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Flying With Kids: The Survival Guide

All parents dread it; a long flight with an inconsolable child, making fruitless attempts to quiet them while surrounding passengers tut disapprovingly and mutter under their breath. Children are never going to enjoy being forced to sit still in close quarters for hours on end, but with our simple tips you may be able to avoid any full-blown temper tantrums!

Give your child their own backpack

All kids like to feel as though they’re running the show, and giving them control over their own travel bag is a great way to help them start the journey in a positive way. Allow them to choose what toys they want to pack, and at the airport let them carry their rucksack themselves. They’ll love the sense of responsibility, and you’ll have one less thing to carry.

Get other passengers on your side

It’s no secret that children can be troublesome on flights, and those without children will often groan inwardly when they see a family heading towards them down the aisle. Make an effort to greet and chat to other passengers, and they may behave more charitably towards you later when your child is in the middle of a screaming fit.

Take plenty of snacks

Food is a great way to distract your kids and pass time on a flight; you’d be surprised how many tantrums can be defused by the appearance of a lolly or a box of raisins. The ear-popping sensation can be particularly uncomfortable for children, so get your child to chew on a sweet during take-off to help relieve the pain.

Encourage sleep

Flights are tedious for everyone and children can get frustrated, so the best thing you can hope for is that they’ll sleep through the whole journey. Pack familiar items such as favourite toys and comfort blankets to put your child at ease, and if possible fly during your child’s nap time. If you’re lucky your children will sleep through most of the flight, allowing you to do the same.

Prepare entertainment options

Of course you can’t count on your children snoozing all the way, so come prepared with distractions. Download some child-friendly apps onto your phone, stock your tablet with children’s films and bring a couple of books along to read together. You could even wrap up a few toys for them to open on the plane.

How do you keep your children entertained on a flight? Let us know on Facebook!

More: How to Survive A Long-Haul Flight

By Kate Moxon – Content and Social Media Executive at