For some parents (and probably a lot of non-parents, too), the very idea can seem harrowing. Actually, though, a plane trip with a toddler can be surprisingly smooth and pleasant, so long as you make the right preparations. Part of that includes investing in the right gear to keep everyone safe and comfy. First on the list? The proper airplane harness. We found one that worked great, and that we’re happy to recommend—but more on that in a minute.
Can’t You Just Use Your Child’s Car Seat?
Before we get to that, a quick what-not-to-do observation. Some parents decide to simply bring their child’s car seat onto the plane, and that’s fine—just so long as you understand the potential drawbacks.
For one thing, that car seat is big and heavy, and you may not have much desire to lug that thing around the airport. We certainly didn’t.
Two, when your child slides into the car seat, those little legs are going to be jutting straight out—making it all too easy to kick the seat in front of you. This is suboptimal for everyone involved.
Our Recommendation: Cares Kids Fly Safe Airplane Harness
The product we ultimately recommend is called the Cares Kids Fly Safe Airplane Harness—which really has a lot going for it. First and foremost, it’s approved by the FAA—which means that it’s safe, but also that you can avoid getting much flak from people in the airport. (In our experience, everyone in America, Europe, and Asia seems to know and understand what the FAA is; it was only in a few South American countries that we had to explain things to the flight attendants.)
Some other perks:
- It’s incredibly small! You can easily fit it into a handbag.
- It’s very easy to install on the airplane seat, too; once you’re used to it, it will take about 30 seconds.
- Again, it’s safe, which is the most important thing. It actually works just like a five-point car seat harness, only it’s exponentially more compact and lightweight.
- Your child will stay put and not be able to wiggle out; at the same time, your child won’t be able to kick the seat in front of them very well!
Again, the only real issue is that some flight attendants may balk—especially if you’re traveling internationally. We had one or two points of tension about it, and ultimately had to keep our little guy on our laps—but overall, it worked well, and was certainly preferable to hauling around a big, bulky car seat. Also, note that this harness is designed for children over a year old and are at least 22 pounds (when our child was an infant we carried him in our lap and used the lap belt provided by the airline).
For any parents who plan on flying with little ones, we highly recommend looking into some lightweight, portable plane harnesses—and this one is the best we’ve come across.
Buying Guide for Best Airplane Safety Harness
The safety of your child is paramount, and therefore having the kids fly safe harness for airplane travel would be vital. Here is a buying guide on what to consider before buying an airplane safety harness:
The safety of your child is paramount when getting an airplane safety harness since that’s its sole purpose. Accidents might occur if your child is not comfortable and secure in the harness. It should be compact enough and should be a 5-point safety harness.
The airplane safety harness should be FAA approved; this is significant to also avoid inconveniences in the airport with flight attendants. In such cases, you can show the FAA approved label. The kids fly safe harness is already FAA approved although you would still find problems with flight attendants.
The kid’s safety harness should be portable and easy to move around the airport. It should be ideal for a one-year-old and weighs at least 22 pounds.
It should be designed explicitly for airplane travel. For e.g., a car seat is much harder for airplane travel and this is because it is bulky and heavy. If you use a car seat for airplane travel, the legs would be all-out, making it easier to kick the front seat which can be a form of inconvenience to another passenger in the airplane.
It is very crucial to invest in the right gear to keep the toddler safe and comfortable. Your budget should be able to fit the right equipment to avoid any accidents and discomfort. In as much as you care for your child do not buy anything that you cannot afford, there are always options for everyone, just ensure it is FAA approved.
It should be the right size to avoid any inconvenience with other passengers and also while moving around the airport. Heavy and bulky airplane safety harnesses would be hard to carry and hard to install. The right size will ensure that your child does not wiggle out as the airplane is moving and in such cases, you should make it snug.
FAQS FOR KIDS FLY SAFE HARNESS
Q: is it FAA approved?
A: Yes. It is FAA approved, and you can show the flight attendant.
Q: Can I use it with an older child of 2 years who is 28 pounds?
A: Yes, but it depends on how heavy your toddler is. The right age should be one year old.
Q: How safe is the kids fly safe harness?
A: The kids fly safe harness is very secure, and FAA approved.
Q: Is it suitable for a one-year-old who is slightly tiny and 19 pounds and 29 inches will she be comfortable?
A: Yes, make sure it is snug.
Q: is it approved by all airlines?
A: Yes in the United States. It depends on the airline for international travel. We’ve generally had no issues with it during our travels but have had to explain what it is to certain flight attendants.
Q: Does it work on buses and taxis as well?
A: It is only ideal for airplane use and not for cars and buses.