Booking a flight, packing, rushing to the airport, and settling in for a long flight is stressful enough as it is. Add a baby to the mix, and it’s enough to make a mom’s head spin. But with a little preparation, a serene mindset, and the help of a few of your favorite Nuk UAE baby supplies, baby’s first flight is sure to feel a lot less intimidating.
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Essential Tips for Flying with an Infant
Here are a few useful tips on how to make your baby’s first flight as pleasant an experience for everyone involved as possible.
1. Checking in with Your Baby’s Doctor
If your baby’s readiness for a flight is causing you anxiety, a call to your doctor will likely be the thing to put your mind to rest. Because your pediatrician knows your little one well and understands their medical history, they’re a great source of information.
Your doctor can provide advice on baby immunizations, medications and safe travel. This is especially important if you’re traveling with a newborn, as their immune systems might not be fully developed to fight off germs, or they may find it harder to endure the pressurized cabin environment.
2. Understanding the Regulations for Breast Milk and Formula
Different airlines in the UAE have different policies when it comes to traveling with packed breast milk or formula. Be sure to do your research and determine what the rules are for your carrier before taking off.
Also, some cooling and breastfeeding accessories may require additional screening at the airport security checkpoints. So, you might want to pack them separately for quick access during check-in.
3. Booking a Nonstop Flight
When booking your flight, consider the advantages of a nonstop journey. Changing planes mid-journey can put some undue stress on your baby, as it can disrupt their sleep and call for additional feedings.
If nonstop flights are unavailable or too expensive, look for flights with longer layovers. This will give you a little break to feed your baby, change diapers and stretch your legs before hopping onto the next plane. It might also provide some time for your baby to nap.
4. Aligning Flight Times with Your Baby’s Sleep Schedule
To minimize any disruption to your baby’s routine, try to align your flight time with their regular sleep schedule. Midday or late evening flights often coincide with nap times or bedtime.
While this won’t guarantee that your baby will sleep on the plane, it increases the chances of them being calm and restful during the flight.
5. Choosing the Right Seat
Opting for basic economy tickets saves money, but the trade-off on some airlines is that you won’t be able to select your seat. So, try to steer clear of these options.
And when choosing your seat, an aisle seat is usually best for traveling with infants. Think of all those times you’ll need to get up to soothe a fussy baby or change their diaper. Aisle or bulkhead (seats at the front of each cabin section) seats gives you more room to move around.
Some airlines also offer bassinets for lengthy flights, which come in handy if your baby can fit comfortably.
6. Packing Essentials for Potential Delays
Flight delays are not uncommon. So if you’re waiting at the airport or on a lengthy layover, you can’t risk running out of baby supplies. Pack more diapers, wipes, clothes, baby food, and formula than you think you’ll need. It’s also a good idea to pack a few small toys or books to entertain your baby should the flight be delayed or if they become restless during the journey.
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7. Soothing your Baby During Takeoff and Landing
Takeoff and landing can cause discomfort in babies due to changes in cabin pressure. This is because their Eustachian tubes, which are located in their middle ears and equalize air pressure on the inside and outside of the eardrums, are smaller and still developing.
You can help alleviate this by feeding your baby. The swallowing motion helps reduce ear pain and pressure, and if your baby resists feeding, sucking on a pacifier can serve the same purpose.
Some moms also find that wearing their baby in a carrier helps them feel secure and comforted during takeoff and landing.
8. Diaper Changes and in-flight Restrooms
Dealing with diaper changes during a flight can be tricky. Aeroplane restrooms are notoriously small, making diaper changes feel a bit like a juggling act.
Try to change your baby’s diaper just before boarding. If a diaper change is necessary during a longer flight, bring only the essentials (a diaper, a small pack of wipes, and a disposable bag for the used diaper) into the restroom.
9. Asking for Help
Finally, If you’re traveling alone, you’ll probably need help. So, feel free to ask your flight attendants or fellow passengers for assistance with luggage, stroller storage, or opening doors. You’ll be amazed how many people are keen to help a new mom out.
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Mom on Board
A baby’s first flight is an exciting milestone for any mom. And it need not be a trying experience. With a bit of preparation, the right supplies, and some patience, your first trip with your little one can be as smooth a journey as possible.