Tips For Flying With Toddlers And Young Kids

While traveling on a plane, you might have seen an inconsolable baby who keeps on crying throughout the whole flight. If you have ever flown with your toddlers and young kids, you can better understand the situation. It’s quite embarrassing when your baby has a meltdown at a height of thousands of feet. It might be a very tough time when parents are more stressed-out than annoyed passengers.

Also, the COVID-19 pandemic has made traveling with kids more difficult. All the new parents who had a bad experience flying with babies mostly keep on searching the answers to the questions like, How to keep a toddler busy during a flight? How to protect toddlers’ ears when flying? And what to consider before flying?

In this post, I’m going to cover the answers to all of these questions. Flying with young kids can be difficult but not impossible. Here’s a complete travel guide for you when flying with kids.

Read on and follow the tips to enjoy a stress-free journey.

1. Book A Seat For Your Toddler

Mostly, toddlers don’t like to be held during a flight. Booking a whole seat for your little one will be a great choice. You can bring FAA-approved car seats and a baby carrier. If your little one is familiar with sitting in a car seat, he or she will sit more calmly in it.

Babies can sleep comfortably in carriers and wearable sleeping bags. Ask the cabin crew to help you with the adjustment of the car seat. Also, don’t forget to remove your babies from these seats during turbulence, landing and take off.

2. Book Direct And Daytime Flights

While planning an air trip with your family, try to book direct and daytime flights. You can’t expect your young kids to sleep on a plane. Mostly, they only take a nap.

For nighttime flights, they can create disturbance for other sleeping passengers. Direct and daytime flights are ideal in such scenarios as they can save you from long waiting hours.

3. Bring a Variety Of Snacks

Keep your kids’ favorite treats aside and offer them as a prize only when you need them to obey you. Or when your toddler wants to run in the aisle, offer him a new treat each time. Bring a variety of snacks for your kids to munch on because if they are hungry, they will show more tantrums.

4. Be Patient and Stay Calm With Your Stressed Kids

Scolding your crying kids can worsen the situation. You can’t expect your kids to behave like elders and obey all the commands. They have their own travel needs. They can’t stay bound to a place for too long. Ignore passengers who are looking at your screaming kids again and again. Stay calm and try to console your kids as much as possible.

However, you should teach self-discipline and train them to be resilient at a very early age. Because kids learn quickly in the early years of their life as compared to matured age.

5. Pack New Toys In Your Carry On

To keep the toddlers busy during a flight, purchase flight-friendly toys and pack them in your carry-on. Make sure not to show these toys earlier to your child. Only give them when you have no other choice. It is a great source of distraction.

Coloring books and crayons can keep them engaged for longer periods. For babies, an empty water bottle can be a great toy. Put a pencil, or a straw in the bottle and close the cap. Allow your little one to get the thing from inside the bottle.

Why Do Toddlers Feel Uncomfortable When Flying?

Let’s find out the reasons behind a cranky child on board. A few possible reasons are:

Fear Of Unfamiliar Environment: Babies under 2 feel insecure in unfamiliar environments. Normally, they are used to car travel. Therefore, flying can be a different and frightening experience for them. Keeping toddlers confined to one seat can be more frightening for them than the flight itself.

Distract your young ones. Offer them a variety of their favorite snacks. Use a pacifier or soother for babies under 1. Play their favorite cartoons if no other options are available.

Ear Pain: Mostly, toddlers suffer ear pain on the plane due to changes in the air pressure. If your baby already has symptoms of an ear infection or a sore throat, the intensity of the pain will increase. Follow the tips mentioned later in the blog to reduce ear pain.

Sleeplessness: Young kids feel restless when away from their home and bed.  Due to sleeplessness, they throw tantrums and show meltdowns. Be sure to select comfortable clothes and shoes for your kids while traveling. Uncomfortable clothing may also be a reason for wailing and screaming babies.

Wrap the babies, give them a pacifier, soother, or a bottle of warm milk to suck on. Don’t try to put them asleep during mealtime. Make efforts to put them asleep when there are no distractions around.

5 Tips To Protect Your Toddlers Ears When Flying

Ear pain is one of the major concerns of parents who travel a lot by air. Here are the tips that you can apply to protect your toddlers’ ears.

  • Consult your pediatrician before an air journey if your baby is suffering from ear infections. Ask him about the ear drops that can reduce the ear pain during flight. Also, take his advice on giving a recommended painkiller to your baby before flying.
  • Sugar-free chewing gum and sucking on hard candy can reduce ear pain. But it is recommended for children of 3 years and older.
  • Breastfeeding, bottle feeding, and sucking on a pacifier can soothe ear pain in infants and babies.
  • Ear pain can be severe during take-off and landing. It can be worse if your sleeping toddler suddenly wakes up during these times. So, keep him awake during landing and take off.
  • You can also use plastic earplugs for your kids of age one and more. These plugs will help to reduce pain and pressure in the little ears.


Planning is the first and foremost step before traveling with kids. Make a list of all the required items. Arrange items in such a way that you can easily get them on hand while traveling. Hopefully, if you follow these tips, you will have a wonderful flying experience with kids.


Writer: Meenaas

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