Babies in the Back?

plane.jpgTaking a baby on an airplane seems to be the thing parents fear most when traveling. What happens if they cry? Or they don’t sleep? What about their ears? I faced all of these fears on my son’s first flight to Florida when he was just over 2 months old, but I went for it & with a little bit of prep, everything went smoothly.

My first piece of advice is this… When flying with infants or young toddlers, book your seats as far in the back of the plane as possible (the last row is truly ideal). This gives you the most privacy if you’re nursing, you won’t have the entire plane watching you if your child starts crying or acting up and if you need to walk around a bit to calm your baby down, you’ll have more space & less of an audience. It also keeps you closest to the bathroom for clean-ups & closest to the kitchen for heating bottles, rinsing cups, getting extra snacks, etc.

I also remember being really concerned about my little one’s ears. Since they can’t “yawn” or chew gum to keep to keep their ears clear, plan to nurse or give a bottle during take-off and landing when the cabin pressure changes the most severely. The sucking keeps the babies ears regulated and avoids the painful “popping” that can occur at these times. Even a pacifier will do the trick. For older kids, a lollipop works wonders.

There are a few items you should definitely pack to ensure a smooth experience…
– An extra change of baby clothes (in case of an unexpected “explosion”)
– Ziplock baggies (perfect for dirty diapers, soiled clothes or anything “wet”)
– A large, tumbler-style cup (have the flight attendant fill it with hot water before you take off and drop your bottle or food in it for heating)
–  Wipes… and more wipes!  Good for everything from wiping down the armrests to cleaning up the baby.
–  Favorite blanket or stuffed animal (or whatever item comforts them to sleep)
–  Baby Benadryl or Tylenol (as a last resort… and I say this jokingly, however it’s sometimes a necessity if they have any kind of congestion, allergy or teething pain that can be accentuated by the cabin pressure.)

Being prepared for every scenario is obviously a good strategy, but don’t go into it fearing the worst. Flying is amazing and the staff & crew are usually more than happy to help you out. The key is to start early and get them used to the process – in fact, fly as much as you can before they turn 2 & you have to buy them their own seat!

P.S.  I know sitting in the back of the plane sounds awful… and it also means you’ll be the last ones off.  Don’t worry.. chances are your baby will have JUST fallen asleep about 10 minutes before you landed & your gate-checked stroller is going to take its sweet time making its way out of the cargo hold… so there’s really no rush 😉

 

Here’s my little guy… he’s an easy, seasoned traveler now & has racked up some serious miles over the past 10 years, but he still starts out every flight like this… Safety first! Lol!

 

 

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Check Out My New Facebook Page!

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The new Facebook Page is up & running! Some of the content will certainly cross over both platforms, but Facebook will provide a place for more interaction among readers, as well as fun little perks like “Tuesday’s Travel Tip” & “Wanderlust Wednesday” so be sure to check it out!

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This week’s “Travel Tip” was posted this morning…
Find out the one thing I ALWAYS bring when I travel by visiting the new page at:  www.facebook.com/tripsandtastes

Once on Facebook, please be sure to “Like” and “Share” the page with all your travel & food-loving friends!  Thanks 🙂

First… A Few Tips for the Perfect “Girls Getaway”

20150221_124406I’ve just returned from the Paradisus Cancun, on my “5th Annual” Girls Getaway, with my girlfriend of over 20 years.  We are very compatible travel companions (highly recommended) and look forward to our 4-night escape from the cold every year.  We have visited Mexico three times and the Dominican Republic twice. Selecting the resort is our toughest task.  We’ve become a bit spoiled and have fallen into the trap of “upping the ante” each year.  Price is still a factor, but we also take into account the following important items:

1.  The resort must be all-inclusive, preferably with an adults-only section, since we’re purposely leaving our kids at home.  This is simply, the simplest way to go.

2.  The reviews must be outstanding.  We will spend hundreds of hours on-line reading reviews before making our final decision.  This is the absolute worst part of the whole trip.

3.  We must have direct flights and the resort must be fairly close to the airport.  With only 4 nights, it’s essential to make the most of every minute at your destination.  You don’t need to waste time in multiple airports or on long, uncomfortable shuttle bus rides.

4.  We must have a room with 2 beds (this just makes things more comfortable but cannot always be confirmed when making the reservation).  So far we’ve been lucky.

The balcony is a perfect place to enjoy your coffee or wine!

The balcony is a perfect place to enjoy your coffee (or wine)!

5.  Our room must have a balcony. Sitting outside and having our coffee in the morning (or cocktails in the afternoon!), is an actual highlight of the day for us.

6.  Speaking of coffee, there must be a coffee maker in the room.  We do not speak before the coffee, except to talk about making the coffee.  If the coffee maker is an issue (as it was on this last trip), pre-scheduled, room service delivery of the coffee is an acceptable substitution.  

7.  An ocean view has become a wonderful, new requirement.  It definitely costs a little more, but hearing the waves and waking up to that view is so worth it.  (Beware: it can also result in 800 pictures of the exact same shot taken every day because it’s just so beautiful.)

8.  The food must be outstanding with a good amount of variety.  We’re ok with a buffet for breakfast & lunch, but there must be at least 3-4 good a la carte restaurants for dinner. And the reservation system should be hassle-free.

9.  There should be some kind of shopping nearby (this is the only time we leave the resort and it usually only happens once).  I should mention that the purpose of this trip is to relax, not immerse ourselves in the culture or zip-line through the jungle.  We save those for the “family” trips.

10.  And the final requirements are my favorites… the sand must be white, the water must be blue and the pools better be clean.

That’s it!  Pack and go… Lol.  Our trips mainly consist of laying in the sun, reading, drinking cocktails, eating great food and the occasional visit to the disco (usually limited to once per trip).  We also laugh.  A lot.  Sometimes uncontrollably… because that’s what Girls Getaways are really all about. 🙂