Hi all. My husband has to go to Florida in January for work and really wants our son and I to go with him and make a holiday out of it. I'm feeling anxious about the flights in particular and would appreciate any advice on the best way to do it. We were thinking of doing it in two legs. Potentially through Hawaii for a few days or even LA for an overnight stop before flying down to Orlando. Hawaii to Orlando involves two flights though.
Has anyone done this or a similar trip with a 5 month old before? What are your recommendations for best flight routes and departure times? I'd assume it's smarter to do the longer leg at night so that bub can sleep?
Also, must have survival items to pack in hand luggage? He is exclusively breast fed which will make things a lot easier. I will feed him on take off and landing for his ears. I have a sling and Baby Bjorn carrier and will be requesting a bassinet seat as well.
What is the best way to manage a smooth transition with the time difference? I imagine we will have a few rough days on arrival adjusting and can stay pretty close to the hotel to deal with it. My husband is being pretty insistent on travelling around a bit after his week of Work commitments and so we will be there for nearly a month. Having him in a different bed every night is a real concern to me too. My husband is adamant and I guess I just need assurance either way...
Thanks in advance!
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11-11-2014 21:00 #1
International travel with 5 month old
11-11-2014 21:31 #2
Hi. We haven't taken DD 7 months over seas but when she was 4 months we took her interstate. She slept in many different beds each night and (as ashamed as I am to say it) she even slept on the floor (carpeted with a very thin mattress and sheet) some nights. She was completely fine. We just kept the routine exactly the same and she kept her own routine the same.
I'm not sure about the flight though. Our traveling was only about 2 hours and she slept the whole time. We also took her on a coach bus for 7 hours and she slept the whole time.
Have fun in America! Sounds like an unbelievable holiday opportunity.
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11-11-2014 22:25 #3
We took DD to the UK when she was 3 months old and travelled back when she was 5 months old. Best thing we found was to book a room in the airport hotel and have a 12+hr stopover. DD didn't sleep really on the plane (we had a bassinet seat which was awesome for keeping stuff in lol) - any sleep she did have was on me. I took my breastfeeding pillow as hand luggage which meant she could sleep on that while on me. We also took our pram and checked it at the gate. Meant we had it in the airport during our stopover so we were able to get her to have a short nap in there.
With the time difference the long stopover worked really well. We were able to have her in a cot and so I just did our usual bedtime routine and she did her normal sleep of 5hrs, feed, 3hrs etc which gave DH and I both some sleep as well. The airport hotels are pretty soundproofed and blacked out so it feels like night time (well Singapore is anyway!). We also worked it so that our stopover meant we were then getting on a plane that would land in the evening so it would be dark when we arrived and needed DD to sleep. Worked perfectly and she once again did her normal night sleep in the evening when we arrived in the UK. She wasn't jet lagged and we were able to readjust a bit better as well.
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14-11-2014 21:30 #4
We travelled to Singapore when our son was 4 months old and again at 7 months - not quite as far as you are going! But I hope some of the info will still be handy.
Both times we flew during the afternoon/evening and with a bassinet seat - he was a good little napper, so he had a snooze or two on the plane and once we landed, he went to bed. We found that going over there, there wasn't much jetlag or time difference problems - but he took a couple of days to adjust coming back.
As for sleeping in a different bed every night, will you be bringing a portacot? If so, it might help to let bub have a few sleeps in it (eg. Naps) before you go to get used to it. Or have a couple of familiar things - our boy has always had a comforter toy (and when he was younger, he also had a a Soothe and Glow seahorse). These travel with us everywhere - even now as a two year old, the comforter toy goes into the cot/portacot where he will be sleeping so it is something familiar.
Travelling for a month or so is, in my opinion, not a bad thing - makes the effort and getting used to time difference etc worth it.
In terms of general travel advice, here are my tips:
- don't over-plan your days. Everything takes potentially longer with a little one. Better to under-plan your days than to try to cram too much in!
- if your little one doesn't nap terribly well in a pram or carrier, make sure that every couple of days, they get to nap in the cot/portacot. When our little one was young, we found that as long as he had a good morning nap, he could manage the rest of the day with just a little nap in the pram or carrier, so we planned our days around him having a morning nap wherever we were staying (eg we would have breakfast out, have a little walk around/visit something close to the accommodation, come back for morning nap time, then head out for the rest of the day)
- enjoy yourself!! What a fabulous opportunity your family has to travel together!!
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First time Mum NSW (15-11-2014)
14-11-2014 21:35 #5
Few more answers to your questions that I forgot:
- essential hand carry items? Spare clothes for you and your bub. The first time my kid EVER vomited was when he was 19 months old and we were about to land in Hawaii. Given that we had never needed the change of clothes on any other flight that we had taken before then, I didn't bother packing spares. Let's just say I was very glad we were seeing our luggage when we got off that flight, before catching a connecting one.
- travelling on an overnight flight? For longer flights - yes!! Granted when we did this, my son was a lot older - we did an overnighter to Hawaii and he slept for 9 out of the 10 hour flight, sprawled across our laps.
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