The $4 travel hack that will save your trip
- byAmy Mills
LETS face it, being trapped in a confined space at 38,000 feet with active little ones in tow isn’t for the faint hearted but it is possible to avoid – actually, reduce – those panic-inducing inflight tantrums during a long haul flight if you’re well prepared. Here are our tips.
Snacks and more snacks!
For small humans, kids can certainly eat a lot while travelling.
And there’s nothing worse than hearing those infamous words, “I’m hungry!’ and realising the little darlings just polished off their last packet of sultanas in the departure lounge.
Arm yourself with plenty of healthy snacks including seeds, crackers, bliss balls – even a whole avocado and spoon – which will keep tummies full and happy. Lollipops are also a good idea to avoid sore ears on landing and take-off.
Getting excited kids to sleep on a plane - especially when its not dark outside and the flight is packed - is no mean feat but requesting a bassinet for a younger child pre-flight can help baby and parents get a decent rest on board.
For older kids, ear plugs and fun eye masks are a worthy investment and small enough to squeeze into your carry-on bag. Even if you don’t have a baby, oversized baby wraps are also ideal to use as blankets while travelling as they’re lightweight and easy to roll up.
Ditch the junk
Airport food courts offer a myriad of dining options these days but filling your overexcited little ones up on sweet treats and fast food pre-flight isn’t the best idea.
Not only will the kids be hyperactive the minute they get on-board, they could end up reaching for the vomit bags faster than you can say sugar high, which makes the flight unpleasant for the whole family – and the passengers in the next aisle.
Ditch the ‘no tech’ rule
When it comes to flying, the usual parenting rules do not apply.
If you get the kids on and off the plane in one piece without tearing your hair out and with minimal disruption, it doesn’t matter if they have more screen time that they’ve had in an entire year during the flight.
Uploading their favourite shows and movies or interactive apps to a tablet can be a lifesaver and stop the kids cutting laps up and down the aisles and kicking the seats in front of them.
Surprise and delight
There’s no doubt well-travelled parents are prepared parents.
Arm yourself with loads of lightweight activities for the plane such as travel-sized games - colouring in books, card games and storybooks.
One way to buy time – and keep the kids happy - is to wrap up a couple of inexpensive new surprise gifts that they can unwrap and play with on the plane or use during the trip and present them mid-flight.
Amy MillsAn experienced freelance journalist and travel writer, Amy has worked in newspapers and magazines in Australia and the United Kingdom for the past 18 years. Based in Queensland, Amy enjoys sharing must-visit secret spots from her adventures around the world with her two little boys in tow.
Access your account
Personalise the newsletters you receive and gain access to competitions and offers