Ocean Family Adventure

Flying With a Baby (Newborn to Toddlers)

flying with a baby toddler plane ride
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on email

Flying with a baby is really quite an adventure. We’ve taken our baby on 6 flights, with 2 of those being long-haul international flights. It’s more about being prepared and realistic than anything else. This means that flying with a baby doesn’t have to be this overwhelming crazy thing. You need to know how to do it, what to prepare for, and you’ll be in the air in no time.

There are a few main areas for this blog because obviously flying with a toddler is going to be different than a newborn.

baby playing on flying plane

Flying with a newborn
(0-8 weeks)

This is, in my opinion, THE EASIEST age to fly. I think these were our BEST flights with Aurora…aside from the difficult task of getting our 3-week-old to keep her head up, eyes open, neutral expression and looking at the camera for her passport photos of course!

For our Canada-Australia trip, she slept the WHOLE way. Honestly, I don’t even think she knew the difference. It was just naps in mum’s arms the whole way, which at 5-weeks-old, she was totally fine with (so was I). 

We packed a few changes of clothes and all the nappies we needed. Also, we packed our cloth wipes, wet bag for dirties, and some blankets for warmth.

baby sleeping on plane, newborn

I would recommend packing these items:

  • 10 nappies for a 24hr trip (we went through about 8 a day so a couple extra is good for padding)
  • 15 wipes (we use cloth, and find that 1 is enough for most nappy changes)
  • 2 changes of clothes (we didn’t use them but having changes is good for possible explosions and anything else!)
  • 1 wet bag for dirties
  • 2 blankets
  • 1 pack of disposable antibacterial wipes

For more tips on packing your nappy bag, check out this blog I wrote.

Flying with a young baby
(2-6 months)

Next, is young babies. They really start to step it up a notch for planes. It was still relatively easy, and this time we had a carrier too which was amazing. Scrap the pram and the car seat. Check them at the gate, or don’t bring them at all!

baby walking towards plane, dad holding her

We put Aurora in the carrier for our 10 hour travel day and it was perfect. I was hands-free and so, I didn’t have to worry about the baby’s safety or wellbeing as she was right there with me. Furthermore, if they’re big enough to face outwards, all the people they’ll see in the airport will be enough entertainment that you likely won’t need a whole lot of toys for them either.

When you get onto the plane itself, having some toys for entertainment is a great idea, and being prepared to do a few laps of the aisles if it’s a long flight.

For this age, I’d recommend packing:

  • 8 nappies
  • 12 wipes
  • 3 changes of clothes (teething drool is real!)
  • 2 bibs
  • 1 wet bag
  • 1 pack of disposable antibacterial wipes
  • 2-3 small toys for entertainment (maybe a book too!)
  • Anything to help with teething

Flying with an older baby
(6-12 months)

Following on, this 6-12 month window can be where things get interesting. These kids are on the move in some capacity or likely want to be. They are extra curious and are keen to discover everything they can.

This is actually the perfect reason TO TRAVEL with your kids. If you’re looking for a push in the right direction, you can see a blog on why you should be travelling with your kids.

baby on a plane in aisle

Also at this age, they aren’t quite old enough to learn about the plane, where they’re going, or have general conversations with. If your kids fall into this age range, plane rides will be all about toys and playing games that don’t require too much space. You could also add the odd bit of TV (we all do it, and in moderation, it’s OKAY).

These are the items I pack for this age:

  • 6 nappies
  • 10 wipes
  • 3 changes of clothes
  • 2 bibs
  • 1 wet bag
  • 1 pack of disposable antibacterial wipes
  • A handful of toys, and perhaps a tablet that is charged (don’t forget the headphones)

Flying with a toddler
(12+ months)

kids on a plane pressing buttons, flying with kids

Finally, toddlers. The most curious, loud, and potentially difficult age yet! Some people say it’s easier to not travel at all during this age, but I believe it can be done!

When flying with a baby (or toddler I guess they now go by), guides often mentioned the 1 toy per hour rule. Also, bringing in a couple of new toys that haven’t been seen yet is great. Maybe bringing some drawing items or books if that’s what your child likes.

Here’s my packing list for toddlers:

  • 3 nappies (depends on age, you know your kids best!)
  • 10 wipes (toddlers are notoriously messy)
  • 4 changes of clothes (you could even have them help you pick what to wear)
  • 1 wet bag
  • 1 pack of disposable antibacterial wipes
  • 1 toy per hour, books, paper, pencils and also, the tablet and headphones
toddler on plane with mum flying on a plane with a baby

Of course, these are all recommendations and each baby is different. If you have new suggestions or MUST HAVE items for plane rides with babies, please send me an email and let me know.

Flying with a baby can TOTALLY be done. In fact, people are doing it all around the world, every day. What are you waiting for? Become one of them!

Booking flights for kids is a whole other topic that can be stressful when you’re trying to book a getaway. I’ve JUST finished a blog post for that and will link it HERE when it’s done.

Finally, check out Instagram and Twitter to see the latest and greatest of our travel adventures with our baby.