I am so pleased to say that we survived our first time flying with Evie. We were terrified about flying with her as we just were not sure what was going to happen. We figured it would go one of two ways a) she would do well, and maybe just get a bit fussy but be easy to calm down or b) turn into the Hulk and have a terrifying melt down and be screaming the whole entire time.
Thankfully she did not turn into a mini version of the green guy, but we did go into things with a game plan.
We parked our car in long term parking, we didn’t have anyone who could drop us off or pick us up, and got a great deal by booking that online ahead of time. From the parking lot we loaded Evie into our stroller and some of our bags too. We were picked up by a shuttle and taken right to where we needed to be for going into the airport. Evie loved the little shuttle bus ride.
We kept Evie in the stroller in order to keep us as close to hands free as possible. Check in was a breeze because we’d done so the day before, and selected our seats. All we had to do was have our bags weighed for the 2 we checked on, and we got a door to door tag for our stroller.
Getting through security was easy. At one point we had to take Evie out of the stroller so they could thoroughly check it. I had to walk through the metal detector holding her. Having the stroller definitely helped for lugging our carry on bags and the diaper bag.
Now the one thing I would recommend if you have an almost 2 year old like we did at the time is to book their seat. It’s worth the extra amount if you can afford it, this way you don’t have to stress, and pray that there will be an empty seat for your kid to sit in during the fight. Apparently some companies will refund you if there were empty seats and you paid for a kid who could be a lap child.
We strategically booked a window and aisle seat and prayed no one took the middle. We had Evie marked as a lap child. Come boarding time someone had taken the middle seat between us. Wouldn’t it be great if you could some how warn people that there is a lap child in that row and they might not want to sit there?
We didn’t know this til at the gate to board. Meanwhile we had been wasting some time. We got dinner, and found Evie a pair of kids headphones. She loved them because they had Minnie Mouse on them. Part of our plan for the actual flight was to distract her with some shows if needed. Thanks to the headphones no one else would hear her kids shows.
The best part of traveling with a young kid is getting to go on the plane first. The flight attendant let us on even earlier so we could get settled and make sure our stroller was ready to be loaded at the door. We were then informed that there were only 2 empty seats on the flight. That stressed me out a bit, but both seats were near us.
Thankfully the gentleman who had taken the seat between us was very kind and offered to move to another seat behind his family. I couldn’t thank him enough. Having a seat for Evie was a huge blessing. We were prepared for battle, but didn’t need to worry. During take off and landing, Evie had to be held by one of us like you hold a baby to burp them. She wasn’t a fan but we just kept asking for cuddles and she gave them.
Besides having an Ipod loaded with her favorite shows we also had snacks galore. So long as everything is sealed and labeled properly it was ok to bring through security. Since Evie is a toddler we were also allowed to bring our own milk in sippy cups. This made a big difference in keeping her happy. We also walked the aisle a few times so she could get her energy out. She won the other passengers over when she passed and said hi to all of them.
What surprised me was that she closed the window and didn’t want to look out as we were flying. Maybe she doesn’t like heights like her mom? She also never screamed in pain from pressure in her ears. I still remember my first flight and screaming in pain they hurt so much. This never happened with her. She did cheer and clap when the plane bumped as we landed.
We also purposely picked seats near the back of the plane. We are first on and last off. We were able to take our time getting packed up and off the plane. Evie said bye and thank you to all the staff as we left the flight. Our luggage wasn’t even down on the carousel yet when we got there. It was nice to get to relax heading over there.
All around we had a great time flying with a toddler. Key thing is definitely being ready for their food needs and entertainment wants. I’m actually looking forward to traveling with her again in the future.