We went for our first family vacation last month to sunny Florida. Knowing we had to fly, I was slightly anxious anticipating how the flight would be with twin babies. Not only the actual flight, but keeping them entertained in the airport, and being able to bring the necessary items with me through security . As any mother knows, it’s best to be prepared for anything that may arise. Here are a few guidelines that I’ve found helped with my air travel;
- Make sure you contact the airlines to find out what you need for your babies to fly. I brought a copy of my childrens birth certificates in the event I may need to verify their age.
- Be aware of age requirements for lap babies. Most airlines allow babies under 2 to fly free (Southwest, Jet Blue and Delta), but some only allow one to fly free and you have to pay a portion of a ticket for the second baby (US Airways)
- Read TSA regulations on what you can bring through security on the plane. I found whatever you have in your diaper bag that you need for your babies can generally be taken through security as well as a stroller.
- Know what items can be checked for free. You can use the stroller in the airport, but if you would prefer checking it, Delta checks strollers, bassinets (not pack-n-plays) and car seats at no cost. Southwest allows 2 bags to be checked for free, so if you require your pack-n-plays they can save you some money.
- If you can manage to roll your clothes and pack them in a carry on bag, it will save you money. Most time airlines will offer complimentary baggage check at the gate if the flight is full. We flew Delta who didn’t offer free checked luggage so we brought carry-ons. At the gate going and coming, they checked our bags for free. It saved us nearly $200. I was able to pack a weeks worth of clothes as well as diapers on a carry on for the babies by rolling them. Some things are easier purchased at your destination especially if it’s cheaper than paying baggage fees.
- Prior to the flight, I was told that only ONE lap baby was allowed per row due to the amount of oxygen masks, so my husband had to sit in the row in front of me. Be prepared to be rearranged if you don’t make prior arrangements before the flight.
- Bring unopened snacks and drinks with you. This will help cut down those expensive airport costs for meals and as long as they are in your diaper bag they should be allowed through security.
- Thankfully when we arrived at the Buffalo Airport, they had a play area for children to run off some energy prior to our flight. My older son and the babies LOVED it and were nice and exhausted by the time we boarded the airplane. If the airport your at has no play area, I suggest finding the nearest empty gate (if possible) and allow them to play. This way you don’t have to worry about disturbing other people.
The number one thing to remember is to have fun. Most people around you will find just as much enjoyment looking at your babies as you will. I was worried that their crying or babbling on the plane would be a nuisance to others, but to my surprise people were much more understanding than I thought. In transit, the flight attendants were very attentive to my babies, offering them snacks and drinks . In all, I would have to say our first air travel was good. As with anything, the more you do it, the easier it will become. Enjoy the journey!