I’m back with a travel post after so long!
We’re fresh from a grueling long haul flight from the US to visit family in India along with my mom and dad (This is the most important gyan I can share right away. Travel with family or friends when possible). If you’ve read about my travels with my baby on board, you would know that I’m pretty comfortable traveling with him. But he’s been so hyper-active lately that it is exhausting to manage alone! Also the initial mommy adrenaline seems to have died down and I get wiped out so much quicker than a few months ago.
The Journey & what to bring on board
Lufthansa was our choice of carrier and I’m glad we made the right decision (though our luggage was delayed and arrived a day later!). Though middle eastern airlines are good, halting in Europe gives the perfect split to the journey making it sub-10 hours each way.
The entire journey till we boarded the flight was overall smooth (with a few bouts of protests by the baby and some irritation of course). Constantly giving him snacks and water to ensure he is full & hydrated at all times.
Since Baby V started walking at 9 months, he has now mastered the skill and is very agile now. He is very inquisitive and loves seeing new things, new spaces and meeting new people. We let him walk & play as much as time permitted.
Ditch the stroller and use a baby carrier instead. The baby is going to be way more comfortable and you will be much faster at the airport, instead of having to search for elevators, you can hop on to the escalators.
Carry a wheeled suitcase on board and a backpack with baby’s essentials. This will free up your hands. Wear clothes with pockets so your cell phone, passport, boarding passes are easily accessible.
Change diaper right before boarding if possible. Most airports have a nursery with comfortable changing tables, cribs etc. This is a much better space to be in than the cramped aircraft toilet. This also saves some hassle for till you take off at least.
Make sure to board before everyone else, all major airlines will accept passengers with disability and passengers with kids before boarding the rest. This gives you some time to settle down.
Once you are on board, ensure to keep toys, snacks, a couple of diapers and wipes in the seat pocket or in a small tote by your seat. This will save you from having to disturb your overhead luggage each time. You can get all this done before other passengers board the flight and the commotion starts.
If you are traveling with someone, get seats in two separate but consecutive rows. It sort of gives the rest of the party some time to catch some sleep. During our first leg, we were all together and no one got much sleep! If the flight is not too full, you can request for some vacant seats towards the rear of the plane. You can easily stretch out and get a good snooze every once in a while.
I tried the Ear planes and it seemed to actually work! I screwed it on right before take off & before landing. Though during the final landing, he did not want it in his ears and just kept pulling at them. Alternatively you can feed them, offer pacifier or give a lollipop for them to suck on during take off & landing.
Another product that I can vouch for is the Munchkin 360 cup. It is a brilliant innovation that is so convenient while you are on the road. It is very easy to train them with it and I’ll link a detailed review on it later.