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Travelling with Little Ones

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  • Travelling with Little Ones

    We did a bit of travelling over the last year with our bub, and we'll be travelling again next month, so I thought I would make a list here of all the tips I have learnt (both for other's benefit and as a reminder for myself when packing!)
    • Qantas (and most other airways) allows extra carryon baggage for babies to allow for all the nappies, feeds and other supplies they will need during the flights
    • Airlines generally allow additional check in allowance for your stroller, and can often provide an airport stroller to use between check-in and the gate (very helpful, babies get sooo heavy, especially when carrying other carryon luggage on the long walk down to the gate).
    • Medications (for you or bubs) are exempt from the 100mls limitation, but they need to be labelled with original labels (and always accompanied with a note from your dr if they are prescription).
    • Some people recommend to pack a nappy for every hour you'll be in transit. I've always found this to be a bit overkill (i.e. Sydney to LA is 13hrs, plus 2hrs either side for airport & transport is 17 nappies!! ) I generally pack half that in the knowledge that Qantas do have backups if you run out.
    • Every plane I have been on has has change tables available in the toilets (and in the parents rooms at the airports).
    • When DS was under 6 months, he still had steralized water for his bottles, so I premeasured his bottles for the flight at home and was given clearance to take them on board (even though they were more than 100mls each etc).
    • Nb. Heathrow in the UK is the strictest airport I have been to in this regard - we were forced to taste each bottle in front of the security guards, which of course meant they were no longer steralized!!
    • In regards to bottle feeds, staff onboard were always helpful in rinsing, heating or filling up bottles but make sure you allow for the heating of bottles in hot water (not as quick as microwaves at home!)
    • Always have a bottle or BF ready during take off and landing to prevent painful ear pressure buildup. DS always has a bottle and we've never had a problem with ear pressure.
    • Disposible bibs are available from some baby shops (like Babies Galore) and they are fantastic for travelling
    • Finger (i.e. less messy) food is fantastic for travelling too.. I always take breadsticks, sultanas, dried corn etc on the plane (or rusks for under 6months).
    • Always request a bassinet if you baby will fit into one, helps soooo much not having to hold then when they sleep.
    • Definitely bring along bub's favourite soft toy and a blankie. Planes can get chilly and it helps them go off to sleep if they have as many of the familiar items as possible.
    • Depending on the age of the baby/child, I find books are a great form of entertainment for DS when we're flying. He loves his books anyway at home, but given that he sits on my lap to read them and is at the age where he wants to hear the same 2 over and over again, a couple of books can provide a lot of distraction/entertainment on the plane.
    • Nb. The sets of "little books" that come in packs of 4 are great, you get 4 little books in 3 by 8cms - we take Dora and ITNG little books with us (DS is currently 14 months).
    • I usual pack a mix of favourite familiar toys from home, and a few new ones to spark his interest.
    • Toys need to be fairly small and not at all noisy!! I take a few puzzles, a clear ball filled with glitter, a few small windup toys, a blow up little ball or toy and books (as well as monkey and a blankie to sleep with).
    • Qantas has a kids channel while has Thomas Tank and Dora on it, amongst other shows. They provide the headset and Dora usually gives us a good 2-3 minutes of peace at a time
    • I also recommend getting a portable DVD player if you travel regularly. DS watches ITNG on his when we're on the plane, in the car etc etc.. Lifesaver!
    • Bubs under 2 yrs can travel on your laps (or in the bassinets), and will only be charged 10% of your seat fare - but after 2 years old they will require you to buy them a seat (although you can still sometimes get them at a reduced cost, check with your airline).
    • Bubs need to be in your arms during take off and landing, and Qantas provide a baby seatbelt which attaches to yours during these times.
    • If you are getting into a hire or chauffered car remember to either bring your car seat or request they provide one.
    • Nb. In the USA they are prohibited by law from installing the baby seat for you, so be prepared to install it yourself (even if you have no idea how to do so - drives me mad!)
    Thats all I can think of right now.. Any other travellers feel free to add your info & tips and hopefully this will be a useful resource for travelling parents

  • #2
    I found the US to be the toughest out of everyone when it came to steralized water. We were NOT allowed to bring it on the plane. No way, No how. They tipped all of the water out of every bottle we had, so we had nothing. I prefer to taste it in front of them, then have nothing at all.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by gizmoduckus View Post
      I found the US to be the toughest out of everyone when it came to steralized water. We were NOT allowed to bring it on the plane. No way, No how. They tipped all of the water out of every bottle we had, so we had nothing. I prefer to taste it in front of them, then have nothing at all.
      Oh how horrible!!

      I guess sometimes it comes down to when you travel and the security measures in place at the time.. I would have been so stressed if that happened to me!!

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      • #4
        Thanks for that darl, that'll come in handy for flight with bub next year

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        • #5
          True about the US custom, they did it to us too, altho they were kind to let us keep the bottle lol but I think because from DS's horror look on his face lol.

          They are getting even tougher now!

          All list look good, if you are Club member, have a shower at any stop over, its good esp for DS, also just a lil info if you are frequent travellers like us, make sure to renew passport before the 6 month due. It safe lots of trouble! DS on his 2nd passport now and he's not even 5 yet lol
          Last edited by ThomasMum; 29-12-2009, 18:35.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by The_Wifey View Post
            • Airlines generally allow additional check in allowance for your stroller, and can often provide an airport stroller to use between check-in and the gate (very helpful, babies get sooo heavy, especially when carrying other carryon luggage on the long walk down to the gate).
            Don't rely on having a stroller available at the other end when you get off the plane. Even your own that they've promised to have - it often gets chucked in with the regular luggage and has to be picked up from the baggage carousels. Slings are easier.

            • In regards to bottle feeds, staff onboard were always helpful in rinsing, heating or filling up bottles but make sure you allow for the heating of bottles in hot water (not as quick as microwaves at home!)
            In my experience of several international flights with bottles, stewards & stewardess were either useless or unavailable to help with making up, warming, or cleaning bottles. Get bubs used to drinking room temperature bottles if you can and bring enough bottles (or teats and disposable bag systems) to manage the whole flight.
            • Finger (i.e. less messy) food is fantastic for travelling too.. I always take breadsticks, sultanas, dried corn etc on the plane (or rusks for under 6months).
            If transitting between flights internationally, you will not be able to carry some foods with you to the next plane. Check quarantine restrictions before you fly. I found that commercial single-serve packets of cereal (corn flakes) were useful and have often had them for breakfast at the LAX gate waiting for our next flight.


            Domestic USA flights do not always have pre-board for families with babies. Ask at the gate anyways, look as pathetic as possible. Otherwise you'll never find space for all your carryon.

            Domestic USA flights charge for food. United no longer accepts cash: credit card only. Bring your own on board.

            LAX terminals - plain milk can be purchased only from Starbucks.

            Returning to Australia & customs/quarantine (Melbourne) - if you have nothing to declare keep an eye out for the Inspectors who are within the baggage claim area. They can review and stamp your declaration and may get you fast tracked through the lines.

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            • #7
              Ooooh thanks ladies. I am flying with DS in March and a little bit nervous about it. This is great information.

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              • #8
                Morroco anyone?

                Thanks for all that useful info everyone.

                Has anyone travelled with a baby to morroco?

                cheers M

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                • #9
                  resource for parents traveling with kids

                  parents,

                  i have been traveling with my 18 month old all over the world since he was born. i have cataloged my experiences, opinions and advice at www.momaboard.com

                  i have really appreciated all the information on this forum and will continue to update momaboard.com in the hope of making travel for parents easier!

                  would love to hear your feedback!

                  thanks
                  momaboard (kaamna)

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                  • #10
                    This is great! Traveling to the Uk in September with 7mth old so all advice is helpful!

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                    • #11
                      Travelling with Children through Sydney International Airport

                      Travelling through an airport with your children can be stressful, it can also be dangerous.

                      There are many variables that you need to take into account as a parent.

                      Safety - It is important that you can find a safe space in which to spend the compulsory time in the airport when travelling internationally. This time can often be extended with gate and flight delays. In this time you will need to keep the little ones under a close watch as you wouldn't want them wondering out into the moving masses of the airport crowds. So I think that it is important to find a place that has a confined area, namely, a restaurant and not the food court. This will allow you to clearly set out the 'no-go zones' for your children.

                      OK so the first objective is to find a restaurant.

                      Health - The nutrition that you and your family consumes when you travel effects your emotional climate - as travelling can sometimes increase tension due to the stress that comes with navigating foreign areas through crowds of strangers. When you can, eat fresh food. This will allow you to avoid loading up on the preservative chemicals that are often found in pre-prepared and packaged foods. You want to depart feeling fresh for the travel ahead, not groggy and frustrated from excessive saturated fats and concentrated sugar.

                      OK so the second objective is to find a restaurant that serves fresh food.

                      Do you really have time to evaluate every food outlet for a safe space and fresh food? Definitely not!

                      So here they are (at Sydney International Airport) > http://on.fb.me/fuZ1KY

                      You can also get up-to-date information on fresh food in Sydney International here > http://bit.ly/ea65na

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                      • #12
                        The UK are not allowed to fit your car seat either - not funny when you arrive in the freezing cold at 11pm to have to choose and fit a car seat for a 9mth old

                        We had to taste our babies water in Heathrow too.

                        I'm travelling in Feb to the UK, with my daughter who will be nearly 3. I'm travelling on my own with her so am extra anxious. I've already started buying little books, stickers etc to distract her. Someone mentioned a pack of snap cards which I thought was a good idea.

                        I'm planning on taking lots of snacks - my worry is how I'll stop her eating them all in the wait to get on the plane

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                        • #13
                          I have plenty of tips for travelling with little ones if anyone is interested on our site: www.wheressharon.com
                          We are currently in the Dominican Republic, have travelled round Asia and the USA and cruised with our young kids

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