Are you planning to travel with babies or toddlers this Christmas? Sadly, mums who travel with babies this season often face a lot of stress.
Some times it is because the baby’s diaper would have to be changed frequently.
You might also have to breastfeed or even spoon-feed baby at some point during and before your trip.
Interestingly, this challenge isn’t peculiar to you alone. Many mums have been in your shoes at some point or the other.
Now, the good news is that a travel with babies doesn’t have to be a stressful experience, for you or your baby or toddler.
Follow these suggestions to attain that smooth travel experience with your baby this Christmas and beyond:
What you have or don’t have in your diaper bag can make or mar your flight or journey.
Write out or have a mental idea of a checklist of all the essentials that you will need during your trip and when you arrive at your travel destination.
Your list must cover the right amount of diapers to last you on the trip.
Also, you should load your wipes, bib, changing pad, diaper cream, powder, nursing cover, light blanket, hand sanitisers, spare outfits. Put everything in its place for easy access during your trip.
If you’re traveling with a partner or an adult, let him or her board first with additional luggage, etc, while you board the plane last with your baby.
THE BEST FLIGHT TIMES TO TRAVEL WITH BABIES
A lot of people who board, do so in the mornings. Others, in the evenings, leaving so much space and so few people to the mid-day flights.
Boarding an afternoon flight presents a higher chance of getting an empty seat beside you, providing more space for your little ones and your essential items.
Depending on your baby or child’s age, a night flight is not a bad idea because your baby might end up sleeping throughout your trip.
Plus, if your baby is already on a routine and is used to sleeping at a particular time at night, a night flight will suffice. If you will travel with a babies, it is best to book a direct flight if possible.
This is because transiting through several airports and long layovers can be hellish with a cranky baby in tow.
It is also best that you check-in online or arrive at the airport early enough to avoid the extra queues.
If possible, fly during the baby’s naptime. The longer your baby is asleep in the air the less stressed you would be.
VISIT THE AIRPORT RESTROOM BEFORE YOUR FLIGHT
You want to board the plane with a dry diapered child. Therefore, ensure you visit the airport bathroom one last time before heading down the tarmac.
If you are traveling with a toddler who is Potty-training, take one last potty break too.
A pre-plane bathroom visit means one less trip to the tiny airplane lavatory.
This leads to less work in midair for you and less inconvenience for those seated nearby.
Plus, you never know how long it will be until the “keep seatbelt fastened announcement” will be made. Better to be safe than sorry and stressed out.
FEED AND CHANGE DIAPERS BEFORE BOARDING.
Feeding or changing a diaper can be tedious work when you’re airborne.
So, ensure you fill up their stomachs and run a diaper change as close to boarding time as possible.
Also remember to pack some snacks (or a full meal, depending on when and how long you’ll be in the air) and plenty of drinks — plane rides are dehydrating.
Avoid awkward and stressful diaper change in the air.
PACK FOR PLAYTIME
Do not attempt to leave behind items to keep them entertained.
A few books or/and toys to keep things interesting while you’re traveling with your baby or kids is a must for a stress-free time in the air; preferably new ones, to keep them freshly amused.
You need to pack numerous little snacks, portable DVD players, packed little activities like card games, sticker books, workbooks and tons of toys.
PROTECT THEIR EARS WHILE IN MOTION
Did you know that sucking or chewing helps ease ear pain caused by pressure changes in the airplane’s cabin and flying at very high altitudes?
So while traveling with baby, give them a pacifier or something to suck on while at.
The sucking will relieve the inner ear pressure and prevent any ear pain.
If that doesn’t help, try gently rubbing their ears. Chewing a cookie or chocolate bar can also work with older toddlers.
You might also want to ask your pediatrician to prescribe ear pain drops before your flight with your kids.
What Items Are Allowed On A Plane For Baby?
Here is a list of some of the approved items you can carry on to the airplane for your baby or kids.
*Baby gear, breast pumps, baby lotion, baby formula etc
*To avoid the whole time-wasting during security checks, it is best you buy water after you have been cleared at the security checks. Or better yet, just buy your water in-flight.
*Not all airlines allow parents to travel with collapsible baby car seats, strollers or highchairs. Some do, allow it but at an extra cost. Please clarify beforehand from the airline to avoid embarrassments.
*1-day old babies to 2 years old’s do not need tickets to fly because they would most likely be placed on an adult’s laps during a flight. If you plan to hold your baby during the entire duration of the flight, you need to inform the airline authorities at check-in that you’ve got an ‘infant in arms’.
The ticket price for a baby is usually about 10% of the adult fare.
However, most airlines prefer babies to be secured for safety reasons. So, booking an extra seat can be worth every penny on an overnight flight.