Everyone is afraid to be on the same plane as the baby … and this includes the baby’s own parents.
My baby first boarded the plane on a 14-hour flight to Dubai, not a short trip from Sydney to Melbourne. It was also between Covid and without my husband.
I’m not a nervous flyer, but I was definitely worried about this flight. I imagined the baby crying constantly as everyone tried to sleep. I learned a few things that make traveling easier.
1. Jet noise starts crying
Jet noise not only acts as white noise to help your baby sleep, but also masks your baby’s crying. I understood this when a passenger sitting a few rows behind was surprised to see her daughter not hearing the sound.
2. All rules go out of the window
This night’s flight had the most sleep and the least crying, so I went to anything for 14 hours. While she was awake, Disney movies were constantly playing and snacks were served on request. Without a highchair, it wouldn’t be possible to have her sit still to feed with a spoon. Fill with extra snacks, bottles and infant formula. I dropped the bottle on the floor, but I’m glad I still had room.
3. Throw away the pram and take a carrier
When flying alone, I want to be hands-free and have as few kits as possible after check-in. And while this will hate non-parents, carriers are very useful when you are alone and need to use the toilet. The baby carriage does not fit in a private room at the airport.
4. Eat when your baby is sleeping
Don’t worry about eating meals when they are served. I was worried that I would never be able to eat the hostess because I felt sick to turn my back on the hostess, but I am in trouble just because I have a fight with the baby in front of me.
Instead, ask the hostess to save something and eat it when it suits you. This was generally when my baby was asleep, as I was flying alone.
It’s also a good time to do something that makes it easier to get off the plane, such as filling out an immigration card, collecting things, or brushing your teeth without an assistant.
5. Pack your clothes
Babies are cluttered and prone to accidents. Pack extra clothes for both, or pack a fresh T-shirt that you can slip in just before landing. If your baby flies with minimal dirt, save your clothes for later use. Accidents can still occur.
6. The less toys, the more
My daughter rarely played with the toys I packed, but instead was fascinated by the seatbelt buckles and headsets. There are many things children find on the plane, and they are usually given a kids pack. Pack new toys, two old toys, and a small book that they think they like. There is no point in wasting valuable real estate in your baggage!
7. Small panadors are very helpful
I usually give Panador only when my daughter is sick or has extreme pain from tooth growth, but a friend of the nurse before taking off to relieve potential ear pain I recommended taking it. I gave him a little Panador at the time of boarding and it worked. If that doesn’t suit you, pack one or two doses in your baby’s bag just in case.
Keep in mind that you are neither the first nor the last to fly with your baby. Ask for help when you need it — the kindness of strangers will surprise you!
Place of originWhat I learned flying solo with a baby