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Monday
Oct142013

Tips for Traveling Solo with an infant

My husband and I were planning a trip from the West coast to the East coast for a few days to visit my parents.  However, I decided that I wanted my 6-month old son to spend more time with his grandparents.  My husband couldn’t take more time off of work, so I made a decision.  I was going to fly by myself with our son.

It would be my son’s third trip back East.  I traveled with him before, but never on my own.  I knew that once I got there, my parents would be waiting for us with open arms, ready to help. 

Pre-Trip

My husband and I took a few minutes to review our previous flights to figure out what would be difficult or challenging on my own.  Next, we went through each item and made a plan. 

Flight Schedule

I decided that non-stop was the only way to go as that way, it would be only one time getting on and off the plane with him and a little longer flight would be better.

Although it was a total of about 6 hours on the plane, it was well worth it. We landed at our destination and were there, rather than searching for a new gate, and waiting for the next flight.  We didn’t have to worry about missing a connection either.

Tip: Consider flying during the early morning or night when your child will be sleeping, and not during their peak awake hours.

Stroller Preparation

The last time we traveled, we brought a heavier stroller and gate checked it.  Prior to getting on-board the flight, we put it in a bag, and then had to carry the stroller bag, baby, and our other bags down the jet-way. 

To make this easier, I brought a nice but inexpensive umbrella stroller, called, "The First Years Jet Stroller - City Chic" that didn’t need a bag and was extremely light.  I kept my son in the stroller until the end of the jet-way and then simply folded the stroller up and on to the plane we went. 

Tip: When you arrive at the gate, get a gate check tag for the stroller so you don’t have to worry about getting one when you are about to board.

Car Seat

Since I was visiting my parents, they borrowed a car seat from my cousin’s son who had just grown out of it.  My parents confirmed the installation was correct at the local police station.  The car seat was in the car and ready to be used when we were picked up at the airport.  This was great, as it was one less thing to bring.

In the Air

I did not get our son his own seat, which worked out fine as it wasn’t a full flight.  I got an aisle seat near the back of the plane.  I highly recommend this as it’s easy to get up and down on the aisle, you don’t have the beverage cart in your way, you have quick access to the bathroom, and there’s a great place to stand in the back or the plane.

Since he was on my lap most of the time, I brought a few toys as well as we did a lot of walking up and down the aisle.  I highly recommend purchasing a Chewbeads necklace. The necklace was something for my son to chew on that I was wearing, so I didn’t have to worry about packing it and was an instant hit. 

Mental Toughness

Yes, I was worried about my son crying and disrupting people on the flight.  However, I had to remind myself of how many flights I had been on with crying babies.  It’s part of flying and sharing a close space. 

My goal was to stay calm and smile as much as possible at people as I knew my son would feel my anxiety.  In the end, it wasn’t the most fun 6 hours I’ve spent, it was work, but, the end result of seeing his grandparents’ faces waiting for us, made it 100% worth every second.

Changes for next time? 

I really couldn’t think of anything besides maybe leaving Sophie the giraffe in my packed luggage rather than on the plane with us, as he’s old enough now where he loves to make her squeak!  He sure loved the noise, but unfortunately, the other passengers didn’t share his sentiment.

I’m hoping this process and what we did will give encouragement for others to do it.  If you have any additional comments or tips, please share!

FreshCruiser Tip – Grandmas on the flight? People love to hold and talk to babies. At 30,000 feet, there’s no where they can go with your baby so feel free to let them hold him or her for a few minutes while you give yourself a break.  My son was so happy to have a break from me and someone new to look at!

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Reader Comments (1)

Thanks for useful tips for Traveling Solo with an infant and appreciate your work for sharing the information. I also have blog related to traveling by title
Bali Driver and Tour Guide and
Bali Driver and Tour Service By connecting you with the right guides,we hope to make your time in Bali more personal

September 9, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterBali Driver

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