View Full Version : Flying with a 1 year old
01-24-2010, 10:16 AM
Just wondering if anyone has any tips for flying with a 1 yr old. We just decided to go to Disney with our daughter in October and she will turn 1 about a week before we go. The plan was to wait until she was a little bit older because I'm afraid of her ears hurting and just having an unhappy baby on the plane, but we really don't want to skip a year! We fly out of Boston so it will only be three hours, but I'm still nervous! People fly all the time with babies/young children and I was hoping that I might get some words of wisdom from my Disboard friends!
01-24-2010, 05:27 PM
I flew with my two many times when they were toddlers. It is really not bad at all. Here are a few tips:
1. Try to book seats so that one of you is sitting in the seat directly in front of her and the other is next to her (or just put yourselves one in front of the other is she will be a lap child). This way you do not have to worry about her kicking the seat in front of you and bothering a stranger. If you cannot do that, at least take her shoes off on the plane and then try very hard to keep her feet away from the seatback in front of her. Personally I prefered not to use a carseat for mine at that age. They rode more quietly when it did not feel like a car ride to them and the car seat pushes them so close to the seat in front of them that it is really hard to keep them from kicking.
2. Once past security pick up a bottle of a drink that you KNOW she loves and will want to drink (maybe her favourite juice). Pour it into a sippy cup (if you have one with a valve she has to work at to drink from that is even better) and give it to her for taking off and landing. The sucking and swallowing will really help her ears.
3. Pack snacks she enjoys. Think clean and easy.
4. The best toy you can pack for her is YOU. Just be there for her and on the entire flight. Help her explore the plane, the tray table, the sliding window blind, etc. is all pretty fascinating at this age. Even the barf bag is entertaining!
5. Also pack intersting things that she is not normally allowed to play with at home. Two favourites at that age from my kids were little post it notes and masking tape. They loved to scribble on the notes and stick them all over the tray table, windows, etc. The masking tape was just a sticky fascinating thing. They would unroll some, feel it, press it on the seat and look at the lint dots, etc and keep on and on until the entire roll was gone. A favourite toy and "lovey is good to being to.
6. Pack a change of clothes for baby and you in the carry on. Otherwise, do not pack a whole lot--you should not need more than one dieaper bag full of stuff for a 3 hour lflight. Too much too carry just adds to your stress.
7. Do not preboard. Wait at the gate (with your DD up and moving) until the last boarding call. No need to have ehr sit for longer than necessarry. At the gate play movement games with her like ring around the rosie, etc.
toys/books with sound effects
things that roll easily (crayons, markers, balls, etc.)
sticky things (sticky food, playdough, etc)
You'll be fine!! Just be prepared! I've flown transatlantic (10 hrs +) with little ones and its true, you are the best toy!! In fact, I would travel now and avoid flying between 18months - 3 years! I refuse to fly over 4 hrs in that age frame! Why? Because they are mobile by that age and don't understand about sitting down and still for periods of time. Beyond that age, DVDs and games and entertainment (like coloring, stickers, color wonder etc) work well.
You will be fine, just be ready for "intensive" parenting for your 3 hour trip :goodvibes
Oh and pack a change of clothes for little and a shirt for you/DH in case of throw-up! :scared1:
01-25-2010, 12:20 AM
You've already got some great tips.
1. I definitely agree with the bottle at takeoff and landing, just make sure you give it when charging the runway/final descent for best effect--worked like a charm for my twins at 8 months.
2. Try to keep baby awake before the flight. We didn't let our kids take their usual nap. They were cranky for 10 minutes before take off (much to our neighbors' horror), but after their bottles they fell asleep for most of the 4 hour flight (much to our neighbors' delight). :thumbsup2
3. A new toy is a good idea. It didn't work for us, but I could see how it would for many kids. I suggest bringing a favorite toy as well.
4. A change of clothes or two or three is a must.
5. Like another said, don't board to early, but do allow yourself time to get settled with a baby. I underestimated how much time it would take us to get their blankets, toys, bottles mixed (we couldn't bring any liquid and had to make a crew member mix formula with water), things packed away, etc. I felt very rushed, but I also had two babies.
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