As a parent a common decision you must make is when to take the first trip with the little one. Whether it is a road trip or flight across country to see grandma, deciding when baby is ready or when mom and dad are ready to take that first trip can be a tough decision. As a first time parent I wondered how young is too young to travel, particularly flying?
According to most airline policies and pediatrician recommendations infants over 2 weeks of age can fly. Also, children under the age of 2 can sit in the lap of an adult saving on airline fees.
From my experience flying with an infant I have leaned to enter your flight with a plan of attack. If you are breastfeeding you may want to consider being prepared to feed during takeoff and landing to ease the ear pressure that can make baby uncomfortable. Also makes sure you have a plan in place for flight delays or layovers. Do you have enough diapers and other necessary gear to get you through a delay? If your child is a toddler make sure you have items to keep them entertained on the flight. A variety of item such as i-pad with favorite movies, coloring books, books to read, small games, puzzles and snacks will help keep the child occupied during a flight.
The first time I flew with my son, he was 3 months old, I was anxious about flying with an infant and concerned he would begin to cry and I would be unable to console him or we would have issues on the flight and I would disrupt others around me. When booking our flight we planned our flight to try and coincide with his nap times. Traveling with an infant is already a challenge so we chose not to book a flight that would require being up super early or late, further disrupting baby’s sleep schedule. I think one of my greatest keys to success was to step back and take a deep breath. When I am calm my son is calmer, so not bringing that anxiety on our flight seemed to help. I had to be prepared to roll with the punches in case of delays or gate changes and teaching those same tools to your child will benefit them in travel and later on in life.