Thursday, October 9, 2014

Traveling with a baby on an airplane

As mentioned in this post, baby Willow went on her first flight just shy of her 4 week birthday.
It was an hour flight each way and from pretty small airports.
We have a 4.5 hr flight next week out of two of the largest airports in the country so this was a big test run for that, to find what works and what doesn't.

I read this blog post of helpful hints from Jamie at C.R.A.F.T. on the subject awhile ago and took most things into consideration.
In my experience, so far, this is what I have learned 
( I am by no means an expert, but this is what worked for us)

1. Wear your baby
I love wearing my baby (since I don't have a stroller), she usually falls asleep and I can nurse her while wearing it and nobody knows 
This  blog post from Our Knight Life on baby wearing and breast feeding really struck with me because I was having so much difficulty and self conscious issues doing it in public. I read the post and started practicing and it has saved my sanity.
Also, when wearing your baby during security, YOU DO NOT NEED TO TAKE THEM OFF. 

2. Ask for stuff
Ask your friends and family at your destination (that you trust)  if they have  a car seat or anything else you may need to limit the amount of STUFF you need to bring.
I know my friends and family were more than willing to help and even offered.
With this trip and the trip we will be taking next week to Illinois, our friends have offered to help and let us borrow. As an option car rentals also rent car seats, but take that at your own risk

3. The rule of 3's
If bringing formula, only make 3 oz or bring 3 oz of water and you will not have a problem
I supplement and sometimes in the car or in public she just wants a bottle. I had one made specifically for take offs and landings which we never used but we had it ready just in case.

4. Fly Southwest
( this is not a paid post and I was paid or perked to promote this company in any way)
So, Southwest does not have assigned seating it goes by when you check in for the flight. You are allowed to check in 24 hrs before hand. If you get a boarding pass in the 'A'  section you are amount the first 60 people on the plane and can pretty much choose anywhere. Southwest also does mommy boarding between the 'A' group and 'B' group in case you muss out and still get a decent seat.
Also, with southwest you can check up to two bags for FREE.
This made my life easier because In The terminal I only had to worry about my baby and the backpack full of all of our stuff we needed. When flying with an infant it's no longer about your entertainment for the flight it's all about there's. 

5. Bring baby's birth certificate or birth record 
I had brought this sheet of paper with me "just in case" because of Jamie's post and I needed it both ways. Although baby is lap sitting with you, they still need there own boarding pass.

6. Clothes for mama
I have found if I wear a "nicer" shirt, I wear a nursing tank underneath so that when I breast feed the nicer shirt goes up and nursing tank goes down and still covers your torso. This is what works for us and makes me feel like I am not flashing the whole world my boobs. You will still have to take off your shoes at security so wear slip ons. I made this mistake the first flight and wore boots in which I singe handedly had to unzip and try to put on while wearing the baby. With any flights bring a sweater cause it gets cold on the plane and be comfortable.

7. Feed the baby
You want to feed the baby or have them suck on something during take off and landings. I had the baby in the carrier in the airports while we were waiting for our flights and she fed while I was walking around so for the flight she was asleep. I AM NOT GOING TO WAKE A SLEEPING BABY to hope they go back to sleep, it doesn't work that way. So during take offs and landings I just put a pacifier in her mouth and we were good during both flights.

(baby sleeping on the plane)

8. Family bathrooms
I now look for these since becoming a mom and they are AMAZING. It is a giant room with a changing table, usually built into the counter not those plastic fold down ones, a toilet, large sink and just room to move and take your time. It was nice to be able to use the bathroom and not think these is someone waiting for me in that long line or I need to hurry up and change the baby.

These are my helpful hints.
 Is there anything you do while flying?

~ Steph ~

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