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Travelling Long Haul with 7 month old

23 replies

Chista · 09/01/2020 14:46

Hi

Not sure whether this was the best place to post, however, we will be travelling long haul with a 7 month old in the coming months. Any tips or advice would be much appreciated.

Thanks in advance

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AttilaTheMeerkat · 09/01/2020 15:06

Your child may well be too big at that time for a bassinet.

In which direction are you flying; east or west from the UK?. This will also have a bearing.

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bluebird3 · 09/01/2020 15:30

I've done it twice with my 4 month old and then when she was 8. Bring snacks and lots of new/different toys to interchange throughout the flight. Give as much floor time before the flight as possible. Bring a bottle or breastfeed during takeoff and landing to help with ears popping. Bring a dummy if you use one. May be useful to have a sling for walking around the plane if they're unsettled. If the plane isn't full and they can give you a spare seat next to you it helps soooo much to have somewhere for them to sit for a bit.

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exexpat · 09/01/2020 15:39

Take several changes of clothes for the baby and at least one for yourself, even if only emergency-use t-shirt and leggings. It is not nice sitting in sick-covered clothes for 10 or 12 hours if your baby throws up all over you early in the flight (got this tip from a friend with DC older than mine and I had reason to be grateful I had paid attention on at least one occasion).

Also take a few big Ziploc bags to seal any damp or smelly clothes in.

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Chista · 09/01/2020 15:53

Thank you @bluebird3 and @exexpat

How many bottles did you take with you? How did you sterilise? How did you cope with making up feeds if you were bottle feeding.

Change of clothes - duly noted and also.

Sadly we are flying with Air France whose family policy isn't very um family friendly so we do not know where we are sitting, if we are sitting together or whether we will get a bassinet.

Have you heard of Steribottle - are they any good?

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Chista · 09/01/2020 16:08

Thanks @AttilaTheMeerkat

We are travelling west. We check airline bassinet policy ans it states 70cm/10kg - I hope he wont be too big for this.

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ilovethatshow · 09/01/2020 16:12

You can order ready made formula bottles to pick up after security from boots to take with you. We travelled to New York when ds was 9 months and they gave us a spare seat so he just watched an iPad and fell asleep.

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SpicyTomatos · 09/01/2020 16:14

Travel at night. Don't expect to sleep. Do expect to be standing. Eat in shifts if you are travelling with someone. Use a baby carrier.

The hard bit is when you arrive jetlagged and exhausted and you have a lively, well slept baby who wants to crawl everywhere.

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Mylittlepony374 · 09/01/2020 16:18

At 7 months also I would take travel sized neurofen or paracetamol.... unfortunately I learned the hard way about a teething infant on a long haul flight.....
If you can get into daylight/sun as much as possible when you arrive (walks during day, sit outside for breakfast etc) you will get over the jet lag much quicker.

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SaharaRoxy · 09/01/2020 16:22

Lots of smallish toys, pop up books, I know it's not great but iPad for travelling really does help!! Lots of snacks - Cheerios, baby puffs, cut up fruit, dummy if you use them.
I actually clipped toys on dummy
Clips and attached them to me, the belt and the seat so that things weren't getting lost.

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Sexnotgender · 09/01/2020 16:24

I flew to South Africa when DS was 7 months, take a sling if you can. Even if you don’t get a bassinet try and book the bulkhead. Hopefully you’ve booked night flights as sooo much easier!

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Ricekrispie22 · 09/01/2020 16:24

Take a hat to pull over eyes and ears to help with sleep and to keep head warm if the air con is too strong.
Order all your food and nappies/baby wipes that you will need while you’re at the airport (both ends) and during the flight from Boots for collection after all security checks. You can order baby milk, food, nappies, bottles, suntan lotion, makeup – basically anything they sell. When checking out, select delivery to store. This will hopefully save you some time in the security queue as you will have less liquids to be checked and will save room in your carry-on luggage.
We found a really good Lamaze toy with a suction pad that we could stick on the tray table.
I've used this baby sleep balm for the plane and it works a treat //www.babipur.co.uk/lgr-organic-baby-sleep-balm.html There are loads of other baby sleep balms on the market that are a bit cheaper. I think Boots sells some.
If you're taking a dummy, bring a dummy clip so it doesn't fall on the floor.
Don't forget bibs and beakers and a few plastic spoons.
Even though you'll probably get given blankets by the airline on the flight, still take LO's own blanket as it will have a familiar smell and texture.
Put hand luggage in a back pack so you have your hands free.
You should try and give your baby a drink whilst taking off and landing to relieve any pressure in his/her ears. Either that or encourage them to suck their thumb (that works for longer!). Take satchets of Calpol and ibuprofen with your hand luggage just in case.
Some parents prefer to sit near the bathrooms at the back, but it can be slightly louder, this might be useful depending on how your baby responds to noise, take this into consideration. I like an aisle seat when flying with kids as I can easily get up to get things and go to the toilets, but if you’re breastfeeding you may prefer the window seat for privacy.
Good toys to take:
A set of nesting eggs or stacking cups- can be used for playing hide and seek with snacks!
The humble balloon! I always pack a few, and there you have a game of catch whilst waiting for a plane or train!
Finger Puppets
ELC star links
Fisher Price snap lock caterpillar
John Lewis discovery cube
Sticklebricks
Edushape curiosity cube

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Dietcokeaddiction · 09/01/2020 16:43

We flew to the States when DD was 7 months and again when she was 9 months. It's hard to find a night flight to the States - ours was during the day both times. We had bulkhead seats and a bassinet but she wouldn't have fitted in the bassinet lying down. She wasn't a napper anyway and she literally stayed awake the entire flight both times (slept on the return flights). However the bassinet was really useful to sit her in when we needed to get stuff out of bags etc - and to put books/toys in seven she was on our laps.
It was fine. It was much harder flying with them between the ages of 1 and 3.

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AttilaTheMeerkat · 09/01/2020 17:57

Which airport are you flying from?.

You're going west so most flights that depart to the US etc go in daylight hours. The return flight is usually overnight arriving into the UK the next day.

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AttilaTheMeerkat · 09/01/2020 18:06

Did you book directly with Air France?.

If finances allow I would purchase a seat for your child both ways. Do not rely on the airline to fully provide for any of you. Be very careful if the crew heat up milk, it can be far too hot initially.

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Chista · 09/01/2020 18:55

Thanks all, some really good tips that I will take on board. Its an early morning flight and a nightime return flight. Air France stated that I cannot book a seat with an infant, these are assigned, I offered to pay extra too. I should have booked a seat and then contacted them for an infant fare - I only just found out that this is a better way of booking with airlines.

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Chista · 09/01/2020 19:51

@AttilaTheMeerkat no we booked with Virgin, didn't realise it was a codeshare until the tickets came through.

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badg3r · 09/01/2020 23:12

I think 7 months is quite a good age to travel! 18 months is much more exhausting in my experience. I second PP about a few spare clothes FOR YOU, including underwear!

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Chista · 09/01/2020 23:50

Thanks @badg3r I would not have thought of that either.

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Sexnotgender · 10/01/2020 06:26

I agree that 7 months is a great age to travel. I was dreading our South Africa trip (was for a family emergency) but actually he was great. He was 8 months when we flew home and still manageable. There were several people wrangling toddlers though and that looked much harder!

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okiedokieme · 15/01/2020 07:24

Try not to worry, I flew with mine a lot, including a baby and a toddler, you just have to have distractions and accept you will be walking up and down a lot. My top tip is to accept the offers of cuddles from whoever offers, some flights I barely had mine, there was always ladies (typically 60 ish) desperate to help me (I lived overseas but travelled to see my parents a lot)

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Chista · 15/01/2020 08:26

Thanks @okiedokieme. Trying not to worry too much but its just freaking me out that we do not know where we will be sitting and will I remember all the stuff to take that has been advised on here, will we get stroppy passengers. We had an absolutely horrendous flight on Air France before and hope not to repeat the experience now that we have a little one.

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PeaOp · 15/01/2020 10:28

I agree with sling- also useful when boarding/ travelling through airport so you have hands free. Be aware they will ask you to take baby out for security (even if sleeping).

Do you have a travel pushchair? We used a babyzen yo-yo right to gate then baby in sling and Pram folded up and put in overhead locker - made our transfer much easier as well as we had it directly at landing.

We also took a small blanket we didn’t mind getting ruined to put on the floor everywhere we went (at gate/on plane) so baby could safely be on the floor.

We also paid for lounge access at LHR and our transfer airport. So worth it as we found a little corner and barricaded our newly crawling small person in to play before and between flights.

It wasn’t nearly as bad as we thought it would be. Enjoy!

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Chista · 15/01/2020 10:49

I have to try and get him used to a sling/carrier, he absolutely hates them and screams the house down when I put him in one. It seems that its the top tip

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