T is for travel 

  • I used to travel with a big backpack as carry-on. Now I wonder what went into it. Perhaps stuff to entertain me during the flight? Now, laptop and diaper bag it is – and the camera, but only because we’re going to a wedding. (Admittedly, the sheer number of diapers for a breastfed baby on a transatlantic flight requires some space.)
  • At said wedding, SB will meet most of my extended family for the first time, and I’m really looking forward to that!
  • We got to the airport with less than an hour until take-off, and nobody ever complained (the elevator and the ticket machine at our local station were broken, and we were running late to begin with…) Not sure if it’s the laid-back style or the fact that it’s a small airport, or SB’s cuteness, but I’m pleasantly surprised. 
  • Local airline gives us a free checked bag* for our infant-in-lap. Yay!
  • And they blocked the seat next to ours so that we could have a bit more space. Ok, the flight was only half full anyway, but I appreciate the thought. 
  • So far we only got a glimpse on how much harder it’ll be to entertain a mobile baby on a plane – SB wanted to nurse and went right to sleep. But in the few minutes before she clearly did not want to sit on my lap. Exploring a plane looks like fun! Good thing the flight is short. Maybe we’ll consider driving or taking the train eventually (8-10h vs 1.5h flight). Thoughts & experience?

* most of the “older” European airlines offer one free checked bag per paying passenger

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8 thoughts on “T is for travel 

  1. ~2 was the worst for flying — that’s when she figured out how to undo the seatbelt but was too young to be convinced to not do so. But that period didn’t last long; soon she was able to take advantage of snacks, books, coloring, games on phone, airplane movies (if long enough flight), etc., AND could be relied upon to keep her seatbelt buckled.

    However, if you opt for land travel rather than air travel, don’t go by car!! All the difficulties you get in a plane, will be there in the car (worse w/o easy access to a toilet). Trains, on the other hand, are immensely civilized ways to travel, esp. if you’re travel through Germany and get a seat in the klein-kind raum! During that 21 – 36 mo. period, we regularly did 6-12 hour train trips rather than fly, and EVERYONE has happier. Gwen could run around and play as necessary, there were often other kids.

    Also, if you don’t drive regularly (I have no idea if you do), long car drives risk carsickness. We’re only just beginning to grow out of that, I think.

    1. As Sara said, train= maybe, though nap on train seems iffy, but car = plane X several times length= terrible. I mean ,however painful the flight is, it’s short.

      However, my almost 7 year old (and how did THAT happen?) is an excellent traveller and can be distracted for many hours by movies, snacks, and periodic stops to run around. An 18 mo car trip convinced is to never go anywhere again ever with that age; 8 hour trip took 14 hours of driving PLUS an overnight stop.

    2. Yeah, I figured that car would be similarly bad, though I had not thought of carsickness. Yuck. SB hates being strapped into her carseat and screams to remind us of this fact for the duration of the drive, or until she falls asleep, whichever happens first. Occasionally we can distract her, but… trains sound like a way better option from that perspective.

  2. Prior to Izzy walking plane flights were easy. She would gulp down a bottle (because I was too chicken to nurse on the plane) and fall asleep. When we went to Spain late last year she was 13 months old and didn’t want to sit for 9 hours in her car seat. We did have to walk her up and down the aisles. We don’t do a lot of tv so she was pretty excited about watching the tv in front of her as well. We traveled three times with her later this year and she was only a bit insane over the summer. She did NOT want to be in either of our laps and could only be distracted with the iPad for a few minutes. I advise bringing new toys on plane rides, food that they don’t normally get, loading movies on iPad (we did Finding Nemo- look at the fish!), etc.

    I agree with the PP, I would absolutely choose the train over a car ride!

    1. Thanks for the (new) food pointer, it’s something I seem to keep forgetting. While on that plane a few days ago I remembered how I tried to shield my nipples on a full jumbo jet last year. Now, in part I care so much less, in part SB has become way better at latching on that the “window of opportunity” is very small. Plus, these are countries of co-ed sauna. Almost everyone will have seen plenty of nipples.

  3. I wish train travel was an option here: that would be great! We’re doing a ~5 hour flight (including transfers) with an a 13.5 year old on Monday sooooo I’ll let people know how that goes haha (we bought her a seat). She isn’t walking yet. Will bring some new and favourite toys and books and milk.

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