So, you twisted my arm. I am by no means an expert whatsoever, but I guess the fact that Evie has a few skymiles under her belt at this point makes me a survivor and therefore, qualified to share what little I DO know about air travel with an infant.
First of all, I thought this post was really helpful when I traveled alone with Evie, so I’ll let it speak for itself: How to Fly Alone with an Infant
Beyond that, I’ll share a few tips that had been shared with me and proved to be quite helpful, traveling alone OR with the hub!
1) Strategically choose your departure time: We all know that will ultimately not be in your control when it comes to air travel, but hey- at least you tried. I do not enjoy the 10am flight (especially alone) because it just makes for a really hectic early morning. Getting Evie up, fed, dressed, getting all the last minute supplies packed up, locking up the house, dropping off the dog, parking the car, not to mention rush hour. Yeah…the noon flight was much better.
2) Get an infant carrier. I love using the Baby k’tan because Evie likes it (most important!) and also, it’s easy to pack. I have an Ergo as well, but it is just much bulkier so I don’t prefer it when I’m already taking the entire house + the kitchen sink in my suitcase. You can walk through security with the baby in the carrier which makes for a much calmer baby and one less thing to unpack/repack.
3) Wear comfy slip on shoes: this is no time to be fashionable people. If you’re getting through security alone, you do not need to spend time/valuable back strength pulling on boots or tying shoes.
4) Your carry-on days are over. Be prepared to check luggage. If you are concerned about the cost over time, consider an airline credit card- they often let you check for free! Rather than bringing along diapers/wipes/formula, get Amazon to send you a supply to your destination. And if bringing your pump, use that as your diaper bag. The less luggage, the better!
5) Bring a light blanket! You can use it to cover yourself on the flight. That way if baby gets any bright ideas with which to pass the time, at least your outfit is spared! I also love to use this while we wait to board. Spread it out on the floor and let the baby get some wiggle time in before they’re confined in your arms for a few hours. Finally, I don’t bring my hooter hider and just use the blanket to cover up if breastfeeding mid-flight.
6) Changing a baby on the plane when there is no changing table: the options aren’t great. It’s the toilet seat or your lap. This is another time when the lap blanket might come in handy!
7) Feed during departure and landing, and throw your feeding schedule out the window. Supposedly feeding the baby during pressure changes will help their ears pop and result in a happier baby. However, when Evie is starving and screaming while passengers load the plane, I have chosen to feed her then and bypass the take-off meal for the well-being of those around me. And she was fine. Ultimately, you don’t want to subject other passengers to a screaming baby in order to keep to your schedule!
8) Get a car seat bag: if you are bringing your car seat and checking it curb side, it will get covered in dirt and filth during the journey under the plane. I know that if you’re flying Delta, you can buy a bag at check-in for $5 (or just look really sad and pathetic and they might give you one for free- what we did). You can also buy them online if you’re a frequent flyer.
9) A few other items you might want to invest in if you’re traveling:
Bath sponge: You can purchase it at your destination and since it’s so cheap, you don’t need to feel bad if it doesn’t make it’s way back home.
Formula dispenser: saves you the space and hassle of measuring out powder formula.
Hanna Andersson pj’s: very cute, easy to get on/off for quick airplane bathroom changes, and comfy travel outfit for baby.
Infant Airplane Seat: I haven’t used this, but it looks awesome- especially if you have a long flight with a small baby.
10) Make sure you bring:
- plenty of supplies for the journey (diapers/formula). Again, if your flight gets delayed/cancelled, you don’t want to run out of these!
- meds/thermometer for baby
- noise machine app on your phone ( don’t pack your noise machine! I know it’s tempting!)
Please comment if you have more tips!!! xoxo
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