Top Five Tips for Flying With a Newborn

Top Five Tips for Flying With a Newborn

Hopefully you had a chance to read about Bump’s trip to the U.S.A. If not please click here and here to read all about it. I thought it would be really handy to do a post on my top five tips for flying with a newborn.

If you have read part one of our trip to the USA, you will know we flew first class {thanks to my husband’s obsession with Avios points}. I won’t lie, there is no doubt that flying in first class made our experience a lot easier than it would have been in economy. That aside, the tips I am going to mention will apply whatever class you are flying in. In fact they will apply to any flight you take with your little one, short-haul, medium haul or long haul.

Before I crack on though, I have had a number of comments about how Bump was on our travels. I hate to say this but he was a dream. On the outbound flight he slept the whole flight. Our internal flight was only 55 minutes and Bump pretty much dream fed the whole way. The return was a little more tricky. The flight was very bumpy. As a result Bump couldn’t sleep in the cot the crew had put up for him. Bump therefore spent the whole flight on W’s lap belted in. Bump did sleep pretty much the whole way but it wasn’t easy for W!

Right the five tips which will make your life easier.

Five Tips: Number One: Feed on takeoff and landing

We all know that when you take off and land in a plane it does funny things to your ears. Hard boiled sweets were given out on flights for this exact reason!

For a baby the change in altitude can cause them a fair amount of discomfort. I am sure all of us have been on a plane with a baby crying hysterically on take off or landing. The reason, their ears are hurting.

The best way to get around this discomfort is to feed on both take off and landing. It worked a treat for Bump. I had planned on doing this as I had read online it was the best way to settle a baby in a plane for the first time. When we boarded the cabin crew member looking after us also recommended that we fed Bump on take off and landing too.

The result: Bump didn’t even squeak once on take off or landing. He was perfectly happy.


Five Tips: Number Two: Invest in a travel bag for your buggybag 2

We decided that we would check our buggy in rather than take it through security. We transported Bump around the airport in a sling which was perfect for us. It meant we didn’t have the hassle of the buggy at security and we also didn’t have to wait for the buggy when we arrived at our final destination {and didn’t find ourselves at the back of the long immigration queue}. The bag also protected the buggy.

We invested in the Bugaboo Comfort Travel Bag {we found it cheapest here} which our Bugaboo Cameleon fitted in perfectly. Yes it was pricey but we felt it was worth it. The bag has tons of space {as you can see in the picture below} which meant we could pad it out with other items. For example, on our return we filled it with our dirty washing!

bag 1

Now that we have the dismantling and packing of the Bugaboo down to fine art {it takes about 140 seconds when you know what you are doing}, on our next flight we may be brave and dismantle the buggy at the gate.


Five Tips: Number Three: Don’t take the car seat onboard

Provided you aren’t going to use the car seat on the physical airplane seat {which you can do, see here for an example}, my tip is to actually check in the car seat.

We didn’t take the car seat onboard for our first flight but we did for the later two. On the flight from New York to Washington, D.C. the car seat fitted in the overhead locker with room to spare. It didn’t fit in the overhead locker on our return flight to the UK. Clearly, overhead lockers differ in size from aircraft to aircraft.


My big tip though is to do what we did on our outbound flight. We paid £12 to get the car seat shrink wrapped at Heathrow just to ensure it wouldn’t get damaged and there was no way it would get dirty. This is the company we used at Heathrow. The car seat came off at New York with the other bags all perfectly fine. The reason we didn’t check the car seat on our return to the UK was that the airport in Washington didn’t have a shrink-wrap service.


Five Tips: Number Four: Have outfit changes for Mummy and Daddy

As well as outfit changes for Bump {see tip five below}, we also packed a change of outfit for Mummy and Daddy. I just had visions of Bump projectile vomiting over me shortly after take off and me having to sit in my top covered in baby sick for the next 7 hours. Of course he didn’t but I felt happy in the knowledge that if he did, I had a spare set. Don’t go over board on the changes, we just had one new top each.


Five Tips: Number Five: Pack ziplock bags in your hand luggage


Tip five is to pack lots of ziplock bags into your hand luggage. Before we left the UK we packed a change of outfit in each ziplock bag {we doubled the number of outfit changes we normally have, as the altitude can do funny things with the tummies of little ones}.

This meant that once in the air, we could quickly access a whole new outfit for Bump if he had an accident. It saved us a huge amount of time as it meant we didn’t have to root around in our hand luggage for an outfit change.

The dirty nappy was then placed in the ziplock bag. The stinky dirty nappy fumes were all contained in a ziplock bag in the bin in the toilet, rather than wafting around the loo.


Five Tips: Bonus Tip


If you are flying British Airways, ask the cabin crew for a Skyflyers Log Book. BA have been offering these to young fliers for years. Bump has his and we will take it on all flights going forward. It is a lovely idea and something for Bump to look back on as he gets older.


Well there we have it. My top five tips. They are pretty obvious but hopefully you will find them useful. Just remember to keep yourself relaxed and chilled. If you are happy and chilled out, the chances are your little one will be also. I am a nervous flyer but found traveling with a newborn pretty easy. Organisation is the key. 

Do any of you have any tips of your own for flying with a little one? Do let me know by commenting below.

Happy flying!

Penny x



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