HOW TO PACK FOR A FLIGHT WITH A TODDLER
It's pretty easy to see we travel a lot around Australia (and recently over seas) with Millie in tow. We have become some what experts on flying with her and she has also become very good at being on a plane. She now knows when we hop on she has to do up her seat belt and recently even learnt to buckle it herself.
One of the most common things I get asked about is packing for traveling with her and tips on flying with baby/toddler.
SO here's what in my bag when we fly and when we are traveling around whether it's for business or pleasure, you can use it as a checklist for when you next fly:
- NAPPIES - 1 for every 1-2 hours flying is a good guide plus a couple extra. (pull ups can make life easier with a toddler as those plane change tables are so small they barely fit a new born on them)
- WIPES & CHANGE MAT
- NAPPY CREAM
- DISPOSABLE NAPPY BAGS
- A SACHET OF FOOD (Easier for her to eat by herself and if you're traveling over seas they will let the through customs no questions asked)
- SNACK - pop corn, rice cracker or anything that your babe loves that is easy for them to eat.
- BOTTLES and/or A NON-SPILL SIPPY CUP (Baby fluids are allowed through customs so I have hers filled with the correct amount of water so it's easy access on flight)
- FORMULA (I like to mix one bottle before we even board to avoid trying to do it on the plane more than needed)
- DUMMY - and a couple of spares. Never get on that plane with out one if your child depends on having one (trust me I know from experience). The dummy can help to reduce the pain in their ears so even if you don't usually use one maybe you could have one handy just in case it might help.
- A BOOK
- AN IPAD (per-loaded with videos or if you're flying Virgin Australia you can access their free WiFi which has kids shows)
- KIDS EARPHONES (so you don't annoy the neighbors with your nursery rhymes)
- SMALL TOYS (the trick is not to give everything at once but just one thing at a time as they get bored)
- CRAYONS & PAPER
- A SMALL BLANKET or their sleep suit.
- BABY PANADOL OR NUROFEN - For just in case. You never know and there's nothing worse than a sick baby with a high temp.
- BABY SUNSCREEN - Just a small tube to re apply when needed during the day especially if you're on holidays.
Oh & And your patience, don't forget to pack your patience.
WHAT ARE MY TIPS FOR FLYING WITH A TODDLER?
1. ORGANISE YOUR FLIGHT TIMES AROUND THEIR NAP time and hopefully they will sleep for part of the flight. What ever you do try to not fly in the early evening (witching hour) because witching hour on a plane is worse than snakes on a plane! Trust me, I've been there.
2. BE PREPARED for tears, tantrums and them wanting to escape and run down the aisle. Toddlers cry and other passengers understand. If they don't then that's their problem not yours. The calmer you stay the calmer I find baby/toddler will stay too.
3. PACK LIGHT I know it looks like there is a lot on the above list but try to pack it all in one bag and ditch your big handbag for either a small shoulder bag OR even better just pack your wallet and essentials in baby bag. If you need you handbag at the other end pack it in your checked in luggage. The less you need to carry on and off the plane the better because you will need your arms free for toddler.
The Nappy Society insert is PERFECT for this as you can turn any tote into a stylish baby bag.
I just discovered these and wish I had AGES ago. They are perfect for me especially traveling as I can use it in my tote bags and have one bag for everything.
4. BABY CARRIER OR STROLLER when you check in ask the attendant if you can take your stroller to the gate. Some airlines (I know QANTAS & Virgin Aust) allow you to take your stroller all the way to the gate and just hand it over as you board. Most the time they won't ask you if you want to and you need to ask them but my gosh it makes a difference to be able to have your babe secured in the stroller rather than running everywhere while you're trying to navigate your way through checkin, security and a busy airport. If you cant take it to the gate another good option is a baby carrier (if bub isn't too big yet) but be aware you will need to take them on and off to go through security which can be a bit of a pain. The baby carrier is also great when boarding and disembarking the plane so you have free hands.
5. ASK FOR HELP use your baby to your benefit, most air hostess's and other passengers are more than willing to help you when they see you're flying as a family or alone with baby. If you need something just ask and they will usually help. Need someone to grab down your bag from over head luggage? Ask the guy in the next row. Want to see if you can sit in a row with no other passengers? Ask at check-in. Need a some water, your bottle heated? Ask the flight attended. Ran out of nappies? Ask another Mum . There is no need to be afraid to ask for help. If you saw another Mum or family traveling would you be happy to help if they needed? YES!
Good luck and remember "this to shall pass" - you will eventually get to the end of the trip so hang in there and try to relax - you'll be sipping cocktails or a wine in no time!!
This blog was written in collab with "The Nappy Society" - which I am in LOVE with!!
Follow them on Instagram @thenappysociety