Golden Tips for Air Travel with Infants and Toddlers
Preparation for Air Travel with Infants and Toddlers
Travelling by air is veritably common nowadays as almost every one can afford an air ticket. One can either pay a premium price to enjoy the luxury of a business class or executive class seat in the plane, or just pay a minimum price for an economy class seat or even a budget flight seat to meet the minimum requirement of getting to the destination. In every flight that I take, I see parents travelling with their babies or toddlers. In many cases, handling crying babies or disgruntled, angry toddlers is a real challenge for their parents. As such, I did a survey on my friends and relatives who have gone through long-haul flights with babies and toddlers, acquaintances who are proven successful in handling babies and toddlers during air travel and consulted nurses and doctors who are my friends. The survey has brought a list of golden tips to light that I firmly believe is worthy of sharing.
Golden Tip 1
Allocate ample time to travel from home or hotel to the airport. This is important for adults to keep themselves calm and unhurried. Otherwise, the adults will be stressed and without them knowing it, their tone of voice will turn harsh and stern. Young children, especially babies, are emotionally sensitive to the tone of speech. Adults can cause emotional discomfort in young children when they are talking to one another with harsh, uncaring tone. It will be even worse if such unfriendly tone is directed towards the young one. If young children perceive the travel to be something unpleasant at the very beginning, some of them may feel bad and helpless about it and may be easily burst into tears whenever disturbed by any form of discomfort during the travel.
Golden Tip 2
Prepare enough clothing to keep the infants and toddlers warm and comfortable as they may not be used to the temperature in the cabin. Keep the pullover, jersey or sweater in a hand-carried luggage bag so that you can have access to them. A pair of good socks is important as chilled feet a great discomfort.
Golden Tip 3
Have the feeding bottles, baby food, diapers in the hand-carried luggage. Other than feeding them with food and changing wet diapers, one is advised to regularly feed the infants and toddlers with some water as the level of relative humidity in the cabin is usually low. Dry air may cause some uncomfortable level of thirsty feeling and discomfort in the throat unless one has regular sips of water. This may be especially true for children who are used to humid tropical or equatorial weather.
Golden Tip 4
Help your babies and toddlers to overcome earache. There is a change in the cabin pressure when a plane is taking off or landing. The pressure change inevitably causes some form of earache or ear discomfort to all. For infants and toddlers, such changes in the air pressure may cause them a sharp pain in their ears. This may trigger the infants or toddlers to let out a wail.
When the plane is taking off or landing, it will be good to wake up a sleeping baby gently and feed them with some water or milk until the plane stabilizes at the required altitude. The swallowing action will help to equalize the pressure in the ear with outside atmosphere and prevent earache.
As for toddlers or elder children, you may want to treat them with some sweets or drinks.
Golden Tip 5
It is always good to consult a doctor to have a medical kit prepared for a baby or your children. This is even more important if a child has specific medical needs, such as having a cold or is susceptible to asthmatic attack.
Remember to keep the medical kit in the hand-carried luggage. Do not check in the medical kit.
Golden Tip 6
Talk to your baby with a happy, friendly tone when he is awake so that he will not be bored during the long travel.
Prepared enough activities for the toddlers so as to keep them occupied. Electronic games with earphones, their favorite colorful story books, easy-to-carry little toys are examples to be kept in the hand-carried luggage. Be prepared to keep the young children occupied with some attractions. A bored toddler may become restless.
Travel with babies and young children is not too difficult a task to handle. You just need to anticipate what is coming your way and make enough preparation for it. Do not leave it to chance. Right anticipation and good preparation is important to make the flight enjoyable for yourself and others.
Finally, wish you a pleasant trip if you are preparing or planning for one.