I just got back from a great trip to Ohio to visit my in laws. They were very nice to buy us plane tickets, and Ryan rode on my lap. I figured even two hours of hell beat a 12 hour drive.
We survived- although sometimes I had my doubts! I did it alone- just me, a 2.5 year old and a 10 month old. My tips to help plane rides with little kids-especially if you are doing it alone:
-Wear your infant if at all possible. You won't have to collapse the stroller at security and juggle the baby while trying to do so.
-Check the carseat if your child can sit up on their own and won't slide down in the seat. If you travel a lot, you can get a CARES harness, which folds up into pretty much nothing. Trust me, after dragging Addison's carseat through DTW, it is easier. And you will be able to put their tray table down and they won't kick the seat in front of them as easily.
-Bring sustenance. Little finger foods that won't cause a mess. Dried fruits, fruit snacks, goldfish or crackers, that sort of thing. Also bring a sippy cup for the flight attendant to fill up with water so you won't have to worry about spills.
-If you have a lap child, try to wear a big, colorful necklace that is OK for them to play with. It will keep them occupied for a little while at least.
-Hit up the $1 store of $1 bins at Target and pick out a few new little toys for them. The novelty of new toy will entertain them on the plane.
-Take them to the bathroom right before getting on and right after getting off the plane, and try to limit liquids so you won't have to take them on the plane. Thankfully, this worked for me and I didn't have to try to juggle Ryan while helping Addison go the bathroom in the closet that passes for a bathroom. I also thought it might scare her.
5 years ago