It’s time to head off on your holidays! You’ll be buzzing with excitement – and so will the kids. We want you to be able to enjoy every second of your adventure, including the flight, so we’ve put together our top 5 tips for keeping kids happy on holiday flights. From games to snacks, we’ve listed everything you need to keep your children entertained so that you stay chilled and relaxed in preparation for a fantastic holiday!
1. Time your flights carefully
If possible, try and time your flights so that they fit in with when your kids usually sleep. There’s nothing worse than having to wake your child in the middle of the night to catch an early morning flight – they’ll be cranky (as will parents!) for the rest of the day. If possible, book an afternoon flight, when your child normally has a nap, or a late evening flight, so that they’ll snooze throughout the journey.
2. Pack games and toys
Perennial favourites for entertaining kids during flights include colouring books and pens (or pencils/crayons), story books, a tablet or laptop for watching a movie (don’t forget headphones and a double jack if you are travelling with more than one child), and small, easy-to-pack card games such as ‘Uno’. Buy them a book or game in advance that you can pull out as a surprise on the flight. Sounds obvious, but you’ll need to pack carefully for flights, particularly if your airline has luggage size restrictions. You don’t want to be reaching into the overhead locker throughout the flight, so try and get everything you want to have at hand (books, games, snacks, etc.) packed into a bag that will fit under the seat in front of you.
3. Bring plenty of snacks
Make sure that your child has eaten well before catching the flight, if possible. This will help them sleep, and will stop them demanding crisps and sweets from the snack trolley every five minutes. Bring plenty of snacks, including a few surprise treats to pull out as a bribe if necessary. Don’t forget to pick up some water in the airport before you get on the plane.
4. Dress for comfort
If your child is very young, and you’re hoping they will sleep on the flight, consider dressing them in their favourite pyjamas. Slightly older kids will probably resist wearing pyjamas, but give them something comfy and easy to sleep in to wear on the flight. If they have a favourite cuddly toy, make sure you’ve brought it along (plus a spare, if possible, in case of loss). A blanket and travel pillow are always a good idea if you have room – if not, a sarong can double as a blanket, and a coat or jumper works fine as a pillow.
5. Remember the essentials: Wipes, nappies, medicine and cuddly toys
Make sure you have a change of clothing if you are travelling with a baby or toddler, along with wipes, spare nappies, wipes, milk and bottles (you can pre-order baby formula milk from Boots at many UK airports), and Calpol or similar. If your baby or infant is susceptible to changes in air pressure during take-off or landing, give them a drink to ease any ear pain. Dummies (pacifiers) can also do the trick, if your child uses one. Of course, for all that you’re going to need a good bag to carry it in, we like the one’s at Mummy and Little Me.