Saturday, November 17, 2012

Planes . . .

I've flown with my daughter twice, both over 8,000 miles one way, by plane. Before going, I scoured various blogs looking for tips for travel. So I made my list, made several purchases, and really was looking for the best. Some things worked; others did not. 

Here's my recommendations if traveling by plane this holiday season:

1. Look into the CARES harness if you have a small child. 
While I could not spend the $62 to purchase brand new, I found a military mom who's child was over 40 pounds and not needing the harness who sold it to me via Craigslist for much less. It does give you peace of mind for any turbulence, and really is quite helpful for landing, as the force tend to work against small children.

2. Don't worry about over-packing the carry-ons for preparedness sake. (Don't go overboard) But it's really better to have a bit more than lacking. This summer, I packed a spare t-shirt in my carry-on and didn't think I'd need to squeeze in a spare pair of pants for myself. Should have. My daughter, who's not a puker, threw up on my leg. Not fun to be flying over 8,000 miles with attempted clean-up of vomit. 

3. Allow your child to bring their own backpack. You can either fill it with toys they haven't seen or their favorites or both. Grandma added a few treats, special crayons, and paper, and the people sitting around us all had their own take-home pictures.

4. Pack a few extra treats in your bag, in case the ones in their backpack get old too quickly. And plan for eating a snack or sipping a drink during take-off and landing.

5. Consider using a stroller at the airport and gate-checking it. Once we used a large stroller, and another time I used the umbrella stroller. It's great in case short legs get tired, or if time truly is the essence. 

6. Ask if airlines have pre-boarding. Often they won't, but a kind attendant might still allow you more time to board or give up a heads up with details.

7. Even if you ask, don't count on the airlines following through the bassinets. One trip, I did everything I was told to do, and ended up at the very back of the airplane.

8. Consider using technology. Bring something to watch movies on or other gaming devices. Don't forget headphones!

9.  Pack at least one thing for your enjoyment. Your child might end up sleeping 8 hours, leaving you with quiet rest!

10. Sit back and enjoy your flight -- you never know what's in store!

Image courtesy of nokhoog_buchachon /


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