Posted in Flying, Babies, Travel

Anxious parents traveling by plane

We are very anxious parents (at least the mom is) traveling to another state by plane with an 18 month old child. Mom is curious about logistics and germs. We need to travel with a stroller (city mini) and a car seat but my wife adamant about boxing the car seat and stroller so neither will be damaged or contaminated in the cargo hold. How does everyone else do this? Will we need to purchase a seat for our child? Will she need a car seat? How concerned are everyone else with checking the stroller at the gate? And then there’s all the other stuff: air pressure and baby’s ears, distractions, treats. Help!

  • Jenn
    May 06

    I just traveled by myself with my 11 month old. I was super anxious prior to flying, especially about the pressure change/ears because I have horrible issues with that. My LO thankfully was not bothered which made my life so much easier. I did have bottles for her for take off and landing, so I'd suggest a sippy cup or lollipop for your LO for those times to help with the pressure change. I brought TONS of snacks, toys, and my tablet in case I got desperate. A child can be a lap sitter until 2 yrs old, so you can buy a seat or not. If you buy a seat for your child, I would check if you need a car seat. I checked the stroller and car seat at the gate. It saved on checked luggage fees and made life easier because I didn't have to carry everything through the airport. It was simple and nothing was broken.

  • B
    May 06

    Checking the car seat and stroller are free, at counter or gate. You can get bags (unpadded or padded) on amazon for them, or I guess boxes. Not sure how’d that work on the other end. I bring a pack of sanitizing wipes and wipe down the seats, arm rests, and tray tables. And then toys that fall on the floor. I had my daughter drink water from her straw water bottle or eat a snack on takeoff and never had a problem with ears. Seats are your call. We always put her on our laps and save the money, until 2. Bring lots of snacks. Lots. And some smaller toys, preferably ones new or not used in a while. My daughter loved crayons and stickers at that age. And people watching. And slept.

  • Joanna
    May 06

    I'm not sure about the city mini, but our uppababy glite stroller has a travel bag. It has a damage warranty too. There are travel bags made for certain car seats (like uppababy) but not for any we own. Instead we used a laundry bag. We actually bought a cheap car seat to use for travel once baby was too large for the infant one (which was at 19 months for my oldest). We got the Cosco Scenera which is less than $50 and then we didn't care too much about dirt and damage. It is super lightweight too. I could not imagine carrying either our Britax or Chicco convertible seats thru the airport.

  • Virginia
    May 07

    I have flown with my baby twice now and have found it easier to fly during your baby’s least cranky time, so for me mornings have been best. I purchased a check in bag for the car seat and stroller to keep them safe in the cabin. Most airlines will check these items for free, right at the place where you get your plane tickets and check bags. My baby is only 11 months but is very active so keeping busy is difficult but snacks and a few toys keep busy. Baby’s ears should be okay, offer a drink during landing and take off that helps to pop ears. I carry disinfecting wipes on board and wipe everything, the seats, arm rest, windows, trays, etc that baby can get hands on. Also hand wipes to keep your baby’s hands clean. Tell her not to worry to much. I am the same way but you get through it and it’s over before you know it. Also, flying early in the morning is best when worried about germs since it’s the first flight of the day and most airlines clean up after their last flight. Hope that helps. Good luck!

  • Katherine
    May 08

    I travel a lot with my daughter (she has been on 20 planes) I have my car seat in a check bag and check it with my luggage. I then check my stroller in the jetway but I’m always traveling alone with her so I need the stroller. I have wet wipes and I wipe down my seat, tray table, seat back in front of us, and the seat belt. I make sure I pack plenty of snacks, her favorite book, a go to favorite toy, a coloring pad, and one of her favorite night time items (her blanket). For pressure I just try to make sure she is drinking something or sucking on something (she likes sucking on her blanket) I have had 2 flights where her ears bothered her and it sucks but just holding them and telling them it’s ok works. I haven’t bought my child their own seat so she has always flown in my lap. My daughter also hates sitting still so once the drink cart goes by we walk and walk and walk up and down the plane. I used to feel like it was annoying to other passengers but my daughter fussing would be much more annoying. Just remember worst case scenario it is a few hours of hell and then it’s over. However the 2 times we flew with her dad the flights were much better. Y’all got this! (Sorry for the essay lol)

  • Wend
    May 08

    I know this is a pricey option but anytime we have flown with our now 21 month old, we flew first class, two seats for us and him as a lap infant. We are older parents and the comfort came in handy for our sanity. No regrets. We did lay down seats to Hawaii too so he could nap on my husband. We do bulkhead if no lay down seats. The extra room helps! We used baby headphones with him and brought his favorite toy from home. We are doing economy plus international once he’s two later this year... we are hoping by then, he will be into tablets a little more and we won’t need the extra room. We also bought an inflatable “stool” of sorts off of Amazon that goes on the feet area, converting it into a lay down area for a toddler.