*In collaboration with Travelstart
There was a magical time (before kids) when you got on a plane and only had to worry about yourself. Now with a family in tow you’re the one that solo flyers pray that they’re not sitting next to. You’re the one with the screaming child who everyone glares at with a ‘you’re not doing it right’ smirk on their know it all faces.
For parents struggling with active children in a confined space or with a toddler or baby that’s not so sure of this massive tin can that makes lots of noise, it’s hard not feel overwhelmed and underprepared – no matter if the trip is a cheap return flight to Cape Town or a long haul flight to Disneyland, Florida. It’s also hard not be aware of how you’re being judged by other passengers ALL THE TIME.
There are plenty of other challenges that come with flying with kids. You have to think about food, closest toilets, changing diapers in a confined space, being able to sit together and more importantly, keeping the kids entertained – particularly if they don’t like sitting in cramped conditions for long periods of time.
But there are plenty of things you can do to make the plane trip more fun and enjoyable for your kids as well as the rest of the family. Watch this handy video, which interviews parents and asks them for tips about how they manage plane trips.
In addition, here are some more tips to consider:
If you’re still not sure if your child will be able to handle a trip of this kind, why not start off with a short, cheap flight from Johannesburg to Cape Town or vice versa if you’re based in the Mother City? Avoid doing a long haul trip to start off with (if at all possible), as it may not be so enjoyable and exciting after several cramped hours.
My eldest son Hayden had his first plane trip last year thanks to his grandma (Ouma) who paid for him to have a trip from Cape Town to Port Elizabeth on a British Airways flight. What made it extra special was when we posed in front of the plane for a picture and the captain put his cap on Hayden’s head – what an absolute treat for a little boy!
*A collaboration post means Mombabbles has received payment for a specific post. We like to highlight them to show transparency.