Flying with Kids – Lessons from a Survivor!

Flying with kids – it’s the stuff nightmares are made of for most parents, amiright?

1Well, it was for me anyway. The Twincesses were a mere 6 weeks old when we took an 11 hour flight from Paris, France to Johannesburg’s OR Tambo International Airport.

We then had a 4 hour layover in Johannesburg before boarding a domestic flight to Durban. The weeks preceding the big trip literally gave me sleepless nights. Being a seasoned traveller, I was well aware of the exasperated “looks” and nasty comments parents sometimes deal with when flying with a fussy toddler.

I’ve collaborated with Travelstart to bring you some great tips for traveling with kids, so if you’re about to board a plane soon, little one in tow, read on for some helpful advice.

ZA_21Dec_FlyKids_Design_Infographic_800px_201217We followed Travelstart’s tips to the letter. We did our research and booked bulkhead seats in advance that came equipped with baby bassinets. We knew we could take our infant car seats on board, which alleviated the anxiety of them getting damaged in the hold.

Doing your research also helps to ensure you have all your travel documents ready as laws have changed dramatically in recent years regarding travelling with children. We had to apply for passports for the babies prior to travelling with them and the passport renewal process can sometimes be a bit confusing.

We packed clothes for all weathers in our carry-on luggage and a few extra sets for those inevitable ‘oopsies’. We were allowed to carry on board baby formula which the cabin crew were happy to heat up for us.

I ensured we had OTC pain medication in our carry on, as well as their favorite plush toys. We avoided toys that made any kind of noise (like rattles).

I was grateful to be able to book a flight that left Paris at 11:30pm, and to my amazement and utter joy, BOTH girls slept soundly throughout the flight, waking only to feed at intervals. I had been a nervous wreck for nothing!

Hearing the first-hand experiences of other parents also gave me some much-needed confidence prior to the trip.

 

Flying with kids can sometimes be stressful for the parent, but it is often a necessity and being prepared makes the trip enjoyable for everyone on board.

Our plan is to take the kids back to Paris this year to visit the family, and I will definitely be revisiting all Travelstart’s top tips prior to the journey!

Disclaimer: This post is in collaboration with Travelstart. All opinions remain my own.
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The Twincesses Turn Three

My girls are 3 years old!

As the girls (almost) share a birthday with Grandma, we whisked the whole family away to the Lake Eland Game Reserve in Oribi Gorge for a weekend celebration. They were thoroughly spoiled with presents from family and friends, as well as their besties at school.

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We enjoyed game drives and cool afternoons at the pool.

The girls got up close and personal with a few friendly giraffes and created memories that I hope will last a lifetime.

Lake Eland is very family friendly, with lots to offer in terms of activities and sights.

There are high-octane sports like ziplining and bungee jumping, as well as a suspension bridge for daredevils. Game drives can be booked via the hotel, but we opted for self-drives as the roads are fairly tame.

There are shallow kiddies pools available, as well as a lovely, large play area. There is a restaurant on site serving delicious light meals for breakfast and lunch. All this only 1.5 hours from Durban.

Of course, no birthday would be complete cake!

25 Daily Thoughts a Mom of a Toddler might have.

  1. So much to do, so little time
  1. Why won’t she eat her cereal? She loved it yesterday! Why? Why? WHY?
  1. Her laugh makes my heart sing.
  1. Why is she being a little monster today?
  1. My kid is SO smart. Smarter than most kids I know.
  1. Got her to nap for more than 45 minutes! Score! I’m really good at mommying!
  1. Why can’t she just play quietly by herself for a few minutes? I just need 5 minutes. Is that so much to ask for?
  1. Orange juice counts as a serving of fruit. Right?
  1. Her smile could stop traffic.
  1. Being a mom is SO hard. I can’t do this. I just can’t.
  1. My coffee is cold. Again.

Toddler Mom thoughts12. She won’t eat her lunch, but wants more Flings. Typical.

13. I love her SO MUCH.

14. Why won’t she stop crying?

15. She’s getting so big. It’s going too fast. 16. How can a tiny human create so much laundry!?

17. I need to get her to eat more veggies.

18. And I thought the new-born stage was hard!

19. When last did I eat something?

20. I can’t wait until she’s older and I’ll be her best friend.

21. If I have to sing the Barney tune one more time, I might die.

22. Who knew that strawberries and chicken could be eaten together?

23. I hope I get more than 4 hours of sleep tonight.

24. Is it too early for wine?

25. How did I get this lucky?