Monday, 26 June 2017

5 tips for travelling long flights with a 5 year old

5 tips for traveling long flights with a 5 year old - stealstylist.com5 IMPORTANT TIPS YOU NEED TO KNOW IF YOU ARE TRAVELLING WITH A FIVE YEAR OLD


Honestly I can not stress how important it is to make sure you are carrying the least amount of hand luggage possible. I know you're probably thinking "but I need to carry my entire existence with me!" Trust me I've been fling on airplanes with my daughter from birth to current age 5 and the times I was least stressed, was when I didn't have to worry about hand luggage. 

Let me break it down for you .
You may think two people means two hand luggage's right?  - WRONG!

A five year old is not going to pull their hand luggage around the airport the entire trip. So who is going to have to carry/pull  that hand luggage, while pulling your own . While Also needing quick access to the important things you need to pull out every five minutes, like your boarding pass and passport . Let's not forget the drama you have to ensue during TSA . All electronics must be taken out of the hand luggage . All small liquids must be taken out, coats off, possibly shoes and the list goes on . What if s/he gets tired? How could you possibly pull two hand luggage bags and maybe carry a whining sleepy five year old , god forbid you may want to grab a coffee while you're at the airport waiting . I know we are super moms, but I think I need to grow a few extra arms and do a couple more bench presses before that happens . Surely you get my point .

Less is most certainly more . I recommend a simple small backpack for all the major essentials, and ONE standing upright small cabin size hand luggage for everything else . Be sure to get a hand luggage bag that has upright zips.  The last thing you want is to be laying your luggage down to open it ( which I'm positive you over packed anyway ) and then trying to squeeze it back shut. Make sure you buy a very Small hand luggage size . Every plan is different and their overhead bins are not the same size . Your luggage may fit in one plane but not the next .  So for all us budget friendly moms who don't usually fly direct to our final destination there's a high chance one of the planes is a short haul plane. These are incredibly smaller get filled up quickly and sometimes don't even have space to fit your luggage!  Trust me, the smaller the hand luggage the better .  Make sure it has four wheels so you can move faster and front pockets to shove last minute things in , like your iPad and phone after TSA .


Okay so you're probably thinking why do I need to do this ? There's plenty of in flight entertainment. 

Wrong again ! Yes there is entertainment but who's to say it's what your child wants to watch?  Kids get bored very easily . How exactly can a five year old endure an 8 hour flight watching the same two episodes of Peppa pig, or movies she has probably already seen too many times to count?  My daughter is a movie junkie and she also loves watching her favourite YouTube episodes over and over again . Wouldn't it make sense to fill up an iPad/tablet with 8hours of episodes she loves to watch regularly ? YouTube videos are completely free to download and you can grab them by heading to . Simply copy and paste the urls of the videos in their downloader and simply drag and drop the files into a folder on your memory card ! Or import to iTunes if you are using an apple product. 
5 tips for traveling long flights with a 5 year old -

 Also I don't know about your five year old but mine is quite small . These in seat entertainment screens are made for eye level of a grown adult , and they do not swivel down . Only up (no idea what sense that makes but plane designers need to re think how they can target the kids too. )
Don't forget a USB charger and an international plug piece. When you are in the airport make sure you let them use the tablet while plugged into a socket somewhere . Some planes have no USB charging port . Yes I said it... let me repeat it 


Meaning we have to go through an 8 hour flight with devices that have only 4 -5 hours of battery ..if that . so be sure to have back up battery packs! Bring your own Toddler headphones for comfort and noise reduction, and a classic airplane headphone jack separator  just in-case you end up on a throwback vintage plane without any modern upgrades . Then you are doomed to have to use their plastic rock solid headphones that have zero comfort in them . Trust me it is pretty common still to this day. There are certain airlines I will completely avoid because of this and the lack of charging availability . Also what else does your child like? Mine loves stickers and princess colouring  books. To be honest she loves anything remotely associate with princesses. She  can entertain herself for a good hour with  stickers alone .

 So it's a good backup to vary the entertainment . 


I think this tip goes without saying and I can't imagine any mother not already thinking this but I need to stress it .I can name roughly 12 different times I've needed to change my daughters clothing during  a trip .  I had her spill hot chocolate down her outfit during a flight because the flight attendant thought it would be a great idea to give her a rest for being so "good" I've had her have a bathroom accident while she slept on the plane .  (Which was a nightmare) Also airplanes are freezing. They provide you with thin flimsy blankets that do literally nothing to stop the blasting air conditioning coming your way.  We always dress for a cold English day regardless if our destination is a sunny 100 degree Jamaica . Simply because the journey there is always freezing. Plus layers are easy to come off when you arrive at your destination so what's the worry? 

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Ever heard of a neck pillow? Well after maybe her second flight I learned my lesson . Seriously you can not fly without one . If your five year old wants to sleep, they need to be comfortable! We all know what an agitated 5year old is like . Let's try and avoid it ! And I'm sure the other passengers will appreciate the quiet . 

The great thing about a neck pillow is that it comes with a handy hook that you can just attach to your backpack ! So easy to travel with . As much as I would love to have one too . Remember less is more . One is enough, let the little one enjoy the comfort and you stick to the uncomfortable airplane pillows . Also bring floppy slippers. In a  Long flight it's important to take your shoes off as it helps with circulation. However we all know kids like to sit with their feet up on the seat or sometimes sitting on their own feet or legs crossed . Pretty much every possibly way except the standard way to sit in a seat . I've had numerous air hostesses not so subtly tell my child to remove her feet from the seat . Obviously I don't want her sitting on the plane without shoes .What if she needs to go to the bathroom?  Fiddling around with shoes multiple times in an already tight space is not ideal. The first thing I do is take her shoes off and slip on her slippers . You can also get really thick gripped socks , it's whatever your little one prefers .


Okay so I love overnight flights because bedtime means they will be asleep most of the flight without you having to put in effort to get them to sleep. However sometimes it's not so easy especially if is not a long overnight flight and just a really early one . I've had flights at 5am before. So it's not enough time to get a full nights sleep before getting to the airport. The key is to make them tired . This is going to sound strange but ice don't this many times and it works for me. I will keep my daughter up past her bed time . ( more than likely the excitement of traveling will keep her up anyway)  I'll make sure she's washed and ready to go so all I have to do is wake her up when it's Tim to leave . I will then wake her up  literally five minutes before we are leaving. If I wake her up anytime before she will get bored of waiting and will go back to sleep. Once I wake her up. I fill her head with all the excitement of traveling and how amazing it's going to be on the airplane . This usually gives her a jolt of adrenaline and she's raring to go. At the airport I let her have any kind of sweets or junk she wants. That way she's got a combination of adrenaline plus a sugar rush. By the time she gets on the plane. Sits down and gets settled she usually crashes right away!  It's perfect!  


5 tips for traveling long flights with a 5 year old -

So those are my top five tips for traveling on a long flight with a five year old ! Ah the madness! 

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  1. We traveled frequently when our kids were small. It sure could be challenging at times! Your tips are great! Tiring them out was one that really worked well for us. We let them burn off energy every chance we could!

  2. These are great tips! My kids have been traveling since they were just a few months old. Your tips are spot on and will absolutely be helpful to moms and dads out here.

  3. Great tips! I don't have kids but can definitely see these coming in handy. Fortunately there's so much great technology to keep them busy!

  4. Very smart! I will be traveling with my son who will be 18 months at the time... I feel like the rules are pretty similar!

  5. Good point on the backup entertainment! We've had several flights recently where the in-flight entertainment system just didn't work, so we were glad to have packed a few toys and tablet for our 4 year old. I do have to disagree with the rolling suitcase for our kid: she LOVES hauling her case around the airport and won't let anyone else touch it! :) Hey, it makes my life easier!

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