Friday, July 26, 2013

Tips for Flying with Twins (toddler age)

There is a lot out there for tips on flying with toddlers but not as much for flying with twins, so I thought I would share on here some tips I came up with after I flew (by myself) for the first time with my almost 2 year old twins. I also asked around to my friends that have flown with little children for advice before I left so some of these tips are a thanks to them!!

These tips would apply to those who might be flying with a toddler and a baby and some for even just flying with 1 child.

1. Instead of bringing your large double stroller, use a small umbrella stroller and a baby carrier of some sort. We use an ergo because it can hold a toddler! The reason for this is it would be stressful to have to manage a large stroller (opening and closing to get through security check and at the end of the gate) especially while other people are waiting around you. If you have the small umbrella stroller you can open and close that easily and it is so light. You have to remember (if you are flying by yourself with your twins/toddlers, as in no other adult is with you) that you only have 2 hands which will probably be occupied with your twins and keeping them from running off.

2. Snacks!!! Having snacks around is a great way to distract your twins and to keep them occupied. It's better to be prepared and have them on hand then to have to buy them when you get there. You DON'T want to have to go into the convenience store area unless it's an emergency! Just think of ALL the things your kiddos could pull off the shelves in there! :)

3. Pack a few new toys/books. This is also a great way to occupy your kids attention. You can just pick up a few things at the Dollar store to throw in your carry on

4. Hide a few of their very favorite small toys and books the week leading up to your trip and then pull them out while you are on the plane or waiting in the airport. This one worked great for us. You know they like it already so you can pretty much count on it to help you out.

5. Ipad or no Ipad? A lot of tips I got was to bring that along (if you have it) and download games and podcasts to help keep their attention. I didn't like having it with me. I pulled it out on our first flight and never took it out again (3 more flights total). In my case ,with the age kids I have, it just caused them to fight over who held it, they couldn't hear it b/c of how loud the plane is, and they didn't get how to do the games yet (too young). I think with older kids it would be great and probably if you just had 1 toddler with you, but NOT with 2! :)

6. Don't over pack! That saying where less is more, really is true in most situations. I over packed my carry on with snacks, toys, sweatshirts, blankets, ipad, extra diapers/wipes, etc. on the way to my parents house and didn't even want to get into my bag b/c it was packed so full I had to take so much stuff out just to get to the thing I wanted. For my flights home, I put half the stuff I had in my checked bag and it made all the difference. I do think it's a good idea to have their sippy cup and also if they have a blankie or stuffed animal that helps to calm them down.

7. Don't be cheap and check your bag. This just helps since you don't have an extra pair of hands.

8. Accept help if someone offers or just ask for help (obviously, use your discretion) Most people really do want to help if they can when they see you have your hands full. I asked a lady to buckle my strap on my ergo b/c I couldn't get to it. She was more than happy to.

9. Flights with layovers, good or bad? I think it is good if the layover isn't too long. On my flight, I had a layover there and back. I liked having a break from the plane and having 2 short flights to entertain kids then 1 longer one. This is just my opinion. It is a little tricky getting them off and on the planes, but I personally liked it.

10. Learn from your experience. I thought flying with my twins had really stressful moments (once almost in tears), but overall it was great! I'll take it over a 13 hr car drive to visit family! I learned what to change and what to keep the same. Try to relax and go with the flow as much as possible. Kids can be hard to travel with but it can be fun if you are prepared!

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