6 Tips for Flying with Kids!

Have you ever flown with kids before?  It’s definitely not always the easiest… ears popping, the grumpy lady in 12C frustrated by the screaming, and not much legroom, especially when they’re on your lap!  Piper flew for the first time at 8 weeks, and has so far done been on 19 flights between our trips to France to see Guillaumes family, and Alaska to see mine.  Today marks flight number 20 and we’ve started to figure some of the things out that make flying with kids easier, so I thought I’d share!

 1.  Dress for COMFORT, and bring a change of clothes (for everyone, including you!) Especially if your kids are flying on your lap!  You can still look totally cute and stylish while comfy, but stay away from tight fitting, non stretchy, fancy clothes, you’ll regret it, promise!  You’re going to spend the flight holding babies, (whether they have their own seat or not), bending down to pick up toys, changing diapers on your lap, and having drinks spilled on.  (It is still fun though!)  My favorite thing to fly in is leggings and a stretchy tunic, and a second tunic folds up nice and tiny in the diaper bag for when I need it.  Comfort extends to SHOES too!  No heels when with kids on a plane!  And you’ll want something with straps that won’t slip off when you have to chase the kids through the airport waiting area on your layover.  I highly recommend Teva’s, but there are so many good options out there!

2. Bring a little wallet size cross body bag for yourself that you can slip your phone, money, and passport in.  That way, you can be hands free to hold onto and chase kids.  I’ve switched my entire wallet into my little bag, and I LOVE it! I can stuff it into the diaper bag when I have everything with me, and if I just need to run in somewhere quick and don’t need everything, I have my bag across my front, and it’s lightweight and hands free. I bought it before my last trip with the kids, and oh man did it  make a huge difference!

 3. Bring something for them to suck on during take off and landing.  If they’re still nursing, let them nurse, if not, bring a sippy cup with some juice, or a squeezy pouch with applesauce to eat.  I don’t recommend lollipops, but they do work for some kids- Piper tends to lick them instead of suck, and she makes a HUGE sticky mess!!  It’s just not worth the mess for us when she’s  cooped up on our lap in a small little seat.  If you’re flying with a baby and they won’t nurse, and are screaming because their ears won’t clear, try blowing in their face.  It forces them to swallow suddenly and usually works!

 4. Plane friendly toys!  Here’s some of our favorites: an ipad with a car headrest attachment (it’s usually a case with a wide piece of elastic designed to wrap around the headrest in front of the child.  Guess what?! They work on airplane tray tables!  It’s a hands free way to add a little entertainment and calm to the flight!  If you’re in a window seat, little static cling window decals are fun to play with!  Some of our other staples are finger puppets and a coloring book with crayons tied to a string so you don’t have to go searching for them.

5.  It’s OK when they cry.  Don’t worry, and don’t let the neighbors looks make you want to crawl into a hole and hide.  Sometimes they just need to cry, and it’ll be ok. A fun way to deal with the neighbors is to bring a little goody bag for the people sitting next to you with ear plugs, and a little Starbucks gift card so they can tune your kids out, and be excited about their coffee when they get off the plane.  Sometimes it just helps to smooth things over!

6. Just remember, no one knows your kids better than you, you know what comforts them most, what makes them most upset, and how to help them through it all.  So trust your instincts, and look at it as a FUN adventure, not something to worry about!

And p.s., a little pacifier tip- if your kids still use a paci, use one of those little strings that clip it onto their shirt and it’ll be a lifesaver!  Otherwise, you’ll be bending down to search for it under your neighbors feet many more times than you wish to…

Have a GREAT flight!





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