Those flights from New York to Tel Aviv…some say are like labor. You’ve just got to get through it. Eventually, it gets to the end and the result is worth it.
Before we start with our practical tips, there are a few important things to keep in mind when you’re planning to fly with a baby. You don’t have to miss out on fun trips because you have little ones!
Kids tend to take cues from their parents, so if a parent is relaxed instead of tense, it does help. Mom and dad should also be well rested before they get on a plane with babies! That being said, we’ve found that when we had little ones, flying was easier at night, when the plane tends to be quieter. If all else doesn’t work, my primary tip is to just keep in mind that “this too shall pass.” Eventually, you do get off the plane and go on to have a fabulous time. But, still, even if you are very relaxed, you may find yourself in a situation where you simply have to calm down the baby–if not for yourself, then both for your baby and the people around you. And being prepared helps! These pointers will help the baby be comfortable and calm–and make flying an experience that’s as smooth as possible.
What to Pack:
- Diapers, wipes, and anything you need often in a separate bag that you can remove from your primary carry-on bag (that’s stored up in the luggage hold) and keep next to you. IMPORTANT: Pack more diapers, wipes and formula than you think you’ll need. You cannot get stuck/delayed/rerouted without enough to get by!
- Change of clothing. A baby will usually need 2 changes of clothing, just in case.
- Extra pacifiers
- Lots of books, toys, finger food (cereal) and a lot of bibs.
- Thin blanket or swaddle – for the cold or just to snuggle with to fall asleep. Also good if you are nursing (baby nursing cover, a great item for nursing moms)
- Shusher – A completely brilliant item to take along on a flight for a baby.
- Inflatable pillow/footrest. This blows up and fits in the space between the seat and the seat in front of you, creating a bed that’s the perfect size for a toddler. They can lie down and be cozy!
- Ears are hurting? Give baby a bottle or nurse during takeoff and landing. It really helps to prevent the ears from popping.
- If your babies tend to be fussy on flights, have their ears checked before traveling.
- DO NOT give Benadryl to a younger child because it can stimulate the child as opposed to making them sleepy.
- More pacifiers!
- And don’t forget Tylenol – baby suppositories are easiest for travel.
Toys for the Plane:
- Suction Toys. These suction spinner toys or this suction “fascination station” suctions easily onto surfaces. They’re perfect for playtime in your seat when the tray table is down.
- Squigz Toobz. For toddlers that have outgrown the above, the Squigz Toobz or the mini version are great, especially if you have a window seat.
- Puffer Balls. Take along a piece of yarn or ribbon and tie these to the tray in the seat in front of you. Now they can play without the balls getting lost.
Food and Drinks:
- A Classic Formula Dispenser. This holds up to 3 bottles of formula. You can also use our diy hack for formula storage.
- Sectioned Formula Dispenser. (UK). This item is great because each formula is in its own section with its own spout, so you won’t accidentally pour out formula from another section (it’s a UK item, so it’s more expensive in the US).
- Pop Yum Baby Bottles. The formula and water are stored in two separate sections. Just pop and shake when ready to feed. Fill them all up with a room temperature water bottle while you’re waiting by the gate (security may let them through pre-filled, but not always) and you won’t need to get up or make a formula mess every time you need to make a bottle. Note: The nipples of these bottles are very similar to como tomo.
- Also important: It’s very helpful to train babies to be accustomed to drinking lukewarm/room temperature bottles so that they’ll take the bottle when you’re not able to heat it up.)
- Snack Catcher. Place Cheerios inside. Your child sticks his/ her hand to get the food without major spills. This is a great one, since kids can’t pull off the lid from this one easily.
- Sippy Cup. This cup teaches toddlers to drink from a real cup at same time, while avoiding spills. It’s also easy to clean (make sure to separate all pieces).
Thank you, Mom, Devorah, Devoiry, Bruchi, Ruchy, Shira and Goldy for all your baby travel tips. Do you have more tips to add for those flying with a baby? Comment below!