Tales from the Tarmac
Plan to hit the road, skies, tracks, or deep blue sea with your baby or toddler? Use these good, bad, and sometimes very ugly stories from experienced parents to help set you up for success—instead of a travel nightmare!
Traveling with a toddler suffering an ear infection is bad enough, but when Tim, his wife, and two small kids arrived only 45 minutes before an early morning flight, the airline wouldn’t let them board. “We were on stand-by for every flight from Dallas to Boston for the rest of the day, bouncing from gate to gate to gate ’til we got on the 8 PM flight. Spending an entire day in an airport with a sick child equals living hell. Especially, when no one from the airport would be of assistance,” he says.
It may not be easy but this tip is very simple: leave plenty of time. Traveling with kids is hard enough, let’s not make it that more difficult.
Speaking of timing, here are a few more tips to keep you sane:
Jacqui, an Iowa mom of two, suggests, “Feed and change Baby last thing before getting in the car or on a plane. This will give you the longest amount of sleep time for Baby in the car. Also, if we will be traveling a long distance that will take many hours, we travel at bedtime or at least around supper time. That way the kids (this works with kids who are a little older too) will sleep for much of the trip.”
Deanna, mom of a preschooler, agrees. “When I flew with [my son], I made sure to plan travel during natural nap/feeding times to ensure he was already comfy and quiet before we boarded.”
Megan flew the day after the liquid ban was imposed and had to throw away all liquids before even getting on the plane. Not only did they not offer 3-year-old Jax anything to drink once on board, there was too much turbulence for the flight attendants to get up and offer beverages during the flight. They flew for four hours with nothing for him to drink.
This one is a two-parter. First, know the Transportation Security Administration’s rules here:
- Separate these items from the liquids, gels, and aerosols in your quart-size and zip-top bag.
- Declare you have the items to one of our Security Officers at the security checkpoint.
- Present these items for additional inspection once reaching the X-ray. These items are subject to additional screening and Officers may ask you to open a container.
The other option is to bring an empty cup or bottle and purchase beverages once you’ve gotten through security. Sometimes it’s just worth avoiding the hassle.
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