1. Pack as little as possible
Remember when you packed half your dresser and all of your makeup to your trip to St. Bart’s? Well, when you’re traveling with kids, the rule is: the lighter the better. Because when you’re rushing through security or trying to catch a train, you don’t want to be dragging along your checked luggage, extra carry-ons, a diaper bag, a stroller and your kids!
We recommend that you bring documents, medicine, light clothing, and leave behind anything you can buy at your destination.
2. But bring plenty of diapers and wipes
You don’t want to be caught empty-handed when you’re dealing with a diaper change mid-flight. Luckily, most flights will have a changing table in the lavatory, but you have to be sure to bring extra diapers, wipes and hand sanitizer, just in case.
3. Bring spare outfits on your carry-on
…and yes, we mean for you and your child. Accidents happen (juice-related or otherwise) and this is one field where you want all bases covered.
4. Bring a car seat
Most airlines allow children under two to ride for free as long as they’re sitting on a parent’s lap. But think about what you lose when you don’t bring a seat for your baby: comfort, safety, and your peace of mind. Your flight will be so much easier for you when your baby can sleep sound soundly in their own space!
5. First-aid kit and medicine
One of the most unfortunate side effects of flying is an upset tummy. So, you’ll want to combat any potential queasiness by packing tums or Pepto Bismol.
Snacks don’t just make your littles ones satisfied and content during a stressful flight – eating also helps pop their ears and distract them. You can bring more than 3.4 ounces of breast milk as long as you declare it at a security checkpoint. As for cooling milk and baby food, you can use a thermos, or even a pack of frozen veggies because ice or gel packs may be restricted.
7. Bottle or pacifier
Kids don’t have to eat to pop their ears – just swallowing liquids or sucking on a pacifier can help toddlers and babies adjust to the pressure.
8. Plan naptime correctly
One of the best things you can do is time your flight so it’s not overlapping with your kids’ naptime. A crying, tired baby is one of the worst things you can do for a flight. For most babies, mid-afternoon is prime fussiness hour, so it may help to schedule your flight early in the morning or later at night.
9. Book an airplane bassinet
An airplane bassinet is typically a canvas container that’s attached to the plane’s bulkhead. Parents often scramble to book the bassinet because it’s a convenient place for your baby during the flight, but it’s not the safest part of the plane, and during takeoff and landing, you’ll still need to hold your baby. Of course, if you bring an infant car seat with you, you won’t need to bother with snatching a bassinet seat.
Your other options? The window seat or the aisle seat. With the aisle seat, you have easy access to the bathroom and an easier time picking up your car seat. But, you risk having your baby being woken up by anyone going up and down the aisle. Window seats give you that previous space and view, but you’re that much farther from the bathroom and the changing table.
10. Go for a walk
Yes, you can still take a walk to calm a restless and fussy baby. After the flight attendants have served food, you can make the rounds by walking the aisles and giving them room to breathe.
Family travel doesn’t have to be so complicated. All you need are a couple of clever lifehacks, and the right tools like the Doona Car Seat & Stroller. With your Doona, you can fold the car seat and place it onto the conveyor belt with ease. Press a single button to let down the integrated wheels, and glide into the gate with time to spare. Then, easily navigate the aisles while keeping keep baby safe and comfortable throughout the flight. With Doona, you can explore the world how you want to, with the ultimate travel companion by your side.