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Long haul travel with infant

(12 Posts)
Karls88 Wed 03-Feb-16 15:27:49

Hello everyone, I was hoping for some advice on long haul travelling with infants.

The OH and I are going to New Zealand next summer and our DD will be 22/23 months by the time we go/return. I know that under 2s can sit on your lap during the flight but this is not really my idea of fun. Therefore I'm planning to pay for her to have her own seat, but have been reading on the airlines website (we'll probably be flying with Emirates) that we will need a child safety belt or seat (one with a 2 point belt system). Has anyone ever used either of these on a flight? Will the child safety belt be suitable for a child under 2? And if not, where do I find one of these 2 point fixing car seats?
This is the link for the airlines safety advice for travelling with children

We also plan to rent a motor home out there. I haven't looked yet but presume I can get a car seat with the rental or use the one from the flight (if we go with this option).

Any help/advice will be much appreciated.

AttilaTheMeerkat Wed 03-Feb-16 17:14:33

I would think your DD will be on your lap for both take off and landing in any event (they will give you an extender seat belt). You could bring along a seat cushion or pillow for more comfort (also they would be a lot lighter to carry around).

The website seems to be suggesting that you can use a car seat or harness but neither are mandatory.

TBH I would not take a car seat to fit onto the aircraft seat; those aircraft aisles are narrow (you will have enough to carry as it is) and it is extremely difficult to find a car seat that will actually fit the seat. Also you may well find that this seat will not be able to be used in NZ anyway because they may have their own requirements.

snowypenguin Wed 03-Feb-16 20:23:39

Your DD will just need to be on your lap for TO and landing.

mangocoveredlamb Wed 03-Feb-16 20:30:18

I considered getting one of these for DD when we travel last year to Canada, but I couldn't afford a seat for her in the end!

PatriciaHolm Thu 04-Feb-16 18:38:43

You don't need to supply anything. They all give you a special lap extender belt you put in your belt and then around her for take off and landing, when she has to be on your lap. Then she can sit in her own seat (you'll have to put her back on you strapped in for any turbulence)

Any other seat or harness is optional.

Artandco Thu 04-Feb-16 18:43:49

You just book a seat, no harness needed. They sit on your lap for take off and landing, and have own seat throughout otherwise to eat, sleep, play, watch tv. Def get own seat it means they have space to relax and so do you

specialsubject Thu 04-Feb-16 18:53:04

re the campervan (and rather you than me in NZ...) - I think NZ car seat standards are different so you'll need to rent one with it. Not all vans can take baby seats so make sure you discuss before booking.

Boleh Thu 04-Feb-16 19:15:33

As someone who's flown quite a lot for work and seen lots of rather horrifying pictures of the aftermath of unexpected turbulence, I think if you could find a way to keep your toddler at least somewhat restrained in their seat as much as possible, at least while they are sleeping it would be wise. I know it's not as comfy but I always have my seatbelt on when I'm in my seat and would think it best for a child to do the same if at all possible. Disclaimer - I don't have a toddler and have no idea if this is achievable!

Karls88 Thu 04-Feb-16 19:31:35

Thanks for the advice everyone, I think I'll speak to the airline (whichever we choose) when we book anyway and see what they say. Just wanted to know if anyone on here had any experiences they could share. Defo going to buy at seat for her though judging by most peoples comments!

specialsubject - is there something about campervans/motorhomes in NZ that I should know...?

specialsubject Fri 05-Feb-16 11:36:59

assuming you are familiar with campervans, the issues in NZ are:

weather - it is summer there at the moment, have a look!
twisty roads/gas guzzling/slow progress - if the van is self-contained it is big.
theft - the one big problem as an NZ tourist. Vans are vulnerable.

also whatever you are driving, don't drive it for at least 24 hours after arriving. NZ has a terrible road death rate and tired tourists add to it.

AttilaTheMeerkat Fri 05-Feb-16 14:31:12

FCO travel advice re NZ is worth a read, particularly this section as you are thinking about hiring a camper van. At the very least you need to read the NZ Road Code first (also mentioned in the link below):-

specialsubject Fri 05-Feb-16 14:38:59

good point.

at least they raised the driving age from 15 to 16....

when I was first arrived I was strongly warned against driving at night - not an issue as a tourist because I wanted to see the scenery. That is wise advice. I saw some horrific driving behaviour and many rolled cars.

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