Friday, 25 April 2014

Parenting - My Top Tips For Flying With Children (and What's in My Carry On)

Flying with young children can be daunting, I have been flying with Ella since she was 6 week's old! My biggest fear when flying with Ella was her getting unsettled and distributing other passengers. I have complied a list of helpful tips I have found important when flying with Ella.

When Booking Your Flight:
  •  Book your flight at time that is going to suit your child. On a long haul flight I would be inclined to book a night time flight that will suit well with your child's night time routine. On short haul flights I know Ella isn't likely to sleep due to Excitement so I like to time short haul flights for when she is in the best mood, usually mid-morning.
  • If your budget allows it reserve seats with extra leg room, this will give you more room for if you need to fossil around in bags, and extra room for your child to stretch their legs and play.
  • Look into what entertainment is available on your flight. Sometimes it can be  better to pay a little bit extra to make sure your flight has good entertainment services.
Before You Leave:
  •  Remember to book a children's meal! The first mistake I made when I traveled internationally with Ella was forgetting to reserve a child's meal, thankfully she slept most of the flight.
  • Download new Applications, movies and music for you gadgets - and don't for forget to make sure you fully charge them before you go. 
  • The key to packing your carry on bags is not to not pack too much or too little. I like to pack a little back pack that my child is responsible for and bigger bag for myself with all our essentials. 
  • Go shopping! A good tip to cure boredom is buying never seen before items and putting them in inside your child's backpacks so they get a surprise when they open their back packs. I find Ella will stay interested in her backpack items a lot longer if the items are new to her. 
  • Write a list. If you are worried you are going to forget something write a checklist and tick items off as you put them in your baggage.
  • Talk to your child about what to expect at the airport (e.g. going through security) and on the airplane (e.g. during take off and landing). If your child is old enough tell them the exact behavior you expect of them. During the flight I like to use positive reinforcement.
  •  Plan a comfortable outfit for you and your child.
 What I pack in my child's Backpack:
  •  1-2 small snacks that she is able to help herself to.
  • 2 Small Book's
  • A Coloring Book and Small Pack of  pencils/crayons. I like to use the Crayola Colour Wonder sets.
  • A small toy that is going to hold your child's interest.
  • Your child's comfort item - Ella likes to take her doll and will carry it with her.
  • Don't make your child's backpack to heavy, or you may end up having to carry it!  

What I pack in my Carry On bag?
  • I like to use a bag with plenty of compartments, to help myself stay organized. 
  • On an outer, easy to access pocket I keep travel documents, passports, wallet and a pen.
  • In another pocket I like to keep my electronics (Ipad, Cell Phone, headphones, Camera etc..)
  • A spear change of clothing and if its a night flight Pajamas. I find Ella is more likely to settle down and sleep if we keep as close to her normal bedtime routine as possible.
  • Water bottle - fill it up at the airport (after going through security) and keep it easily accessible along with extra snacks. I also like to pack lollies pops to reward good behavior and to help with sore ears.
  • Hand Sanitizer, Water Wipes, Small Pack of Tissues
  • Lip Balm, Moustirizer, Makeup Essentials (It's important to rember items for yourself)
  • Plastic Bags/Ziploc Bags
  • Small Blanket
  • A spear shirt for yourself - especially if your child experiences travel sickness (there is nothing worse than sitting in a shirt smelling of vomit for 8 hours)
  • A good book or Magazine for if your child falls asleep
Last Words:
  • If your child is anything like mine they are going to be excited when they go on a airplane, and I think that's important to remember when your at airport and on the airplane. For a small child going on an airplane is a great adventure. Don't sweat the small stuff! If you let yourself get stressed out its going to dwindle on your flying experience.
  • My pet peeve - Don't allow your child to kick the seat in front of your's, it can get very annoying especially when you are trying to sleep.
  • And if all else fails and you end up having a disastrous flight just remember although at the time if may feel like it  you are not the first or last person to be in that situation ... And the best part you more than likely to never see the people on your flight again!!

1 comment:

  1. I just flew this week for the first time in 11 years and was thinking the whole time, I can't imagine travelling with young kids. All the waiting, lines, lack of food/drink. Thanks for the tips as I'm sure it will happen to my family sooner or later.

    Besos, Sarah
    Blogger at Journeys of The Zoo