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From a previous contributor to this board, posted by Augie
“For those who are traveling with an infant alone here are some tips I learned from my experience. My travel was from Portland OR to Columbus OH with a 1 hour 26 min layover in Minneapolis/ST. Paul.
1. ALWAYS bring more food and diapers then you need for your baby. My baby eats solids and I cannot breastfeed him due to being dried up. The TSA only allows enough for the "duration" of your itenerary, but take more anyway. There isn't anywhere in the airports I went to to buy baby food. For those who are Bfing, buy water AFTER you cross security b/c you won't be able to carry it THROUGH security. You never know when you will be delayed. In a perfect world, I would be able to travel without a layover, but that will never happen. Well, we got a snow storm in Portland OR and we had to de-ice the plane 2 times. We ended up sitting on the tarmac for over 2 hours with no circulating air....leads to lesson 2
2. Dress you and your young one in layers, I am glad I did cause it was hot during the 2 hours....my baby sweat the entire time.
3. The TSA will help with your stuff through security but not with your child, so carry as few bags on the plane as possible. The TSA helped my with my stuff and even put my shoes in the bin as they inspected my carrier. Since I didn't look suspicious, they let me walk through the check point with him in my carrier. Just ask for help and they will.
4.If your baby is older than about 8 to 9 months or is over 28 inches long, it WILL be difficult to change your baby in the lavatory. The changing tables are very small and the bigger the plane, the smaller than the changing table. For those who use disposables, if your young one is old enough, I would recommend using the more absorbant overnight diapers or doubling up to avoid changing them on the plane. Also this is conveinent when there is turbulance, your infant needs changed but you are not allowed out of your seat. In contrary, if your baby is young enough, you could change them in your lap, but I would ask those around you if that is ok and I would ALWAYS change #2 diapers in the lavatory or close to it.
5. You will need plastic bags for every diaper change, but if you forget, then ask for a sick bag, but if no one is there and you need to throw it away, then toss it and forget about it. The airlines "prefer" you to use a bag for the diapers, but really, who is going to see you throw it away anyway. The real lesson here is...the bags are helpful, but if you forget...no biggie.
6. The flight attendants can bring you hot water to sterilize nipples pacifiers and etc, but it is BOILING and there is nothing between boiling and ice cold, so don't count on their water for a bottle if you bottle feed unless you give it Plenty of time.
7. If possible, get an aisle seat and perfect world is to get assigned to a seat with an empty seat next to you. Northwest Airlines has an option for seat assignment changes but some airlines are first come first serve unless you anty up some dough. The reason for this lesson was: I got to walk my son through the aisle just to change the scenery and I had more room to feed my son. I also found that Bfing would have been difficult in coach class, the seats are SO CLOSE, especially if you are like me ( I am a beautiful plus sized woman size 18-20 )
8. As I stated in lesson 1, you never know when you are going to be delayed. With our delay out of Portland, it was looking like I was going to miss my connnecting flight because of the delay. I pleaded with the flight attendant about my situation with Joseph and the lack of food I had to endure a 4 hour delay ( which would have turned into more because of a snow storm in Columbus and Chicago ) and the flight attendant did notify the pilot to contact the other flight and notify them to see if they could hold the plane. The flight attendant gave me no guarantees, but it worked. I had to RUN to the other gate but I did make it. I will never know if it was my plea or common sense that they held the flight, but I like to think it was me.
9. Bring an extra outfit for you and the baby. I found that even my tidy son needed this outfit and I needed one too. If it can spill and leak, it will happen the day you fly.
10. If you bottle feed, then I would recommend the bottles with the drop ins because the flight attendants can bring you water to sterilize the nipples but they cannot wash your bottle and it is less to pack and carry.
11. RELAX....and enjoy. If you are relaxed, then your baby and fellow flyers will be too. Try to have fun and roll with the punches and be prepared for anything.
I know I did not write everything I did because It would have been way longer than it was and if you are reading this line, then I know that I have babbled enough for a lifetime and thank you all for your patience. I hope this helps at least one person with traveling questions. For those traveling, have a safe trip.”
Posted by numerous members and ex-members of this board.
1. When possible to plan ahead, do so. I use a system of list so that we dont forget to pack anything.
ie. I list what we need and cross of as it is packed.
If the list is to buy for the trip I would checked it off when bought and then cross it off when packed.
2. A $5 luggage scale is worth its weight in gold.
3. Ask the airline when boarding if they have extra seating and can you get more space. 1st come 1st serve... they will often move people around when space is avilable.
4. When traveling internationally with children make sure to bring all kinds of medicine, it can be a life saver and a thermometer. Kids can take it hard and the medicines in new countries can make it worse.
5. Pack a new surprise gift for kids to open on the plane... it can amuse children for a long flight and also a new DVD if you have a DVD player. Kids especially young ones will watch the same video over and over again.
6. We always get antibiotics, Imodium, Gravol, Advil, after-burn gel, sunscreen, and cough syrup whenever we travel--it saves us hours in a doctor's office and dealing with insurance if someone gets sick. Our family doctor is really good and we only take the antibiotics if we really need them-------never used them yet! We also make sure to take vitamins with us to avoid colds, esp with DS. After we got really sick once at an all-inclusive, we now also take A LOT of that hand alcohol gel and make sure to use it before we put anything into any of our mouths.
7. For every child you have, allow 15 minutes of give when you've got to be somewhere on time. If you're to be at the airport/docks/whatever at noon and it takes you an hour to get there, and you have 3 kids, TELL your family that you're leaving at 10.15am and you'll probably get out the door by 11.
8. I've just discovered the joys of travelling with toddlers in their carseats on airplanes. Since we're paying for his seat anyhow, we bring his carseat-he was more than happy to sit in it for our 12 hr flight to Florida last month-he's restrained, so he can't throw himself down or jump all over; and we brought lots of toys and movies for him-also great to fall asleep in. He's used to being in it when we do our long camping trips, so it worked out very well! Big PITA to pack around airports, but a lifesaver on long flights! And of course I don't have to rent a carseat at our destination. I did go out and purposely buy a cheap $70 seat esp for flights, since I don't want my $300 Britax Marathon getting banged up through airports.
9. Bulkhead seats have extra leg room and are often close to bathrooms, handy for pregnant travelers.
10. If you're driving or renting a car at your destination always print out directions to every place you want to go. Is a bit of a pain before leaving but invaluable once you're there.
Last edited by Carwen*Angel; April 10th, 2010 at 12:34 PM.