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Flying with kids is fun. And crazy. Flying long distances with kids is ridiculous. But, for us, it’s the only way for my kids to see their grandparents. We have to cross the Pacific Ocean whether we like it or not.
I love flying and I want my kids to love flying too. For me, the key to awesome flights is to pack carry-ons light and well. Today’s post is about 5 products I love for flights. Stayed tuned for upcoming Top 5 posts with Travel Tips, Packing Tips, and On-The-Ground Tips.
TOP 5: Essential Products for Flying with Little Kids
1. Kid Headphones: Our fav is Califone Headphones for Kids
These headphones are perfect for little heads. After trying unsuccessfully to use the adult-sized ones on past flights, these headphones are now number 1 on my essentials list. I love the genius who invented the personal screens for each plane seat. And I love the person who decided kid programming was important. And I love that my kids are soothed by bright moving colors and ridiculous storylines. Mickey Mouse Clubhouse is a beautiful gift when you have to keep your 2.5 year old man-child in his seat for a long time. Combine that with a never ending cookie supply and you are golden. (Standard headphones will only have a mono sound. If you want sound in both ears you’ll want to get a special jack.)
2. Sippy Cups: Our fav is Take And Toss Spill Proof Cups
In addition to water bottles (which, for kids, you can take through security without having to dump), having sippy cups with spill proof lids are essential! Remember, they serve beverages in open cups on planes. And I don’t know about your kids, but my 2.5 and 4.5 year olds can barely drink from an open cup on solid ground. The “Take and Toss” brand are cheap enough that losing one enroute is not the end of the world. And they are great quality too. I also used one for myself: to mix up vitamin C powder and hydration powder throughout the flight.
3. Pull-up Diapers
Think your willful toddler is going to lay down on a drop down ledge in a tiny jet-loud bathroom? Mine didn’t. He screamed at the top of his lungs in utter terror. This was not a moment of disobedience but one of fear. His legs locked and his eyes widened in panic. So we diaper-changed standing on the seat-downed toilet. If you’ve ever tried to put a diaper on a child who is vertical and thrashing, you’ll know exactly why pull-ups are a travel essential whether you’re potty training or not. Good luck.
4. Mini Doodler: Our fav is Fisher-Price Doodler
Yes, crayons are awesome. Definitely pack crayons. And paper. But we lose every crayon. And somehow they draw all over everything else too. So I love these mini doodlers that are small enough to cart around. By the way, hide away any toys like this a month before your trip (or buy especially for the trip) so they are excited to have it. And wrap everything, including snacks, like a present. 🙂
5. Relax and Sleep Aid: Our fav is Calms Forte for Kids
Travel is exciting and things that are usually easy routines with kids can become a total circus. Getting a little one to relax and fall asleep on a plane can be a giant adventure for you and everyone else on the plane. Our pan Pacific flights are at awful times. The outbound flight is at midnight – hours upon hours after bed time. And the return leaves at 10am – a time when our small man-child wants to be running wild not sitting for 14 hours. When the flight crew dim the lights and passengers expect quiet, Calms Forte has helped our kids adjust and relax. Totally natural and drug-free, this is a great alternative to the “other options” some parents use secretly. BTW, no judgment is allowed on this topic. Many adults can barely hold it together on a long flight like this. Parents are rightfully empowered to help their children survive and thrive as travelers. There are great homeopathics and other products to help with jetlag, stress reduction, and sleep. None of them are against the law. Parents – do what you need to do to get through those ridiculously long flights! Selah.