Flying with kids this Winter? For most moms, that means prepping ahead by thoughtfully packing a well-stocked carry-on. Before kids, your carry-on might have typically only held some noise-cancelling headphones, the latest magazines and a book—stuff to pass the time. These days? As a mom, this may now be more of a “work trip” as opposed to a “vacation”. If your kids are young, your bag will be full of things to keep them happy—aka fed, entertained and comfortable. Here’s some quick tips to use as a packing guide:
Start with a Great Bag
We love a machine-washable multi-tasker like the ones from JuJuBe. The aptly named Be Prepared Diaper Bag (shown here in The Duchess pattern, $210) is roomy enough to handle your stuff and the kids’. Thinsulate bottle pockets, color coded dividers and a memory foam changing pad are just a few of the features moms with young kids will love.
Pack Snacks with a Flight Delay in Mind
There’s almost nothing worse than running out of food when you’re stuck on the runway or have a long flight delay. Bring enough snacks to fly to Fiji…even if you’re just going to Fort Lauderdale. Small bites like goldfish or baked peas are ideal because they don’t crumble and take longer to eat than, say, a cereal bar. Plus, be sure to bring extra formula (and a bottle of water to make powder versions) and milk for toddlers (since the drink cart might not come around quickly enough).
Make An Entertainment Section
In one of those helpfully divided sections (see above), create an entertainment compartment that the kids can reach into on their own. Pack it with dollar store items they’ve never seen before (extra points if you wrap them up, which will keep them entertained for a few extra minutes). You can throw in any small packs of crayons and coloring books the kids have recently gotten as birthday party favors. Stickers are a solid distraction and can be stuck onto paper or even the back of the seat back tray (just don’t forgot to take them off for the next passenger). Travel games and books are also fun for kids of all ages.
Prepare for Sickness & Ear Pain
Besides hungry kids, sick kids are pretty much the hardest hurdle you’ll encounter when traveling with the family. So be sure to bring Tylenol, Motrin, and any other medications you might find yourself needing. For regular old ear pain, a well-timed bottle at take-off and landing (or a lollipop for a toddler) can help them swallow and feel better, fast.
Don’t Forget the Essentials
Diapers and wipes are obvious inclusions. But moms who have experienced spit up or a spilled cup of juice during a flight have learned that an extra shirt for both them and you can prevent a trip from going sour quickly. Since we’re heading into the middle of flu season, hand sanitizer and sanitizing wipes (for the hand rests and seat back tray) should also be one of the first things you pack.
Consider Letting Them Carry Their Own Stuff
If you have older kids (or even bigger toddlers), let them pack and carry their own backpacks (JuJuBe has a ton of cute patterns, from Harry Potter to Hello Kitty). Not only will you be able to bring more stuff, but they’ll be able to get to their things on their own. Who knows? You might even be able to read a few pages of that magazine or book, after all!
If you’re interested in learning more about JuJuBe bags and other accessories, go to jujube.com and use code TLMN20 for 20% off your first order. And don’t forget to join in on the fun and follow them on social.