Aside

Air travel with Abbie

10 Sep

We took a flight to Minneapolis on 9/2 and I thought I would share our experience because I know how stressed parents get when they are flying with babies. Because, let’s face it, babies can be pretty unpredictable and traveling is stressful as it is.

We booked our flight back in June and I had been stressing/ worrying about how Abbie would do on a plane ever since then. I researched and googled “flying with an 8 month old” multiple times, watched Youtube videos on the topic, and grabbed all the magazines that had articles about baby travel. All of the info I read was great, but honestly nothing made me less nervous about our pending flight.

Abbie actually ended up LOVING the flight so I wanted to share some tips for air travel with an 8- month old. I think these tips would work for any baby, you would just need to modify things based on your individual baby.  Anyways….here are the things that worked well for us!

Tip #1: Pack smart! Here is what we packed in our “diaper bag” (we actually used a large tote bag for the plane and packed her empty diaper bag in our checked baggage):

1. A Ziploc freezer bag filled with new toys. I went to the $1 section at target and bought some fun toys and made sure I didn’t show them to Abbie before the trip. I got a little bath toy that is meant to squirt water (she enjoys being shot in the face with air….weird, I know), an ABC picture book, and a little duck that quacks. Bare essentials are key. These three toys were perfect for a 3 hour flight. Between those and my empty cup that I got from the flight attendant, Abbie was entertained the entire time!

2. 5 diapers along with wipes. We really only used 2 diapers, but I like to feel prepared. You never know when you will have a blow out or leaky diaper.

3. 2 extra onesies. Again…prepared 🙂 We didn’t use either of them but you never know!

4.  Nursing cover

5. Extra blankets. I packed two and used these for peek-a-boo, laying one on the airport floor to change a diaper, and covering her on the cold plane.

6. Sanitizing wipes. The nice thing about flying with an infant is that you can board early. Once we were on the plane, I held Abbie and Justin wiped down our seats, the window, the seat belt, the trays, the arm rests….pretty much everything in sight because Abbie likes to put EVERYTHING in her mouth.

7. A quart-sized bag with our liquids: hand sanitizer, teething gel, and diaper cream.

8.  Snacks for myself since I have diet restrictions

9.   Nursing pillow. This is optional- but since I usually still nurse with the Boppy I wanted Abbie to have a comfort from home with her wherever we went . It was also much more comfortable for her to sleep on when she fell asleep nursing on the plane 🙂

Tip #2: Nurse during take off and landing! This helps take pressure off the ears and calm the baby. This is a pretty popular piece of advice so most of you have probably heard this before. If you don’t nurse, have a pacifier or a bottle/ sippy cup on hand.

Tip #3: Wear your baby through security! This way, you don’t have to worry about getting asked for a body scan. We pushed the travel system (Stroller/ car seat) through security and just checked it at the gate. This was also great for holding our carry on luggage! Here’s what we looked like rolling through the airport. Ignore the blurry photo and my morning hair haha.

Tip #4: Go with the flow! 🙂  You can plan all you want, but you just can’t control how a baby is going to react to any given situation. Just be calm, cool, and collected and pray that your baby feeds off of your cues. We approached the entire ordeal with excitement and tried to show Abbie how exciting and fun this was (but on the inside, I was a nervous wreck haha). I really believe that the way YOU go about the situation says a lot to your baby. But , hey, melt downs happen. You just have to do go with it. This happened to us when we were on the taxi on the way home, but I just nursed Abbie and she calmed right down and fell asleep.

That’s really all there is to it! Just keep it simple 🙂 Happy travels!

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