Any advice for a mama taking a big cross-country trip with wee baby?

posted 3 years ago in Babies
Post # 3
Member
7271 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: February 2013

That sounds like my worst nightmare! I’ve never done it, so I don’t have very much advice, but I’ve heard others say to have your baby nurse or use a paci during take off and landing, use a baby carrier, and bring some toys during the flight. I don’t know, it all sounds terrifying to me.

Post # 4
Member
4483 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: April 2015

Benadryl and whiskey.

 

Heck, bring some for yourself too 😉

Post # 7
Member
9 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: January 2009

I’ve flown by myself with DD a few times prior to her turning 1. My mom took her on a plane by herself too. It can suck, to be completely honest, but at least you’ll have help. Plus, it’ll be a lot better than driving.

My suggestions are:

1. Pack extremely light. Start far in advance, lay out everything you want to take, cut it in half, repeat. Bring one or two small toys at the most– she’ll be getting so much attention that she really doesn’t need the toys. If she gets bored, she can tear pages in the Sky Mall catalog or look out the plane window. She can rewear outfits too, just find a hotel with laundry or a family member’s house.

2. Get to the airport extra early. I really think that baby’s can sense stress and getting through airport security with a fussy kid when it’s busy is extremely stressful. They make you take the baby out, collapse the stroller, test any breastmilk/mixed formula you bring along. Plus, you’ll want to be one of the first people on the plane so that you can get settled. If you’re there on-time/early, they’ll let you board with the first group.

3. As soon as you get on the plane, get the essentials out and put them in the back pocket of the seat in front of you. The seats on planes have gotten so small and it is brutal to try to hold a baby and dig through the diaper bag while in the air. Put the special toy, mixed up bottles, etc. in the pocket, so you can grab easily.

4. As the plane takes off, make sure your baby is eating. This helps to with ear pressure. Have you seen those fruit to go things that kids can suck on? If you have started adding food to her diet, look for an oatmeal or applesauce one of those. My daughter was too distracted to drink her bottle on one of her trips, but she sucked on the fruit to go thing instead and it really helped with not causing her pain.

5. Bring Tylenol. Depending on how long of a day she’s going to have, she may get a headache/some other ailment just like any of us would. Also, with all the germs in the recirculated air on planes, you’ll probably need it during your trip too.

6. During transfers, watch for the giant family restroom. You can lay her out on the changing table so she can stretch and wash out bottles. Consider bringing one of those travel size dish soaps so that you don’t have to bring so many bottles.

Finally, just relax about the whole thing (so easy to say, right?). When it comes down to it, every passenger (whether they realize it or not) annoyed the crap out of some other individual when they were a kid. So if your daughter screams and screams or is a perfect angel, just go with the flow. You being calm and relaxed will do more benefit than any other types of preparations. 

Good luck! I bet the great grandparents will love meeting her!

Post # 8
Member
9 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: January 2009

Also, I kept my daughter kind of hungry so that she’d want to eat (I didn’t starve her that morning, but didn’t give her as much as I normally would). She didn’t poop on the flight at all, so I just changed her in between flights (mine were only 1-2 hours long each, but 3 transfers). If she does, I think your idea about changing her on your mom/your lap is the best idea. Plus, you can have your mom hold up a blanket if you’re worried about people seeing.

ETA: I brought my Ergo along. They’ll make you take her out of it for take off/landing though, just as an FYI. I honestly think you’d be ok without it since you have helpers. I just used mine when I was setting up her stuff prior to take off.

  • This reply was modified 2 years, 8 months ago by  Miss Boone.
Post # 10
Member
42546 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

Flying across the country is quite do-able.

Babies rarely have trouble with changing ear pressure on take-off. It’s more so on landing. But it can’t hurt to ensure that she is suckiing and swallowing to help equalize the pressure in her ears.

Contact the airline and see if you can get a seat in the first row behind the bulkhead. Many airlines have a flip down shelf where you can place your baby seat so you don’t have to hold her all the way.

You can find out the layout of your plane by going to http://www.seatguru.com and searching your airline and flight #.

I am sure that you and the pp are just joking about the Benadryl. Be aware that it can have the opposite effect in children and cause excitement instead of drowsiness.

Post # 11
Member
9 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: January 2009

iarebridezilla:  No problem! If they don’t have ready-to-drink formula or it takes up too much space, consider the packets of formula. Each one makes an 8 ounce bottle so there is no scooping to do 🙂

Post # 13
Member
9533 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2013

You can totally do this. My good friend took her kid from the midwest US to Sweden at that age. 

I would encourage you to think about simplifying things for yourself, not just baby. Slip on shoes. Outfit with a pocket where you can keep your ID/boarding pass. Pack light. That way your stuff is as easy as possible when dealing with baby. Also, be nice to the flight attendant and they’ll be happy to warm up your bottles for you.

Have you given your daughter Benadryl before? If it made her sleepy in the past, this is a good tool to keep with you. I, personally, use it on overnight flights all the time! But julies1949: is right, it makes some kids hyper. You just have to know how it affects your daughter. 

Also, accept help. Looks like you’re going to have help with you, which is awesome. People know it sucks to travel with kids, so they’re usually helpful and understanding. But I’ve definitely seen solo moms trying to hold a kid while trying to open a stroller and hold a diaper bag all at the same time and tell people “No, no, I’m fine”. They’re way more stressed than the mom’s that say “Yes, I’m sorry, could you open that stroller for me? Thanks so much!”. This is not the time to be super mom.

Post # 14
Member
968 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

Oh no, a baby on an airplane? *covers ears*

Post # 15
Member
1892 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

I agree as a frequent traveler often mom’s don’t want to “bother” others but it takes way longer for you to try and hold your baby, open the stroller, get out your computer, take off your shoes etc. If there is a sweet looking lady, grandma or teen near by ask if she would help. Worse case is they just say no

I would also suggest sucking it up and checking your baggage (and maybe having another adult come into the airport w you/ pick you up since you will have your hands full) – no one likes to pay but its not worth having to wrangle a carriage, baby, car seat and two carry ons  – the $50 you spend will be worth the peace of mind and freedom from dragging yet another item around the airport with you

 

as for the diaper changing… its not about seeing it but I really have to suggest another idea besides changing it in the main cabin. If its #1 that is one thing but subjecting everyone to a diaper full of #2 on a small plane were people are already a little naseaous just isn’t right. Please don’t do that unless it is a 100% emergency and there is honestly no other option

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