Flying with a 4 Year Old

Updated on June 16, 2013
A.C. asks from Bridgeport, NY
7 answers

I'm flying next week with my 4 year old. I am bringing her car seat for the rental car. Should I bring her car seat to use during the flight or should I check it?

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answers from Kansas City on

I would check it. At 4 she doesn't really need to be strapped down (like say a 1 or 2 y/o might, cuz I've done it! ;) and it's bulky and hard to maneuver through the aisle, etc.

You can check it for no charge, but just know that most airlines will make you sign a waiver that says they aren't responsible for damage, etc. I haven't had a problem until this last flight when my daughter's booster was completely destroyed! They went ahead and replaced it anyway b/c it was a bit extreme! Southwest rocks!! :) But I've done it quite a few times and never had a problem until now.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

You'll do great!! Make it an adventure! You're 4 yr old is old enough to enjoy it.

I would check the carseat. You'll have less to lug around in the terminal. I always tried be go as lightly as possible when flying with my daughter. We started flying when she was about 4 months old. She's 18 now and has earned free tickets with her frequent flier miles!!

Have fun games that are not what you normally do. We made puppets with airsickness bags.

Enjoy and don't stress!!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Seattle on

Yup. Check it.

And at that age, we brought a bacless booster seat. We could carry it onto the plane.

Have fun!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

technically you are safer with the car seat. however I have never done air travel with one along. In fact, I will be traveling with car seat for the first time this summer, and I will opt to check it in. First, so I don't have to lug it around and second, because it will make the ride more enjoyable if she has a little wiggle room.



answers from Detroit on

Bring it on the plane. Why check it when she'll be safer with it?

In one flight, everybody died except the 3-year-old, found dangling upside down in her carseat! So, it really is important. Plus, she'll be comfy and maybe even rest/sleep. And that way, you don't risk the seat not making it to the destination.

Have a good trip!


answers from Los Angeles on

I would check it, but I know my kids could keep still and stay seated ...if you think your kid would benefit by being strapped down even further than bring it with.

No real wrong answer, whatever you feel more comfortable with!

Have a nice flight!



answers from Washington DC on

Check it!
I would also recommend getting a harness buddy for walking through the airport. It will give your child a bit more freedom. I could not have survived without ours. You do have to take it off to go through security.

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