toy recommendations for planes ?
Cawthorne · 20/03/2001 14:57
we're taking our very active 18 month old on a 9 hour flight. Can anyone recommend toys to keep him occupied, I am dreading 9 hours of crawling under seats to retrieve pieces that he's dropped !
Cos · 20/03/2001 17:06
we flew to jamaica with twin 22 month olds and the best activity was those reuseable sticker scenes
and they loved the seat back video
the flight was actually fine, dont dread it too much. What airport are you using?
Ems · 20/03/2001 19:44
Hi Cawthorne. We did florida with a 23 month old. I wrapped up little things for him to open every so often, he enjoyed the opening bit. He especially liked the magic board from ELC, draw your piccy and then pull up the plastic and it disappears. Got new books of his favourites, a new kipper book and a mini set of Thomas stories. Little box of smarties. we went with Virgin and they gave little ones a goody bag, inside was a little Gromit figure and he played with that for AGES. Its always the thing you least expect that they like! The flight seemed to go really quickly so dont feel too worried.
Rhiannon · 21/03/2001 13:44
Books, crayons, paper, cassette player & tapes (singing), little photo album with old photos, magazines - Teletubbies etc. Both of mine just liked walking up and down which was fine as they were not going anywhere.
We get in a filthy mess everytime we go on a long haul flight. Virgin give you a big bag full of all sorts of junk like ear plugs, socks, eye shields, it should take about an hour to work his/her way through that lot. Makes a nice swimming bag when you get home.
I found it hard work with an 18 month old, take clean t-shirts. Put his slippers on as the continual scraping of his shoes on your skin hurts after a while.
Make sure you pre-book a child's meal as they won't presume you want one. Foods pretty good for an airline. I always take a bottle of watered down squash on the plane as we always seem to be drinking. Try to avoid sitting by the toilets 9 hours of continuous queueing and pooing takes its toll on your nostrils. The further you sit nearer the front, the quicker you'll get off.
Don't get on the plane first as it just means you'll sit for an hour B4 it takes off.
Marina · 21/03/2001 14:47
The latest Blooming Marvellous cat has a padded vest thing that the child wears and you can then connect it safely and comfortably to your seat belt. It looks much better than the awful time we had trying to keep ours still using just one length of webbing during landing and takeoff.
Stickers and a little book of family/friends snaps kept ours quiet for two hours virtually non-stop. The daft array of plastic tubs within tubs you get with the "food" was also of interest.
To Rhiannon's advice of boarding late I'd add but check in early if you can then run him into the ground in the airport. He might sleep better...You may also be offered a seat with a bit more legroom if you arrive early.
Rhiannon · 21/03/2001 14:52
And another thing, Virgin now do something called Twilight check-in where you can check in the evening B4 your flight between 3.30pm and 9pm. It might help as you then only have to be at the airport an hour B4 take off and you don't have to stand in the mile long queue the morning of the flight.
Hmonty · 22/03/2001 12:08
You don't say who you're flying with so a word of warning. We flew to Florida with Air2000 and it was awful. They didn't provide food for our, then, 14 month old, as he didn't have an allocated seat and were the rudest, most inconsiderate set of flight attendents I've ever come across. For instance, when we asked if they'd keep my husbands meal back so that we could eat in shifts they grudgingly said they would but there was no guarantee that it'd still be there when he wanted it!! Where was it going to go? Out the window with a parachute?? Also note that on these flights the inflight entertainment is on TV screens placed at intervals in the cabin (useless for shorties like me and the kids). Also you had to pay for all your drinks and snacks so take loads with you otherwise you'll be permanently scrabbling around for change (not to mention the cost).
As soon as we got on the plane we took off the boys' shoes to make them more comfortable but were told, in the shortest possible tone, that they had to be on for take off and landing. No explanation was given. Still don't know the reason for this but it resulted in us having to wake a sleeping child....Arrgggggghhhhh.
We took loads of new toys with us but our 14 month old just wanted to rush up and down the aisles.....Fine when everyone was awake but the aisles were very narrow and we kept bumping other passengers when we went to get him back. The flight attendents wouldn't let us use the space they have around the 'kitchen' as they were using this space to sit down and obviously didn't want a todler interupting their conversations about what they were doing that night...They didn't particularly like him running up and down the aisles either but we chose to ignore that! On the flight home were were seated next to the toilets. I'd definitely agree with the comments to avoid this. The constant chattering and on/off of the light made it nearly impossible to get the kids to sleep. Also, we had three seats together on the flight home and were planning to pull up the arms so that the kids could stretch out and sleep....but one of the arms wouldn't lift up!
We've flown with Virgin and BA previously on numerous occassions and they were much better. Virgin gets our vote for anything transatlantic normally but we booked last minute and the flight we took was the only thing available. Uggg! never again.
Incidently the headphones they provided and the plastic cups they used for tea/coffee kept our youngest amused for ages...Take lots of baby wipes and, like I said, snacks and drinks.
Ems · 22/03/2001 13:44
When we went with Virgin, although checking in early they couldnt put my husband, myself and little one together (he was on my knee). So we spent lots of awkward time passing him across and back a few rows, it was really hard not to have an extra pair of hands nearby.
A dad with a little one will get more help and sympathy than us mothers do. I remember a magazine or something did a survey on this, we certainly found it to be true!
Sari · 22/03/2001 18:23
Does anyone have any tips for flying with a 9 month old? We are due to go to Argentina in two weeks and it is a 13 hour flight with BA so any advice would be very welcome. How can we keep him amused / send him to sleep / make the journey as stress-free as possible? The agency I got the tickets from have requested a bassinet for us although they did say that they are normally only big enough for babies up to six months. So I am not sure how much use that is going to be!
That said, it is by no means certain that we'll be going as he currently has a perforated eardrum and we have to keep checking in with the doctor to see if he can fly. So we won't know for sure until the day before whether we can all go or not. Oh well, I guess it will teach me to buy tickets that can't be changed ...
Rhiannon · 22/03/2001 21:09
Sari, if you do get a bassinet you'll also be really lucky as you'll get a seat with lots of legroom. You'll need to take a favourite blanket with you as they don't have sheets or mattresses although the airline has little pillows and those blankets you can use. Check in early and you'll have more chance of getting one. It may mean you don't sit with your partner if they have lots of babies on board.
As for tips, see below. Try letting him/her go short of sleep the night B4 so you may get a few quiet hours on the plane. Otherwise just join all the other harrassed parents walking up and down and put it down to experience!
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