Advice on Traveling with a 2.5 Month Old?

Updated on October 17, 2008
C.Z. asks from San Francisco, CA
16 answers

Thanks in advance! My husband and I are flying from NY to LA at the end of the month and bringing our baby boy for his first flight. He will be 2.5 months old then. I'm completely freaked. What do I bring? What if he gets fussy? Is there room to change him in those tiny bathrooms? We're hoping it isn't a full flight and we can bring the car seat on the plane. Otherwise we need to check it at the gate.

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answers from Rochester on

I just flew to Disney World with my 3.5 month old. I wouldn't be freaked, they are easy at that age. Check your car seat, I wouldn't bring on the plane. Just hold him. If he gets cranky, feed him. If you're breastfeeding, just make sure you have a blanket handy. I breastfed at least once every flight. The only tricky one was when I was on an aisle. Lol. Oh well, I will never see those people again....ever :) :)

Room in the changing rooms? Good luck. The last plane I was on they didn't have a changing table. I had to change him ON the toilet...gross. At least I had his changing pad, but I will never do that again. She was stinky, otherwise I would have changed her in my seat, which is what I did for the rest of the flight. Ask your flight attendant when you get on the flight about a changing table.

Bring your stroller, it makes it SO much easier when traveling in the airport. You put it at the airway for check-in, and you get it when you get off the plane (SO easy). Plus, if you need to change him before or after getting on the plane, you can do that in the stroller if you'd like. No searching for a bathroom.

I only brought her diaper bag, a boppy and a blanket on the plane. They aren't very responsive to much at that age, and will most likely sleep. I put some things to keep me busy in the diaper bag, and when I got on the plane I took out a couple diapers and wipes and put them in the pocket in front, and stuffed the diaper bag by my feet. The boppy was a great place for my baby to relax and to feed from. It worked out perfect.

Sidenotes: My baby is hardly ever fussy (so take this advice from that angle). Also, I have no problem changing diapers in public...I do a good job doing it fast and having least amounts of people seeing anything, so that helps w/ the plane experience.

Good luck, don't stress, and have a great flight :)



answers from Philadelphia on

I have not flown yet with my child who is 18 months now, but a lot of my friends have with their children and have given advice or rather what they wish they had done. The first suggestion was get an extra seat for the baby. You can have the car seat there which is the safest place for him. Some said there were changing tables or said no but the all change them on the extra set or on their seat with the help of their spouse. Also they said to bring a bag on filled with stuff they have never seen before to and if they will be seeing them during the trip to have another one for the way home. Call the airline and see what accomidations they can make for you. Like more your seat to the front rows, that way more floor space in front of you and see if you can have the choice of boarding first if you want to. Lastley feeding during take off and landing to help the pressure on the ears. In the end though don't fear it because you will learn from each time and what works now won't work next time. He's a baby and will be eith over stimulated and might cry the flight or sleep the entire flight. Good luck!



answers from New York on

My first flight with my son was at age 8 months and at that time a sling really helped me (especially cause we couldn't bring the car seat on board--we didn't want to pay for another seat). I imagine at 2.5 months a sling would be even more helpful as he would be cozier and warm snuggled up next to you rather than on your lap.
There is a pull down diaper changing board in the bathroom-- I suggest preparing a smaller ziploc bag with wipes, hand sanitizer,diapers and change of clothes/onesie and whatever else you use so that you're not lugging a big diaper bag into that small bathroom.
Also, if you're breastfeeding be prepared to try and nurse your son during takeoff and landing. If you're bottlefeeding have a bottle ready during takeoff and landing so that he's drinking and this helps the ears.
Other than that perhaps a rattle or his favorite colorful little toy or something that plays soothing music.
I hope this was helpful. Have a great trip!



answers from New York on

From a veteran flying mom (my kids were born in CO and NM and I am from CT so they traveled a few times a year until they were 3 and 5 and we moved back east), I can tell you that is the easist age to fly with a kid. I did it with both of my boys at that age and the mostly slept First I will say, if he is awake feed him (bottle or breast) going up and down, HOWEVER, if he is sleeping DO NOT wake him because the change in pressure will most likely not wake him up. There is not usually room to change in the bathroom, but you can use your seat and your husbands. If you are lucky enough to get there early and get a bulkhead seat you will have some nice extra room in front of you. As for fussy, I never really had that problem, the noise and motion put them to sleep. They both basically ate, slept and traveled very well.



answers from New York on

Don't freak out. I've traveled all over the world with both my kids at many different ages. They are now 5 and 8 and have crossed the ocean at least 7 times each. They actually get bummed when they haven't been on a plane lately.

We buy them a very special workbook before we go and hold it back until we get on the plane. As soon as we sit down, we pull out the markers and the workbook and the kids get busy. Find the thing that he is most into right now....coloring, dot to dot, dragons, dinosaurs and have something brand new to offer. Then just stay calm and explain everything as it happens. Take lots of walks around the plane. He'll have a great time. It really is easy...and what a great age....he'll love the new adventure. Bring lots of good snacks.

Enjoy yourselves!!



answers from New York on

I would suggest having small individual size snacks, a coloring book and 4 crayons in a small sandwich baggie!!! Why 4 crayons??? Easier to keep track of and it creats less mess. Also buy a few new small, NON NOISY toys, a book or two and maybe one of those magnetic boards that erase. Those are wonderful and I have bought many from WalMart for 88 cents and they are pocket size. Some kids hit that plane seat and lights out!!!You can dream big!!! (My brother was that type of child). If your not so lucky get one item at a time out slowly. AND if your little one gives you a hard time Don't stress. We have all been there done that with kids. That is a natural part of children. Have a great time!!! A.



answers from New York on

At that young age you will be fine. Bring diapers, bib, wipes and a change of clothes. If you are nursing, nurse on take off and landing to release ear pressure. If you are not nursing, feed on take off and landing or you can also do a pacifier. Just make sure he is sucking on something on take off and landing. As for changing...there is no way you are going to be able to change in an airplane bathroom. And to me that is gross. So if they plane is not full, go to back of plane and change on seat. And if it is full, well then change him on your lap. You pay enough for your ticket and if anyone has an issue with it, so what. Your baby is clean and you will most likely not see those people again. Just bring a few plastic zip lock bags. If you put the diaper quickly in the bag and zip it up, you wont have that much smell. Good Luck!



answers from New York on

Lots of toys and surprises to pull out..

I went to the $99c store and bought a lot of little
cheap toys for the flight.

Yes, there is room in the bathrooms to change a baby,

We flew on Jetblue and Virgin America and they have a baby
changing table that folds down in there.

My son actually slept a few hours on the flight.

It's not easy, but preparation is the key.

Check in early, and PREBOARD, it makes it all less stressful.




answers from Albany on

Don't be freaked. Our sons first flight was when he was 2 mos and he did fine. Just pack 1-2 diapers for every hour of travel (on and off the plane) and wipes of course. I have only had to change our son once on a plane and the "changing station" (a flat board hinged to the wall) was at the very back of the plane. The flight attendants were very accommodating if I needed anything. We used a Snugli to carry him around and just checked the car seat and stroller. He seemed to sleep better that way too. Which he did a lot of due to the hum of the plane. Be sure to bring a pacifier for his ears and a couple of rattles. You can stand and rock your son in the aisle when the seatbelt sign is off to soothe him if you need to. At 2.5 mos, my son did not need a whole lot of entertaining. Just a warm body. :) If you are nursing, you can do that in the bathroom, if you are bottle feeding, just bring what you need and they can give you water on the plane. If you are nursing, I recommend staying away from sugar or caffeine before and during the trip to help him stay calm also. Don't worry, everything will be fine. HAVE A GREAT TRIP!PS Be sure to take a picture of his first plane flight too!



answers from Buffalo on

Make sure you have a portable dvd player with you. Bring coloring books, crayons, his favorite toys (cars and trains work well) Bring his favorite blanket, binkie, or other comfort item. Make sure you have a couple books to read to him as well. He will get fussy at some point so plan to handle the situation. Don't worry about what the people around you think. If your son senses you are nervous or anxious, he will also become nervous and anxious. Try and get the front row seats...they have MUCH more leg room and your son will be able to stand up and move around a bit...or even sit on the floor once you're in the air. He'll probably sleep at some point too.

Best of luck! Enjoy your trip.



answers from New York on

*Oh, good heavens, Christine...I just wrote this whole response thinking your baby was 2.5 YEARS OLD. My bad. Read on if you want advice for traveling with a toddler :-p
Traveling with such a small baby is MUCH easier. Some of the same advice still applies - the large changing pad and bottles, etc. Mostly, if you have your baby in a Baby Bjorn, or similar snuggly device, he might just sleep for the majority of the flight! Definitely try to nurse, or give him a pacifier, for take offs and landings. Then again, my baby would do neither, and it never seemed to bother her ears. Bring toys that he likes and that are interesting, and do a few laps if he gets cranky. I wouldn't worry about nursing right there in your seat. By 2.5 months, I'm sure you're a pro at doing it discreetly! Have fun!
My baby is 2 and has already been across the country a few times.

What I WOULDN'T worry about is a stroller in the airport. The luggage carts that you can rent for $2 have a child seat in the front (like a shopping cart) and have the added bonus of keeping all your carryons on ONE cart, instead of draped all over your body. (In my experience, having a toddler roaming WITHOUT a restraining device is both a HUGE headache and dangerous.)

As far as ON the plane goes...bring things that will keep his attention. If he likes movies, consider investing in a battery-operated DVD player. If he likes coloring, I'd STRONGLY suggesting finding those triangular crayons that Crayola makes - they won't roll away! Also, consider heading to the Dollar Store and picking up some new toys. Hide them before the trip, and then get one one new toy every hour while you're flying. Wrap them up like presents, for extra fun! What toddler doesn't like a) new toys and b) birthday presents!

Bring snacks, too. Honestly, when my girl was just a baby (12 months?), we'd bring snacks that were "ranked" in desperation - Cheerios were first, and fruit, followed by sweet raisins...chocolate came last of all and was usually pulled out in the last 15 minutes of the flight to bribe her to NOT scream until we could unload at our destination! (A cross country flight is NOT the time for child-raising scruples!)

If you need to change his diaper, the bathroom is PITIFULLY small. Unless you already have a super large changing mat, I'd recommend heading to the fabric store and picking up about 1/4 yard of rubberized flannel. It makes an awesome changing mat, as is, and it's big enough to confidently lay your Precious Boy on ANY surface. (My sister used hers to change her daughter's diaper on a convenient sidewalk during a parade.)

Oh, and he most likely WILL get fussy. Decide now what you're going to do. The stewardesses usually don't mind if you take a few laps down the aisles and through the galley, but I'd use that as a last resort - you'll end up running into carts, other passengers going to the bathroom, etc.

Does this help? If any of the things I've mentioned DON'T make sense, please send me a message! My baby isn't a Traveller, but she has done her fair share of flights, so I know what works for HER. Get creative and don't worry about "spoiling" him. Long flights are the perfect time to let him play with things he's not usually allowed to play with...anything to distract him from the fact that he's going to spend 1/3 of his day sitting on a large chair with a seatbelt!

Oh, and I don't know if he still takes a bottle, but something I learned on my last flight is that the flight attendants CAN heat up bottles. My daughter was still drinking bottles of whole milk on our last flight, and the flight attendant offered to stick the bottle in a "sick bag" full of HOT water. That heated the bottle up in about 8 minutes or so. Good to know!



answers from New York on

i traveled with my son by car from ny to md when he was 3 mos old. are you nursing? if so, bring a shawl to cover you while you nurse. he probably will get fussy. modify what you do at home to a sitting position...practice. bring a few of his favorite toys. if i'm not mistaken you can bring a car seat on the far as changing him, practice changing him on your lap. i did it. the bathrooms at rest stops were disgusting...airplane restrooms cannot be all that much better...have a great trip!



answers from Rochester on

I'm not sure if you mean 2 1/2 month old OR 2 1/2 year old?!

It's not fun traveling with a kid - I last traveled with my 18 month old daughter. She sat on my lap from Rochester, NY to Houston, TX. She wiggled, grabbed my shirt, yelled "BOOBIES!", leaked through her diaper, etc...Luckily my husband was with me, but all she wanted was "MOMMY!"
You should have purchased a seat for your son and it would be wise to strap him in the car seat.
Is this a non-stop flight? I would recommend that you allow breaks every now and then, read stories, SNACKS!, buy new toys that he's never seen before and give them to him one at a time to help maintain his attention. Try to be consistent too, meaning if he's a napper from 1-2pm and you're on the flight then, try to do your normal nap routine. If that doesn't work, then no need to force the issue - do what you can to make it seem like a fun adventure for him!

If he's still a baby, I'd recommend a baby sling and leave him in the pouch, snuggled next to you. Yes, believe it or not, there is room to change him - wisely to do it before/after you get to the airport...
If you're nursing, it helps too. If not, try to give him a bottle during takeoff/landings to help with the ear pressure.

Best of luck!



answers from New York on

Hi Christine,

Don't freak! It's never as bad as you imagine it will be. I travel with my 2 kids every 3 months and have been doing so since they were 5 weeks old (they are now 3 & 5). The best advice I can give you is to remain calm no matter what. Babies/children sense their parent's anxiety and if you are calm, he'll be calm. If you're nervous about his behavior on the flight you can bet he'll be cranky. Deep breaths help tremendously! If he does have a fit, politely apologize to those around you and I guarantee you that 99.99% of the time they will smile and say "don't worry about it" or "believe me, I've been there"!

To keep them entertained, I used to bring pacifier clips for their toys and I'd clip them to my clothes so they didn't fall on the dirty floor. I also brought a large ziploc bag to put in the seat back pocket in front of me to keep their toys and bottles sanitary. Humming softly to the baby will let him feel the vibrations from your body and will also keep you calm.

You won't want to bring a large diaper bag into the bathroom with you, so pack a small bag within the diaper bag that can hold 1 or 2 diapers, a changing table cover, a couple of wipes and maybe a change of baby clothes. You can always refill this little bag when you get back to your seat but it's a lot easier than struggling with a large bag in a tight space.

Relax and enjoy your trip! Good luck!



answers from Albany on


A couple of things. 1) It doesn't matter if it is a full flight or not. Because he will be over 2 at the time of travel, you will have to buy a seat for him. You might as well bring the car seat. 2) Those bathrooms do not have changing tables nor room to change a baby in a sanitary way. I suggest putting his car seat next to the window and if you need to change him, you will have to either have him stand up for a minute and do it, lay him across your laps, or lay him across your seats. 3) Take lollipops or binkies, whatever he uses at that time, especially sippy cups of drinks so that he can use it on take off and landing particularly to help with the ear popping. If he seems like it hurts, ask for a warm towel to hold behind his ears. 4) Portable DVD player and favorite movies. 5) Crayola Colorwonder books and special toys. Alternate throughout the trip so he has something "new" throughout. 6) Let him run around the airport. Don't make him sit still until he has to on the plane. 7) New diaper just before take off. Make sure you have a couple changes of clothes. 8) Special lovie, blanket or pillow if there are any.

Be calm and enjoy it yourself. He will stress if you do too. I have flown with two of my children by myself. My youngest was 5 weeks old at the time but we have flown at all different ages. Prepare to tag team with your hubby. :) If he gets fussy, just try to calm him. Read a story. You might be able to pace a bit. Also ask the flight attendant for a kiddie bag. They usually include "wings" and special coloring pages.




answers from New York on

Don't worry. Usually , the younger the kid - the easier to fly with him...Just don't fuss yourself -kids would pick up at your stressed behavior. Usually , they let you take the car sit with you, besides, sometimes they have basinets to give to infants to sleep in, ask at the board... Nurse and put him to nap as usual. When the plain takes off and lands you'd better give him a pacifier, he'll suck and it makes his possible ear discomform dissappear.
I travel with my daughter all the time overseas, the flight takes up to 10 hours and mostly it's okey, the older she gets , the harder it takes as it gets her schedule right off, but as your flight will take shorter than that and you baby is young, he would probably just won't notice the whole thing. The only thing he needs now is his Mom close, I bet you can be there for him. Again, don't worry too much, it's gonna be okey.

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