37 answers

Air Travel with 5 Month Old Infant-first Flight!

Hi mama's!

I am going to be taking my 5 month old to Hawaii and I have no idea what I need to bring with me...I am currently nursing him, so I think I have the feeding thing taken care of. Should I travel with his car seat or should I rent one? Is it comfortable to sit with him on my lap, because we did not purchase a ticket for him?

I would appreciate any advice you mama's can offer.


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We'll be going on vacation in another month, so I'll be sure to update this when I get back. THANKS for your advice, you guys rock!

More Answers

Definitely travel with your own infant car seat. You may get lucky & find an empty next to you!
if not holding the baby on your lap is fine I have done it many times. You can check your stroller just before you get on the plane, this way they will have it waiting for you when you deplane. Also the rental car seats are disgusting.

I took my daughter on her first flight at 4 months and it was not a problem. You don't need to bring a car seat or purchase an airline ticketsince you will be holding him on your lap. (I held my daughter during the flights as well.) I would suggest trying to nurse him during take off and landing because it helps with their ears. If you have a sling I would bring it because it will give your arms a break during the flight. Besides that, I would just bring a few small toys and a couple of books. My daughter, who is normally a sleep fighter, slept great on the airplane. I hope that you have a great time in Hawaii!

Hello- First I have to say congratulations on choosing to take your little one with you for some R and R. So many people are afraid to fly with little ones, but in my opinion, the sooner you get them used to flying, the easier for you, and the more travel you will be comfortable doing! My daughter took her first flight at about 5 months as well, and now at 5, she is a seasoned traveler with 4 trips to Hawaii, 2 trips to Mexico, and a few continental flights under her belt. We always bring our car seat ( the ones that you rent tend to be older, and not as safe as the one that you would use, and much less hygenic). My suggestion is to go to Babies R Us and get the car seat bag so you can check it with baggage claim. Keeps it clean and less likely to break due to rough handling. Make sure and pump some breast milk into a bottle if your son will take the bottle- reason being is that when the plane takes off and lands, it is hard for baby's to clear their ears. If they are drinking from a bottle or even sucking on a pacifier, it helps to clear their ears. Chances are that your son will sleep most of the flight, but one suggestion that was given to me was to give a small dose of Childrens Benedryl about 20 before take off- it is totally safe and guarantees sleepiness. You will be somewhat uncomfortable with the baby in your arms for 5 straight hours, but hopefully your husband can share the duty. One thing that I have found, and is worth a call to the airline before hand, is that if there is an empty seat on the plane, the flight attendants will work to get you that seat for your baby at no charge once everyone boards. If that is the case, it is good to bring the car seat with you on board. Hope that all helps! Have a great trip!

when traveling with my nursing children i always broke all my own rules.

for example, nursing to nap is a no - no (that is, nursing so the child will fall asleep) but in mid air, it's a go! keep him lulled asleep and comfortable. also do not buy another seat as guaranteed you will be holding him the entire flight.

if he likes baby einstein or barney or something like that, purchase (if you do not already have) a cheap portable dvd player and charge it up! it's worth his comfort and happiness. plus the less anxiety from cranky passengers giving you glaring looks due to a crying baby ... well you get my drift.

can't remember what a 5 month old plays with anymore but make sure to have a few of his favorite things that you pull out in case of emergency for a nice surprise!

my husband always traveled with us so we brought our own car seat and he handled it. if not, you have enough to worry about. rent one and have them install it for you. have fun.

Hi there, I have traveled with my son to New Zealand when he was that age. I would advise to check with the airline to see if they have the basinettes for babies on the plane. these are little beds that drop down from the wall of the bulkhead of the plane. I am not sure if they only have these on international flights, but they saved me when I traveled with my son. If not, I would suggest trying to get a flight that is during one of his nap times, so that he will sleep better on your lap.If he has a pacifier, make aure that you bring that to soothe him. Also, feed him during take-off and landing to make sure his ears don't pop with the pressure. I would bring the carseat, as he will be familiar with it, and more comfortable. I would also bring a port-a-crib, unless you are co-sleeping. Plenty of diapers and a change mat on the plane, as the changing tables in the bathrooms are hard as a rock. Also, I would bring his own bedding and blankets, etc. Anything that is portable and familiar to him will make him more comfortable. I hope that helps, and have a wonderful trip!!

I took my son, who's now 5, to Hawaii too for his first trip, he was also 4 months. I took my own car seat( but checked it in) i dont trust the ones at rental places. He sat on my lap and was fine for the whole trip. i just made sure to be feesing him during takeoff and landing (or a pacifier will do) for the discomfort in the ears. have a great trip! AND GOOD LUCK!

We recently flew with our 2 sons (2 1/2 and 7 months) and rented everything. At the time I was nursing too so which made it very nice. Depending on which island you are going to, there are companies that rent out every kind of baby item you can think of... cribs, car seats, high chairs, toys, pool and beach toys, breastpumps...you name it, they have it! They set it all up for you so it's there upon arrival. It's fantastic!! We took enough diapers to get us there and checked in and then went to the store and bought everything that we would need (food, diapers, wipes etc.). It was wonderful and much easier than loading ALL that you need for a baby!! Good luck and if you email the island you are going to, I can make suggestions on which companies to use.

I took my son on an airplane to Cleveland when he was 3 weeks old and again when he was 5 months. It is safe to have him on your lap. The only thing I can suggest is that you have something to hold him in while in flight. I have a Baby Bjorn carrier and I kept him in in during the flight because your arms will get tired. The only problem I seemed to have in the Baby Bjorn is he got really warm. Make sure you bring a blanket. He slept most of the way although he is a great sleeper and probably because I was holding him the whole time in the carrier. The airlines might not let you use the carrier during take off, but they will let you use it during flight. Also during take off and landing feed him, so he is able to "pop" his ears. If he does not want to feed you can try a pacifier. Consider this regarding his car seat, if you check it in and it gets damaged most airlines will not cover the damages. Best of luck to you and Have a great and safe trip.

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