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Has anyone travelled alone with their toddler? Was it a nightmare?!

(15 Posts)
PDR Thu 15-Oct-09 16:38:28

I have some friends who want me to visit them in Berlin in Januray with my DS who will be 18 months old.

DH cannot come as we are already going on v long holiday in Feb/March and he has to work.

So, has anyone been on a shorthaul flight with a toddler?

How do you manage the baggage, buggy situation?

I can drive and park at the airport and be picked up at the other end but will need to take some baggage as the friends are childless.

Does anyone have any thoughts?

lisad123wantsherquoteinDM Thu 15-Oct-09 16:43:43

Not quite the same but travelled with my 2 dds over the summer to isle of white, dd1 is 6 nad dd2 was 22 months. It involved driving to ferry 3 hours, ferry trip which was another hour and then anoth hour the other side. TBH wasnt too bad. Took a bag of toys and drawing, some snacks, some sweeties and drink and a buggy.
Most airports will allow you you take buggy to the gate so shouldnt be too bad and so you wont have to panic about hanging onto bags and baby.
I think your be fine

LibrasBiscuitsOfFortune Thu 15-Oct-09 16:45:13

Just bookmarking this thread for tips as I am travelling along with 18month old to SA in Jan.

PDR Thu 15-Oct-09 16:46:59

Ooo Libra you are a braver woman than me!

thighsmadeofcheddar Thu 15-Oct-09 16:50:34

I took DD to Australia at 18 months and then again at 30 months (involved 2 flights 24 odd hours). It was fine. You just need to be organised for the flight with toddlertainment, not take too much hand luggage etc. I took the buggy and used it for airport walking. Once we collected the luggage from the carosel I put the buggy on the cart and sat DD on the luggage.
If someone is collecting you it will be very easy.

Bubbaluv Thu 15-Oct-09 17:03:37

I did Australia and back with an 18 month old. It's never as bad as you imagine it will be.
Germany will be a doddle.
Just push the buggy with one hand, pull your suitase with the other and then after check in you hand your carry-on/nappy bag over the back of the stroller.
Don't try to take too much with you - just send your friends a shopping list or get them to take you to a supermarket on arrival.
You'll be fine - really!

3littlefrogs Thu 15-Oct-09 17:06:54

I have done it with a 2 year old and a new born. Reins, pushchair, suitcase, sling and changing bag. I am sure you will find that the staff and fellow travellers will at least offer to hold doors open for you, if nothing else.

skinsl Thu 15-Oct-09 17:17:19

It won't be as bad as you think. I have done it a couple of times on my own and long haul with DH. Don't get a trolley, just take 1 suitcase and the buggy. Then travel lightly with your hand luggage. Get new games so she will be very interested, i got things like animal snap cards, and a friend gave me the best tip which was stickers, played that game for ages! Maybe a backpack for handluggage, keeps your hands free. And favourite snacks, grapes and raisins dont take up that much room!
I have always tried to book the flight for nap/sleep time. Sometimes it works and they fall asleep on takeoff!

blueberrysorbet Sat 17-Oct-09 20:08:15

I travelled recently long and short haul with baby and toddler alone and if it had just been the toddler- put them in the buggy and take buggy with you to the gate. at least if its busy they can't run off. hand luggage - rucksack with usual stuff- suggest baby wipes as hand gel won;t be allowed. be prepared to answer questions about people with masks on/ checking buggy at security.

get a happy meal then feed toddler when you get on plane. they will sleep after and it will amuse them while you fiddle with bags etc. let them sit by window and you sit next. we looked for tommy zoom alot on the flight itself.

take a change of clothes as they may get messy on flight with juice/ food spills. even just a clean t shirt for arrival will make a difference.

play doh, crayons, but its a short flight to germany and i found that the constant cabin crew tea. food. duty free palaver occuppies lots of time, looking at the inflight magazine.
oh, and take any bedtime teddies in your hand luggage. a certain airline LOST my ds draggy suitcase for a few days and if his nightime teddies had been in it we would have had a dreadful few days....

Sturl Sat 17-Oct-09 20:46:56

usually an airline will carry car seat/buggy additional to your allowance and free of charge. (Check Ryanair)

In terms of the buggy you can take this to the gate and then when you disembark it will be waiting for you.

The advice about food is great, and with the flight to Germany being only about an hour i doubt you'll have a problem. If possible put your child next to the window, that way they can stand on the seat and have plenty of room.

kreecherlivesupstairs Sun 18-Oct-09 09:55:31

I've made lots of flights with our dd, both long and short haul. IME, airstaff are great with kids, they tend to give them a toy or a colouring book. The only exception to this was AlbastardItalia. They left us stranded at Malpensa airport with no means of getting cash and no nappies. Dd had explosive diarroeah. We've never used them since.

LeonieBooCreepy Sun 18-Oct-09 10:13:51

Message withdrawn

curlychloe Mon 19-Oct-09 15:17:58

the tricky bit is getting to and from the airport.

Take a backpack for your luggage (you'll need to pack quite light) then you've got your hands free for the pram. I've done it, had no problem. We even survived an 8 hour delay and other travellers were really nice and helpful.

flyingdolphin Mon 19-Oct-09 15:50:04

Take something chewy (sweets are best) in case his ears hurt during takeoff/landing, as chewing something relieves the pressure. Lots of kids get pain from the sudden change in pressure when they are little, and it can mean a solid 20 mins or so of screaming before landing if nothing is done about it.
Drinking water helps too.

Otherwise, I have always found it fine travelling with dcs, ds (5) tends to fall asleep and dd (6) just finds it all really exciting and loves it. Try to get a window seat.

PDR Thu 22-Oct-09 12:46:00

Thanks for the advice everyone!!!

We will be going to Berlin

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