Travelling with Two: Tips for Family Flight Survival
If you are like me, you are amazed about the parents you hear about that take their children on long flights to places like London and Greece. Even if you are just booking a domestic flight, there are ways to make plane travel less intimating with two children.
We recently posted a question on Facebook about your best travel tips for in-flight entertainment and received so many great suggestions we wanted to share them in an article:
Takeoff and Landing:
- If you little one is still nursing or bottle feeding, get them to drink during landing and takeoff to help equalize their ears. Alternatively, you can put a little salt on baby’s tongue to get them to swallow.
- For older kids, play a game by making funny faces at each other. This will get them to stretch their facial muscles and move their jaw, just as adults do to relieve ear pressure. And have a sippy cup or drink ready, since swallowing will also help.
Booking your seats:
- Book near the back of the plane – close to the bathrooms and standing room for moving around.
- If you are able to choose your seats, choose the aisle and window if the row has three seats. If the plane isn’t sold out it is less likely that someone will choose a seat in between two already sold seats and the baby will be more likely to get its own seat.
- Try to have one new activity an hour planned – Busy Bags (fill ziplock bags with mini cars, finger puppets, mini flip books), sticker books, new small toys, Playdough/modelling clay, crayons & colouring books.
- Wrap a special small new toy as a “good behaviour” present that they can receive at the end of the flight.
- Technology! DVD player (with spare battery), LeapPad, iPad, or if they are older and your plane has seatback TVs, bring headphones (not earbuds) that are easy for children to get on and off.
- Snacks & Meals – Don’t rely on airplane food or buying food at the airport. Bring lots of snacks, even a few treats, to get you through your trip (and don’t forget a snack for yourself!).
Other tips from our Moms:
- Try and book direct flights!
- Pack an extra pair of clothes (not just for the kids, for you too!) in case your child gets sick.
- Try to make eye contact, smile and be friendly with the oncoming passengers…. It’s a lot harder for people to get irritated when a connection is made and often they will help if needed.
- Bring your carrier for getting on/off the plane and use to put your little one to sleep.
- Bring your stroller to the gate and check in right before boarding.
- Pack each new diaper in a ziplock bag for easy disposal after changes.
- Limit sugar intake and make sure everyone keeps well hydrated.
If you are flying alone with your kids, check out Nanny In the Clouds – maybe there will be babysitter on your flight!
And finally, don’t forget to check what you can bring on board before your fly.