Flying with My 7-Month Old Alone - Need Advice Please!

Updated on April 09, 2009
C.L. asks from Los Alamitos, CA
4 answers

Hi. I will be traveling alone with my 7-month old from NY to LA this weekend. I have taken him on planes a couple of times already, but always with my husband. My baby boy is a little hard to handle when we travel because he can never seem to get comfortable enough to sleep unless I lie down to breastfeed him. Last time we flew, my husband and I were fortunate enough to get the entire aisle to ourselves, so I was able to feed my son lying down. I, however, do not expect to be so lucky this time. I think I may have conditioned him too well to only sleep in the crib, and now when he is not in his "safe" environment, he can't sleep. Otherwise, he is too overstimulated by all the new sights and sounds that he doesn't want to sleep. I'm nervous about having to hold him for over six hours on the plane when he gets fidgety because he does get cranky when he can't sleep. Any advice???

Thanks so much!

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answers from New York on

I have done this kind of trip several times with my son (now 13 months) so I know what you are going through! Here are some ideas off the top of my head:
- Perhaps a nursing pillow might help? My Brest Friend has an inflatable nursing pillow so at least he could be lying down. I used that when my son was younger.
- I find that having my Ergo carrier on flights is key - he is cozy and my hands are free. Useful for getting on the plane, going to the bathroom, etc.
- Take some small toys, a favorite and a new thing to keep his attention. He will not sleep the whole way so you need some distraction for both of you!
- The video screens can often be a good source of entertainment for them. My son doesn't watch TV at home so it is sort of a novelty for a few minutes.
- I also take a small blanket (like one of the ones from the hospital) and put it on the floor so if he wants to sit/crawl I'm not quite as grossed out by the floor! :)
- snacks for both of you! and don't forget to drink water, which does mean you'll have to go to the bathroom but you can ask someone else to watch the baby if he's sleeping and you don't want to take him with you.
- ask for help every step of the way! when you are traveling along people can be more helpful. not always, but it never hurts to ask. When you check in see if they can save an empty seat next to you, for example.

Let me know if there is anything else I can help with - I'm traveling this week with my son by myself again (3rd time in a month) so I feel your pain, so to speak!
Bon voyage!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from New York on

If buying a seat for him is an option, I would do this, especially for a 6 hour flight. I have flown with my daughter since she was six months and have always bought a seat and put her carseat in so she could sleep, and sit still without me having to struggle with her. Todays flights are often booked full, which means you will probably have people sitting right by you, it may be hard trying to hold your son still the entire time... Of course it all depends on the baby, and is certainly doable on a shorter flight. I just know it was worth the cost of the seat because she was comfortable and knew she should sit and stay in her car seat! Good luck!!



answers from New York on

I bought one of those u-shaped neck pillows and found it to be very helpful to rest my son's head on when he laid on my lap. I also found that generally people always offered unsolicited help when they saw me alone with my son and trying to fold up the stroller, or whatever -- so don't be afraid to ask for help or an extra set of hands when you need it.



answers from New York on

We flew with our son the first time at 7 months and brought his car seat and bought him a ticket (he is big for his age and very active so holding would not have worked even then). We also used a light weight stroller in the airport. I also packed lots of snacks and toys--especially a few new toys.

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