Flying with Kids
Ever since we travelled the world, before we had our kids, our passion for seeing new countries has got even stronger. We have passed the travel bug onto our sons who love to visit new places, meet new people and explore different cultures. We took our eldest son on his first flight when he was weeks old before doing our first long haul flight with him when he was 6 months old. Since then we love to fly to different places, several times a year.
Although as they’ve got older we no longer need some of the items on flights such as buggies, nappies and baby milk. I still remember having to taste that at security! There are lots of items that to this day we still take with us on flights to keep them entertained. Here are a few of my essential items when flying with kids:
1 Take plenty of snacks. No matter how old they are this always helps to pass the time! Take more than you need just in case of delays. Remember sucky sweets can really help sore ears during landing.
2 Fully charged devices. I would like to pretend my kids don’t use DVD players or tablets on flights but they do! Make sure you have downloaded some good apps before you fly and take comfortable over the ear headphones with you.
3 Stationery is an essential. It’s amazing how the time can pass drawing, colouring in playing knots and crosses, stop the bus and numerous other games. I’ve got some lovely personalised pencil cases, pencils and notepads to help you with this.
4 Calpol. It’s one of these things that you hope you won’t need but it’s great to have just in case. Remember you can’t take more than 100ml.
5 Pull Ups. If you child is at an age that they still use these, even just at night, take one in your hand luggage in case your plane is delayed. You want your child to be able to sleep without worrying that they are going to soak through their clothes.
6 Sticker Books. I found from age 2 up this was an excellent way of passing the time. It’s also great for their fine motor skills, picking up the stickers and carefully putting them in the correct place and great for language development too as you can ask so many question.
7 Playing cards. It’s amazing how one item can be so versatile from playing snap and pairs with younger kids to Rummy and Old Maid with older ones. They don’t take up much room either which is always a bonus when flying with kids as space is always a premium.
8 Playdoh. So much fun and creativity can be had with a tub of this. I must however add a warning here. We have literally flied round the world with a tub of playdoh but bizarrely we had a tub confiscated at Chicago airport as it was banned there? My son, who was about 3 at the time, looked like his world had ended when his bag was searched, a supervisor called over to confirm it wasn’t allowed and then removed from him. Thankfully those snacks that I had packed came in very handy at this point.
9 A book or magazine. (I always buy a new one and keep it hidden until we are on the plane to make it more exciting!)
I’ve heard, too often, parents tell me that they don’t fly with kids as it’s too much hassle. This is a load of nonsense! As long as you are organised and have lots to keep them entertained and fed. It really is an enjoyable experience. So if you haven’t tried it yet, have a go!