airtravel with toddler

Jul 12th, 2007, 08:42 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jun 2007
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airtravel with toddler

After reading a news headline about a mom and toddler being led off a flight because of the toddler's behaviour I am even more nervous about flying by myself with my toddler from the southwestern part of the US to Paris. Any helpful hints as to how to entertain toddlers and pacify neighbors on transatlantic flights?
equinoxgal is offline  
Jul 12th, 2007, 09:00 PM
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well, the neighbors were fine with the toddler - how do we handle the flight attendants?
Travelnut is offline  
Jul 12th, 2007, 09:04 PM
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Please explain as I am not following...
dutyfree is offline  
Jul 12th, 2007, 09:09 PM
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I wouldn't worry. That family was really put off of the plane because they did not force their daughter into her seat and belt her, not because she was throwing a tantrum. The plane couldn't take off without the girl being seated so they were holding everyone up.
MonicaRichards is offline  
Jul 12th, 2007, 09:09 PM
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I of course meant seatbelt her, not belt her as in hit her....
MonicaRichards is offline  
Jul 12th, 2007, 09:10 PM
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Monica, I don't know about your story - the one I thought we were referring to was the mother and son put off the plane b/c her 19-mo old kept saying 'bye bye plane' and the flight attendant didn't like it.
Travelnut is offline  
Jul 12th, 2007, 09:21 PM
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I think the poster is referring to a more recent story -- just yesterday (Thursday) it was reported that a mom with a little boy had been put off a plane. According to the story I saw, the toddler was saying "bye-bye, plane," the flight attendant told the mom to make him be quiet, and then suggested that she should give him some Benadryl. Apparently her neighbors in the plane did not think she and the boy were a problem, just the flight attendant did.

I think if you get a really hostile or neurotic flight attendant (which one would have to be, in my opinion, to be disturbed by a 19-month-old saying "bye-bye plane") there is very little you can do except keep calm and make a note of the name, if possible, for dealing with the airline later.

For entertaining toddlers, "new" things (like a special toy bag that has two or three books and a few silent toys the child has not seen before) can be a good distraction.

If you are flying alone, you can't do what we did last year to pacify neighbors, which was arrange our seats so that either my husband or I could sit ahead of our then-two-and-a-half year old and be the person to suffer the inevitable brushes against the seat.

But you could try to get a bulkhead, or, failing that, a window seat -- so your toddler can turn towards you a bit and not be kicking the seat ahead of him/her. My experience has been that people will grimace at their seat being kicked much sooner than at little bit of noise, as long as it's happy noise.
Barbara_in_FL is offline  
Jul 13th, 2007, 06:20 AM
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I have flown 2x with my toddler-- 12 months and 5 months with DH. Now we are planning a trip to Frankfurt and will fly sans DH from CLT but I will only take the NON STOP 6 hr flight option!! My biggest concern is meal times...not sure how to hold child, get tray down and not have a HUGE mess! AND of course the diaper change thing.... I am praying that the flight will not be booked up and we can end up with 2 seats....I can't afford to pay for both of us at 600ish a pop! Our other flights didn't include meals and DH and I would just hand off the DS and take turns. He is normally well behaved but by then he will be walking everywhere.

I don't want to miss this opportunity but I am nervous at the thought of doing this alone--
alise007 is offline  
Jul 13th, 2007, 06:37 AM
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alise2007, I'm wondering what non-stop Charlotte/Frankfurt flight is only six hours long? The US Air flight is over eight hours, which seems about right. Hope you get an empty seat next to you, but with flights so crowded these days, I wouldn't count on one. I always packed a goodie bag with small, new toys for my girls, some books, playdoh, small dolls etc. If I had time, I'd gift wrap some of the toys which made it even more fun for them to unwrap. Also included animal crackers, juice boxes and other healthy snacks. Not sure if your airline will allow an extra carry on for your child if he doesn't have a paid seat. Be sure to check with the airline before your trip to find out because with one paid seat, you may only be allowed one carry on, including your purse.
Grinisa is offline  
Jul 13th, 2007, 06:40 AM
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We have just flown four times with our now 2 year old. I would advise three things

1. Cheap option - have a bag of presents - cheap and cheerful wrapped up and to be opened at a rate of one an hour. This breaks the monotony and gives them something different to focus on.

2. Bag the seat - please other posters without children don't hold this against me but here goes. When you take your seat ask if the flight is full - if it isn't establish very quickly where the empty seats are and relocate to a row that is empty - that way you can get your toddler to lie out on a row of three to use them as a bed - William slept for 5 hours there, 6 back between Manchester UK and Vancouver. If any other passengers question your motives ask them if they have ever seen claustrophobic, sleep deprived, bored toddler before - it does give you some leeway.

3. Expensive option - before becoming a parent I used to stand in judgement on those parents who simply gave their children asome electronic device to keep them happy. I recently bought an ARCHOS - TV, video hand held player - with the correct educational viewing it works wonders in occupying a toddler.

PS does anyone know the airline involved in the toddler incident so that I can add them to my list if boycotted companies.
markrosy is offline  
Jul 13th, 2007, 06:40 AM
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The best advice I ever got (and used, successfully, with my own) was to practice. I don't mean you have to take a practice plane trip. But do think about car trips of similar duration, at similar times and with the appropriate meals, changes, etc-all in space where your guy HAS to be confined (though not, of course, sitting on your knee, but you get the idea. The you won't be as nervous and your little one won't sense that fear and translate it into bad behaviour...after all, its the only mode of expression he has.
LJ is offline  
Jul 13th, 2007, 06:41 AM
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It would appear we had similar thoughts - you beat me to the post!
markrosy is offline  

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