When our son Aarav was born, our friends who were well-acquainted with our love of travel told us to slow down until he grew up. But we were travel junkies. We wouldn’t let having a child keep us away from our next fix. Besides, traveling is awesome, and we wanted to share this passion with our son. We knew that for our son’s sake and our own, it was necessary to introduce him to travel as early as possible.
So when we decided to travel with a four-month-old, we knew not to expect smooth sailing. His first flight was rocky. But we learned. And with each trip we take, we learn even more. Though Aarav has now been on over 70 flights, we’re still learning. However, one thing we know for sure is that there’s no substitute for proper preparation. In the spirit of helping you prepare for flying with an infant, here are a few of our favorite tips for flying with a baby.
We love traveling, and so does our son. Well, considering that he was only four-months-old when he went on his first flight, he hardly had a choice. He didn’t choose the travel life. The travel life chose him. His first flight was not easy, but we never expected it to be easy. Like any parent flying on a plane with a newborn, we were terrified. But we decided to go anyway.
If you enjoy traveling, it’s essential to make it a habit early on during your child’s life, both for your sake and your child’s. And no matter how long or short the flight, it’s best to be prepared. Here are a few things we’ve learned about flying with a newborn on a plane. Though they can’t guarantee you a hiccup-free trip, they’ll certainly help your flight be more enjoyable.
As parents who have traveled with our toddler for 9 months straight, taking 39 different flights around the world, we can’t help but notice when there are parents attempting flying with kids for the first time. It’s easy to spot the newbies: there is a sense of panic before boarding, their children are hungry, and they are not not working as a team.
Don’t get us wrong — Aarav has had his tantrums and we have certainly had our moments. But with all of the trips we have taken, we now know what to do, and what not to do when flying with kids.
Finding and booking reputable private tours can be especially daunting when you are going to a new and unfamiliar city or country. When you don’t have recommendations from friends and all you can do is search, how can you find good private tours (including transportation), not to mention get the best rates?
We love traveling by train, especially long distance. If we had to pick our favorite mode of getting around, we’d pick train travel in a heartbeat. We find it to be far more comfortable than plane, bus, or even car rides; there’s more space to get up and walk around, and no turbulence you have to deal with! Most trains get you where you need to go pretty fast, yet there’s also ample opportunity to look out your window and take in the scenery.
When you’re in a foreign country or an unfamiliar city, it’s important to be ready for anything. For example, you may wish to take a short trip by bus, either as part of a tour or simply to get around town. Bus travel with a child has its perks, including affordability, but also significant drawbacks—especially when you’re traveling in a bus with a toddler.
Over nearly nine months of international travel with our 2-year old, we obviously took our fair share of flights—roughly 40, if you’re keeping score. But we spent plenty of time in the car, as well, renting vehicles in several different cities and exploring our surroundings via automobile, always with our little man in tow. (We also had several tour guides who carted us around, so our experience in this regard was quite varied.)
Yes, it’s vacation time… nope just kidding. You are a parent traveling with a child. It’s an 18 hour long flight, jet lag, screaming toddlers, judgy passengers, non-helpful flight attendant and bad airline food. It feel likes the halloween version of vacation.
Trust us, we know how you feel and it’s really not that bad and in this post we have some tried and tested tips for you. By the time our son was two and a half, he’d already been on 40 international flights with us, spanning some 19 different airlines. So, we have some decent experience—and in this blog, we’re going to share a few of the lessons we learned along the way. (We’ve also embedded a few links to some favorite products for air travel, so that you can click and buy them instantly.)