Family Flying: Tips for surviving a plane trip with young kids

2020-06-03

Family Flying: Tips for surviving a plane trip with young kidsFlying with young kids can be a breeze or a nightmare, and with many factors involved, it's nearly impossible to predict which kind of trip you're going to have. Fortunately, there are many things you can do to make a trip with young kids more relaxing.

Build in extra time: Quick layovers and narrow time windows don't leave much room for normal kid "emergencies" like potty breaks or emotional meltdowns. It's worth a few extra bucks to buy a ticket that departs at a reasonable hour, or allows for plenty of time between plane changes. Try not to book quick layovers or super complicated flight schedules, and don't commit to being anywhere too soon after you're set to arrive.

Take care of yourselves: Don't overlook your own well being as parents and how that impacts your ability to respond to stressful situations. As they say in the pre-flight instructions, you have to put the mask on yourself before you can help somebody else. So at the same time you're planning to take care of everybody else, make plans to address your own needs and comfort while traveling.

Bring snacks: Hunger is at the top of the list when it comes to things that can make a kid or an adult fussy and irritable. Pack a few snacks that travel fairly well, like cheese sticks, granola bars, nuts, or bananas, to keep everyone sated through the journey.

Prepare activities: Yes, movies and iPads count, and will definitely work to an extent. But it's just as easy to prep a few non screen-related things to engage and calm your little ones during a layover or difficult moment. Learn a few games (like I-Spy) or bring along some coloring or tactile activities to make traveling a little more fun.

Stay hydrated: Getting enough water will keep you and your family from feeling too sick and/or tired while in transit. Bring along an empty plastic water bottle and take advantage of airport filling stations to avoid having to pay for and trash a bunch of disposable ones along the way.

Travel light (or as light as possible): When traveling on your own, deciding whether to check a bag or try to go with all carry ons is a challenging choice. But adding kids to the equation makes for an even more difficult decision. It's smart to carry the necessities with you, just in case you get stuck. But if your flight plans are complex, or you're traveling with more than one child, it might be worth it to pay the fee and have someone else lug your bags, so you can be hands free.

Buy trip insurance: Especially when kids are involved, you can't control last minute emergencies like illness, broken bones, or other unexpected events that make travelling a bad idea. Prepare for the possibility your trip may have to change or be rescheduled by purchasing trip insurance. This way, you can make the best decision for your family, instead of worrying about how much money you will lose by cancelling your trip.

For any insurance questions, call or contact Executive Insurance & Financial Services today.

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