at 18 months liked just ham or just cheese on plain bread. They don’t want a BLT or a steak wrap as nice as these may be.
Tip 2: Flying with Babies
I packed a spare set of clothes in our hand luggage for all of us, including the adults. If a baby is going to be sick then you need a change of clothes for them and usually yourself! If you’re lucky enough (!) to be sat on a row with other people who don’t have kids the last thing you want is to return to you seat after dealing with the sick still smelling of sick yourself. Yes that’s happened to us!
Tip 3: Flying with Babies
Pack lots of packets of wet wipes in easily accessible places. Not only for the nappies, but for spilled drinks, for the above mentioned sick, for the crayon marks on the back of the seat, or to wipe the man next to you when milk is sneezed! Again I talk from experience.
Tip 4: Flying with Babies
Tip 5: Flying with Babies
Chocolate buttons for the 18 month old or whatever works to get you through a tricky situation. Just hand one over.
Whether you’re breastfeeding or bottle feeding, a short feed at take off and landing helps babies as they are sucking whilst the pressure changes. We found this worked wonders and stopped ours crying when other babies around us were very unhappy.
Tip 7: Flying with Babies
More nappies than you know what to do with and nappy sacks. You will go through more than you think and the journey always takes longer than you envisage with the transfer at the other end too.
Tip 8: Flying with Babies
A tablet/phone filled up with baby games, or lights for them to follow. There are lots of free baby rattle apps for your phone and the distraction of these works very well for slightly older babies.
Accept that they might cry. Don’t fight it, and just enjoy the fact that however long your flight is the holiday at the end of it will be worth it. A friend who was off to Australia updated her status a while ago to say after all it is only a day travelling for such an incredible experience. In that context what’s two hours or even 4.
Tip 10:Flying with Babies
Find enthusiasm and patience. It would help if they sold it in duty free. More useful than some cheap perfume. Fundamentally you need to stay calm and have fun. If you are relaxed then they are more likely to be. Were we? Not really, but the babies were fine, and smiled happily at everyone around us.
Oh and if in doubt – Take the Grandparents!
If you have toddlers, why not read our Flying with Toddlers – ten top tips post.