10 Tips for Flying with Toddlers

If you’ve ever flown with a child or thought about flying I’m sure you’ve had the dreaded thought that you might have the screaming child on an airplane that everyone is looking at with no way out!! Traveling with a toddler can be difficult and stressful, but It doesn’t have to be ! Both of our kids have been a couple of airplane rides and none have really been terrible. We’ve had a few bad moments where the stress was pretty high but I think they have done pretty well flying!

tips for traveling to Disney World with toddlers (1)

  1. Baby wearing: If your child is still small enough to be worn in some sort of wrap its kind of a life saver for the airport! Frees your hands up for everything and keeps them from running around the airport! It also saves time going through security – They don’t make you go through the body scan and they just have to test your hands. I traveled alone with my daughter and I don’t think I would of been able to do it all if I wasn’t wearing her with the age she was!
  2. Stroller: If they no longer like to be worn a stroller is also very convenient, but it also has its drawbacks. Having a stroller helps the kids stay close and not have to carry them or hold their hands. It also is nice to have some extra space to have purses, bags, coats while in the airport. It can be more of a hassel through security because you have to fold it down and it has to go through the conveyer belt, then unfold it and put everyone back in. And do it all again when you are walking down to board to plane. Even though those two times are super inconvenient, a stroller is still might be worth it to bring! My advise would be if you have an easily collapsible stroller, bring it. If it takes a lot to collapse and is difficult, maybe try and do without .
  3. Family Boarding: Make sure to take advantage of family boarding! We’ve only flown with southwest with the kids so not sure how other airlines work with this. Family boarding allows you to board after all of the “A’s” before the “B group.” Obviously if you got an “A group” it wouldn’t do anything for you but otherwise its really nice to take advantage of!
  4. Snacks: Having snacks on hand was great! When they would start to get agitated I could distract them with a snack and usually made them happy for a while. I didn’t give them one right away so it was kind of a surprise when I got it out!
  5. Security items: Both my kids like having a blanket and my son loves his Mickey Mouse. Always good to have a little comfort from home 🙂
  6. Sleeping schedule: If at all possible schedule flights with nap time or bed time in mind. I know that’s not always feasible and with the time it takes to get to the airport, through security, flight, and getting luggage its near impossible to not mess with schedule, but traveling with tired kids makes things much worse.
  7. Activities: Have something for them to do! We went a picked out new coloring/activity books and told them they couldn’t use them until we were on the airplane. They were excited to use them once we pulled them out! We also downloaded a couple movies on our Ipad for them to watch. (had headphones that went OVER ears instead of in)
  8. Backpacks: For Christmas we got our kids little backpacks that they could pack with a  few little things in it. They thought it was so cool to have their own bag!
  9. Car seats: We have done it two ways. The first time we flew we checked our car seat when we checked our luggage. We put it in a large black trash bag and just checked it like any other bag. The other option is if you are renting a car once you land , usually rental car places have the option to have a car seat in your rental car. Super convenient if you are going to rental car route.
  10. Don’t stress and be flexible: Traveling can be tiring and stressful, but if you are tense your kids can feel that and they will not do as well! Even if your kid starts to have a breakdown, its ok. Any one who has had kids understands sometimes no matter what you do, you’re kid is just going to throw a fit. Just do everything you can to comfort them and try to distract them from whatever it is! Be flexible . I say that because the last 3 flights I have been on have had delays on the way home! Which, lets just be honest… flight delays suck.
I’m no expert in this, and like I’ve said, we have had a few times where our kid was screaming or throwing a fit but we got through it and made the best of it! Don’t let the fear of traveling with them stop you from your next adventure! Hopefully these tips will help you feel more prepared and ready to go!
What tips do you have? What has worked for you?
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