How to Make Flying With Kids Fun
Traveling with kids can be hard for you, the kids, and the other passengers. However, a bit of preparation can make the flight fun for your family and pleasant for your fellow passengers as well. Use these tips when planning your next family vacation for an easy, stress-free flight.
Book your flight several weeks in advance. If it possible to get a direct flight, do so. Changing planes with kids in tow is rarely an enjoyable experience, so avoid it if you can. If you must change planes mid-flight, you can make it easier by packing properly. Each of your children’s carry-on bag should be a backpack that the child can carry alone. When the flight attendant announces that it is nearly time to land, it is easy for each child to put his things back in his backpack, zip it up, and be ready to put it on for the walk to the next plane.
After you purchase your tickets, call the airline about seating arrangements. Do not rely on the seating choices you made when making an online ticket purchase or even a purchase through a travel agent. Talk to the airline representative and make sure they assign your family to sit together. If they can give you seats at the front of the plane, that will make getting on and off the plane easier. The biggest thing is to make sure your children are seated next to you. Double check the seating arrangements when you check in at the airport.
If you are traveling with a young child, using a car seat is often a good idea. Choose a car seat that is rated for air travel. If you are using your regular car seat, make sure you clean it well before going to the airport. If you don’t plan on using the car seat on the plane and can rent one at your destination, that might be a better plan, especially if you have to switch flights.
Pack activities to keep your kids busy during the flight. Coloring books and crayons, books and comic books, travel puzzles and games, and electronic game devices like a Nintendo DS are good choices. Avoid games or toys that are noisy or have a lot of small pieces that can be thrown or dropped.
Take some snacks that your kids enjoy, such as potato chips, carrots, or peanut butter crackers. Avoid taking sugary snacks as these can give your kids more energy than they can handle in a small, enclosed space.
Talk to your kids about what behavior you expect from them and what the rules are on an airplane. It is good to have this discussion a few days before your flight, and a reminder on the day of travel. Let your kids know that kicking the seat in front of them, screaming, and throwing things will not be tolerated on the plane. Offer an incentive for excellent behavior and a consequence for breaking the rules. If you make it clear what your expectations are before you even get to the airport, your children are more likely to behave appropriately.
It is possible to have an enjoyable flight with your children. Using the tips discussed here, you can plan a fun flight that you can remember fondly.