I will be flying with my 6 month old soon and would like some advice. I have one of those Graco car seats that detaches from the base. I was going to pack the base in a suitcase and carry the baby in the other part, storing it in the overhead compartment. Has anyone ever done this? Do you think it will fit? Will the airline give me trouble? I don't want to rent one (I heard scary stories). And this will attach to my stroller also (which I will check). I don't want to check it because I hear scary stories about luggage getting lost or broken. Any other advice on taking a 6 month old on an airplane would be great! Thanks!
My daughter started going on planes at 10 weeks old. If there is any empty seat next to you, they airline will let you strap in the car seat and you can use that. Most seats will fit in the overhead as well. Take some toys to play with and have a pacifier for take off and landing.
I took my son to Utah when he was still in an infant carrier (about 10 months old), but I didn't bring the base with me it was enough to carry with the stoller, his carrier with him in it and the diaper bag and carry on bag. I didn't buy a seat for him, but I took the late red eye flight and so it was pretty empty so I got a seat to put him in anyway. Flying the red eye with a baby is the best I think.
You can just take the stroller and carseat with you as far as the door to the airplane where they will tag it and stow it for you during the flight. Just let them know at the check-in counter you plan to do that and they will give you teh tags you need. It is a little bit of a pain to get a stroller and carseat through security but the people are usually very helpful as many have kids of hteir own and feel your pain. When you arrive at your destination the stroller and carseat will be waiting at the door of the plane as you exit. I fly often and they really do a pretty good job of getting luggage to the right place so I wouldn't worry about that too much. Continental airlines and Southwest seem to be the most helpful in my experience.
I've flown several times when my dd was small enough to fit in her infant carseat. I would GATE check your stroller and leave the base at home. Practice installing the seat without the base. Also, in case there's an empty seat, you'll have your carseat with you on the plane PLUS when you get off the plane your stroller will be there for you to snap it on and go about your business. They won't let you put the carseat in the overhead b/c it won't fit but if there's no room for it on the plane in a seat they'll put it with your stroller. They're MUCH nicer to gate checked items so that's safest and easiest.
The best thing we did was buy our child a seat. That way if you have a FAA approved car seat you can install it in the airplan and you child will be safest. Also, you can gate check it you are not purchasing a seat for your child. Plan to nurse, bottle feed or give a pacifier for landing and take off. If it is a long flight bring some benedryl with you (if your pediatrician okays it). Make sure you take extra food, formula & diapers in your carry on just in case you are delayed. Good luck.
So here was my experience. I have checked a carseat and they let you do that without going against the number of bags you check, but I'm not sure if that would qualify for just the base. The other thing is all the infant carriers can be used in cars without the base, the base is just for ease, it is totally safe to attach your carseat without it. As for the infant carrier/stroller, if you have a travel system they should attach, most are interchangeable, but I would try it first at home. When I did take the stroller/carseat with me, I didn't buy him a seat, I took both the stroller and carseat to the gate with me and left them plane side, they won't let you put them in an overhead, they're too big. But if you leave them plane side you'll get them immediately at the other gate when you get off. Make sure to get a tag for each, not one for both at EACH gate, just to be sure. As far as for the flights, make sure you have a paci or something from them to suck on at take-off and landing, I nursed, even if it wasn't a feeding time, just during those parts. Babies can't pop their ears like you and I so they need that sucking to do it for them. I also brought his comfort item and a toy that he liked, which I took away for a week or so, because then it's "new". Make sure you have formula or whatever he eats a this time because it will not be good if he's hungry and you have no food. Also, pack extra diapers, you'll never know when something will happen and a package at the airport for 12 diapers is like $20. I did everything, carried around everything but the kitchen sink and my son slept every flight he's ever been on, I've had people in front of us not know I had a baby with me. If you have any questions (I know this was a lot) or if you want some more ideas, feel free to email me ____@____.com a GREAT trip!!
You can gate check the carseat. They take it for you when you've gotten into that tunnel thing right before you step into the airplane. And it's there when you board off the plane. Just let the people know when you are checking luggage and they'll give you a tag for your carseat. Ask if they have a bag for it too so it doesn't get dirty. Sometimes you can gate check a stroller too, if it isn't to big.
What you should do is bring the stroller and car seat with you to the gate, and they will check it there. Because you are basically handing it over at the gate, I wouldn't worry about it getting lost or broken. When you come off the plane, it will be waiting for you right outside in the jetway. I am pretty sure it wouldn't fit in the overhead bins, as they aren't that big.
For the plane, chances are your baby will sleep the whole time. Bring a bottle or BF during takeoff, to help ease the pressure in the baby's ears. You can do the same thing during landing, but usually during landing the cabin is depressurized more slowly, and it shouldn't really affect the baby's ears. If your baby has a favorite toy or blanket to soothe him/her during the flight, I would bring that along, and maybe some small toys or books to entertain him/her if the baby doesn't sleep.
I traveled on an airplane with my daughter when she was 4 months (she is now 7 months)and eveything went fine. The airline staff will help you with whatever you need. If you are traveling alone with your child....GO EARLY. Getting through sercurity is a pain....and the people are not very helpful. One thing to consider; if you are taking the car seat on board you will have to pay for a seat for it. It does not fit in the overhead and the airline will try and get you to check it at the gate. I did...along with the stroller and it was there waiting for me when we got off the plane. (Everyone was very helpful.) I took my "Boppy" pillow and had my daughter lay on it. She was confortable and so was I....
Ohh...one more thing, you are only allowed to take 3 ounces of milk (either water for formula or breastmilk) in a container. You may take as many containers as you like....just no more than 3 ounces in each.
My daughter just flew on delta 2 weeks ago. It will not fit in the overhead compartment. They will put it under the plane and check it as luggage. The stroller you can take on the plane and they will put it away for you and have it ready and waiting for you when you get off. Hopes this helps.
Gate check!! I loved it with all of mine. You can take your stroller and car seat right to the door of the plane and they will bring it to the door when you arrive at your layover/destination. It is handled far less than checked luggage so less risk of damage and believe me you want that stroller handy! Another tip is to nurse/bottle feed on take off and landing. It helps with pressure in their ears. Most airlines are very helpful when you travel with little ones and you will usually be able to board first as well. I never had difficulty flying with my babies, now once they are toddlers that's a different story! Good luck.
We have checked strollers at the gate with no problems. They put them in a special compartment and then you get right when you get off the plane. I wouldn't bother with a car seat on the plane at all, don't think it will fit overhead and its not worth having in a seat, you would have to pay for the seat for the baby, and you don't need to pay for kiddos until they are 2 unless you want a separate seat for them. Also, the BEST way to help a baby through take offs and landings is to nurse them, the swallowing helps their ears pop and not hurt them, which is what causes all the crying usually. I have flown LOTS with my little ones who are now 7 and 2. Good luck!
i just held my child on the plane and brought my umbrella stroller. no problems. i dont know about carseats and all that. do you not want to hold the child...for a short trip is ok. a long trip might not work.
I have flown with my 2 young children on a few different occasions, the last time was just last Christmas. Because your child is so young if they have any extra seats on the plane they may allow you to keep it and put your baby in it. Just ask the person at the gate or a stewardess if there are any empty seats and if so you would like to keep your baby in a seat because it is safer. If there is no room they will check your seat because it will not fit in the overhead bin. They have usually been lenient with me when I travel with the kids when it comes to the 2 carryon rule. I usually have a diaper bag, purse, jackets, and a bag of toy/food for the kids. They never told me I had too much, maybe because I didn't take up all the bin space. I always store things under the seat in front of me to allow for easy access. Don't worry too much though, if there is something they don't want you to do they will let you know =).
I flew with my daughter when she was 6 months old as well. I had her in carseat and slept the whole time. I didnt buy her a ticket but ended up being able to put her in an empty seat next to me anyway. I kept her in the carseat which attached to the stroller. As far as checking the base to the carseat, I ziplocked it to the bottom of the stroller, in the little compartment storage area.
Keeping the stroller with me until it was time to board was great for several reasons. 1- I got to be the first one to board the plane! 2- Everyone knows how long airports can take, it was nice to keep her in her stroller and not carry that heavy carseat around everywhere. She wouldnt have liked that anymore than I. 3- I had the stroller waiting for me at the end of the walkway from the airplane. They take strollers and wheelchairs off first and are waiting for customers as you deboard. 4- Since I had ziplocked the base to her carseat as well, I had that with me immediately in case we wanted to put her straightaway into a car. 5- Nothing was lost or damaged.
I think "checking" your stroller with your other bags is more of a recipe for disaster.
-It could get lost like luggage does. If you keep it till you board, you KNOW theyll be putting at the bottom of YOUR airplane.
-They could mistreat it because it goes "behind" the scences with all the other bags and might get tossed around and such.
-There might be some collossal delay in getting luggage off the plane or long lines, long trip to baggage area from terminal- oy!
Keep it with you, its really the best option these days with flights being so unprectiable.
ok, here goes. I have traveled with in the last 2 years with my 2 yo son. going over seas and domestic. more than 15 times for myself i have it down to a fine art.
I too have the graco system. Yes take your seat base, when it comes to the seat and stroler. keep hold of the stroler untill you bord the plane you can check the stroller and car seat at the gate. (only check the seat if they wont let you use it) I never had any problem with my car seat being used. you will want to use the car seat. some where for your baby to sleep safely. it will not fit in the over head..
now i also recomend you purchasing a stroler cary bag (they come with two small wheels so they are easy to pull) at the gate pack your stroller into this bag. thus being the carriers and their handlers dont care about your stuff so they through stuff around and things get ripped and broken off. the bag may get damaged but that is what you are buying it for. the bag is cheaper than the stroler.
as for your baby. when you get on the plane make sure that you have a carry on for him that has spare clothes (also a change for you spit up realy does stink on a plane) blanket and a toy or two. also you should have your diaper bag (these two bags should be counted as the babies and not yours)
make sure that the babie is dressed in easy clothes so that it is easy to change that diaper.
when it is time to take off, make sure that you have a bottle to feed him, the suckking on the bottle will help with the preassure in the eardrums.
also you can go to the DR. and get some prisciption benadril test this on the child before you leave a couple of days before you fly, if it makes him sleep then take this with him it can help a baby calm down and go to sleep.
i have used it a couple of times. no harm to my son.
well i hope all this advice helps that is just what it is all this stuff has worked for me in the last 2 years.
We flew to London with our 6-months old and were told we could take the stroller to the gate- we ended up checking it in... Long story short-
- make sure you check the airlines website on what it says about luggage (print it out and take it with you)
- ask at checkin, if you will be able to take the stroller to the gate and let them confirm that somehow.
- If you do check the carseat, I'd make sure to have a cover over it, bc they don't always have enough covers and without one it gets nasty!!!
- If you take the baby on your lap, make sure that you get a seat with a little cod (first row)- sitting somewhere in between is NO FUN!!
Of course there are risks either way, but unless you pay for a seat, they won't allow you to take the carseat. The chances that there is an empty seat next to you in summertime are rare.
You can gate check the stroller and base right before you get on the plane. That way they are the last items loaded and the first items unloaded. They will have them waiting right outside the plane door for you.
Having the stroller with you until the last minute can be a life saver just in case your plane is delay. It will allow you to walk around and keep your little on happy.
The only con is that it's a bit cumbersome to get through security with all your stuff. Unfortunately, they will make you collapse the stroller and carry your baby through the detector.
Bring the carseat attached to stroller to the plane. go to the gate desk and ask them to tag both of them. they'll be available right when you get off the plane... not at baggage claim. i've never had a problem. the only thing that is a pain is at security. you have to take the baby out, separate the car seat from the stroller to put them through the x-ray. just take your time and don't worry about anyone else behind you. try to be calm so your baby isn't nervous. flying with an infant for the first time can be stressful, but just relax. mine slept the whole time... and if they cry, no biggie. other passengers seems to expect it when they see a baby.
We traveled with our daughter at 6 mos as well. We brought the car seat on the plane and did not bring the base- BAD idea. we needed to buys onw when we got down there. Put it in the overhead or bring an extra large bag to pack the odds and ends. We made sure she had a feeding as the flight took off to keep her swallowing so her ears wouldnt pop- It worked. Also we scheduled the flight time at nap time so that she would sleep thru the flight. Worked like a charm.. She didnt move the whole flight. We checked our stroller at the gate right before we boarded..not with our luggage.. it was waiting for us when we got off of the plane. We did check the pack-n-play without problems.
Call the Airline and see if you can check the car seat at the gate the same way you leave the stroller at the gate. That way it will get on last while you board and will be there when you get off. Of course if nothing else and you have to check it the airline should give you a car seat until you find yours. Good luck with the flight.
Hello Amber. We traveled from Baltimore to Miami when our daughter was 6 mos. and I remember being totally perplexed about whether or not we should take the car seat. Since we weren't going to travel much by car while on vacation, we got away with only taking the actual car seat (without the base). You can actually secure the carseat with the seatbelt without the base (directions should be included with the carseat). We decided to travel light and not bring the big stroller. We checked the car seat and would't you know- it got lost on the way home!! BUT IT WASN'T THEIR FAULT! We barely made the flight, so we weren't surprised when our luggage didn't make it. It arrived safe and sound the next day.
We just let our daughter sit on our lap during the flight. It was really no problem because the flight was only 2 hours. Now we're thinking about taking her to Italy to meet her extended family there- THAT should be interesting!! She'll be nearly a year when we go.
Be sure and have the baby nursing or drinking a bottle on the ascent and descent to help alleviate the change in air pressure. Not sure about the car seat, haven't traveled with an infant recently.
Be sure to pack plenty of diapers and food in case of flight delays or cancellations. Hope it goes well!
A couple of years ago when my son was 6 months to a year old, I flew a couple of times with him by myself. I was able to bring him through security in his infant seat along with the stroller and up to the gate of the plane where I then checked the seat and stroller and then held onto him during the flight. They will have the seat and stroller waiting for you when you get off the plane. Be sure to have them tagged by the airline at your gate. You don't need to worry about the seat and stroller getting lost this way. Hope this helps.
The best thing about traveling with a graco snugride (assume that is the carseat you are refering to) is that you don't need the base. We have traveled numerous times without it and have never had a problem. Occsionally we will need to roll up a towel or jacket to get the carseat at the right angle, but traveling without the base is so much easier and just as safe. I would check the carseat and stroller right at the gate before you get on the plane(they give you a special tag) as that has always been easiest for us, and less worrisome than checking with other luggage. Usually if there is room on the plane they will also move us to an extra seat and give us the option of bringing the careat on the plane for free. Good luck!
Your trip can turn out fine!
At 5 months, we took out daughter on a cross country plane ride. She did great! I don't see why the carseat would be a problem. When your baby gets older, you can use her car seat in the plane seat as long as it is approved for flight. There will be sticker certifying this.
Take-offs and landings can be hard on baby because of the changes in air pressure. Feeding baby juice/formula/nursing at these times can prevent dicomfort-sucking does this. Think about how you'll change a diaper. Inquire if there is a place for this. My husband ended up drying his slacks in the men's room since we didn't change diapers in flight.
Also, think about walking w/baby up and down the aisle. You won't get so cramped and baby likes the movement.
I am a mother to a 2 year old little girl who has already traveled more than I have in my first 5 years in the Navy. JK. Anyways at the tender age of 4 weeks she already took her first trip from Washington state to Key West, Fl to see her daddy stationed there at the time. Well because you are traveling alone with your baby you will have to be pretty prepared and well packed. You should consider how all your bags are going on your body and how you are moving those bags along with your baby. I traveled with a big case on wheels behind me with one hand and a backpack for a purse with laptop and anything else I could pack for her along with our documents. On her stroller was the car base and her seat and on the bottom was her blanket and her diaper bag. It just depends on how many bags you have. But you need to check your stroller at the plane so they can pack it downstairs for you for your arrival at the next stop waiting for you when you leave the plane. It's a convenience. The seat will have to go at the bottom as well since they don not fit in the top storage compartment unless you have paid for a seat for her at probably full price or a child price to have her car seat on. But there is definately no room for it in the cabin if you don't have a seperate seat for your baby. Just your lap if you are flying the baby for free. The only problem I ever had with one trip was that her cup holder came off her stroller but it wasn't screwed on so any detachable part should be taken off. Hope this helps and have an enjoyable trip. My little one was so good at every flight she's been on I always get complimented on having such a sweet and calm baby unlike the other screaming ones but you can't blame them, sometimes their ear popping really hurts if they are awake.
Those car seats are designed for you to use without the base. There are slots on either side to slip a seatbelt through and it should have come with a metal locking piece that prevents the seatbelt from moving. So there's no need to bring the base with you, and you can gate check the car seat. You may be lucky enough to have an empty seat next to you that you can put the baby in, otherwise, you can get it back when the plane lands. Happy travels!
I just did this with my 7 month old :) on 2 planes. (well 4 altogether) And, it was just me and her... it was EASY!
I checked the car seat, and only used it for the rental car.
It was so much easier to have her on my lap, or napping in my sling. I had a backpack diaper bag to bring on plane, and my purse, and one suitcase that I checked. I was able to attach the car seat to the suitcase, and roll it behind me. Worked perfectly.
Slings rule. (as long as the rings are metal, the plastic ones suck) I never needed a stroller.
I was allowed to take on as much milk as my baby needed inside my body (because I breastfeed)
If you nurse, be sure to nurse on ascent and descent to avoid painful ears. Worked like a charm :)
I haven't taken a 6 month old on a plane, but I did take my 22 month old. I doubt your carseat would fit in the overhead bin but you would have to check on that. I do know that you don't have to check your stroller, you can have your child ride in it up to the gate, then ask the airline to check it at the gate and have them deliver it back to your gate when arriving. They take it directly from you before you enter the plane on the jetway and bring it to you right as you get off the plane to the jetway, which was a LIFESAVER for me and my daughter. As I said, I'm not sure about the carseat, but you could either call the airline directly and ask someone or wait until you get to the airport and ask someone as you are checking in. Most people are quite helpful when you are travelling with a baby! Surprising, I know! Good luck to you and I hope you have a wonderful trip.
The last time that I traveled, the airlines did not charge extra for carseats or strollers and they were be available when I got off of the plane. The airline may check the stroller but they should have it waiting for you at the door when you get off of the plane. Things have changed but the airline should not charge for the base of the carseat or the stroller.
Good luck on your trip. FYI, you may want to give your baby some decongestant just before getting on the plane. It will help keep the ears from getting clogged up.
Hi, Amber. I just made a plane trip with my 5-month-old son. I held him on the plane, and we checked his carseat as baggage. Yes, there is a small risk that it will be get lost, but it was a minimal risk for us.The airline bagged it in a large plastic bag to protect it, and we had no problem. My concern with taking it as carry-on was that there wouldn't be room in the overhead bin. Hope that info is helpful! Happy flying!
I flew with my daughter when she was about 4 months. We checked her car seat with our luggage. They put it in an oversized plastic bag for us but when we picked it up at baggage claim the bag was ripped, the handle bar of the seat was scratched up and there was trash inside the bag. Although it is fine, it definitely had a rough trip so I would recommend gate checking it along with the stroller.
Since that trip we bought a "Gate Check" bag at Target online. I think it was only about $13 and is a lightweight nylon bag that will definitely protect a car seat more than the plastic bags at the airport.
The airline will be able to clarify what you can bring. We flew JetBlue and they allowed a car seat, stroller and diaper bag for free along with the baby. The diaper bag did not count as my personal carry on which was nice.
I was amazed at how helpful the airline staff was. Even though my husband and I were travelling together, they still went out of their way to be helpful (offering to hold boarding for a minute so we could get on first, helping to open the stroller for us when we got off the plane, etc).
If you are able to time your flight so that your baby is ready to eat or sleep that would probably help you out quite a bit. Security will need to look through any breast milk or formula you have so you will want to make it easy to pull out of your bag.
Our son was 4 months and then 7 months on his first 2 plane trips this past year.
We didn't buy a seat for him - just infant in lap.
I suggest CHECKING the seat and the base -
hook them together and have the airline wrap them in a bag (so they don't get TOO scuffed - ours were fine)
Make sure the baby breast feeds, sucks on bottle, or paci while ascending and decending -
I can almost guarantee that it won't fit in the overhead compartment. Although, I had one of those bags on wheels and when I went to the plane with it they took it before I got on and stowed it below. Then, when I switched my flights they gave it back to me as soon as I walked off the plane. They allow 2 carry-ons. One personal and one other. Your diaper bag and the carseat would be all you could carry on. Other than that you will have to have it checked in with your other luggage. Good luck on your flight.
Hello. I actually took my daughter on a plane at 2 months and 6 months! I didn't buy a seat for her, I felt more comfortable holding her as I do not believe the seats fit that wel in the airplane seats. If you hold her it is also free on most airlines and if the plane is not full they will allow you to take your carseat on the plane anyway. As far as bringing the car seat along: I checked the carseat and they seemed to take care of it fine both times, I checked just the seat and left the base at home. You can just buckle the seat in itself in the the car. The stroller on the other hand you can bring right through security with you and they will have you take the baby out and fold it up once you go down the "aisle" to get on the plane. Personally rather than bringing a stroller when I travel without my husband I find it easier to use a snugli that way I am carrying everything I need and don't have to worry about the stroller. It is up to you but this has worked well for me both times. Oh yeah, don't forget give the baby a bottle as the airplane lifts in the air to prevent his/her ears from popping that was a Dr.'s suggestion for us. Good luck hope all goes well!! Enjoy your trip and no worries they will let you know what you can and cannot do.
Hi there. We have traveled on airplanes with our 17 month old quite a few times. I recommend keeping the stroller with you - the car seat part of the travel system can get heavy carrying it. Just gate check it. We also gate checked the car seat part too, and just held him in our laps. It is much easier to stroll your baby thru an airport than carry him and the airlines are usually very good about gate checking. Just go up to the people at the desk when you get to the gate where your plane is departing. The only tough part is going thru security. The stroller and car seat both have to get put on the conveyer belt to go thru the x-ray machine. Hope you have a good trip.
My son flew for the first time at 7 months and did awesome!!( we also flew across country so we were chancing it) We also have a Graco snugride but didn't bring the base- just used the clip in the car we rented. I brought stroller and seat up to the terminal where they put them under the plane before I boarded- made for easy travel in the airport. Also if there are extra seats on the plane they will ask a passager to move and let you bring the carseat on board. Otherwise they will put it under the plane and bring it to the terminal (along with your stroller) when you de-plane. Bring a new toy to keep your son entertained and if he if is eating food bring lots of goodies- again another great way to entertain. Good luck and have fun!
I took my 6 month old to Las Vegas on vacation and we opted not to take the car seat, as we felt she would be most comfortable cuddled in our arms. It worked for us because we would not be driving at our destination. If you will be driving in a car then you will need to take it. The airline gives you the option to take the seat or hold the child. She was fine and the best baby to care for on the plane. The passengers commended us on how pleasant she was. Not sure if you already know this, but a big help in avoiding ear popping is feeding the baby just as you are taking off and landing since the sucking action is similar to chewing. It works! Good Luck!
We flew to Colorado (4hrs) w/ our son who was 8 mths at the time. As far as the car seat we took ours without any isses. This was a year ago so I would check. It shouldn't count as luggage if you were goingto have him in your lap. It sounds like you will have a seat for him though. What we did was pack the base in a contractors bag and tag it w/ our information. Again they should not cahtrge you for it because it shouldn't be considered luggage, same w/ the pack N play, if you are taking that as well. Since its just tyhe base they are pretty hard to break. In case it would happen to get lost, luckily enough car seats will still install correctly, and if needed you can make it to the store to buy and exatr at the expense of the airline of course. Also we flew w/ our son on our lap to Fl. (2 1/2 hrs). Try to scheuld or keep him awake and as you are taking off feed him. This will help with the ears popping and all since he is sucking on the bottle. Then hopefully he will take a nice long nap and wake as you are making it to your destination. It makes it alot easier. We also had a travel laptop w/ headphones for the Colorado trip and when he woke up we watched baby einstein. He has enjoyed those disks from 3 mths old. Just simple stuff to keep him entertained for the trip.
Double check w/ the airline about the base and good luck with the travels!
HI, we traveled a while back with a 3 mo old and did the following:
~brought the infant carrier (not the base) and did a gate check-in of the infant carrier - didn't have any problems with the airline. We rented a car at our destination, so just seatbelted the infant carrier in the rental car (with no car seat base).
~had a "frame stroller" that the infant carrier fit onto and also did a gate check-in of the stroller - again - didn't have any problems with the airline.
We did not have any problems with damage to infant carrier or stroller - but we did a gate check-in instead of the regular luggage check-in stuff.
Do you need to take your car seat base - or can you get by with just the carrier part?
I traveled on a plane with my son when he was 7 months old from MD to AZ - it was a 5 hour flight and I was nervous. I didn't bring any of that because luckily I had a friend on the other end in Phoenix who had a complete set of stroller and car seat. THE BEST thing I did was take my Baby Bjorn/baby strap on thing. When they are that small, it's hard to move as quickly as you need to with all their baggage in tow and remembering to take the baby, ha ha.
I strapped him on me and was able to pull our suitcase on and off the shuttle (I had to park at the airport for the 5 days we were gone), got into the airport, checked my bags and was able to go through security without a problem (removing my son and the carrier for the walk through). On the plane, I fed him his bottle, a couple jars of food, put him to sleep on my chest and by the time we arrived he was just getting antsy. If I didn't have that baby carrier I know my trip would have been way more difficult.
Good luck! Get a good night's sleep before you go!
When my daughter was an infant, we flew with her. We did not bring the base with us. Most of the Graco infant seats can be used in the car without the base. Check your manual. If you are not buying a ticket for your child, if there are empty seats on the plane, you can use the infant seat. Otherwise, just gatecheck the infant seat along with your stroller.