Jump directly to the Content

Flying with Babies

Good information for airplane travel.

Taking an infant on a plane can frazzle the best of parents. Here, veteran flight attendants offer advice for a smooth trip with your infant:

Purchase an extra seat. Flight attendants strongly recommend using a certified child restraint seat on airplanes to keep babies safe in case of a bumpy ride. "An FAA-approved device will provide children with the protection they need," says Patricia Friend, President of the Association of Flight Attendants International. "Infants and small children who sit on an adult's lap are at risk of injury during takeoff and landing or during turbulence," says Friend. Airlines offer discounted tickets for babies; you may even be able to use an adjacent seat without charge. Ask your airline for information.

Plan ahead. "Parents often forget to plan for unexpected delays, layovers, or illness and wrongly assume that flight attendants can supply what they forgot," says a flight attendant for America West Airlines.

Pack the basics in your carry-on bag: blankets, diapers, wipes, rash cream, bibs, bottles, formula, water, baby food, spoons, and pacifiers. Consider bringing an extra outfit, teething rings, toys, pediatrician-approved medicine such as Tylenol, nasal drops, teething gel, and a few plastic bags for soiled laundry, diapers, and bottles. Lisa also suggests to double up on your normal quantities in case your trip takes longer than planned, and pack an extra shirt for yourself in case the one you're wearing gets soiled. Remember that airlines limit carry-on luggage to one bag per person. You may bring one personal bag (such as a purse or diaper bag) in addition to your carry-on, but your bags must fit in the overhead bin or under the seat in front of you.

Follow diaper-changing etiquette. Change your baby's diaper right before you board the plane. For sanitation purposes, do not change a baby's diaper in the cabin area. Instead, use the changing tables in the lavatory. If your plane is not equipped with a changing table, bring a changing pad from home, or ask a flight attendant for a clean blanket to place over the lavatory sink area and change your baby's diaper there.

—Trina Conner Schaetz



Airlines Accommodations For Babies



America
Seat Discount: yes
Diaper-Changing Facility: some
Supplies: some
Stroller gate-check: yes
Bassinets: some


America West
Seat Discount: yes
Diaper-Changing Facility: some
Supplies: no
Stroller gate-check: yes
Bassinets: no


Continental
Seat Discount: yes
Diaper-Changing Facility: some
Supplies: no
Stroller gate-check: yes
Bassinets: some


Delta
Seat Discount: yes
Diaper-Changing Facility: no
Supplies: no
Stroller gate-check: yes
Bassinets: some


Northwest
Seat Discount: yes
Diaper-Changing Facility: some
Supplies: some
Stroller gate-check: yes
Bassinets: some


Southwest
Seat Discount: yes
Diaper-Changing Facility: no
Supplies: no
Stroller gate-check: no
Bassinets: no


TWA
Seat Discount: yes
Diaper-Changing Facility: no
Supplies: no
Stroller gate-check: no
Bassinets: no


United
Seat Discount: yes
Diaper-Changing Facility: some
Supplies: no
Stroller gate-check: yes
Bassinets: some



March/April 2002, Vol. 14, No. 4, Page 17

Read more articles that highlight writing by Christian women at ChristianityToday.com/Women

Free CT Women Newsletter

Sign Up For Our Weekly Newsletter CT's weekly newsletter to help you make sense of how faith and family intersect with the world.

Read These Next

Comments

Join in the conversation on Facebook or Twitter

Follow Us

More Newsletters

Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest
RSS