Teeny Ramblers

A Blog celebrating the Teeny Ramblers of the world & and all the things that make it work

10 Helpful Tips When Traveling Alone With Kids

Happy first Monday in November!!  This post is all about traveling with kiddos.  I do a fair amount of air travel (alone) with both kids since my family is all based on the east coast.  I know some people get discouraged flying with small ones but if you want to travel and/or see family and you don't have help--don't let that stop you!!

As I thought long and hard about it, I narrowed my tips down to the 10 most helpful.  Prepping is the most important thing when you are traveling solo with little ones.  Over preparing is good especially--so that if the unexpected happens, you'll be ready.  

1).  Although you'll want to pack everything you own, pare down to just the essentials in the diaper bag.  These essentials being-diapers (at least 3), white onesies/toddler shirt/leggings, socks (ditch the shoes for baby), hand sanitizer, pacifier (if baby uses one), bottle warmer (we use and love this one), a few books and toys.  My advice is don't go overboard with packing these last two things--most likely you can find something entertaining on the plane (i.e. a seat belt or in flight magazine). 

3).  Pack an extra shirt for yourself!  I learned the hard way after being peed on that not having an extra shirt (or just a sweatshirt when it's 100 degrees) is NOT fun.

2).  Pack a small backpack for your toddler.  We have this one for Jordan and she loves it.  I also never let her play with anything in it until we get on the flight--this backpack is strictly for traveling!  We pack a bunch of small things for her.  I've mentioned this before but these gel clings (to use on windows) are LIFE on a flight, and keep her entertained forever.  The dollar bin at Target is your friend!  I once got her a rubber band ball on a cross country flight and although rubber bands were everywhere, it kept her busy.  We also pack an IPAD with all her fave shows in case the plane doesn't have a TV.  A few more ideas to consider: 

-stickers (or even bandaids)
-play dough
-coloring book
-slim paperback books
-pencil sharpener (takes Jord forever to figure this out)
-chapstick that your little one can easily open

3).  If traveling with a baby, check to see if there is an open seat available and bring your car seat on board.  This option isn't always available, but if it is, we take advantage.  Along these lines, bringing a light weight umbrella stroller that you check at the gate will be SO helpful.  My first flight (when Jordan was 10 weeks old), I mistakenly brought our huge stroller and checked it at the gate--big mistake.  

4).  If possible, take a red eye flight for cross country flights.  Although this always leaves us exhausted, this is the best shot you have of eating up time with sleep.  I've traveled solo with both kids this summer (one 2, one 8 months) and the ability to have both sleeping at the same time was BLISS.

5).  Once on the plane, ask your seat neighbors to help out!  Most people are really wonderful and will keep an eye on your little ones if you need to use the restroom.  Also, there is no shame in strapping your Ergo on and taking your child right in the restroom with you (desperate times call for desperate measures).

6).  Bring snacks and your own sippy cup from home.  I usually pack something small for the kids and then a energy bar or nuts/dried fruit for myself in case we are making a mad dash and don't have time to stop for food on a layover.

7).  If you're with a baby, be prepared to carry them through security and then have your hands swabbed.  DON'T, I repeat, DON'T use any hand lotion with SPF in it! I once had both kids with me and had to go into a back room for more searching because some lotions use Glycerin which reads as an explosive (what the literal eff!?)

8).  If you need to have a layover, schedule at least and hour and a half but not over 2!

9).  Bring light weight muslin blankets so baby/toddlers can have a clean space to play or sit while you're waiting for your next flight.  These mats are kind of pricey but I think they would work great.

10).  Take advantage of kid play zones!  Many airports have them and it's a great way to keep your kids contained and burning off energy.

Of the million pieces of advice I could give, these stand out to me the most.  I'm planning on pulling out a lot of these ideas for our (cross country) trip to Disney in a few weeks!  So tell me, how do you make it easier on yourself when you're flying solo with little ones??

Jaimee Lynne

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