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Flying alone, 14 hours with a Lap Baby! Help and ideas! - Page 2

post #21 of 44

I vote for boarding very last!! I let my toddler run/crawl/climb around outside the gate till the last possible moment! No need to strap him down any longer then you have too. It takes forever to load the plane it seems and I never want to add time to what is already going to be a challenge.

post #22 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by AKislandgirl View Post

I vote for boarding very last!! I let my toddler run/crawl/climb around outside the gate till the last possible moment! No need to strap him down any longer then you have too. It takes forever to load the plane it seems and I never want to add time to what is already going to be a challenge.


Yes, I may try to do this too, although not sure if it will make it harder to organise potential seat switches or not. If you are going to travel from T5 Heathrow (or any airport with escalators at the gate) definitely board last. When I flew with my son they called the peoples with kids and disabilities first but we all had to wait to use the tiny elevator and by the time I got my turn the flight was half way boarded and I was trying to carry my son, my carry on and my folded stroller though a crush of people on the gangway. Nightmare. Another reason to bring a sling. 

 

I'm considering bringing a beach ball. It might not be practical for the plane (although at least it won't hurt anyone) but she'd love to chase it around the airport. 

 

post #23 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by AKislandgirl View Post

I vote for boarding very last!! I let my toddler run/crawl/climb around outside the gate till the last possible moment! No need to strap him down any longer then you have too. It takes forever to load the plane it seems and I never want to add time to what is already going to be a challenge.



Really?  I hate this!  The few times we have been late and had to board last there was no room in the overhead for our stuff so we had it all bunched up under our feet and the games bag ten rows back, and they forgot to stow my stroller in the cabin (taken up with business class bags) and I had to wait FOREVER to get my stroller back at the end (something I never ever fold up until I am about to walk through the door of the plane.)

 

I have found it so much less stressful to get on first, settle, stow and organize while the elderly and special needs travellers are boarding, before getting bumped and squished around by the elbow throwing regular travellers fighting for overhead storage (and man those folks can be RUTHLESS, taking up bulkhead storage because they want to get off first and even if their own overhead storage is empty fifteen rows back).  I also find being first on the plane the stewardess gives me first pick of empty seats and has time to calmly bond with me and baby while we are at our calmest and most charming selves (whereas after fighting the crowds I am a sweaty red faced paniking mess annoyed with everything and DS is fussy too), whereas when we got on last they had already "given them away" to other people who were able to lounge out and stewardess was way to usy attending the needs of every PITA traveller to gives a rat's patookey about me and my kid. 

 

I definitely vote for boarding first and getting settled.  When we're talking 14 hours, what's another hour? 

 

post #24 of 44
The board last tip works best when you have another adult to take the carryons and dealt with carseats. Then the adultbwith kids can chase them around till the last possible minute
post #25 of 44

I don't know, it's always worked for me and I often fly alone. Just my experience. To me another hour is huge! I always ask about an empty seat before getting on anyway. They have always been able to arrange that for me before we even board if there even is an empty seat. I'm sure every airline is different though.

post #26 of 44

with ones child, enfant etc "alone" and how one travels and whether to occupy the  enfants mind with toys etc.?  A very serious condition...really would prefer real mothers having children and the knowing that what babies feel etc is relative to their mother.  Secure and happy are a child whose needs are met!

knot thought about nor outwardly decided as per convienence or trends in toys.  Do you birth products?  If you are traveling unnecessarily~ or feeling like you do not want to be traveling with your baby this would be the place to address what is going on...to drive the travel is longer ...to travel via ship longer... it does not matter time while in the loving care with ones mother this is all they know!

help it appears ever disappearing wise and natural people...how did I get stuck in the future thought up of mediocrity?

Aviaum

post #27 of 44
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by hakeber View Post





Really?  I hate this!  The few times we have been late and had to board last there was no room in the overhead for our stuff so we had it all bunched up under our feet and the games bag ten rows back, and they forgot to stow my stroller in the cabin (taken up with business class bags) and I had to wait FOREVER to get my stroller back at the end (something I never ever fold up until I am about to walk through the door of the plane.)

 

I have found it so much less stressful to get on first, settle, stow and organize while the elderly and special needs travellers are boarding, before getting bumped and squished around by the elbow throwing regular travellers fighting for overhead storage (and man those folks can be RUTHLESS, taking up bulkhead storage because they want to get off first and even if their own overhead storage is empty fifteen rows back).  I also find being first on the plane the stewardess gives me first pick of empty seats and has time to calmly bond with me and baby while we are at our calmest and most charming selves (whereas after fighting the crowds I am a sweaty red faced paniking mess annoyed with everything and DS is fussy too), whereas when we got on last they had already "given them away" to other people who were able to lounge out and stewardess was way to usy attending the needs of every PITA traveller to gives a rat's patookey about me and my kid. 

 

I definitely vote for boarding first and getting settled.  When we're talking 14 hours, what's another hour? 

 


Yeah,  i was thinking about waiting to board (especially because we are flying on an A380 and I have no idea how long it will take it to board 500+ passengers) but I am worried about not having space for our carry on and i would like to get settled and not be frazzled and to be there calmly when my row-mates come and ask them before they settle in if I can switch with one of them for the window seat. put on my sweetest smile and get DS to act cute as can be...

I think we will definitely use priority boarding. I'm in the front of the plane so usually the last section to board and I don't want to lose out on any perks I can get by getting on first.

DS can squirm around in our row and around our section before it fills up if he really needs to move around.

 

post #28 of 44
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by aviaum View Post

with ones child, enfant etc "alone" and how one travels and whether to occupy the  enfants mind with toys etc.?  A very serious condition...really would prefer real mothers having children and the knowing that what babies feel etc is relative to their mother.  Secure and happy are a child whose needs are met!

knot thought about nor outwardly decided as per convienence or trends in toys.  Do you birth products?  If you are traveling unnecessarily~ or feeling like you do not want to be traveling with your baby this would be the place to address what is going on...to drive the travel is longer ...to travel via ship longer... it does not matter time while in the loving care with ones mother this is all they know!

help it appears ever disappearing wise and natural people...how did I get stuck in the future thought up of mediocrity?

Aviaum


I sort of understand this post... I suspect an internet translation? As I always used to tell my ESL students, internet translations are NEVER better than your own attempts at simple English if it is not your first language... But I appreciate the response- it is true! Secure and happy is a child whose needs are met! And yes, time doesn't matter while in the care of one's loving mother. Even 14 hours! smile.gif

 

post #29 of 44

I couldn't read all the posts so you may have heard this but cheerios strung on a piece of dental floss is something fun. Lots of snacks, obviously!  Those small plastic animals that come in a tube our kids LOVED to play with but maybe yours is too young? I bring lollipops for emergencies. :-) And the ergo or sling is a great idea bc that way if she falls asleep you won't have to wake her to go pee (THIS WILL HAPPEN--as SOON as she falls asleep!) or when you arrive. Anyway, ONLY 1 DAY and YOU CAN DO IT! Just stay relaxed, flow, smile, easy, and it'll be fine. She'll probably LOVE all the attention! :-) And if you need to run down the aisles, no worries! Just smile at everyone. It'll be EASY compared to the mom I once saw alone w infant and toddler and the toddler vomited al over both of them on the plane. Ugh. It'll be FINE. 

post #30 of 44

Hi-

 

I didn't read all the tips other mums have offered here, but I wanted to tell you that I did a 10+ hour flight (with 1.5 hour delay idling on the tarmack!)  with my 9 month old DS a couple of years ago and while some things were nerve-wracking, like the plane was packed and he had to be in my lap the entire time, other things worked out okay. For example, I'm kinda plus-sized, so me plus my chubby 10mo in his wrap were too big for a standard seat so we were re-seated in a bulkhead row- thanks kind flight attendants!

 

Don't be afraid to ask for help. I passed my baby to a woman who was flirting with him from the next row when I needed to stretch or use the restroom. Her husband entertained DS for a while too. And the 3 little girls from down the aisle who came to visit us were adorable and they talked to him for long stretches, even while he was in the wrap, so I could just sit still and zone out while he was occupied visiting.

 

Other than a couple of favourite toys and some snacks, I didn't bring anything much for entertainment and we didn't need it as time was mysteriously eaten up with nursing, napping, flirting, bouncing and singing (softly).

 

The only really annoying part is that when mealtime came around, DS was fast asleep in his wrap on my front and I couldn't manage to hold or eat a tray of food in any way. I had to beg the attendants to bring my tray back later, which they didn't like, but there was nothing to be done about it.

 

Take it one minute at a time if need be. If your DS cries or fusses, tell yourself it won't last long and try not to worry about what others are thinking. If they are parents or grandparents, they will be very patient, as you would be for a woman traveling on her own with a baby. Good luck!

post #31 of 44

On long flights you can walk around the plane. There is also an area you can stand in the middle of the airplane.


I would plan on taking lot of little walks while it is safe to do so.

 

Bring lots of snacks ( turkey! This naturally makes people sleepy)  and maybe a portable DVD player and some favorite dvd's.

 

Books for stories, markers and paper.
If you are sitting near a window - a squirt bottle with water in it and a towel to dry. This something that they never get to touch - my daughter could spend hours squirting.. You can also have him squirt a rag and into cups. 

 

Remember he will be sleeping some of the time.

 

Good luck! Please let us know how it turned out!

post #32 of 44

 I fly home every year too and lots in between I always do at least one leg alone. So for me that is a 12-13 hour flight, a layover of 3-4 hours then another 1 hour flight. This year I am staying 24 hours then taking another 5 hour flight. So all and all I'll be doing A LOT of flying alone with a 3 year old and a 15 month old. Here is my plan

 

- My kids never slept in that basentt thingy so I tell them not to bother. It does make a great table for colouring or sticker books though. It also makes a nice fort to sit under. For sleeping I made a little nest on the ground. 

 

- Eating is the hardest part. Tell the cabin crew to serve you only one meal at a time and do it towards the end of service. Then let them know that you'll need your tray picked up ASAP. If they don't come quickly I put the tray on the floor. Better that way than flung on the walls.

 

- I bring a few packs of raisins or something and give them out very very slowly. One in my hand and get them to open on of my fingers at a time. Since put in and take out is such a hit at that age I also put one or two snacks in one cup and give them a second cup to transfer snacks to and from

 

- We have these little bags called ispy from etsy. They are little fabric bags with plastic beads and a bunch of treasures like a little shoe, puzzle piece, penny etc in it. You push the plastic beads around to find all the little toys in there. My 3 year old still loves it.

 

- I take them to a bookstore the day of the flight and let them pick out a new book that they can't read until we get on the plane. 

 

- I have a small backpack that I put a few new toys in. An old wallet with old cards is both my kids favorite and it only comes out for flights.

 

- The pocket on the bulk head can be emptied and filled with toys and books over and over and over

 

- We download a few apps for the ipod. Tumble books and duck duck moose are always hits and they have a few different ones so they don't get bored.

 

It's not so bad with just one little monkey! Have a good trip!

 

 

post #33 of 44

You will do great!  You can do it!  It looks like you already have lots of great suggestions, but I will add a couple:

 

-take lots of walks around the plane.  You will probably find some other older kids who will be happy to make faces at your dc for a few minutes.

-practice changing diapers with your dc standing up.  This will be easier than trying to cram dc onto the tiny changing table in the bathroom

-pack a small diaper kit, with just a couple diapers, wipes, maybe some hand sanitizer.  that way you can pull it out when you need to go back to the bathroom, instead of dragging your whole diaper bag

-bring a sippy cup for yourself, in case you want to drink something that's not in a sealed bottle

-wrap a few of the small toys you bring.  Makes them seem more fun and exciting

-pack lots of plastic zip-loc type bags.  They come in handy for all kinds of things

-toys that have worked for us: small flashlights, aqua-doodle coloring books (they sell these at the airport sometimes; they come with a brush that you fill up with water; the pages can be used over and over after they dry out; no mess), small coin purse (fun to hide things in), small finger puppets, "vocabulary" type board books with a million photos of everyday objects; rolls of tape; lots of new snacks

 

Good luck!  And remember, it's just one day out of your life.

 

post #34 of 44

You can always ask before you get on the plane if they would be willing to seat you where there is no one in front of you, to avoid kicking the seat, and if you cant move then, ask people to switch you seats once you get on!  A lot of people will be willing to trade to avoid a screaming child on a flight!  And nurse nurse nurse if you can get the kiddo to.  It will keep them quiet, and help with ear popping, maybe even get them to fall asleep!  I havent flown that far, but we flew with a 6 month old for several hours, and will be flying again with our 16 month old next week for a couple hours.  Good luck to you, and definitely keep reminding yourself that even if its not great, its just one day!

post #35 of 44
Thread Starter 

I am so floored by the number of responses offering such great tips and advice! It means so much to me and is going to be sooo helpful! love.gif

I'll definitely come back and let you ladies know how it all went and which ideas worked for us.

 

Thank you so much!

post #36 of 44

I've only skimmed thru the responses - sorry if this has been mentioned already. 

 

If I may add one more thing - I've always found the air onboard to be very dry. If you're still nursing - definitely nurse often and don't forget to drink often yourself.  For 'entertainment' and if things get desperate, there's always juice on the plane.  I don't give my kids any juice at that age - but when everything else failed I did try apple juice/water mixture, or straight apple juice for long travels, which worked great.

 

Many good wishes for your travel!

 

 

 

post #37 of 44

I did a transatlantic flight with a lap baby (I am also an expat). A couple of things I didn't see mentioned. First, find out what the "bassinet" is. On our flight, we were given a bassinet that was a cardboard box somewhat reminiscent of those temporary cat carriers you get from the vet. Without the handle, of course. We also had to be in the bulkhead seats which meant no under seat storage for my older DD's toys. I couldn't bring myself to put him in the bassinet but he did stand in it for a while.

 

My baby is not the best sleeper at home but he really did sleep a lot while I watched movies. Something about being on an airplane made him tired.

 

Good luck. IME, babies travel easier than preschoolers so hopefully it will go well.

post #38 of 44

I can't wait to find out what worked!

post #39 of 44

This has already been mentioned, but if you see someone who seems to smile a lot at you/your baby or just seems generally interested, offer to let them hold him!  Every time I've flown, I've wished someone would let me hold their baby/kid - I'm pregnant with my first now and I've always loved children.  Of course I never offered 'cause I didn't wanna seem like a weirdo redface.gif but I would've been thrilled to hold/cuddle/entertain a baby for a while!  If your son is happy to go to new people and you feel comfortable about them, go ahead and do it - it takes a village, right? Good luck!

post #40 of 44

Wow!  What great suggestions!  I'm bookmarking this thread for sure!

 

I swear by Rescue Remedy!  I don't know if you can get it where you are but you can get it in the states for the trip home.  I usually order it from vitacost.com as their prices are much better than Whole Foods or Health Food Stores.  I use it for myself and for my kiddos and they love it!  It's all natural flower essences and it really does seem to calm everybody down.  I tend to get very worked up in tense situations (the only child in me I guess) and like another poster said, when mama's worked up so is baby wink1.gif

 

Another thing that might be helpful is a CD called First Flight by ZenTots on iTunes.  It helps get your babe used to all the sounds they'll hear on a typical flight in the hopes that it won't freak them out.  Might be worth a try, especially if your LO is prone to getting upset in new situations.  

 

Above all - YOU CAN DO IT!!!!  Have a very safe and happy flight, and enjoy your visit!

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