It was our first family airplane ride with a toddler and I learned from that experience. We spent a Palawan tour for the Puerto Prinsesa underground river last week. As a mom, I wanted to be prepared so I did some briefing for my little boy about the tour and I even let him watched the video about the underground river. He was prepared for the underground river adventure but not much with the airplane ride.
I almost forgot that I should also prepare him for the airplane ride because I focused on the underground river tour. There were only a few hours left when I realized that I missed some preparations. Anyway, let me share some of the tips and preparation for the first airplane ride with a toddler.
Tips for First Airplane Ride with a Toddler
- Prepare the hand carry bag with your kids stuff and make a checklist. Hand carry bag checklist with toddler’s stuff: extra pair of clothes (tops & pants), hand towel, wet tissue, one bottle of water, dry crackers, kid’s low sugar candies (gummy bear, raisins, or any of his favorite), ear doctor (helps to remove ear pressure) small soft pillow and small blanket or Malong.
- Choose comfortable clothes and shoes for your toddler. I would recommend longer shirts and pants. In the photo, my little boy wears a short . He is actually wearing a long pants before we ride in an airplane but because his pants get messed, I change his bottoms with a short in my carry-on bag.
- Pack a small comfortable backpack or any carry-on bag for your toddler in the airplane. Put his favorite toy or small interesting book, small notebook, pen & crayon. These things can make him entertain while on board.
- Go to the airport early. This will give you enough time to be in the airport for the security screening and to avoid missed flight. For local flights, two hours in advance is advised and three hours for international flights.
- A few minutes before the airplane takes-off and about to land, give your toddler something to chew such as chewing gum or gummy candies. I believe it relieves ear pressure because I tried it myself and with my toddler.
- If your toddler does not want to wear a seat belt, you can simply cuddle him on your lap. A secure position as advised by the flight attendant is for the adult to wear a seat belt first then cuddle securely the toddler on your lap. The picture below is showing how I held my toddler on my lap.
- Relax, be patient and pray for a safe plane ride.