Traveling with an Infant, by Airplane
Major Under-Eye Concealing + a Minimal Makeup Tutorial
This is one of those posts that may not necessarily be interesting to a wide group of people. But when I was pregnant, I found myself laying in bed wanting to read about “upcoming scenarios” to make sure I’ve thought everything through. If you are traveling by airplane with an infant soon, I thought it may be helpful to read about my experience!
David has mastered 3 flights already, with another one coming at the end of this week! I was pretty nervous to fly with him prior to the first flight, so I thought I would share a few tips I’ve learned from my experience to any other mom’s out there who are flying with a baby soon.
David has mastered 3 flights already, with another one coming at the end of this week! I was pretty nervous to fly with him prior to the first flight, so I thought I would share a few tips I’ve learned from my experience to any other mom’s out there who are flying with a baby soon.
First, I will say it was more stressful to fly with a cat than with David. I flew one of my brothers’ cats up to him a few years ago and I was just praying that Bedford, the cat, wouldn’t soil the carrier and meow the whole time. He was a champion and barely made a peep.
David pretty much followed suit.
Follow these tips to get your baby to look like David in the bottom right photo.
Allow yourself plenty of time to pack the diaper bag. Think through every possible senario and be as prepared as you can be in case it happens.
What’s in my diaper bag:
travel container of wipes
bag to put dirty diaper in and tie off
4 burp cloths
bag of formula (enough to make 3 bottles)
I pretend like I’m going to be traveling for much longer than I actually am. Then, if for any crazy reason, we get re-routed or have some situation that keeps us at the airport longer, I’m prepared. I always make sure to have plenty of formula in case of an emergency. That’s one thing I miss about nursing. . . it’s always on tap.
There is a pack and play, car seat, and stroller at my parent’s home so I don’t need to worry about hauling these things up north. This makes traveling a million times easier and I am very grateful for that. Since I don’t need to travel with my car seat, I simply put David in the Ergo as soon as we arrive to the airport. The Ergo* is also known as the “Nap Inducer” around these parts so he’s pretty much a zombie in it.
*I have the Ergo Performance
I’ve flown Southwest Airlines all three times and all I need for David is a copy of his birth certificate. I need to show that, along with my driver’s license to a check-in agent and they print our boarding passes.
Going through security is simple. I opt out of the body scanner so a TSA agent swipes my hands to check me. Once we are cleared, we head up toward the gate.
About 15 minutes prior to boarding, I change David’s diaper. Afterwards, I try to track down a place where I can get a cup of hot water in order to warm his bottle on the plane. Starbucks usually gives me hot water for free.
We board during “family boarding” time and I try to find a seat by the window. When I’m traveling with someone, I’ll have them hold David while I mix his bottle. Once it’s mixed, I sit it in the cup of hot water to warm it.
If I’m by myself, I will mix the bottle before getting on the plane since there isn’t much room to shake it up in the seat.
Once we are seated, I try to get everything I’m going to need out of the diaper bag. Burp cloths, a blanket, spare bib, and toys.
Just prior to take off, I get David all set up to eat. I feed him on the accent in order to help his ears pop. After he’s finished eating, I burp him and then see what he’s feeling like. If he looks tired, I’ll strap him back into the Ergo. Otherwise, we’ll play with a toy for a bit. He usually falls asleep within about 20 minutes of finishing his bottle either way. The white noise of the airplane and being full makes for a happy, sleepy baby.
On the descent, I’ll try to get him to take the paci to help his ears pop again. If he’s out cold, I leave him.
After we land, the hard part is over and we head to our destination!
Traveling doesn’t seem to throw David off too much. I keep him on North Carolina time in order to make the transition back home easier (as far as his napping and nighttime sleep schedule is concerned).
Overall, it’s fairly easy. I’ve found that most people are willing to help if you need it.
If you are traveling with an infant soon, I hope this gives you a little peace of mind.
1. Why don’t you bring a stroller?
David simply prefers to be held. I have a feeling if I brought a cheap little umbrella stroller that he’d cry the whole time he’s in it and I would end up dragging it behind me while I carry him anyway. The Ergo is perfect. I have both hands free and he’s happy.
2. What did you do if he had a dirty diaper mid-flight?
The only time that has happened, we had a whole row to ourselves. I laid out a disposable changing pad and changed him right on the seat. After I was done, a flight attendant came by and mentioned there is a changing table in the back. I don’t know if that’s in the bathroom, or in the galley near the bathroom, but I have yet to use it.
I add any new Q&A’s here! Feel free to ask in the comments
ah!! i can answer the poopy diaper question 🙂 I had it happen once, and I learned that over the toilet in the bathroom is usually a fold-down changing table! Not always, but I’ve noticed it more now that I know to look for it!
I love all these tips — fo. real.
I bet that thing is tiny!
It’s SO small. It’s fine for little babies say 6 months or under, but I tried to change my 10 month old on that thing once and it was awful.
YES! definitely not for toddlers, etc 🙂 or at least it would be pretty difficult! It was the width of the bathroom and folded down like a shelf — I just covered it with paper towels and my changing mat and then was very careful — YUCK. well, what isn’t totally uck on an airplane!
You are doing a great job!
Hi Kate! Love seeing your little handsome man and love the baby posts! You mentioned a “bag” of formula so I just wanted to throw this suggestion out there, it saved my life when my daughter was an infant. It’s a formula dispenser, that allows you to pre-measure 3 doses of formula. Great for on the go! I also used mine at night, had it on my nightstand, with a room-temp bottle with water, that way if my daughter woke up in the middle of the night, I had it on hand! http://www.amazon.com/Munchkin-Powdered-Formula-Dispenser-Colors/dp/B0009ET94A/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1395833876&sr=8-2&keywords=formula+dispenser
Always went everywhere with one of those. I love your tip about the night stand!
the formula dispenser is a LIFESAVER!
thanks for the tip!
Oh yeah, those things are the best!
Since others are offering formula dispenser suggestions, this is the one I had and loved it. When my son was just a few months old and I’d fly with him, I’d fill all five servings up and would have it ready. We even started using it at home because it was all pre-measured whether I needed a bottle at home or while we were out. It was around 3-months that we slowly got him used to room temperature milk which makes the whole formula/bottle feeding thing even easier. 🙂 http://www.buybuybaby.com/store/product/Packin-39-SMART-reg-by-Innobaby-5-Tier-Storage/126379?Keyword=snack+cup
Kate, Walmart also sells on the go formula packets as Well.pretty nifty when on the go and travelling. I live in Virginia and in-law s live in Tennessee So these help. Just tear open the Crystal light look alike packet and mix it up
Curious, how long was/is the flights?
just under 2 hours
Great tips, I’m glad that he is a good little traveler. The changing tables in airplane bathrooms are laughably small, definitely avoid using them at any cost!
That’s super you had such a good experience…. just curious, what formula do you use? 🙂 have a great day! 😀
We have found the ready to feed bottles (they come in 2 or 8 oz) helpful when traveling ☺️
I’ve had some good and very bad experiences with babies on a plane (other people’s I don’t have children) and I can’t say it thrills me on a 5hour flight when I see someone come on with a baby!
TOTALLY agree. Just got back from vaca, a 5 hour flight, where a baby cried/shrieked at least 75% of the time. These parents should just not fly until their children are older and more controllable. I spent a lot of money on the flights and I think I should be able to enjoy them in peace!
as a mom of two, I can say that the parent of a screaming child is about 100 times less thrilled about the situation than other passengers. sometimes, there isn’t a choice and flying with little ones is necessary. I try to extend extra grace now to parents in that situation since I know how hard it is!
Please realize it’s not always parents going on some leisurely vacation with their children. Just think, they might be flying to visit a sick relative or to meet their grandparents for the first time. I have yet to fly with my daughter (she is 4 months old), but I will be soon and I am praying those around me will be kind and understanding. We can’t predict how our children will act each time, one flight they might be fine and the next flight they might be “that screaming baby”. Please be nice to parents with little ones, none of us want our kids to make your flight unpleasant.
I do have to echo Misty and Kathryn – if you think you hate having a crying baby on a flight, the parents are hating it a 1000 times more! Not only are they not loving having to hear their baby cry, but they know others are judging and thinking badly of them. And as Kathryn said, yes – perhaps “flying for fun” isn’t the best idea when you have very young children (I know we take less trips by plane or in general when the kids have been really young), but perhaps people are flying to a funeral, flying for something important/can’t be missed. Or like me possibly this summer – flying to see family while my husband is deployed to Afghanistan so we can break up the time while he’s away. Even just a nice smile (even if you have to fake it) can go a long way. If you are ever in that position someday, you’ll understand!
I live 20 hours away from all of my family. I don’t get a lot of vacation time so in order for me to take my son to visit family back home, I have to fly. And, yes…if he even so much as whimpers, I am mortified. Thankfully, most of my fellow seat mates have been very gracious and not rude at all.
I will say that I’m more sympathetic to parents with fussy babies on flights as I’ve gotten older. Even the best parents and best babies have bad days. Given how unhappy I am during long flights, I can only imagine that a baby or toddler or child would be less trilled. I’m willing to take the crying so that a parent doesn’t need to drive several times longer to get to a destination.
Obviously it is not anyone’s intent to make others unhappy, but is it fair to the vast majority of the other passengers on the plane when a baby is screaming almost the entire flight? Jeez, even at a restaurant parents are asked to take their crying children outside because it ruins the dining experience for others, and a meal doesn’t cost anywhere near as much as a flight and the duration is much shorter. Sure, we are all supposed to be kind and understanding regardless of the inconvenience. And it’s not like I was rude or flashing the mother dirty looks or indicating in any way my extreme displeasure. I was not judging or thinking badly of the parents, because as I said, kids are not controllable or reasonable at that age. They should have “parents with kids only” flights or some section of the plane with a dome of silence for the rugrats. Drive. Take a train. Or just abstain from flying. Just don’t be hushing my Maui buzz.
kmac, how about you drive? then you don’t have to worry about anyone else’s children ruining your precious trip.
These comments make me laugh. Everyone pays a pretty penny for a flight, but you have to expect fussy/crying/screaming babies and toddlers…it’s part of life haha, and people of all ages fly on planes. If it makes you angry at the possibility of a crying baby will be on board, invest in some noise blocking earphones or simply bring earplugs. I admit, my husband and I bring them every time an we have yet to have an unpleasant flight:)
Our twins will be 6 months in May when we take them in their first flight. Of course I pray that they will sleep the whole time, but you never know. Looking at the situation, it definitely seems more stressful as a parent. And as for other passengers…earplugs (or else it’s your own fault)!
We just flew across the country with our 5 month old. When I was looking for tips, a common suggestion was “fly during baby’s naptime” which was laughable since I was flying across the country. The trip would encompass several naptimes. If you have to fly cross-country, take heart! You will survive! My tip is to try and plan a layover of about an hour (short enough that you don’t wait around the terminal for awhile but long enough to not have to rush if plane is a little late or worry about baggage making it), and try to pick a city that is kind of halfway so you can have two flights of 3-4 hours rather than one flight of 7 hours and the other 1.
On our flights there was a changing table over the toilet in the bathroom. Just in case anyone else was wondering!
All good advice. I traveled to Australia with my then-13 month old daughter while in my first trimester with my second daughter. Almost 30 hours one-way…EEK! I learned to take a few toys, lots of treats and goodies, and lots of diapers and a change of clothes for myself. My girl was very agreeable, and I was able to change her on my lap for less-messy diapers. I wouldn’t want a stroller either.
Oh bless you! You are my hero.
Seriously Kate, you are a pro already! I’m always so impressed with your posts about traveling with your little cutie. Motherhood obviously suits you and you make it seem like you’ve been doing this for ages. Keep up the awesome work lady, David has an great momma!
That changing table is key! The smell of the diaper (even if you don’t have to see it) can be a tad overwhelming/unexpected for others. 🙂 David is a cutie – you’re one lucky momma!
This was definitely helpful. There’s a possibility I may be bringing my babe with me to the UK for a wedding this summer and I’m pretty stressed at the idea of flying with him! Feeding on the ascent and descent definitely makes sense – good thought!
This is so helpful! I love your baby posts 🙂
These are very helpful tips, but number one should be safety. New moms need to know that both the FAA and the American Academy of Pediatrics strongly urge parents to use carseats on the plane. It is so much safer, and I would never have dreamed of flying with my baby without using one. Can it be an inconvenience? Yes. But in case of extreme turbulence, which is more common than people think, it is the safest way. Just a few weeks ago a baby went flying and landed two rows back. It’s scary.
Was just about to post this! It seems inconsistent to me that airlines make you stow your laptop but allow babies to fly unrestrained, and I know the AAP is pushing for changes to this policy at the federal level. I hate that babies have and will continue to be hurt or killed until lap baby policies are changed.
I know, hopefully the measures to get the law changed will work sooner, rather than later.
I actually hadn’t hear that but it makes sense
The car seat lady has great tips on her site, as does the FAA page. I don’t know if they still do, but when my son was little Southwest offered discounted fares for children under the age of 2. I would have never known either, since I always saw lap babies on planes. I stumbled across the info when I was pregnant.
They never allowed me to keep my baby in my baby bjorn for the ascent or descent. That made no sense to me at all.
And I agree about flying with a cat – luckily the TSA let me bypass the full body scan and hold the cat, then an agent helped me get him back in his carrier. I had nightmares about a loose cat running through the airport for weeks.
I really like flying with a carseat. It is more expensive but that piece of mind is totally worth it. My britax carseat attaches to a britax wheeled luggage rack of sorts and makes a little kind of stroller. I usually have a tula carrier to wear my son and stick the diaper bag in the carseat and wheel the whole shebang on the plane. Then stick the carseat in the seat and it provides a comfy seat and contains the kiddo. Safe and cozy.
Virginia, not wearing a baby in a carrier during ascent or descent is for their safety as well. If you get thrown forward for whatever reason, your baby would become your airbag.
But how would that be any different if you are holding them?? the baby would still become your airbag. If the baby is in a carrier, you are restrained and they are restrained against you. That leaves your hands free to brace yourself and/or protect you and the baby from flying objects. In the carrier sounds safer to me!
Kay, there are videos that show the carrier literally disintegrating (and baby flying through the air) in the event of a crash. It is definite no-no – you can’t question physics.
You shouldn’t be holding them if the fasten seatbelt sign is on. Baby should be properly restrained in their carseat during those times.
I am not even close to having a baby and I love reading these posts!
Have you heard of a wet bag? It’s like a laundry bag for soiled cloth diapers. It can also be useful for any clothes that become dirty.
I was curious what type of pacifier David uses. The must have that I get for all my new mom friends is a wubbanub paci because it’s so easy for the babies to get them in their own mouths and becomes a lovie. You can get them on amazon: http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_c_0_5?url=search-alias%3Dbaby-products&field-keywords=wubbanub&sprefix=wubba%2Caps%2C250
They are also very easy to dig out of a bag, keep track of, they don’t roll, and you can throw them in the wash. I’m a huge fan!!
Do you leave the Ergo on you while you’re seated, even if David isn’t in it?
I leave it strapped around my waist, but unbuckled on top
I also like to travel with some “to go” disinfecting wipes. Obviously you can’t ever get everything, but planes and airports are such a germ hub I like to do a quick wipe down of the surfaces around the seat our little girl might want to grab, etc. — obviously you haven’t had to worry too much about this yet as your guy isn’t to the grabbing stage yet! But nice to think (even naively) that I’m at least trying to limit our chances of catching something on the plane!
I am a mom of a 6 month old and we will be flying home in a month. I’m planning on wearing him in my baby carrier as well. When you go through security do they require you to take him out of the carrier? Also, is there a line designated for families?
I can answer your second question (I’m not a mom but I travel frequently enough to notice this stuff) – it depends on the airport. Some airports have a security line designated for “families/casual travelers/people who need more time” in addition to the regular line (plus the super-fast Pre-Check line, which again, some airports have and some don’t). The airport closest to my parents’ house has a “family line” + regular line + pre-check line, while the airport closest to my house only has a regular line + pre-check line – which is weird because I live in a much bigger city and the airport is much, much larger.
When I traveled alone, he was in the Ergo and I didn’t need to take him out.
I love reading your blog! I have found SO many helpful tips. Unfortunately I don’t have infants anymore but I did notice you said you bring a bag with formula and I remember those days of trying to take pre-measured formula and trying not to spill it. I thought this product might be helpful. http://www.toysrus.com/buy/cups/philips-avent-powder-formula-dispenser-snack-cup-132-2736618 That’s not the exact one I had but it’s pretty close. I just thought it might be helpful. 🙂 Enjoy your trip!
Rock on, babywearing Mama! I love that you wear your sweet babe…it truly makes life so much easier.
You can opt out of the full body scanner?!? I never knew that!!!
Thank you for your awesome blog. I absolutely love reading it, and I shared it on my fb pg just the other day to spread the love. 🙂
I love all of your baby advice, and I don’t have kids (I’m not even pregnant!) I always pin it to my Pregnancy, Babies & Kids Pinterest board for when I’ll need it later 🙂
Wow, I had no clue about the birth certificate for when flying with a baby. HAve a great trip visiting your family.
I don’t have kids, and I’m not expecting any soon but I still love your posts about David. I would also make sure that you have an extra set of clothes in your bag!! I was on a long flight from FL to UT and sitting in the seat across from me was a mom and her newborn baby. The baby was perfect all flight right up until we were about to land, then the poor little thing had explosive diarrhea. It soaked through all her clothes including the moms. The mom had all the extra clothes for the baby but didn’t bring anything for herself. Once the plane landed it was so great to see everyone not rushing to get off the plane, everyone waited and helped her out. One person held the baby so she could clean her off, and so she could clean herself up a bit since the poop soaked her shirt and pants and one passenger gave her a shirt out of her bag so she at least had something to change into. FAITH IN HUMANITY RESTORED!!
That is AMAZING! I cannot even imagine that nightmare scenario.
I love that! My baby screamed for a good 45 min on her second flight and another passenger told me it was bothering me more than anyone else, and the entire two rows agreed with her. It made me feel so much better.
I’m a baby nurse and we tell our formula parents to feed their babies with room temp water so you can do away with trying to warm bottles away from home, also makes night time feedings go faster. Warming it is nice and sometimes we will do that for the NICU babies just to warm them up 🙂 but thought you might want to give that a go and save yourself a step. Of course, this is not for premixed formula but it read like you were mixing right before eating.
I am intruiged by the birth certificate with just a thought…..I keep my own ORIGINAL birth certificate locked tight in a safe in my house. I plan to do that with any future children as well. Do you need an original at the airport or will a copy do? Also, are you on flights whre you just buy a ticket and pick a seat when you get on? most of the flights I book you have a preassigned seat that’s on your boarding pass.
They are fine with a copy.
I have never, ever had to present a birth certificate for my baby or even children when flying.
Aw he is so precious!!
Sincerely Miss Ash
Great post Kate! Just one, maybe stupid question. Do you take the water for making up your bottle just in the bottle? And what do you do for subsequent bottles, do you just wash the bottle in the toilet and get water from hostess? This is what stresses me about travelling, at the minute I buy ready made formula for handiness sake but its expensive. Thanks!
My babies always drank their formula at room temp or straight out of the fridge at night. So when travelling we just used a drinking fountain or sink to fill the bottle, and then dumped in the formula and shook it up. We also just wash our bottles in the sink and reload when needed. We never got into all that extra (an unnecessary IMO) sterilizing and such with our bottles.
My first had to use bottles and at one month old she started drinking cold bottles since it couldn’t be room temp since it was breast milk and needed refrigerated. It made travel so much easier. I also never worried about sanitizing.
Just my opinion, but I wouldn’t use sink water to fill my babies bottles. Just bring a bottle of water with you anywhere you go, that way you know it’s clean water! Or like the poster above said, yes it’s more expensive but bring premade bottles. Totally worth the extra price you pay!!!
that’s not a stupid question. I prefer to use purified water at home, but just purchase spring water at the airport. And I have yet to wash a bottle en route! I was told I wasn’t allowed to bring ready made formula through security otherwise I would totally do that!
You can bring premade formula on with you in a bottle. As well as, milk or soy milk in a bottle when your baby is past the formula age. When you go through security you just tell them that you have formula or milk in bottles and they will have you take them out of the diaper bag and place them a smaller container that they don’t run through the scanner. When I did this with my three daughters they just looked at the bottles and gave them back, with my son it was always the same way, until our last flight a couple months ago. On my departing flight they opened the bottles and placed a paper strip above the bottle to see if it reacted. I have four children and have flown multiple times a year with them for ten years now and that was the first time I ever had that happen.
To Dairywife – I always pre-fill the bottles with water, I also use the formula dispensers, but the water will go right through security, you will have to let the agents waive a paper over it to make sure its safe, but ive never had a problem. its so much easier than trying to find water on the plane or from the hostess, also less messy trying to pour water into the bottle during a bumpy ride.
Have you encountered another baby on the plane that is fussy and/or crying, and if so, how did David do with it? If not, do you think he would react if another baby was crying?
Nope, not yet!
Great advice. This is what I did with my boys as well. A good tip for toddlers is to buy a bunch of cheap (dollar store) toys. Hide them until they get a bit antsy on the plane, and then bring out 1 of the toys from the to play with. Since it’s new they will be occupied for a while. We found that having 1 activity or toy for every 30 minutes of travel is best. I would progress with what you think will be least interested first and save the most interesting for last. Remember to HIDE them so its a surprise!
I tried to respond to the other person but couldn’t get it to work. Car seats are actually statistically just as safe as not having a car seat. There is a TED talk about it – you can watch videos of the test dummies; in a car seat the child bounces just as much as wearing only a seat belt. It’s very interesting. Kind of wish there weren’t car seat laws; would be much less of a hassle.
I hate to jump to any conclusions here but what’s a hassle about keeping your kid safe? Stats or not – I don
‘t see the point in skimping on optimal safety.
Also, these put their claims to rest:
this is super helpful! I’ll be traveling with my 5 month old in November!! Which means he isn’t here yet… 🙂 but will be in July!! This definitely helps! Thanks!
I opted to wear our infant through security and had my hands swiped as well. They came back positive for explosives. This freaked me out, meant I had to leave my three little boys (age three and under) with Daddy while I went off to some private room for further screening. It was a nightmare.
I have since learned that the wipes I use (the Kirkland brand from Costco) gives you a false positive on that explosives test. Awesome. (Only not really)
Now I make “the baby” (who will be three this summer) walk through security on his own. Just in case my hands have been dealing with explosives while I wasn’t paying attention!
Loved reading this! We don’t travel by air much so my first time this fall was with a toddler. TOTALLY different ballgame! 🙂
As a fellow “planner,” I love your detailed play-by-play. I would add that when you’re traveling alone with a baby, you should think carefully about what you yourself are wearing (how easy will it be for you to go potty while holding a baby in your arms?!), your own entertainment on a long flight, and I totally agree with ditching the stroller! I have tips I wrote about flying with a four-month-old baby on my own blog (http://mommycribnotes.com/2010/02/tips-for-flying-with-a-baby/) including how to bypass security lines. Anyone flying soon, should definitely read as many tips as possible. Feeling prepared helps make everything less stressful.
Agreed. Also, for those moms who may want to bring the car seat but are traveling alone, you can have a friend or family member get a “gate pass”. I did this when my son was little because getting through security alone, lugging a car seat, then to the gate was next to impossible. Just have your helper accompany you at check in, the airline will give them a gate pass, and they can go with you to help the entire way up to boarding the plane. It is a lifesaver!
As a flight attendant, 2 main things: First, please never never NEVER change your child on a seat, or a tray table… yes, I have seen that, too! We hate that! That’s what the changing tables in the bathrooms are for.
Secondly, for the few of you wondering… the reason we make you take the baby out of a carrier is not because we’re trying to mean, but because it’s a Federal Regulation. Parents argue with me almost every time I inform them of this, but believe it or not, your child is less prone to serious injuries in a crash if they are not strapped to you & most likely going to be crushed. I know the FAA has been looking into doing away with ‘lap children’ for a while now… and personally, I think they definitely should. I know it’s cheaper than having to buy a seat for the carseat, but it’s just not safe. I’ve seen kids slip out of their Mom’s grips during turbulence… not cool.
Just think about it like this… you buckle your child up in a vehicle traveling 65-70 mph down the highway… why wouldn’t you in an airplane traveling 500 mph where you could have expected or God-forbid UNEXPECTED turbulence? That has never made any sense to me.
Anyhow, not trying to be a downer. Just trying to provide some insight from OUR side of things! And FYI: I think your baby is absolutely precious!
It is funny how many flight attendants are shocked when they learn that my infant (and now toddler) was a ticketed passenger. It is definitely not the popular option, but absolutely should be! I know it is expensive to purchase an extra seat for the child, but honestly, you’re going to have to do it when they turn 2, so what’s the big deal starting now? How much money are you REALLY going to save in that two years?
It has been proven (proven!) that you will absolutely NOT be able to hold on to your infant in the event of a crash. It just isn’t physically possible.
I too hope the FAA does away with lap children. It is definitely worth researching 🙂
I wasn’t quite as informed with my first two kids and they flew as lap children plenty. My third has flown four times, in her rear facing car seat on the plane. Sure it cost money but she has slept for most of the flight each time being in familiar seat so that’s worth something!
I think the problem is people think of it as an *extra* seat when they shouldn’t. Simply put, you should be required to buy a seat for each member of your party, whatever their age, and when the fasten seatbelt sign is on, babe should be safely buckled in his/her carseat.
I’m also a flight attendant (and future first tine mama! Due in July, so excited!)
I just wanted to add one more tiny piece of advice to those traveling with little ones, mostly to help you avoid being shocked/offended by the flight attendant: please don’t hand a flight crew member a dirty diaper. It would happen on nearly every flight, and I gently would give the instruction to dispose of it in the lavatory trash receptor. I understand this may seem harsh, but it (like most times) is another procedure we have to follow. It makes sense, as we are handling food/drink for most of the flight, so handling a dirty diaper is a no no.
I do sympathize about the changing tables in the bathroom, though. They are tiny!
I’m flying with my 6 week old next week (by myself) so this was perfectly timed! Thanks!
I loved using these for when we travelled with my boys even if they had a diaper explosion I could put their dirty clothes in it and my whole diaper bag wouldn’t smell like poop…and it’s easy to carry around with you and lots of bags if you need extra…and now that my boys are a little older I still keep it with me in case we have any accidents while we are out…http://www.amazon.com/Munchkin-Hammer-Diaper-Dispenser-Colors/dp/B001QKDI48
Another tip, if you did not purchase a seat for baby, bring your car seat to the gate. If there are seats available you can bring it on board. I’ve got lucky a few times that way with my first and second. My kids always slept better on the plane in their car seat.
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Hi Kate. This post and comments are so helpful. I’ll be traveling with a 6 month old in a few months. Just curious – do you opt out of the body scan as a personal preference? Or is it related to the baby? Thanks
This is super helpful! Our baby girl will arrive in August and we’re planning to fly for Thanksgiving. Never would have crossed my mind to nurse during takeoff to help her ears stay open!
Finding hot water for formula was always the most annoying thing about being out and about and traveling. Starbucks was always great but I also got a small thermos from IKEA and would fill that up with hot water so I would have it on hand.
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Thanks for any kind of support 🙂
This is such a great post! You have really nailed it with all the information you have given. All of my kids are way past being infants, but so many of my friends and new mommy’s need this post you have done. I know that the anxiety of being a mom to an infant is enough to deal with, but then needing to travel on top of it, can be a real stresser. Way to go, sista! I love it!
That Comfort Girl
Thank you! What a great, simple explanation! I’m looking forward to continued travel once my baby arrives!
One thing more to add Re: Car seats on the plane.
If you checked your car seat these past few flights you may want to re think using it any further. Many brands are replace after any accident and others are up to your discretion (check your manual) but what they do to car seats on planes is atrocious. They toss them around as if they have not a care in the world. Damage to car seats can be invisible to the eye but detrimental when it comes to keeping your child safe in your vehicle. Here is a GREAT resource about car seats on airplanes and why checking seats is just an all around no-no.
Great advice and so true. I flew with my now 7 year old a couple of weeks ago and even gate checked his high back booster.
Oh Kate flying with newborns is the easiest!!! Fly and go see mom as much as possible. Once they’re mobile it’s kind of nightmare, especially the in between time where they want to be mobile and walking everywhere and then not understand why they have to be on your lap and can’t get down. With my little girl it was around 8 months that t started being hard. Last time we flew she was 13 months and it was really really hard to wrestle her for 3 hours. 🙂
These are great tips! I used to live in mass, while my family was in oregon so flew cc several times when my older two were tiny and I’d add a spare shirt for mama in a ziploc bag.
You can travel and go through security with formula or breast milk. They will just need to do a test to make sure it is what you say it is. I just got back from a 12 hour flight/travel day with my 1.5 year old and 3 year old traveling by myself with them! They don’t sleep if we are out and about and I was nervous about it as it was my first time with 2 alone but it went well. I brought a back pack of food and another bag of toys. The hardest part was taking my 3 year old to the bathroom with my 1year old in tow. Sometimes he came with and sometimes I just asked someone to hold him even though he may not like it…at least no ones going anywhere!:)
I’ve been getting inspired by you for years. You are a great example of a modern, classy woman. Plus, you are an amazing stylist! I linked your high bun tutorial today for a Hepburn look on my blog at thefancyb.blogspot.com.
Thanks again for all the great ideas!
The superb highly informative blog I’m about to share this with all my contacts.
only addition I would make to that list is an extra shirt for yourself because there’s nothing worst then traveling for 7 hours smelling like digested sweet potatoes in an international flight.
You are doing a wonderful Job !
Marula Body Lotion
Kate- you should get a flyebaby for when you fly and then you can use it as a portable high chair later that way you can have your hands free if you need to. we are buying one for our flights to texas this summer.
Thanks for the tips! But I was wondering if you or any of the other Mums have any long-haul flight tips? I am travelling from Australia to the UK for 3 weeks over christmas, which is a 21 hour flight with a 2 hour stop over in Singapore. And even though I’ve done plenty of long haul flights before, this will be the first one with an 8 month old!
Any tips for the flight, travel and going from a boiling hot summering Australia to a freezing winter in London all in a day, as well as baby jet lag would be amazing!
Thank you! 🙂
We are traveling with our almost 5 month old to the bahamas. he absolutely hates being tied down in the car seat and will cry/scream the moment he’s in there until he comes out. We will not be taking a stroller for this reason as he likes to be held. Was wondering if mom’s out there recommend me taking the car seat just by itself for safety reasons since we will be going in cabs ?? Or will carriers be sufficient ?
If you plan on being in a car at any point during your trip you will need a car seat. A cab is still a car and a car requires a car seat. You can rent car seats from the car rental agencies at airports but personally I would bring my own. You have no idea how the rental car seat has been maintained and many times they are expired. My 4 month old also hates the car seat but for safety she will be in it during the flight and obviously in the car at our destination.
I remembered my first ever flight travel with my eldest son when he was just 6mos. old. All I know that I’m so well-prepared, only to find out, what I had for my baby’s thing is not enough. I even barrow a nappies to other parents on board because I forgot my son’s extra nappies 🙁 Good thing they have extras to lend. It was really a chaos.
I felt so good to this kind of article helping moms like me to know what to bring on our next flight.
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Do you carry the water for your formula with you? How much water can you carry on an international flight?