My oldest daughter was just under three months when we went on our first flight. Being a new mom and terrified from all the stories I had heard about how hard traveling with kids is.
We loaded up on drink coupons to pass out to our neighbors that might be bothered by her screams we boarded the plane. Even had a bottle made and ready for her to help the pressure in her ears. For heavens sake, I put two diapers on the kid just in case of a blow out. Yep someone actually told me to do that and I did it.
Things you Need to Make Flying with Kids Enjoyable:
Ignorance is Bliss
Funny thing about being a new mom is that honestly, ignorance is bliss and most of these horrible scenarios that are told to us, never happen. I was determined to start them traveling young because a screaming 6 month old is always more acceptable than a screaming 6 year old. And practice makes perfect, right?
We are 6 years in and I can honestly say that I have zero fears of flying with kids. I have flown solo with the girls across the United States without a hiccup and even flew across the Pacific Ocean with no Wi-Fi. Guess what, we are still here to talk about it. And I am going to share all my tips and tricks we have learned along the way.
Now I used to let my girls pack a travel bag. And while it was a good idea and totally kept them entertained, it was typically their biggest back pack stuffed to the brim.
My mothering style can easily be described as lazy to the outside world when in reality its actually me teaching them independence. So I don’t carry their backpacks. But when they packed their own bags I would end up having to because it out weighed them. That only happened once before I made the change to a smaller bag.
I totally splurged on these backpacks and could have easily found other backpacks that were the same size but cheaper. But what can I say, Im a millenial mom who wants to twin and I couldn’t pull the trigger on my own backpack unless I bought them matching ones because then it’s just cute. Right?
Dollar Section is Your Best Friend
This has become a tradition that I think I like more than the girls. I love to fill their backpacks with goodies that I know they will love. So prior to hitting the road I stop by Target or the Dollar Store and grab things that pertain to where we are going or seasonal items they can enjoy while on the road. This can get pricey so if you aren’t wanting to buy new things, you can def grab things from around the house that they haven’t played with in a while or forgotten about.
Here are a couple things I include for each of my girls and have since around 2. So just make it age appropriate.
Arts & Crafts
Coloring books and markers or colored pencils are their favorite and I can usually find a book or two laying aroud the house that they havent played with yet. Slime is also fun.
I don’t care what your mom says, not all technology is bad. We make sure to have charged device with ample amount of storage space and ear phones in each bag. Load a movie and their favorite apps and they will be set. That way if you come across a no WiFi plane, they can still catch up on their favorite soaps.
As you know, hangry happens and when it happens no one is safe. So just like back in the day with a newborn I include snacks in case their ears hurt as well as their favorite junk food because we all like travel trips better when junk food is involved. Sweet and salty are a typical combination since you never know what kind of mood they are going to be in. Then I include an apple sauce pouch just in case they get thirsty. But honestly they can also wait.
As I write this we are in the air and I am surrounded by sneezes and coughs so hand santizer is an absolute must. Also inlcuded is Boogie Wipes because no one like to be without tissues and raw noses hurt. Traveling makes my lips chapped so I know theirs get that way too. So I always throw in a lippy.
Blind bags do have a purpose. If you have seen YouTube you know about these. They come in so many different variations. This is definately their favorite part. They never know what they are going to get. Thrill of hoarding, errrr collecting, them makes them so exciting. Stuffed animals also make a great addition. Girls like to snuggle with them at hotels. LOL dolls are also amazing. Because they can be used in the pool as a pool toy or bath time entertainment as well.
Things to remember when flying with kids
- Trash Bag. Trust me. Blind bags and LOL dolls come with a ton of trash. The airlines attendant with thank you. Plus it doubles as a barf bag. You are welcome.
- Things that roll aren’t your friends. Also keep in mind that kids dexterity is different. If you are anything like me, flexibility is not a strong suit. When the kids drop it, it’s gone. Little isn’t always better.