A red eye flight can be difficult even for the most experienced adult who has been on several airlines and taken multiple flights all over the world at every possible time of the day or night. So you can imagine how difficult these flights will be on children. But sometimes you simply do not have a choice but to get on a red eye, especially when you encounter an unexpected delay or cancellation for the flight that you had booked for your family.
Thankfully, there are ways to make a red eye flight more tolerable for children so you don’t have to skip the family vacation. Check out the tips below to ensure their comfort and happiness.
Make Sure Everyone is Well Rested
If you know that you are going to be on a red eye flight with your kids, you can prepare starting from the week prior to the flight. Take steps to keep your kids on a regular schedule so that they get plenty of sleep throughout the week and so that they will be fully rested prior to getting on the flight. This will help prevent travelling with a sleep deficit, and it can make the journey easier to handle.
Get an Extra Seat for Your Toddler
Travelling on red eye flights with toddlers, rather than with older children, can be even more of a challenge. While the majority of airlines don’t require that a child under 2 years of age have a seat of his or her own, you should definitely book an extra seat for a red eye flight. This will provide you and your toddler with extra space, and he or she will be able to comfortably fall asleep. This also makes it easier on you because you won’t have to hold your sleeping child for the duration of the flight.
Tell Your Kids What to Expect
If your kids know what to expect ahead of time, it could make the process of being on a red eye flight easier on them. Give them a bath before heading to the airport, have them dress in really comfortable clothes that they can easily sleep in, and make sure that they get plenty of rest while on the plane so that they don’t end up sleep deprived. You can also bring along an iPad and let your child watch the in-flight movie if there is one, but you should set a rule that requires that your child go to sleep at the appropriate time, too.
Ensure Your Child’s Comfort
Being on an airplane can be uncomfortable, so again, you should dress your child in comfortable clothing, but also bring along other comfort items, such as stuffed animals or blankets. Make sure your child is also warm even if the airplane becomes chilly.
Once you arrive at your destination, you can check into a beautiful hotel like those found on www.ihg.com and reap all of the benefits of preparing well for your red eye flight because everyone will be rested and feeling refreshed for the family vacation rather than drained.
One Word: Babywearing
Forget the stroller and get a baby carrier for your airport travels. Baby wearing will make getting through the airport with your tired child MUCH easier and depending on your child’s age, most airlines will let you wear your child in the baby carrier on the plane. As long as the child is under 2 years old (and sleeping!) most flight attendants will not bug you to remove the child.
Whether you have an infant or a 40lb toddler, there is a baby carrier for you!
Newborns under 15 lbs will be most comfortable in the super comfy and stylish LaLaBu Babywearing Shirt (pictured above). Infants and babies under 6 months travel best in a cozy wrap style carrier like the Moby Wrap.
Parent’s with small toddlers (under 25lbs) will travel more easily with a carrier like Boba 4G and Ergo Baby that are easy to adjust as well as easy to get on and off when going through security.
Brands like Tula Baby Carriers, Beco and Lenny Lamb make toddler size carriers to accomodate older children that are 18 months old up to 4 years old (25-50lbs). Some parents choose to wear their older children that can walk because they find it’s much easier to keep track of them and keep them safe, especially in a busy, dirty airport!
Baby Carriers We Recommend