Travel Advice: long-haul travel with children
Pack toys and snacks: a bit of planning goes a long way when travelling with little ones
Pack sweets to suck or something to chew for take-off and landing, it relieves ear pressure which children are more prone to. Photograph: Istock
Travelling long distances is exhausting for everyone and a little planning can go a long way. Choose your seats carefully, if the airline allows. Some airlines will want you to contact them in advance. Aer Lingus telephone reservations 1890 800600 open 8am - 6am (22 hours) will make seat bookings.
If you are travelling with an infant try always get the bulkhead seat for the bassinet. Generally under twos have to sit on an adult’s lap. Aircraft nowadays do not have empty seats. Services for infants and small children vary from airline to airline, check in advance. You can see the layout of all aircraft on seatguru.com. You can check airlines’ ratings here. airlinequality.com/ratings/a-z-airline-rating/
Flying with children has improved with good-quality in-flight entertainment and seat back screens for everyone. With more children flying these days service on board is child-centric with toys, games and special food. If flying on a low-cost carrier be sure to bring plenty of healthy snacks and drinks.
Snacks and games
When planning a trip check out the entertainment on board and you can let the children know, they can binge view their favourite shows. Pack backpacks for children old enough to carry them, with snacks, games, colouring books, and favourite teddy or toy. Pack little toys they have not seen before. Flying east, Etihad Airlines have on-board trained nannies to help with children.
For infants make up individual nappy bags with wipes to save unpacking each time. Bring extra clothes for baby and yourself, in case of accidents. A hand towel or two is useful for all sorts of things,
Pack sweets to suck or something to chew, for take-off and landing, it relieves ear pressure. Children are more prone to earache on flights, pack an analgesic too. Wet wipes are invaluable. Do remember flying is fun and a great adventure, so smile and everyone smiles too.