When I first said I was going to Paris and Barcelona with my kids, most thought I was crazy. I am. A friends suggested that I leave behind the baby and take just my daughter but two weeks without my son in another country was not an option. If I can work full time with only part time help, I can make Europe work with kids. The plane ride, as I suspected was the hardest but here are a few tips to help you cope when flying with kids.
Fly at night.
My kids go to bed between 7:30-8:30 most nights so when my husband booked our flights, he booked the last one leaving O’hare at 10 pm. They may be overly tired and we should have flown out a bit sooner but it worked out, luckily. Keep them hydrated to ease the jet lag that is to come.
Fly kid friendly.
We flew Turkish Airlines. They provide baby beds for infants up to 24 lbs. My one year old made the cut. After a late dinner on the flight, which was delicious, and the baby finally fell asleep, we were able to put him in the bed and strap him down and sleep a bit ourselves. But let’s go back to the food which gave us a vegetarian option, kid and infant option. While our 5 year old had chicken and rice or nuggets with chocolate mousse and apple juice, our son had organic baby food, apple sauce and organic vanilla milk with cereal. Fancy huh? They also got coloring books and toys. Speaking of…
My daughter took her school bag which was meant to be her carrying on. In it we took her blanket (his was in the diaper bag), and a few things to keep her entertained. She packed 3 Barbies, a book, iPod, and crayons. She also packed her favorite cars to play with and a ken doll so he could play with her. However, Turkish airlines gives you head phones and everyone has an individual TV and can watch whatever movie or TV show they want. He watched Mickey Mouse and she finally saw Big Hero 6.
Most airlines don’t give you snacks, Turkish Airlines does, including traditional Turkish candy immediately after take off. Yum. However, this was our first time on this airline so we didn’t know so we packed a few apple sauce pouches (no spoons needed) and individual to go peanut butter cups with crackers.
Like I said, we packed their blankets but be sure to be comfortable yourself. I dressed in casual loungewear and took a few things for me for the flight. After feeding them and putting them both to sleep, we were able to lounge back and rest a bit ourselves. I took my new GO SLEEP, a pillow and sleep mask set that supports the head and neck while resting in an upright position. It was perfect for such a long flight and so comfortable, I’ve now made a home for it in the car for long weekend drives. I also took a lip balm and travel sized moisturizer in my purse to hydrate my skin in the air.
What do you pack for long flights with kids?
I was provided with the GoSleep pillow and mask set but was not compensated for this post. I recommend, whether sponsored or not only products that I truly enjoy.