The world is starting to open back up, and many people are itching to travel. After more than a year at home, what do you need to know when flying with your children?
If you’re anxious to see the world but aren’t sure what you need to know, here are the main things to keep in mind:
- With some medical exceptions, masks are required for kids ages 2 and older on most airlines. Make sure your kids have masks that fit snugly. Adjustable ear loops are ideal for younger kids, and older kids should wear a mask with a nose-bridge wire.
- Everyone, except for children under 2, must wear a mask at all times, except when taking bites and sips. Bring along a water bottle with a straw so your kids can drink under their masks.
- Keep a stash of sanitizing wipes, hand sanitizer, and spare face masks close at hand. Tuck them in your purse or carry on, or wear a fanny pack so they’re always within reach.
- Some things are the same as they were before the pandemic. The change in air pressure during takeoff and landing is still likely to hurt your child’s ears. Sucking on a piece of candy of pacifier can help.
- Bring along some headphones in case the sound of the engine or cabin noise bothers your child.
- Try to encourage your kids to sleep during the flight. Bring along sleeping cues, like their favorite stuffed animals, a familiar pair of pajamas, or a special pillow or blanket.
- Make sure you have all the documents you need before you head to the airport. In addition to the normal paperwork, like passports and boarding passes, you must also check to see if you need any COVID-related documentation. The United States does not currently require a negative COVID test or proof of vaccination, but many other countries do. If you are traveling internationally, verify whether it has any quarantine requirements and plan accordingly.