10 Tips for Traveling with a Child

Travelling with a child can be a challenge especially when you are on a long flight.   Here are 10 tried and true tips to help get you and your child to your destination with ease.

1. Bring a stroller and gate check it  All airlines allow free gate check of a stroller so this will allow you to get your child to the gate without them running away and will help you to control them while getting you and yourself to the flight.  If you have an infant use a stroller that the car seat will clip into and check both.  For a toddler try using the stroller tray and then resting your car seat on that and strapping it onto the stroller with a bungee or some other type of cord this lets you get both your car seat stroller and child to the gate easily.  Once your child is 3 I highly recommend the Ride Safer Vest instead of a car seat

2. Have activities for your child to do on the flight Sticky notes are great for coloring writing on decorating and keeping your child occupied.  Be sure to bring some crayons and/or colored pencils.  Coloring books and books to read are also a good idea along with lots of stickers.  Bring headphones and if you have one a tablet so they can watch cartoon or movies on the flight.

3. Make sure to have lots of food and snacks  Bring a big variety of snacks in little bags and bring them out at different times, pretzels, goldfish, dried fruit, granola bars, almond butter are some of our favorites, applesauce and fruit pouches are also good as they travel well & kids like them

4. Bring a water bottle with a sippy straw so you can have water milk or juice for you child to drink and it won’t spill

5. Try to book a window seat for your child most kids love to look out the window to watch the plane take off and land and also to see the clouds

6.  Once in Flight take your kid to the bathroom and or to walk around  Its good to walk around especially on long flights to keep circulation going and allows kids to move and get wiggles out and explore a bit.  Often a flight attendant will offer them milk or juice or water and sometimes even a cookie or a snack

7. Bring a change of clothes  You never know what might happen in flight.  If your kid is in diapers bring an extra, if they are potty trained put them in a pull up just to be safe or being extra underwear and pants and a top, better safe than sorry

8. Ask to see the cockpit  For safety concern no one is allowed in or near the cockpit during or before flight but once you land most pilots will let your child see the controls sit in the cockpit and if you are lucky many will let you sit in the pilot seat and “drive the plane” some will even let your child wear their pilot hat and pose for pictures with your child.  ON your first flight many airlines will give your child a certificate and or plastic wings to commemorate their first flight

9.  Relax I’ve seen some mention of bringing ear plugs or goodie bags for fellow passengers  to thank or warn them about your child and in my opinion this is ridiculous.  If your child cries try what you can to make them stop, they will eventually.  Try to keep them from kicking the seat in front of them by having them sit sideways or with their legs on you if they refuse to stop kicking but most people understand when you fly you are in a tight space and kids are kids and as long as you try to control them and keep them fairly well behaved and not too loud people should be understanding.  And if you are able treat yourself to a glass of wine or three!

10. Bring a pacifier or lollipop to help your kids ears on take off and landing  For infants a pacifier or bottle or breast feed can help keep their ears form hurting.  For older kids give them a candy or something to suck on and help the pressure in their ears.  Also let them bring one special stuffed animal to cuddle and sleep on.  Our son loves his Pillow Pet

Our son is not quite 4 years old and has been to 5 states and 4 countries the longest flight being 16 hours.  We started him young and like us he loves to travel and adapts well.  We try to book flights at night so he will sleep and we let him pick some special toys books and items to pack in his own little bag so he is excited about our trip and the flight and chance to use them on the plane.  Hope you find these tips helpful, Happy Travels!

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