5 Tips To Flying With Kids

When faced with the idea of flying with kids or staying home, most parents will choose the latter. You don’t want them to be that cranky, whiney kid that everyone secretly loathes while flying. But by cutting off this mode of transportation, just because there our kids involved, you are limiting their ability to see different parts of the world. The Lopez Crew has become quite adept at flying with kids. We’ve encountered many different scenarios that sound disastrous, but we’ve managed to survive them and we have some tips for you.

  • Start Flying When They Are Young – The best way to survive flying with kids is to start them early on in life, so that flying with their parents is just a matter of fact. When kids grow up knowing that plane travel is a part of life, they are less likely to have issues. Dittles & Papo started flying around 4-5, and now three years later, they are pros. If that hasn’t happened, and your kids are a bit older now, then we have another tip for you.
  • Communicate What to Expect – If your kids are old enough, then discuss how this trip will go down. Get them used to what to expect when flying. Explain the complete process from beginning to end. You could even go as far as to create a little index card that has a few rules for them to look at when you feel they are heading downhill during the flight. Or if they can’t read yet, you can draw pictures of each part of the process and pull them out as each segment is happening.
  • Pack a Plane Survival Kit – Kids are usually allowed to have their own personal item aboard, so long as it fits under the seat in front of them. Our kids have small backpacks that we use to pack their plane survival kits. In there, we pack their tablets, coloring books, a favorite small toy, small snacks (when permitted),  headphones, and a blanky. We also have neck pillows they can wear on their necks through security. If possible, let your kids select what goes in their kit. When they have a choice in the matter, they will be more inclined to cooperate.
  • Take a Walk During Flight – If you want to avoid your kid running around as they get antsy, take a walk up and down the plane when possible. This is a proactive way to keep the wiggles at bay, before they explode, and allows you to get some exercise while flying on a plane with kids. A good excuse for getting up is taking them to the bathroom. Make sure they actually use it too! (We’ve had a little accident when one of our kids needed to go, but the flight attendants would not let us get up as the plane was preparing to land).
  • Respect & Patience – While you may be a little late in teaching your kids these skills, we hope you have worked to instill a medium level of both respect for others and patience when the kids aren’t getting their way. Reaffirming respect and patience will help your kids to better behave when on a flight. Prior to the flight, you can even role-play some scenarios that they might encounter, and how to behave in each situation. Simply telling them is usually not enough. They need to understand what is considered good behavior, and poor behavior as well.

Remember to practice patience, respect, bring distractions, have open communication about what to expect and then be proactive when in flight as a means to curb those wiggles. We hope that these five tips to flying with kids will minimize the negative effects being on a plane can have on kids, parents and passengers.