At four weeks our son Isaiah earned his first pair of wings. Since then, he’s been all over the world (making us wish we could count his frequent flier miles). We’ve learned a few things through our time at the airport, so here is my best advice!
Flying with baby tips
Give yourself extra time.
Bring Baby’s passport, birth certificate, or vaccination documentation. You’ll also need to ask for an infant boarding pass.
If you travel often, invest in TSA pre-check. With the 5 year, $85 membership, you can speed through security and don’t need to remove your shoes, laptops, liquids, belts and light jackets. And the line is usually so much shorter.
Pack extra outfits juuuuust in case of seeping poop, pee, barf—you get the picture. Also make sure to have some extra layers for baby because the temperature on a plane varies based on what the flight attendant decides to put the thermostat at that day.
Pack plenty of diapers to at least get through the airport (typically airports don’t sell diapers).
Bring a carrier. This gives you free hands to manage tickets and luggage, and you can even go through security with baby in carrier.
If you travel often, invest in a travel stroller that folds up nicely. We always take the stroller through security all the way to the gate-check. We end up using it mostly as a luggage cart.
Purchase a car seat travel bag to avoid nasties. With the infant carseat we always brought it to the gate to ensure it wouldn’t get lost and we could still leave the airport if our other luggage got lost. With the toddler carseat we just check it immediately.
If you are nursing and traveling with milk, invest in a mini cooler and make sure your freezer pack is always frozen. Sometimes security will allow you through with an unfrozen pack anyway, but TSA actually requires it to be frozen so if someone decides to be mean that day they can take it from you at security. (It happened to us in Portugal.) So even if your bottles are empty, your freezer pack is supposed to be frozen.) Also, just have the cooler out and separate because they most always will test it because of the amount of liquid.
Bring a diaper changing mat. There are so many icky germs in airports so we make sure to use our mat, of course during diaper changes in the airport and on the plane.
Bring a couple of swaddles: good for breastfeeding, cleaning burp up, keeping baby warm, letting baby kick around on the ground before boarding the plane, etc.
If baby is nursing, nurse often and if it makes you feel more comfortable, invest in a 360 breastfeeding cover.
Before boarding check to see if there are any open seats. If the flight isn’t full you can request to sit next to an open seat for extra space. If you can, get an aisle seat.
Sanitize! Bring wipes and use them on armrests, seatbelts, screens, tray tables—anything your babe may touch.
If baby is toddler age bring lots of different snacks in different small packages. Also, make a stop at the dollar store and pick up a few different toys to keep them occupied.
I’m all about doing what you gotta do to survive a flight so if your toddler is willing to watch a show on the iPad or iPhone—do it. Make sure to have downloaded a few different shows/movies prior to getting to the airport so you can access them without wifi/service.
Ask the flight attendant for wings for your babe!
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