Going on a family holiday naturally raises a multitude of different emotions.
You're excited to make memories that will last a lifetime. You're happy that you will have a 'break' from hoovering and Octonauts (kind of!) and you're overjoyed at the prospect of building sandcastles with your toddler.
However, it's very normal to also feel apprehensive about the whole thing, if you're taking young ones on a plane. Especially if it's your first time leaving the country with your sprog in tow.
Your time away with your kids should be enjoyable and a time for creating happy memories, not stressful ones. So, we’ve compiled a list of 12 things to make sure you have a smooth start to your travels and avoid a complete meltdown* at Gatwick airport.
(From you, or your toddler!)
1) Put *all* flight essentials in one bag
This way you can be fully prepared for your flight and you won't have to keep going up to the overhead locker to get other bits out.
2) Make sure your stroller is TSA-approved
Make sure your pushchair is safe to go on the plane and make sure it's been checked at the gate. Thank us later.
3) Keep kid's clothing light and simple
Make sure the kids don't have really heavy clothing on and make sure they have comfy shoes.
4) Pack an empty water bottle in your carry-on
Save money on the extortionate prices of the airport and fill up at a water fountain past security.
5) Bring a portable phone charger
Make sure you have charge when you land by bringing your own portable device - you won't know when the next availble plug socket opportunity will arise.
6) Rucksacks are the way forward
Showing off your new designer bag shouldn’t be at the top of your list whilst at the airport (Er, Kim Kardashian, are you listening?) Make life a whole lot easier for yourself and invest in a big backpack, meaning you can use two hands. It's the little things.
7) Check in online beforehand
Print out your boarding passes or even load them to your smartphone so you don’t have to stand in the long, tedious queue at the airport which can easily cause stress.
8) Pack plenty of toys
The kids section on the inboard flight entertaianment will get old fast. Definitely pack more toys than you'd expect.
9) Check if the airport has a 'family only' lane
During busy holiday seasons, aiports usually open a family only lane. Use it to your advantage!
10) Don't forget the snacks
Get the kids some of their favorite treats to tuck into on the plane just in case they don't like the plane food. Check out our guide to toddler-friendly snacks, which are picky-eater approved!
11) Take a photo of your parking spot
This sounds obvious but once you’re back from your holiday the last thing you need is to forget where your car is parked...
Choose a specific time to fly
Book a flight at a time when your children would usually be asleep or having a nap.
With summer just around the corner and the beach calling your name, it’s time to stock up on those warm weather essentials to ensure you have everything you and your baby could possibly need whilst away from home.
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