11 Tips for Flying with Children
Taking your young family on holiday can be such a wonderful experience, but does the thought of a few hours or more in an enclosed aeroplane cabin make you feel a little less relaxed?
Do not worry. Here are our 11 tips for flying with children.
Check the airline policy on buggy’s
Some airlines will require you to check them in, some may allow smaller ones to be stored in overhead lockers. You will also need to check where you have to check them in, is it at check-in/bag drop, or is it at the gate? It is often the latter, but best to find out early on!
Can you take your car seat?
Some airlines will allow you to take a baby onboard in their car seat as these can be strapped in. This will also help in trying to settle the baby as they will be comfortable in their familiar surroundings.
It will also help at the other end in meaning you will not need to hire a car seat either!
Need to breast or bottle feed?
If you have a baby that you are still feeding via breast or bottle, try to do this whilst taking off. This will help their ears with the change in pressure.
Have suckable sweets
Flying with children can be painful on their ears from the change in air pressure. Airlines used to hand out sweets for this reason, but very few do now. Make sure you have a few on hand just in case. We recommend sugar-free suck able sweets… you probably do not want your child having any more sugar on a flight!
Take a night flight
Flights at night are often cheaper than daytime flights. Flight at night will mean that your children are likely to settle and sleep, making that flight a little easier. Do not fly too late in the night, however, keeping a child up throughout the night to board a late flight could be a cause for tiredness tantrums before boarding!
Pre-book your seats
Each airline is different these days. Some automatically allocated them on booking, some let you choose them, some charge a fee for doing so. However, your chosen airline does it, make sure you book your seats well in advance to make sure you are sitting together.
And your kid’s meals
If you are flying long haul, airlines often provide meals for free in economy. We recommend that you let them know in advance that you need children’s meals. You will thank us for that later as they will definitely rather eat a child’s meal than an adults.
Bulkhead seats may not be the best choice
These seats are great for extra space and legroom and some have spaces in front for cots. However, the arms of the seats rarely lift up, meaning your children may get uncomfortable not being able to stretch out onto your lap.
Take some home comforts
The best way to settle a child is to give them some things they are familiar with. We recommend a blanket from home that they are familiar with. If you can fit it in, a small pillow too.
Remind them who is in charge
Kids will be kids. People understand they need to be entertained and can be a little noisy. What they will not sympathize with are children kicking the backs of seats or running around the aisles screaming.
Before a flight, remind them what is going to be happening and what is to be expected of them. Remind them that they will need to be seated for a while and that they will need to put their belt on if the light comes on.
And before you get off…
Now, this is important. Depending on where you are going, the queue for the passport check can be long. Before landing, make sure you take your children to the toilet. They may say they don’t want to go but try. You do not want them to tell you they need to go all of a sudden during that queue!
Once you hop off that flight, landing at your destination it will all be but a distant memory. We hope you have a wonderful time!
If you or your children have a fear of flying, try taking a read of our tips for help calm those nerves here.