If you were flying with a baby, what would you always bring with you?
Bring a Baby Carrier
When it comes to airplane travel, using a baby carrier is one of those things that makes a massive difference. It makes going through security way faster, and if you have TSA pre-check, they don’t make you unhook the baby. Some countries (like Mexico), will make you take the carrier off entirely, even if your baby is fast asleep in it.
Strollers have to be folded down to go through the scanner, which adds time to the security process. If you can get through with just a baby carrier, that can save quite a bit of time. Otherwise, having a stroller that folds down to super small, super easily can be just as good. We use a version of the Babyzen Yoyo http://amzn.to/2GcxnJC, which is the most travel-friendly stroller we’ve seen- and both our little guys like to squeeze in together in it, which is super cute.
When it comes to baby carriers, we’re a Tula Family. They come in an insane amount of prints, but above all else, they hold the baby in the proper positioning for their hips, and babies and toddlers both LOVE to ride and sleep in them. We have both a toddler and standard (infant) sized one. http://amzn.to/2syqeRA
The baby carrier is also a lifesaver when it comes to sleep. The excitement of flying can overstimulate our little guys, and sometimes the only way to get them to sleep is to put them in the Tula, cover their head, toss nursing over, or blanket over to make it dark, then dance them to sleep.
If we’re trying to get our little guys to sleep, as soon as it’s free to move around the cabin, we’re doing the baby carrier dance, patting and shushing our guys to sleep. Some kids sleep anywhere. Ours don’t, so having the Tula literally saves our lives.
Change of Clothing + Diaper
I’ve been told that the pressure change makes babies poop. Not sure if that’s true, but you never know what a baby is going to do, so it’s always safer to have extra diapers, burp towels, and baby wipes when you fly. Also, expect to change your baby’s diaper on your lap, or on the floor at your feet. It’s way easier and cleaner than a restroom. Just put the diaper in a barf bag so the flight attendants don’t have to touch it. Better yet, take it to the bathroom yourself when it’s safe.
Lastly in this category, keep an extra outfit for each child, just in case. You will need it more times than not.
Flying With a Baby – Snacks
Wipe down the tray first with a baby wipe. Supposedly they’re super dirty! Babies don’t eat much food, but the little healthy superfood puffs from Happy Baby are a total hit with all babies. http://amzn.to/2EprQ5M
The snacks the airline provides are usually baby-friendly, too. We don’t buy much snack food, so getting to eat the cookies or crackers or pretzels the airlines gives out are very exciting for our kids, but bring whatever you know will work for you.
We avoid sugar because our kids do turn into absolute lunatics on it, and the last thing we want on a travel day is an increased chance of a meltdown.
Okay, so don’t consider this medical advice, and please consult your doctor, but we always travel with a baby or toddler Advil. If you travel frequently, you’re going to end up with a kid teething while you fly, and baby Advil is overpriced in airports. It’s easier to keep it in your travel necessities for the times you need it.
We also travel with a mini pack of essential oils: lavender, On Guard/Thieves blend, tea tree oil, and so on.
On the tip of baby ailments, nursing at takeoff and landing can help if their ears are clogged. Our kids have never reacted poorly at takeoff, but our son did have one rough landing. For adults, there’s something you can do called the Valsava Maneuver. All you do is plug your nose and try to blow out of your nose and it’ll equalize the pressure in your ears.
Babies can’t do that, but you can do it for them. They don’t like it, but it works. When they let out a loud cry, pinch their nose shut. Their cry is usually done on an exhalation, so when you plug their nose, it does the same thing. While it makes them mad, it also unplugs their ears, which helps them calm down.
We try to keep all these items in the carryon that we stow underneath the seat in front of us to access it all whenever we need it. If it’s up above, you’re out of luck if you have a baby need during takeoff, landing, or whenever else the fasten seatbelt sign is on.
Are you flying with a baby? Tag or us (#ouryeslife) so we can see what’s working (or not working, we’ll be there in solidarity) on your trip!