The thought of flying with your newest addition has your sleep-deprived mind racing? Whether you’re jetting off to the sun (lucky you!) or just visiting the in-laws for the holidays, even the most seasoned of mamas needs a flight plan with a new baby. Read on for some tried- and tested tips to ease you through this new adventure. We promise, it’s worth it.

Passport, check.

Yes, even babies need a passport, so make sure you have one made for your little angel in time for your travel dates—or else, you might be grounded before you even take off.

Get your crew packed up

Let’s be honest, preparing for a flight is enough to send us into girl scout mode when it’s just us—let alone a whole new crew. Make a list way in advance to make sure not to forget anything and also, not to overpack. If you’ve thought everything out, half the items we throw into our suitcases at the last minute don’t seem so necessary. If you’re going somewhere warm, don’t forget:

  • Sun protection (sun suit, sunscreen, hats)
  • Swim diapers
  • A blankie (like these) for beach-time naps

Include extra diapers and a change of clothes in your diaper bag to tie you over in case of any delays. And you’ll most likely still have all the regulars, like a changing pad and teething toys.

Sleep plan

Since you’re already in planning mode, don’t forget to call ahead and reserve a crib at your hotel or plan sleeping arrangements for your final destination. It’ll save you one less playpen to pack. Trust us, you’ll want to lessen the load.

Stick to the schedule

Babies love consistency and it keeps them in a good mood. Try and follow your baby’s regular feeding and nap schedule throughout your travel day. The best-case scenario is that you board right after nursing and right before nap time—if you’re lucky, they’ll pass out during the entire flight. Either way, plan meal times and have your bottles and baby-food pouches ready before a major melt-down occurs.

NO some liquids allowed for babies

Border security allows you to carry on breast milk and formula exceeding 3.4 ounces. So, feel free to pack whatever your baby needs to eat or drink on your flight. The best time to nurse or bottle-feed is during takeoff and landing. Since they can’t chew gum yet, drinking will ease the pressure in their ears. Also, remember that babies get dehydrated too, so don’t forget to give them sips of water between feedings.

Bring reinforcement

You want to have different distractions at your disposal to make sure you keep them happy on the plane. Pack a few of their favourite toys or buy a couple of new ones at the airport. It doesn’t take much to entertain them at this age, and they’ll be happy to have something to play with later in the hotel room as well.

Bring a lightweight stroller

You’ll have enough weight to carry through the airport with suitcases and diaper bags. Bring a foldable stroller that you can drop off at the gate and that will take you through the entire process, from check in to take off. It also makes security lines easier to manage.

Last but not least: Even if you follow 101 tips and tricks, chances are your baby might lose it at some point. It’s a long day for all of you. Don’t pay too much attention to annoyed stares and smart remarks. They don’t know to what lengths you’ve gone to make sure you don’t disturb anyone around you. Put your attention on getting your little one comfortable and happy again, and keep your eyes on the prize—you’ll soon be on vacation!

December 22, 2018 — James DiMiele