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10 Tips for Flying With Kids

Family holidays always seem to come with a substantial helping of stress. Try as you might, ferrying your family from A to B is never without the odd complication or setback, particularly when flights are thrown into the mix. If you’re apprehensive about an upcoming family plane journey, you may want to take a look at these ten top tips for flying with kids, so your well-deserved holiday can begin the moment you set off. 

Bring Activities

Although some airlines may provide you with colouring pencils and an activity sheet, this won’t keep your kids entertained for the entire journey. Long-haul flights become even longer when you’re bored (or having a small person complaining perpetually to you that they’re bored). Keep them occupied with books, their tablet, playing cards, a sketchbook or anything you know will hold their attention.

Bring Snacks

Those with many mouths to feed will be all too familiar with the wrath of a hangry child. Airport food can be pricey, and you’re never 100% guaranteed to find something your children actually want. A steady supply of their favourite snacks will keep them from grumbling and save you forking out an absolute fortune. 

Travel Light

The last thing you need when rushing through the airport with your children is to be hauling around more luggage than necessary. This is also applicable for your hand luggage; having your essentials without surplus junk will minimise fuss and enable you to easily access the things you need.

If your kids are old enough to pack their own bags, it’s advisable to weigh each individual suitcase at home to ensure they’ll be within the weight limit.

Prepare Your Kids

If your upcoming journey will be your child’s first time on a plane and you suspect they might be a nervous flyer, preparation is vital. For a young child, airports can be large, scary environments full of unfamiliar faces and planes often make loud, startling noises. Children are prone to mimicking our behaviour, so even if you yourself get anxious, try your best to remain calm, collected and stoic for their sake. Talk to your child about what to expect throughout the journey, keeping communication open and constant. 

Dress Smart

Not “smart” in a besuited sense, but a “sensible” sense. If your child takes forever and a day to tie their shoes, security will be a nightmare. Dress them in loose, breathable clothing with slip-on shoes so they can enjoy their flight comfortably. Dress them in layers so they can easily adjust to the range of temperatures often experienced during air travel.

Be Hygienic

Airports and plane cabins are germ hotspots. Large numbers of people in close proximity is a recipe for infection. Minimise the risk of catching something nasty by ensuring you and your family practice excellent personal hygiene. Encourage your children to wash their hands thoroughly and regularly and keep a bottle of hand sanitiser close.

Book Parking

If you plan on driving the family car to the airport, a great tip for saving money and hassle is to use a service for booking your airport parking in advance. Car parks at Manchester airport can get busy. The earlier you book, the better options you’ll have to suit your budget and individual needs. 

Book Direct Flights

When possible, it’s wise to book direct flights. It might seem tempting to break up a long-haul flight with a stopover, but minimising the overall journey time will work in your favour. Uninterrupted travelling also means your children are more likely to sleep.

Reserve Seats

By reserving seats as early as possible, you’ll be able to ensure your family sits together. Seat your child by the window – the main appeal of flying for children is the ability to look out of the window and watch as the landscape gets smaller and smaller during take-off. Distractions like this will make time fly (pun intended). 

Ask For Assistance

Airline employees understand how stressful and overwhelming flying with your family can be, and they are there to help you relax and enjoy your trip. When in doubt, don’t feel like you can’t ask the airport staff and cabin crew for assistance. Whatever you need, they will be happy to help.

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