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would we be mad to do a long haul holiday with an 18mo?

(11 Posts)
ppandj Fri 29-Jan-16 13:16:01

Just that really. Looking at the holidays we are, DS wouldn't have his own seat on the plane and it would be roughly 9-11hours on the flight. We don't need to go long haul, but we're interested if it is really that bad? Be honest!

Felyne Fri 29-Jan-16 13:30:20

I would pay for his own seat for longhaul, if you can. 18 months is a tricky age to do it because they don't understand why they need to stay in one place for ages. My 3 year old struggled recently!
I've done longhaul with my kids aged (at various times) 7 months, 11 months, 21 months, 3 years 3 months, 3 years 5 months, 4 years 4 months, 6 years.
Age less than four was trickiest but if you manage a night flight where they are tired and may well sleep the whole time it certainly helps!
It does depend a lot on the child though and how easily amused they might be by books and electronic tablets.

ToElleWithIt Fri 29-Jan-16 13:42:34

We did 8 hours with a 19 month old and it was okay. It's definitely hard work, but it was doable. If you aren't booking a seat for him I suggest getting to the airport earlyish and asking the check in staff really nicely if there are any spare seats. We managed to get a row of 3 to ourselves both times which really helped. As Felyne said, take off and landing where they must be seated are trickiest, so save a tablet or raisins or some kind of treat for then. It does get exhausting entertaining that age and even though we took an evening flight he held out until 1am. I would suggest taking turns entertaining him and when it's not your "turn" try to switch off and watch a bit of the movie or something. Definitely doable though.

snowypenguin Fri 29-Jan-16 13:45:33

Its as bad as you make it so bad would be:

No seat for child of 18 months so sat on your knee
Day time flights
Sitting next to someone with said child on your knee.

Good would be:

18 month old with their own seat - although has to be on your knee for TO and Landing, they can sit and watch inflight or table stuff and even lie out a little for a snooze.
Night time flights - hopefully they will sleep for most of it.

ppandj Fri 29-Jan-16 13:57:45

Flight out would be a daytime one so that is the main one to get through by the sounds of it? We would stay over at the airport the night before to ensure that the actual time spent travelling all in one go is less, that way we could check luggage etc in the night before.

If we were to do it, it would be November this year so obviously we have no idea what DS will be like then, but he is a very happy, active and energetic baby. I wouldn't put it past him to hold out on sleep the whole way there. Can it be turned into a fun game for toddlers, or are they unlikely to get excited by planes at that age? (Sorry for naivety, he's my first baby.)

mummymeister Fri 29-Jan-16 15:49:07

depends where you want to go and why you are going there. your toddler wont really care if he has you and the beach so if its somewhere that you really want to go then I would just go for it. agree with others. must have their own seat and worth booking the extra legroom so that they can play on the floor etc.

Salmiak Fri 29-Jan-16 15:53:25

It's perfectly possible. Just pack one of the hand luggage cases full of his favourite books, food, toys and I pad. Plenty of nappies and 2 changes of clothes. I actually find overnight flights easiest as they sleep through most of it rather than wanting to run around and burn off energy

OldBeanbagz Fri 29-Jan-16 15:58:46

We did Far East when DS was 22 months old but i paid for a seat for him. Even though he wasn't a big toddler, i felt it would have been uncomfortable us any other way. Outbound was a daytime flight and i think he coped pretty well as i had plenty of books, a flip photo album and a few little toys (plus the inflight movies), inbound was overnight which was a lot better.

I generally tired my kids out as much as they could at the airport so they slept for a big chunk of the flight. In my experience they don't get that excited about being in a plane.

EagleRay Fri 29-Jan-16 16:00:36

We've done it a couple of times - DD was 15 and 24m at the time (if hrs approx 10 and 12 hrs I think). Didn't pay for a seat as under 2, but more than once she got allocated her own one anyway, which was a bonus.

Can't remember how we managed but DP does like an aisle seat due to longer legs so he does most of the toilet trips smile

We don't think too much about it - just a small discomfort in order to have a nice holiday.

Now, as for jet lagged toddler, THAT is something else shock

Heatherbell1978 Sat 30-Jan-16 12:58:08

Flying to Oz in 5 wks with an 18 month old (2 flights, 6 hrs and 11 hrs) so will let you knowconfused
Longer flight is through the night so I think DS will sleep.
Just be prepared. I've been reading loads of forums on what to bring etc but we really wanted to go to Perth to visit friends (who have same aged kids) so we thought f**k it!!

MyBigFatGreekYoghurt Sun 31-Jan-16 21:55:41

Is there no chance you could spring for a seat at least for the day time leg?

You need an iPad and a lot of snacks. I've done long haul when ds was 13m and 23m the 23m time we bought a seat and would not have done it otherwise.

If you're willing to put up with a painful 12 hours it's worth it for a nice holiday.

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