Tips to flying with kids
Flying is a great experience for children, get them excited by telling them that it is special time you can spend together playing or reading or talking.
- Ears and screaming children are a parents biggest fear before flying, but both are easy to avoid.
- For a baby try to plan their feed around take off and landing. If the plane is delayed try to split the feeds or use a dummy.
- For toddlers, I have found chuppa chops are a great option for take off and landing – we would call them “aeroplane lollies” and it would be the only time they got them. They could suck them on the way up and when the seat belt sign turned off they give them back to you (don’t need a whole lollie on board at the start of the flight!), wash it, then give it back to them on descent. I have also found tic taks, bubble gum or chewie sugar free lollies are also good, depending on their age.
- once in the air give the kids one toy at a time, try and make it last about 20 mins at least and then put it away before bringing out the new one.
- if smaller children use the area in front of the exit doors to play with blocks or their play mat.
- use the aisles to walk a little, don’t think your bothering anyone, stretch your legs.
- they will usually serve the kids meals first so you can help them eat before your meal arrives.
- If you are flying overnight, explain to them before you fly that they will be sleeping on the plane. Keep the children in their sleep time routine, after dinner clean their teeth, change them into PJ’s, read them a story, give kisses and tuck them into bed/seat.
- if they scream and are unsettled, try not to get too upset yourself, they smell fear! you know your child better than anyone, try what usually works to settle them, walk around, read, sing….. most other parents on the plane have been in your shoes at some stage and will understand.
- You usually worry about it more than those around you, take a breath, relax and take any help offered to you.
- Some airlines – such as Cathay Pacific, offer Air Angels. If children are booked on a flight they will roster an extra staff member to help with the children. They are not a nanny but they are very helpful to parents.
- if the hostess or another passenger offers to help, accept it – they can’t run off with your child.