Summer is here once again, and i vividly remember the first time Little took a plane ride. It was in H’s hometown which was a good 1.5 hour flight.
I was concerned about the pressure on her ears, plus disturbing other passengers if and when she will cry.
luckily all those worries, remained just that — worries. everything went well on Little’s first flight and i credit it to research, common sense, and consultations with other fellow moms.
Another challenge is to travel alone with your infant/baby/toddler. I have done this a lot of times whenever we visit H in his work abroad or in the southern part of the country for his work. Also travelled trans atlantic flights with just the kiddo and me for a couple of times, so i kinda got the hang of it already — but believe me it gets challenging everytime.there’s just a pro and con at every stage.
Like for young kids, they just sleep all the time, but you have to literally carry them all the time. For toddlers, pro is they can walk, but youd have to chase them around the air terminal, and they get noisy even on ungodly hours in the place if they are active.
Here are a few tips for first time mommies tagging along first time fliers, and for travelling alone with your baby:
1. Check out your airline’s policies on infants. Children 2 years of age and below are free if they will be sitting on your lap. If you want to bring your car seat with you and have the baby sit there, you would have to buy a ticket for her.
2. Bring a light weight stroller. Yes,. your ordinary umbrella stroller, so that you would not have a hard time lugging it around, and folding it, just before you enter the plane.
3. Just bring enough stuff for your baby. Do not indulge your inner over-packer because if you will be travelling without your husband or the yaya, you will have a hard time pushing the stroller, bringing the baby bag, bringing your own bag, and handing out e-tickets or boarding passes.
4. Bring a light blanket for your baby. It could get cold in the airplane.
5. If your baby can already eat solids or puffs, bring something she or he can munch on during take off to help relieve pressure on the ears.
6. Read your airline’s policy on transporting bottled formula, drinking water, or expressed breastmilk.
7. Bring a small hooded jacket for the baby just in case it will rain/drizzle when you get to your location.
8. Bring 1 or 2 toys that could entertain her during the ride (do not bring very loud toys as this may disturb other passengers). a colorful storybook, and something that would keep her hands busy may do the trick.
9. Do not hesitate to ask the person in the check-in counter too give you an aisle seat so that it would be easier for you to get in and out of the seat if you need to use the restroom, or you need to take the baby to the restroom.
10. If you are alone, and you need to use the washroom badly, most FAs (PAL in particular) would be kind enough to watch after your kid. just find a nice lady FA of course!(did this during a long haul flight) — that is much safer than leaving your kid with a stranger or trying to brng your kid with you in the very small restroom while you do your bathroom stuff.
11. Other people are kinder than you expect! If you suddenly find yourself in the middle seat and you wanted an aisle seat, try asking your seatmate if he or she would be willing to change seats with you. Most co-passengers (who, usually have or have had kids your kid’s age) would be sympathetic of a mom travelling alone with an infant. There is no harm in trying!
12. You may wanna take an extra energy boost for flights lasting more than 3 hours, because the wait timee in the terminal etc would sap your energy plus the plane ride and all, so you would need that extra jolt. So whether you get it via a wheatgrass shot, espresso, or red bull, just make sure, you would get some before the flight.
13. Do not forget about yourself. Eat your meals and try bringing some snacks and hydrate well so that you can better care for your kid on board and in the terminals!
14. Make sure you have all your important documents with you and that it is in an easy to reach bag (bodybag?)
15. Secure necessary documents for your kid. if you are travelling out of the country and you are alone, you will need a parental consent from your husband. If it is a domestic flight, they may ask to see a copy of your kid’s birth certificate for identification purposes, and validation of kid’s age.
16. dont forget to ask for special lootbag for kids. Northwest, PAL,Cathay Pacific, and Air Francr/KLD have this! it is a nice memento for your scrap book! pl;us some items in the lootbag can entertain your toddler.
17. Upon booking of your tickets, make sure that you ask for a bassinet for your long haul flights. your kid may rest here during the flight. You may have to be early in the airport though coz mostly this is on a first come first serve basis, but it is good to let them know ahead of time (during booking).
i will post more as i remember the things that ive learned from our first few airplane rides, and my plane rides alone with Little 🙂
have a safe flight and till next post!