15 answers

How Can I Entertain My Toddler on an International Flight?

I am planning on taking a trip back to the states from Incirlik, Turkey with my 2 year old and my 4 month old and I need some advice on keeping my toddler entertained. When we PCS'd here, my husband was with me and we flew at night, so she slept almost the entire trip. This time I will be alone with her and the baby and we will be flying during the day. What on earth can I do to keep her occupied sitting on a plane all day long?? Her books and magnadoodle won't keep her entertained very long. Also, she is in the very picky eater stage, and I worry she won't eat the food they offer on the airplane. So this may be a dumb question, but are you allowed to bring snacks onto the plane so I can bring stuff I know she will eat? The last thing I need is a tired, bored, hungry cranky toddler stuck on a plane over the Atlantic!
Anyway, any advice or suggestions is much much appreciated!

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Featured Answers

J.,
I just flew back to the states with my 2 1/2, if you are flying Delta I know they play at least one kids movie and headphones are free. The novilty of how the food was served was enough for my very picky eater to like it. You are however allowed to bring nonliquid snackes.
Good Luck
Ashlee

More Answers

I know this may sound a bit odd, but would she wear headphones? I know when my kids were little and we flew, I grew desperate for even a few minutes break from being the entertainer, so I would take along cassette books on tape or even Raffi or other songs. We had some Sesame Street chunky books that came with tapes that my daughter loved. And of course, depending on how you feel about it, portable DVD players (again, with headphones) would give a brief break. As far as food goes, you'll need to check and see what they allow you to bring through security, because otherwise you'll be stuck with what you can buy in the airport before you board. Best of luck to you--and remember, most people will be quite understanding of what you're be going through.

In addition to the previous suggestions, I would say make sure you bring a baby carrier for your little one so you can chase after the 2 year old better. Also, if you can get hold of one of those animal back pack/kid leashes, they are good for the plane and airport if the child is restless and wants to walk but you want to keep her from running off.

A portable DVD player was a lifesaver for me when I travelled with my older son at that age!

I recently flew with my son from Okinawa to Utah and back. They were really good about letting me take on snacks and the little Gerber juice bottles. I also tried to stock up a little at the shops by the gate with banana's and other fruits. If you have a portable DVD player that was one of my lifesavers. Just remember most of the people will get up and move around during that long of a flight and you should let your toddler do the same. My son was excited just to be able to stand up in his car seat and stretch.

J.,
I just flew back to the states with my 2 1/2, if you are flying Delta I know they play at least one kids movie and headphones are free. The novilty of how the food was served was enough for my very picky eater to like it. You are however allowed to bring nonliquid snackes.
Good Luck
Ashlee

For my 2 year old, books and coloring works best. That and eating snacks, which I always make sure to have plenty of. Just remember that if you have something like an apple, to make sure it's eaten by the time you land! I had one confiscated by customs because I forgot about it. The earphones and movies are usually pretty interesting too. A friend gave me some teething tablets to help calm nerves and I'm not sure how much they helped (although she was pretty good), but I think you would probably find them at your commissary. I know how nerve wracking it is to travel with your kids without your husband. Good luck!

Bring a gift bag with a wrapped present your kiddo can unwrap each hour. Something like a coloring book, or a mini playdough. Cheap things are great.

You can bring food, just no liquids. Don't forge the wipes.

And a spare change of clothes as carry on. Food spillages etc happen and a spare change is always a good idea.

If you have an iPod you can load stories for her to listen to. Even a CD player with CDs. all else fails, a portable DVD player. It's like a laptop that just plays DVD's.

Good Luck!

Hi, I have been in your shoes! I have flown from Korea to the states(14 hours) twice by myself with 3 kids...one being 15 months and then 2 years! Soooo, what I do is purchase some very small toys, cars, action figures etc and put them in a gallon ziplock baggy. At every hour that he/she is awake, pull out a new toy. I also included colored pencils(they travel better than markers or crayons) and drawing paper along with new small board books. If the toy kept him occupied for more than an hour, I would wait to pull out the next one. They have to be toys he/she has not seen before. And yes, you can take snacks. I included some fun foods in another baggy that I could pull out as well. Happy flying!

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