You don’t have to say goodbye to traveling after giving birth! When you have a baby, it only means one thing: one more person on your trip. That’s it! The thought may sound scary, especially if you are bringing your baby with you for the first time, but at this point, is there anything you can’t handle?
There will be challenges that go with flying with a baby for the first time. Your baby is only beginning to know the world, and here comes another completely new, scary thing! Traveling with baby is definitely doable, but the entire family needs to prepare for it.
The great thing about babies is that they are surprisingly flexible and adaptable. They can easily adjust to a new environment as long as you are there. If they feel safe and secure with you around, then half the job is already done.
But because you wouldn’t want to be caught unprepared in the middle of a trip – especially one that is 7 miles up in the air – it is really helpful to prepare a flight checklist for your baby.
Here are some tips to get you ready before hopping on a flight to your next holiday!
9 Tips for Traveling with Baby on Plane
1. Let your baby in on the preparations.
Your little baby may not exactly understand what is happening, but giving them an idea of what you are about to do may help with the adjustment. Show them what an airplane looks like and sing songs about airplanes. You may even show your baby a video of an airplane flying and young kids going on their flight.
2. Schedule your flight around your baby’s nap time.
Your baby needs to have a daily routine, and at this point, you should already know what time they nap in the morning or in the afternoon. Unless you’re going on a long flight, which takes overnight, choose a flight schedule that coincides with their nap time so that they are asleep while flying.
3. Pack the baby essentials.
Because your resources will be limited when you are 35,000 feet above in the air, you should be ready with your baby essentials. Bring an extra outfit or two, a blanket, a jacket, diapers, plastic bags, diaper cream, a pack of wet wipes or tissue, alcohol and hand sanitizer, and a first aid kit.
If you are breastfeeding, bring your pump, extra milk storage, and a nursing cover. If you are bottle-feeding, bring extra bottles, sterilized water, and measured formula powder.
4. Pack snacks and water.
If your baby is already eating solids, pack baby-friendly snacks that will not only keep them fed but also entertained. And even if your baby is not yet eating solids, still pack enough water and snacks to keep you full, energized, and hydrated for the grueling flight.
5. Bring a carrier.
Unless you absolutely need to bring a stroller, it’s best to bring a light carrier for mobility and convenience. Choose a carrier that is lightweight and comfortable for your baby. It’s also best if you bring a carrier, or baby sling, without buckles and snaps that can get caught on clothing and bags.
6. Bring entertainment for your baby.
Boredom is the enemy when it comes to long hours of sitting down, so don’t neglect to bring entertainment for your baby. Whether it’s a plush toy, a book, or even a phone or a tablet, it’s best to have something handy to distract your baby when they are feeling weird and uncomfortable.
7. Check in early for your flight.
Give yourself enough allowance to prepare before boarding the plane by checking in early for your flight. This will allow you to check your things – twice – and buy those that you may have forgotten. It will also help the entire family stay calm and collected, which is essential.
8. Let your baby feed when the plane takes off and lands.
The pressure on the ears when the airplane takes off and lands is no joke, and it can be especially painful for tiny babies. To relieve the pressure, chewing, nibbling, and swallowing can be a big help. Let your baby feed in time for the take-offs and landings.
9. Don’t stress!
It can be hard to stay calm when you’re doing so many things at once, but your baby can sense if you’re panicking or worrying. The best way to keep your baby calm and quiet is – guess what – by staying calm and quiet. Stressors are unavoidable, but keep your composure and try to avoid worrying about things that you cannot control. It will all pass!
Taking your baby on their first flight is challenging but possible! These 9 tips will help prepare you for the task and will help your baby adjust to the new environment. Who knows, your baby just might enjoy their first plane ride!