Tips for Flying Long Haul for the Whole Family

Tips for Flying Long Haul for the Whole Family

Now, the problem with flying long haul is that your kids are confined to a very small space on an aeroplane for a very long time. You have to keep your children entertained and contained in a single seat for up to 10 hours!  Here’s how to do it…

Three Year Old

Flight Bag

Munchkin Flight Bag

Everything my three year old needs to keep her entertained is in this bag. A flight bag gives children a huge amount of freedom in the way they play. The bag sits on the seat next to them and they choose when they want to play and what they play with, all with minimal help. This was great as it allows you time to look after the baby or watch a sneaky film. See my blog on the Munchkin flight bag to see what goes in.

 

 

 

iPad & in-flight Entertainment

There is of course the in-flight entertainment, which is a good excuse to press lots of buttons and another opportunity to use the much loved headphones.

However, from our experiences, I did find that the shows and films on offer don’t tend to hold my little one’s attention for very long. She tries to watch films, but prefers to go back to her iPad and watch the CBeebies shows we download. She also has games she can flit back and forth from and is much more confident using the tech. So, don’t neglect the iPad thinking they will watch the TV on the plane; chances are they wont.

good excuse to press lots of buttons and another opportunity to use the much loved headphones.

However, from our experiences, I did find that the shows and films on offer don’t tend to hold my little one’s attention for very long. She tries to watch films, but prefers to go back to her iPad and watch the CBeebies shows we download. She also has games she can flit back and forth from and is much more confident using the tech. So, don’t neglect the iPad thinking they will watch the TV on the plane; chances are they wont.

Food and Snacks

Meals seem to gobble up a bit of time on a plane. The children are served first, which gives parents time to help  before their own comes.

Pack some sandwiches and snacks for the flight in case the kids get hungry in between meals. If they tell you they are hungry and food isn’t due to be served for another couple of hours, you could be in for a bumpy ride.

Take empty drinks bottles and fill them up with water at the airport after clearing security. Small kids with plastic cups of water on a plane has disaster written all over it.

Games

When my little one gets restless we walk up and down the isles of the plane counting seats, looking for people in red jumpers, looking for people that have taken their shoes off or people that have fallen asleep. Any game that engages the brain and keeps boredom at bay.

Take a Pull Up or Nappy

Just in case you are in a situation where the toilets are out of bounds and your trapped on the plane. A pull up or nappy in the baby bag for the older toilet trained ones can be a life saver!

The Baby

Breast Feeding and Bottle Feeding

There isn’t a whole lot of room within the seats, but this only really becomes an issue if you are sitting next to someone you don’t know, especially when breast feeding. My advice would be try and sit in the window seat or on the aisle, as this will give you a little bit more wiggle room. The flight attendants are always really helpful if your bottle feeding so don’t be afraid to ask for anything you need. The really baby friendly attendants will even welcome a little cuddle while you get everything else sorted when the plane has landed.

Baby Flight Bag

1. Muslin within easy grabbing distance

2. A dummy at hand and on a cord or clip so it doesn’t fall on the floor and pick up any nasty germs

3. A toy for distraction when they get grouchy 

4. A good chew toy. We have a Matchstick Monkey called Marvin for the baby to gnaw away at. His arms and legs are just right for little hands to hold comfortably and every part of him 100% chewable. I also put Marvin on a cord so if he gets dropped he doesn’t go on the floor either.

The Adults

Fly with someone

Flying with another adult when you have a really small baby is really really helpful. With a baby in arms the seat back tray doesn’t drop down very nicely and doesn’t lay quite flat, which is a problem when the food comes out. With another person there you can juggle the baby and the food between each other and when you get offered a drink just down it so there’s no risk of spillages!

Toilet Trips

Take it in turns to take the kids to the toilet or to change nappies. It happens more often than you think and this way you don’t get annoyed at keep having to get up all the time. 

Night Flight

Night flights allow you to keep your kids in their typical routines and lets them sleep the majority of the plane ride away. If you put your kids in the middle seat between you they can then lay across and on to your laps making them a little more comfortable.

Take a Travel Pillow for Everyone

Travel pillows are handy for everyone when it’s time to get comfy and get some sleep. We have a roll up travel pillow, a neck pillow and a Trtl pillow. I bought the Trtl pillow to help me sleep when holding the baby. I haven’t used it enough yet, but expect a full review on it in November.

Blanket, Scarf and Jumper

If you are on a night flight the cabin can get quite cold. Some airlines provide blankets and others want you to pay about $10 for them. Scarves can also double up as a blanket for your little ones and pack down smaller. Regardless of what the weather is like at your destination you will appreciate the decision to take a good jumper on to the plane too.

Take Turns Holding the Baby

Sitting in one position holding a baby for a long time can make your arms and back ache. Swap over regularly so you get a break and the chance to play with your other kids too.

 

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Create the perfect flight bag for your kids with these must have additions

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