Hi there, flying moms and dads (present and future) and all of you folks who wish to find how to fly with our little ones. A baby on the plane is no stress once you grasp the know-how.
Together with other bloggers travelling with kids, we share here a handful of practical info on what small children might expect with various airlines.
AirBaltic / by Wszędobylscy
We went for our first plane trip all together when Ala was five months old. And we chose for her debut a fairly short one-hour-long flight with the airBaltic lines from Riga to Gdansk. We booked the tickets on the carrier’s website. The baby ticket was offered with 90% discount off the tariff, but we had to pay taxes and charges. Babies do not have their own seats but are simply traveling on their parents’ laps (fastened with their special baby belts). With airBaltic a baby is not entitled to hand luggage, so we had to put all the necessary things in our cabin luggage. As for the registered luggage, a kid under the age of two is entitled to take one piece of baggage up to 10 kg. Strollers/Pushchairs are free – no matter if they are small and lightweight or large and heavy. We can leave it at the check-in desk or later at the airplane. We decided to take a heavy stroller with us to the plane, which was a mistake, because we had to fold and unfold it numerous times – at the security check, at the stairs, at the plane. And still throughout, our child was cheerfully sitting in the sling. Since the next time we have only traveled with an ultra-light stroller you can fold and unfold with one hand. During the flight, airBaltic does not offer free food and drinks. You can possibly buy something to eat and drink from the cart, but during such a short flight we did not need to. Since we flew a small plane (Fokker 50) it lacked facilities for parents, like a changing table in the restroom. Fortunately, our child fell asleep shortly after the engines started and slept through the entire flight, so there was no need for additional attractions and entertainment. We will remember our first plane trip with Krzyś as a pretty nice one, all managed without much stress. As the saying goes, the first cats behind the fence!
Air New Zealand / by dzienniki samochodowe
We took first plane trip with Leon when he was just 3 months old. It was Air New Zealand flight from Auckland to Queenstown. The flight takes 1h 50 mins. Surprisingly we didn’t have to pay anything for his flight and we could take one carry on bag for the baby. We could also check in the pram (stroller) and a car seat. (However we had to take these to oversize luggage) After dropping all the bags we went through the security and then to the plane. I was given a special seat belt for the little one and a small pillow. Leon slept throughout his first flight, and he was behaving for the next 3 flights we took so far. Airnz crew was very helpful, they opened a toilet door and changing table just noticing me approaching the toilet. Overall very good experience. We’ll be flying regularly. Next trip approaching in May but this time much longer.
Easy Jet / by CiekawAosta
The low-fare airlines Easyjet are really kids-friendly. First, families with children under 5 years are admitted to the plane faster. Secondly, all the children – even those under 2 years – can take hand luggage. You can also carry 2 items of baby equipment free of charge per child: a pushchair plus one of the following items: car seat seat or travelcot.
What happens to be convenient you can take your pusher with you all the way to the airplane. After landing, depending on the airport, you will pick up your stroller either by the plane again or at the luggage carousel later on, so it’s advisable to take your baby sling or baby wrap with you for comfort of carrying the kid just in case.
At an infant fare, the children under two years do not have their own place and travel fastened to their parent with a special belt.
Easyjet, as other carriers, allows for taking your own baby-food onboard – in accordance with applicable safety rules.
Emirates / by Gdzie są Kasperki
Our first long-haul flight with baby Maja was when she was 11 months old. We flew to Thailand with Emirates, two 6-hour flights each way with comfortable transfer in Dubai. So far that was the best flight experience.
As in most long-haul aircrafts, passengers with infants can get dedicated seats with extra legroom (behind the bulkhead wall) and book a bassinet for the baby.
What is extraordinary, however, is the crew’s attitude towards young Travellers. On each flight, babies get some gifts – coloring books, toys, infant care kit, etc. Baby meals are provided, any need for the baby (e.g. heating water) is treated with priority. During transfer in Dubai airport, complimentary strollers are provided, and if your transfer takes more than 4 hours, you’ll even get a voucher to get a meal or coffee.
KLM / by hit the road
Let’s be honest, a 16-hour intercontinental flight with a 3-month old baby cannot be just a pure pleasure. Well, of course, much depends on our approach, but also a large part on the nature of our child. The flight itself is a big burden for the baby (bacteria, drafts at the airport, air conditioning, etc.), so you should be well prepared. The KLM airline offers – on early booking basis – a cradle (also called a bassinet, a cog, or a baby basket) mounted next to the seat of the parent, if the child is under 62 cm and its weight does not exceed 7 kilograms. BUT whenever the pilot will command fastening of the seat belts (for turbulence or any other reason) you need to take the child out of the cradle and fasten it to your belt. In practice, this means there is no way your cherub will be sleeping all the way in peace. At the airport we were allowed to take all the medication for the child, even in excess of 100 ml, including thermal water, which I highly recommend to spray dry air. The airplane also has added a light blanket, a nosefrida, to make sure that the nose is completely clean, hand gel, and the baby wrap, which will let your little one easily fall asleep.
LOT / by Kartki z podróży
We flew LOT when our young one was 7 months old. I was a short flight for it was domestic. The child was on our knees (generally this is the case in all the lines, when the child is less than two years old)
We took on board a bottle of water and maybe three toys, including a new one. They proved to be no use, for Piotrek simply fell asleep at take off and woke up after landing.
From flight attendants received a commemorative certificate of the first flight, coloring books, crayons and the mandatory photo with the captain.
On departure, we left our pushcart at the entrance to the plane and collected it right there after leaving the plane on arrival.
Find the photos and impressions on our blog > here. As well as a comparison to the journey back onboard the Pendolino speed train.
Ryanair / by Merecz on the go
Travelling Ryanair was good. Which took us by surprise, for we had been biased, to tell you the truth, terribly… We had simply heard rumors that they economize on everything, that the seats are super tight, that there is no leg space and so on… The reality proved nicer.
To start with – you can take your baby stuff onboard free of charge! (provided that it weights less than 5 kilograms, but who would take more than 5 kilograms of diapers and toys for the baby?) It was a pleasant surprise No. 1. Next – the pushcart is free too, as well as a car seat for a child (or a travel cot) – it’s No. 2. Thirdly, checked baggage allowance for a child is half cheaper than the same for an adult, which generates nice savings (we checked our both suitcases with children 😉
As for the stroller/pushcart: as said, it goes for free! And it can be checked-in either together with other luggage at the check-in desk or it can be taken all the way up to the aircraft steps, which, with a small child, may be comfortable. For, one has to go through all those queues: to check in, security control, through duty-free zone and, finally to the plane itself. Ryanair, as a low-fare carrier, operates essentially between „economic airports”, i.e. those that do not have jet bridges (or “sleeves”) directly connecting terminal with aircraft’s door; moreover, there are often no airside transfer buses either, so the passengers have to simply walk to the plane on foot! You can only imagine how happy we were to have taken Miłka’s stroller with us! At the aircraft’s steps you just hand the stroller to the airport employee waiting there. After landing, the strollers are handed back to passengers right by the plane.
And journey itself, how it goes for the kid? Simple and convenient, especially for the mother-child duo, who like to cuddle. The child travels on the parent’s lap. When booking online (or by phone) select this option and the special additional belt will be awaiting you at the plane’s door. You simply fsten the kid’s belt to your own belt, and that’s it! – the child flies safe! For children over one year (10-20 kg) there is also a second option, which involves the use of special braces Amsafe CARES, in which the child is traveling on his own chair. Catch? You have to have to come with your own Amsafe CARES braces ($70 on eBay… Oops!). And finally, a third possibility – if you have a car seat with a 5-point safety system and the CE label and the words „Certified for use on aircraft” on it, go ahead, Ryanair does not see obstacles, the baby can be flying in it.
As part of the family-friendly policy Ryanair launched the Family Extra program, which provides additional benefits for families traveling with children, which is cool, because it did not have to! 🙂 These benefits include, among others, the said above 50-percent discount on luggage, priority for boarding and travel insurance at a preferential price. In addition, it also provides a quite nice „family bonus”: the third trip, which the family takes together, may be subject to a 20 percent discount (details on page https://www.ryanair.com/pl/pl/ Useful-information / center-help / Frequently-Asked-questions # 18-7).
Once on bord, Miłka fidgeted a bit and then quickly fell asleep. Hurrah!
Singapore Airlines / by Łukasz Kędzierski
What’s best about it is that a ticket for our baby – a regular fare – cost not more than 100 zł (which translates into ca. $25).
For the flying babies, the airline allocates a special place in the first row, where there is more legroom and a special wall to which you can attach a bassinet (or a cradle) for a child weighting less than 14 kg. Of course, places are limited, so… first come, first served!
During the flight, a child can sleep in it, and must be removed only at times when the sign „fasten your seatbelts” beeps. Then you need to put a child on your lap and fasten it with a special belt to your own safety belt.
Alas, Singapore Airlines (unlike e.g. Malaysian) do not allow you to book those special first-row seats at the purchase of your tickets. You just need to be lucky.
As any good carrier, Singapore Airlines offers gifts to the baby: mascots, crayons, coloring books, and – in addition – a special meal designed for our comfort. The aircraft crew is very well geared to parents and children needs, so they are very helpful.
Singapore Airlines / by Vanilla Island
We took our first long flight with Krzyś when he was just over one year old. We flew from Copenhagen to Singapore with Singapore Airlines. The flight attendants were very helpful, they gave Krzyś a small toy (plush Mickey Mouse) and cared for regularly providing and preparing baby food. The biggest hit was the suspended bassinet, where our son slept 8 out of 12 flight hours. The cradle was a bit too short for our little one, yet it didn’t bother him, and allowed us to have a surprisingly comfortable journey. Unfortunately, on the way back because of the turbulence we were told to remove our baby from the bassinet (interestingly, at the first flight, despite numerous turbulence, our child was allowed to stay in the bassinet) and therefore, once removed toddler flew on my lap throughout till the end.
WizzAir / by weekendowi podróżnicy
Proper preparation and positive thinking are crucial in successful flying with your child. Journeying parents definitely need to focus more on travel logistics, but it is neither complicated nor difficult to implement. But how does it look in practice?
We travel with different airlines. Within Europe we generally stick to the two low-fare kings: Wizzair and Ryanair. While choosing carriers for long-distance expeditions, we search and follow the hottest promotional offers. In fact, I can safely say that there are no major differences between lines in the treatment of children on board. This Wizz, for example, has a fixed fee for children up to two years (approx. 100 PLN / $25 excluding tax and reservation fee) for a flight. And the child travels on the parent’s lap. On boarding, the parents are handed the special child belt to be fastened to their own. As for baby food, we always get it ready on our own in advance. It may happen that at a low-fare flight you’ll need to pay extra for hot water to prepare powder baby milk. What is good, there are folding changing tables installed in the plane’s toilets, so the change of diapers, despite small space, does not pose any problem. It is worth knowing, that the level of noise is much higher in toilets than on board the aircraft and the child can respond to it. We noticed it only when our Helcia grew a bit up – now, when she is 2.5 years old, she is reluctant to use the toilets on board.
Babies are granted cabin luggage allowance. The baggage dimensions must not exceed 40x30x18 cm. Out of practice, I preferred to have everything in my luggage. Keep in mind that you can always bring your stroller. And for free! We can either get rid of it at the check-in desk or keep it (and use it) throughout the airport passage right to the plane door. Be sure to label the stroller with the sticker; after all, we want it to fly over to the same place as us! 🙂 We have so far preferred to leave our stroller at the check-in desk and further use the baby sling (for our Helcia was smaller). I heard that it is possible to bring a car seat (certified for aircraft use) and fly the child in it, but it requires buying a separate seat for your baby, therefore we never used this option. And one more thing: you are allowed to get your child (up to 2 years age) on board with priority (and with up to 6 people traveling on the same reservation! :).
also useful for you:
The family without borders
My name is Ola
If you have any experience with traveling with a baby, or if you have any questions, please, comment this article below.
Everything will be very helpful for young mums and daddy’s.
PREVIOUS POST ← Niemowlę w samolocie
NEXT POST Wiosna w NYC →
great post, very informative. I ponder why the opposite experts
of this sector don’t notice this. You should proceed your writing.
I am confident, you have a huge readers’ base already!
Well I sincerely liked studying it. This tip procured by
you is very constructive for correct planning.