Children on board: how to prepare for a long flight with a child in 2022

White twins children kids plane

The behavior of children on an airplane is akin to a soccer game: it is difficult to predict the outcome. Social networks are flooded with pictures of happy families on vacation. But even a trip to the city center with a child can cause more trouble than pleasure, if you don’t prepare for it carefully. In general, forget romance and spontaneity. Mom and Dad’s best friend on the road are a detailed plan and math.

It’s good if you have 2-3 weeks in reserve. During this time you can have time to perform all necessary procedures, collect documents, visit doctors, and psychologically prepare the child.

Choosing an airline

The cornerstone is the choice of airline. One thing is to fly light with friends, another thing is to spend long hours in the sky to entertain your child and to keep the peace of mind of the passengers. The rules for transporting children on a plane are easy to find on the websites of most airlines.

There are difficult cases when the child is 2 or 12 years old during the trip. Here each carrier has its rules, but many of them still allow customers to save money, like bonuses you see after entering your National Casino login. There are also bonus programs that give families with children benefits for frequent flights.

The stroller can be used until the gangway, at which it will be taken to the luggage compartment. Check where you can pick it up when you arrive: it is not always possible at the gangway, sometimes only in the arrivals hall. Some carriers allow you to take a stroller in certain dimensions on board. Many airports allow you to take a stroller free of charge. Otherwise, airlines’ conditions may vary greatly.

Pre-order baby food. Food for babies can be taken with you, but do not stow it away: at the airport they ask to show and even taste it.

To get a seat near you you must book in advance, and not always check-in begins 24 hours, pay attention to this when buying tickets. Children are not allowed to sit in the emergency exit area (designated as I on the aircraft diagrams).

The airport’s an obstacle course

It’s a good idea to study the plan of the airport, so as not to run with a screaming baby in his arms in search of a changing table or a baby cafe. And arrive early because modern airports are grounded for families: there are exhibitions, cinemas, organized viewing platforms, entertainment areas, children’s libraries and even gardens with butterflies.

A child can get frustrated if he doesn’t get to enjoy it to the fullest. And if it’s the first time he’s flying, he’s interested in learning everything, seeing how the airliners take to the sky.

A pleasant bonus: passengers with small children in most cases are allowed through without waiting in line. In some airports there are ads with information about this. But the rule does not work everywhere. If you plan to make a connection, calculate your connecting time.

Be calm on board

Prepare your child for a flight 2-3 weeks in advance. He should talk in detail about your plans, and in game form show how everything will happen, you can use themed educational books. If your baby is afraid of the plane, it’s important to clarify what frightens him/her, and understand why. And then connect your imagination and talk through this disturbing situation using your favorite characters and not force it. 

During the flight, the child may sleep. For this, it’s important to organize his comfort and not to forget his favorite toy. For the rest of the time in closed space, it’s necessary to provide an interesting leisure activity. Some airlines provide entertainment on board: play sets, felt-tip pens and pencils.

When choosing a place, take into account the temperament of the little passenger: it’s better to sit by the aisle for active passengers, by the porthole for dreamers.