Get your holiday off to the best start possible with our essential tips for travelling with children on an aeroplane.
From babes in arms to toddlers prone to a tantrum, travelling with children in the confined space of an aeroplane can present a wealth of problems that parents, and passengers, would rather not face in the run up to a holiday. Luckily we are on hand to tell you our top tips for keeping those little tykes entertained on board.
Book the right flight
Does your child sleep through anything, or is he or she easily disturbed during slumber? Make sure you choose a flight that fits in with when they are happiest, or most at rest. Even if it costs a little extra, it will be worth every penny.
Forget airport etiquette
Waiting at the airport is the perfect time to get your child to let off steam, use up energy and explore the exciting airport environment. Find an empty(ish) area where you won’t be disturbing others if possible, and try not to let the little ones fall asleep while waiting.
Get a good seat
A comfy child is a happy child. On most flights, children under two fly free, but they will not have a seat. If this is the option you have chosen, it is well worth enquiring about any empty seats that may be available on the plane. This is more likely at off-peak travel times. The safer and more comfortable way to fly is to spend out on an extra seat and bring along an FAA-approved car seat. Check with the airline beforehand for any restrictions, for example, some airlines do not allow rear-facing car seats.
The Number One Tip For Parents? AVOID SUGARY TREATS!
Choose packets of dried fruit, savoury snacks such as crisps and cheese, and if you must turn to sweets, make sure they are sugar free. Sweets might work in the short term, but the fallout from refined sugar won’t be welcomed by fellow travellers!
Plan your time in 15 minute slots
Once on board, you need some serious tactics to get you through the flight. By diving the flight time into 15 minute activity slots, you have more chance of keeping your child amused. OK, this is not going to work with a baby, but it is pretty effective for toddlers. Ideas:
- Story books
- Colouring books
- Board games
- Card games
- Small tasty snacks (they take a while to eat)
- Drawing games
- Sticker books
- Finger puppets
- Fuzzy felt
Take a portable DVD player or mobile device
The wonder of 21st Century technology is that we can download apps, games and films that will keep tired and potentially tantrummy youngsters amused, even if it is just for another 15 minute slot!
Make sure you have your own survival kit
Your kids may not care about anything other than toys and treats, but if they spill a drink and need a change of clothes you’ll soon know about it. Apart from packing a liberal change of outfits, you’d also be wise to pack additional food you know they’ll like, a few favourite toys, spare nappies, wipes, a blanket in case they get cold and even a surprise toy or two.
While we are not promoting bribery, in times of extreme need, a well-timed treat isn’t all that bad. Pulling a brand new, and even wrapped up cuddly toy out of your bag might well be just what you (and fellow passengers) need to get a few moments peace!
Top Toys To Make Traveling Easy?
If you want to know which toys make traveling with children easy, you’ll have to tune in next week! We’ll be showcasing 10 tried and tested favourites, with tips on which traditional toys to take along and advice on where to buy ‘new-fangled’ gadgetry that will guarantee some peace and quiet!