A.M. asks from Saint Paul, MN on April 21, 2009
We are flying from MN to AZ this summer to visit our in-laws. What type of identification will we need for our 2 year old? Also, does our son need to stay in his carseat on the plane, or does he just sit in the airplane seat? Thanks!
J.C. answers from Minneapolis on April 22, 2009
I have flown both with and without the carseat for my daughter. I thought it was a pain in the butt to carry one more thing thru the airport and plane and she was way happier to sit on the seat at 2.
No ID is required, last month I flew with both kids and my son was on my lap, he was not even listed as being on the plane which was really strange to me. My daughter had her own ticket but was not required to have ID.
Good luck! Be prepared to give your kid 100% of your attention and not to be able to relax and you will be ok.
L. answers from Minneapolis on April 22, 2009
Hi A., regarding ID: I always used to travel with my two year old's passport, but a couple of months ago, one of the security people "scolded" me saying that she doesn't need it and I'll probably just lose it by carrying it around when I don't need to. I have never been asked for ID for her while flying domestically.
K.S. answers from Minneapolis on April 21, 2009
At 2, I highly recommend using a carseat on the plane. He will be safer as well as more comfortable and be able to see out the window better. However, double check that the carseat you bring has a sticker that says it is FAA approved. Some flights, the staff don't check but on other flights they insist.
In terms of ID, I have never been asked for ID for my son on domestic flights, but it is always a good idea to check directly with the airline.
C.K. answers from Minneapolis on April 21, 2009
Call the airline(s) you are flying with for both questions. I would call now, and then again shortly before departure, to see if any regulations have changed.
The FAA's website has a special section for flying with children:
This is part of what they had to say about i.d. and minors:
"Each airline determines identification requirements for minors. Contact your airline well in advance of your travel date to determine if they have unique policies or procedures for minors."
S.I. answers from Minneapolis on April 22, 2009
You don't sit in a car seat on the plane. Most carseats are not made to work property with airplane seats. He just sits in the seat, or in your lap depending on his age. And will no doubt spend a bit of time putting the tray up and down. There are a few other times when car seats are not needed - things like on buses and taxis.
We just went on a trip with our 2 girls. They don't need any type of ID. Hopefully you can get a direct flight. I was worried about how our girls would do and if they didn't like flying having a layover would be miserable. In the end they were great.
C.S. answers from Minneapolis on April 21, 2009
There is actually no airline rule that says your child needs a carseat on the plane (pretty scary,isn't it?) so it's up to you if you want to use your carseat or a CARES restraint.