Tips for travelling with toddlers

Posted Date: 05 April 2016
Toddler travel tips

The idea of flying with kids can be a major cause of stress for parents. But we’re here to take the worry away and arm you with all the tricks you need to conquer the most common problems when it comes to travelling with toddlers.

We want your vacation with the little ones to be a joyous occasion. Read our tips on flying high and happy.

Tips for travelling with toddlers infographic created by: Southern Cross Travel Insurance


Tips for travelling with toddlers

The thought of travelling with toddlers can be daunting. That’s why we have created these tips to help you cruise through… or at lease survive!

Sweet dreams are made of these

If you’re anxious about how your little one will sleep on the plane, book a seat with a cot. It’ll be a huge help for both you and baby. There’s often a waiting list, so get your name down early to avoid missing out. With a little luck, there will be minimal disruption to their regular sleep patterns and you might even be able to relax too!

Un-happy meal

Meal times can be like a war zone with hungry kids, so access to food that’s less likely to be thrown at you is always good. Mac and cheese is often a kids’ airline favourite, along with fried rice or pasta. Yesterday’s favourite can be totally gross today though, so bring along some extra snack ammo for emergencies. Just make sure they’re pre-packaged so you can get them through customs! Baby food and milk are exempt from the usual 100ml liquid restrictions so you are allowed to bring enough for the flight.

Snakes (and ladders) on a plane

You know what your wee one’s favourite toys are, so bring what works best – now’s not the time to leave that special toy at home to save on luggage space. No doubt you’ve got your arsenal of toys locked and loaded, but keep customs in mind and avoid toy guns unless you fancy a pat-down! Not all airlines have an inflight entertainment system, so be prepared. If you use smart devices at home, you’ll be forgiven for letting your kids have a little bit of extra screen time for the sake of everyone’s happiness.

What spew lookin’ at?

While a little spilt milk on your clothes isn’t a big deal usually, when you’re stuck on a plane it may start to ripen. Along with changes of clothes for the kids, it’s also worth remembering to take your own change of clothes. Make it easy for yourself – getting changed in cramped airplane toilets can make you feel like Superman in a phone box, so fitted and fiddly garments might not be the best bet.

Flying doctors

You may be surprised to know that air stewards can’t give passengers medication of any kind during your flight. Depending on what works for your kids normally, things like Pamol and Infacol can be helpful additions to your inflight bag. Rescue Remedy can also be a great help with calming stressed kids who might not be used to flying, or asthma inhalers for those who need them. It pays to have a doctor’s script if your child needs any more serious medication. Lastly, in case all else fails, don’t forget the Panadol and earplugs for yourself!

Walking on sunshine

Sure, you’re not going to let your kids run riot over the whole plane, but it can be a good idea to let them stretch their legs every now and again. Just be sure all cart services are complete before you set them free, so they don’t get stuck behind a major road block. You could make it into an undercover spy mission: count the number of rows, or find a passenger wearing a green shirt. You might even find some friendly air stewards who will play along.

Under pressure

During ascent and descent there’s no way around the fact that kids get uncomfortable as pressure builds up in their ears. Try playing ‘submarine’: hold your nose and mouth tightly shut and blow! You may find this game more effective if you start the game before any discomfort. For infants, you could try a dummy or bottle, or put some rescue remedy on your little finger and let them suck on it.

Early bird gets the worm

Standing in queues is sooo boring! The early boarding call for families is a great way to avoid your tots turning into terrors, with the bonus of getting them settled in early. Make the most of this opportunity to get the kids comfy and get all your important carry on items stowed away in an easy access spot.

Finally, remember to get our insurance so that if things don’t go to plan, we can help. We even cover kids for free!


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