Flying can be crazy enough these days without the added stress of keeping your kids happy during the trip. There are some things you shouldn’t be without if you’re traveling with small children.
Snacks and juice boxes: Sure, they serve peanuts, pretzels, sodas, and water on the plane, but if there’s something your son or daughter especially enjoys to eat (that you can use as an, ahem, bribe for being quiet and not kicking the seat in front of them). Plus what you pack may be a little healthier than the options on the plane.
As an adult, I was a little nervous about spilling the cup of soda on myself on my last flight, so if you can take individual kid-friendly drinks in your bag it might be wise. One bump and that cup of liquid could spill all over you, your child, and maybe even your electronic devices. It might be hard to get either of you to quiet down if that happens. The TSA siteÂ makes it sound as if taking juice onto the plane will not be a problem, even if it doesn’t fit within the 3-1-1 guidelines.
Coloring or activity book and crayons: Ah, the old standby. Crayons and coloring books are so portable and can keep kids entertained for hours. If you purchase a new book and some fancy crayons (glitter crayons are magical in my house), you’re increasing your odds of a much more pleasant trip without spending a lot of money.
A change of clothes and a hoodie, sweater, or jacket: You never know what the temperature will be like on the plane, so layers are a must. When traveling with kids, it almost goes without saying that if you don’t take a spare outfit, something will spill. If you do take them, you’re helping tilt the odds in your favor that you won’t necessarily need them.
Baby wipes: Messes like to pop up in the most inconvenient places and times. This is why those extra clothes are important, but you’ll also want to be able to clean their hands and faces, especially if your child is really bothered by being sticky or messy. You can use the wipes to spot clean the clothes if you don’t necessarily need to completely change them.
Handheld video game, smartphone with games, or Kindle with games: This will work best if you have something available that you usually don’t allow your kid to have access to. My phone, for example, would be perfect, because I reserve it for special “I really need you to be quiet and still right now” occasions. If you have something similar, do not leave it at home.
What do you like to pack in your carry-on to keep your kids entertained during a flight?
Photo credit: caribb