Flying with a baby can be a very stressful situation. So how are you going to survive a long flight with a baby?
No one who has to fly wants to be on the same flight as a crying baby. More than that, no one wants to be this baby’s parent.
What should you do?
First, understand that your baby will cry during the flight –simply because babies cry from time to time. It is natural and you do not need to feel bad about that!
More than anything you are going to do your best to make your baby comfortable (like you always do) and hope for the best.
On my first flight as a new mom, my daughter was only 7 months old. It was a 12-hour direct flight and we came back home after a few weeks.
For this round trip, I had bassinets attached to the wall unit in front of my seat (see below for details on how to get them for yourself!). It was a night flight from 5pm until 7pm and my little one was sleeping for most of the flight.
On my way back home, I again used this bassinet. I was alone since my hubby came back to Toronto two weeks earlier, but I was able to manage just fine.
For this flight, I bought a bit more expensive ticket for myself. While flying Business Class is too expensive, I upgraded from economy class to economy+ class. While I could have stayed in the economy, there was only one bassinet and it had already been taken by someone else. It was totally worth it and some extra leg space was great.
Later this year I took a short flight to New York City that was only an hour and a half. I have to admit that my little one was crying for most of the fight and the only thing that made her calm down was breastfeeding. It was a difficult flight for me, but at least it was a short one.
Now for the best part, my tips to help you fly with your little one:
Tips on How to survive a flight with your baby
Before the flight:
1. Reserve an infant bassinet/crib
- Before you order your ticket, call the airline’s customer service department and ask to reserve an infant bassinet/crib for your baby while you purchase your ticket.
- The common guidelines for the bassinets are that your infant does not weigh more than18 kilograms and that their height does not exceed 74 cm.
- Each Airline has it owns guidelines, so please confirm with your airline for the details before you make any plans.
- You will need to book your flight ahead of time (approximately 7 months in advance) to make sure you have the right seat (first row after the washroom, middle seat).
2. Try to avoid connecting flights as infants are very uncomfortable during take-off and landing time.
3. Buy for your LO some new and interesting toys which are small enough to keep in your carry-on luggage. Introduce these toys for the first time during the flight.
4. You can take your baby food and formula with you on the plane. While there are normally restrictions on liquids and food, airport security knows how to deal with parents who are traveling. Pack all foods in one Zip bag for a fast security checkup.
If your infant doesn’t have their own ticket, they will not get any food during the flight.
Getting ready for the flight:
1. Pack for the flight:
- Diapers and wipes.
- All of your baby essentials.
- Advil or Tylenol.
- A blanket for your little one.
- Two pairs of extra clothes.
- Small toys that your baby can play with.
- Extra clothes for you!
2. Pack a small bag with two diapers and a small pack of wipes that you will be able to take with you to the washroom. You can also use Zip bag for that. The plane washroom is just too small to take your big diaper bag with you. In addition, you may be asked to leave your big bag in the overhead storage containers. Put this small bag where it will be within your reach during the flight.
3. Take your best carrier with you. Your baby will be able to sleep on you. As an added bonus you will be comfortable and hands-free.
If you fly alone, it will be necessary to have a baby carrier. You will need free hands after giving your stroller to the airline and before you find your seat on the plane.
4. Get Travel bag to your stroller and the Car seat you are taking with you. You can even use a big plastic bag. Although it is not mandatory, it will help to keep your stroller safe.
During the flight
1. If you breastfeed, you can nurse your baby during take-off and landing times.
2. Offer your baby a pacifier.
3. Introduce the new toys that I mentioned earlier.
4. If you fly alone and you need to use the washroom, you can ask the crew to watch your baby for a few minutes.
There are many products on the market that will help you survive a long flight with a baby. Before you purchase something, confirm with your airline that you can use this product during the flight.
I Hope you will have the best trip ever. Feel free to comment and share with us your best tip for flying with a baby.
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