Things to Remember When Flying With Children

I have taken my children on a plane with my wife. I know not to take a infant ever again without the proper items. It can be hard for them to sit in a tight spot for many hours. Little children are afraid and nervous. Some children love it but not all. As for the flight itself, young children are usually most uncomfortable during the take-off and landing due to the change in air pressure. Chewing gum or swallowing liquid are good ways to relieve the pressure, but a 12-month-old is likely to be too old for a bottle and too young to chew gum.

Instead, try having your child suck on a pacifier (if he uses one) or sip from a sports bottle. Younger children may regress, acting clingy, wetting the bed, or wanting a pacifier. Any of these could be signs that your child would not do well on a long trip. If your kids ask you whether you think flying is safe, be honest about your feelings. They’ll know if you’re not telling the truth and will feel even more frightened. Dress your kids, and yourself, in layers. Bored children (and parents) are even crankier when they’re hot or cold. Ask your child to pick a special stuffed animal or character figure and a few favorite toys.

Traveling with a preschooler means thinking creatively. With forethought, patience, a sense of humor and lots of planning, you can enjoy your airplane ride with your toddler. To make sure that the rest of the passengers feel similarly, be sure your child follows the same good-behavior rules on board that you encourage at home. Particular pet peeves of fellow travelers include seat-kicking and shouting. In order to keep my three year old daughter entertained, I packed a carry on full of new toys and books that we pulled out at varying intervals throughout the flight.

This kept her happy, while I was able to focus on the baby. I actually find that having a layover of an hour or two is a good thing. It gives the children a chance to get off the plane and run around a bit, getting the wiggles out. Most airports now have fairly extensive food courts with a wide selection of fast food, giving you a chance to eat something other than airplane food during your stop. One strategy is to write down a list of essential items, pack a bag accordingly, then make a trial run with the children through a supermarket – preferably one with narrow aisles and a large number of slow moving, fuddled shoppers. If the kids are old enough, insist that they carry their own bags too. Once home, have everyone discard items that suddenly appear superfluous.

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