1. Fly on Southwest or other carrier with open seating. This way if there is an extra seat on the plane you can just bring your baby’s carseat on with you and snag the seat next to you (with attendant’s permission of course). With assigned seating, even if there is an open seat it is not likely to be next to you and you will have to ditch your carseat at the gate check area as you board. So even if they can rearrange you to be next to the open seat…the carseat is long gone.
2. Not likely to be a free seat available by the time your flight rolls around? Buy one. The main point of #1 is that you can set your baby down. It’s great to have more options. You can hold your baby or your baby can be in the carseat. For any flights over 1.5 hours I would highly recommend this. I love holding my baby, but the experience of holding my baby for 5 hours (half of it squirming) was quite a workout. That experience has me planning to buy a seat for my baby from now on. Plus it’s a lot safer for your baby to be buckled into a carseat than in your arms in the event of an emergency.
3. Be friendly when waiting at the gate. Yes, a lot of people will be glaring at your and your baby. But some people will be chatting you two up! They might even offer to hold your baby on the plane if you need to use the bathroom. It’s like having friends in high places. Get it?! Good one Beck!
4. If you are going to rent a car its easy to rent one at the airport – or if you decide to rent a car later – remember Enterprise! They pick you up! Never seemed like a better idea to me than it is now.
5. Bring a secret stash of toys to introduce as needed. My baby got bored of toys after a few days. So I would give them a rest and give him something new. After a few days, those old toys were like new again! He also enjoyed many other “toy” objects while we were on the road: cloth napkins, spoons, leaves, water bottles, those spring loaded hair clips, etc, etc).
Got any other good ones?