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We recently took a family trip with Little Miss which involved quite a bit of flying.
We hadn’t taken her on a plane since she started walking and I was more than a little bit concerned how she would do sitting on my lap for such a long time now that she was a toddler (we had 2 flights, one of which was 5 hours long!). These 5 Ways to Make Flying with a Toddler Bearable are now a must in our travel plan.
Luckily, my aunt used to be a flight attendant and had lived in Hawaii when my cousin was little so she knew just what to suggest to keep Little Miss entertained!
5 Ways to Make Flying with a Toddler Bearable
Pack lots of fun and yummy snacks
– No one likes to be hungry and little ones especially can get hangry very quickly. Little miss is very into Goldfish crackers so I packed several bags of those as well as graham crackers, fruit snacks, and plain crackers. We also got fresh water to put in her sippy cup once we got through security and made sure to eat when we had layovers.
Let them walk around in the seating area at the gate
– It’s hard for little ones to have to sit still for long (or even short) flights! By letting them explore and walk around the gate area they can stretch their legs, stimulate their brain, and hopefully wear themselves out so that they nap when you board. This is one of the best tips for flying with a toddler who is usually running everywhere.
Pack new/special toys
– This one is big. There’s nothing quite so exciting as novelty and a new toy can do the trick! If your toddler is old enough to understand presents, try wrapping them so that it adds to the excitement. Bonus: it takes longer for them to get to the toy extending the excitement and how long it holds their attention. If you’re really on top of things, you can pack several of the wrapped gifts and when they lose interest in one, pull the next one out!
Pack some old magazines
– There’s nothing more fun for Little Miss right now than looking at the pictures and, eventually, tearing up the pages. Make sure that you’ve already read the magazines or that you have no interest in reading them. It will make a mess so be prepared to pick up the shredding before leaving.
When all else fails, screen time can save you
– I know, I know…screen time is a bad word. But, really, in a small confined space, it may be your last saving grace! I’m all about balance. If some screen time will make airline travel more enjoyable for everyone on the plane (including me and my little) I’m totally going to resort to it if nothing else will work.
So, what has made air travel easier with your toddler?
Product recommendations for flying with a toddler
These are some items that I have used
- Baby B’Air Flight vest – This makes me feel better about having a lap baby!
- Umbrella Stroller – I love the high handles on this one, it saves my back. Light and easy to fold, this makes getting through the airport so much easier!
- Indestructibles Baby Book – Found this in an airport and it has been great. Washable, chewable, unrippable!
- Weighted Flexi-straw Sippy Cup – This is Little Miss’ favorite sippy. She drinks from every angle and the weight means it’s not a problem!
- Travel bed – this was a lifesaver! It was easy to fold up and fit in a suitcase, she loved the novelty of it, and it means family doesn’t have to find something for her to sleep. We recently used it on a trip where we were in a hotel and it saved us $30 a night that an extra bed/crib would have cost!
Flying with a toddler
No matter where your destination or how long your flight, I know that you too will enjoy your upcoming trip with your toddler. Flying with a toddler doesn’t mean you have to be miserable. In fact, it is a great way to see the world in a whole new way!