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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Fri Feb 22, 2013 7:45 pm 
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Semen Strong
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Leela will be about 20 months, so it would probably be horrible. I can't imagine her doing anything but running up and down the aisles trying to play with people. That is essentially what she does when we take the train into NYC and I find it exhausting. And that is a 45 minute train trip.

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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Fri Feb 22, 2013 8:08 pm 
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***LIES!!!***
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Dude, I clearly don't even know what month it is now. Sheesh.

My dad said he might move to Mexico because somehow it's reasonable to move to another country when you're eighty and don't speak the language. I was like, dude, that trip is just not happening so think again, buddy.


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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Fri Feb 22, 2013 9:13 pm 
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The Real Hamburger Helper
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We just got home from a three hour flight, but tack onto that at least two hours on both ends for traveling to and from the airports. She was really good considering there was no nap all day and so many times I just could not let her run around. The line for going through customs was INSANELY long. Thank god one of the officers took pity on us when babynut was freaking out and moved us ahead. Otherwise I might still be in that line.

I would do it again. I'm generally annoyed by air travel even without the baby, so there you go.


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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 2013 4:06 pm 
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nearly 3 was not bad at all, ariann. see my england trip thread. she was old enough to explain what was going on, a little bit capable of restraint, and can sit through a movie. of the 20 million children on board our two flights, the ones who were around 18 months old were the most hellish. the under 1s and the over 2s were pretty good.


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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Sun Feb 24, 2013 10:32 am 
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Location: Aarhus, Denmark
Oh boy, we're doing it next month. I am dreading it already but we bought the tickets and are flying from Denmark to the US.

trip plans=
day 0--take train to Copenhagen, spend night close to airport
day 1--fly from CPH to Newark, spend night with BIL, very pregnant SIL, and their 3 year old twins
day 2--fly from Newark to Tucson, visit all other family for 10 days
day 12 or something, fly to Newark, visit more with in-laws. Don't know whether to hope their baby will have arrived or will be hanging out.
day 14 or day 1 million as I imagine it, fly back to CPH. Hopefully take train home.

Everyone says it it's way easier to travel with small babies, and tiny wu will be 5 months old so I really really hope that's true. But I am already having stressy dreams about it. Not to mention the large chunks of time we will be spending with my BIL's family.

Trying to focus on things like how nice it will be to see certain family members, enjoy non-below-freezing weather, and eat Mexican food!


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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Sun Feb 24, 2013 10:48 am 
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Semen Strong
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Exciting! Have a great flight, and if you're near Newark and want vegan and baby-friendly restaurant recommendations, let us know!

My sister did a lot of traveling with her first before he was one (Spain, Morocco, London) and said that as long as he was not mobile, she says it was all pretty easy. As LB says, it gets harder when your kiddo is very mobile and can't understand why they need to sit still or follow directions very well.

You know, I always hear about people calling for child-free flights, but I wouldn't mind being on a flight where everyone on them were families-with-little-kids. Imagine the pressure it would take off your shoulders if you knew every single other person was worried about the same things you are and that not one person was going to judge you because they know how easily it could be them...

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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Sun Feb 24, 2013 11:34 am 
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Oh gosh butternut, I forgot about the customs line. We're also doing a three hour trip to the beach in a couple of weeks (I'm guessing you probably went somewhere in the Caribbean too?) and I just figured this is the shortest flight Ada has ever been on so it shouldn't be too bad.
What we did on our last long flight was book the extra legroom seats for a little extra money, and the front row for one flight. This gave Ada a little place to play on the floor. it worked pretty well. We did the same thing for our upcoming flight even though its shorter because I know she is going to want to sit on me but my belly is getting pretty big so it's not the most comfortable and paying for the extra legroom was obviously cheaper than getting her a seat. And it's the last time she can fly for free!
Oh also, when she was smaller we found it was easier to get her to fall asleep if she was in window seat instead of the aisle where she could get more distracted.


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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Sun Feb 24, 2013 12:55 pm 
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Nooch of Earl
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Oh Tlish, I know!! I've actually seen faceboocquaintances with small kids complain that they got stuck in the loudest part of the plane (engine noise) with all the other people with kids and I was like what the fizzle PLEASE DO THAT TO ME. Realistically, on United at least you get put next to the other vegetarians. (seriously)

I think the ideal would be ripping out like 2-3 rows of seats to install toddler-sized jumper seats that folded up after the plane took off to create one big play area, then throwing in lots of soft toys and having a kiddie free-for-all.


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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Sun Feb 24, 2013 4:04 pm 
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The Real Hamburger Helper
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Sashi, it was manageable. And it looked like it was standard procedure to move families with young children into a shorter customs line (at JFK). That's one of situations when you really can't let them run around but there is all this space to run, so it must be super annoying to a confused toddler.


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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Sun Feb 24, 2013 4:18 pm 
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Scandina, we took the bean at 8 months and not yet crawling and we did alright. I wouldn't want to do it every day, but it was in no way as gnarly as what I thought it would be. On the way there (day flight, UK time) we basically just catered to her every desire...the best books, favorite snacks, lots of boobies. We walked the aisles some, played with the headphones/pillow/eyemasks/yada yada. We looked out the portholes a lot too. Karl and I were exhausted after 3 hours of pre-flight travel, check-in, etc and then a 9+ hour flight, but baby stayed happy. On the way back, we'd booked a night flight and she slept/boobed most of the time. I got virtually no sleep, because she was on me, but I could relax and was happy that she wasn't disturbing any other passengers (whew).

I'm a bit nervous after reading about the recent toddler (versus baby) trips, but hopefully our "distract her for 9 hours" technique can work its magic again. A trip to Norway is in the works too, but that's a bit shorter (a little)


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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Sun Feb 24, 2013 4:33 pm 
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Nooch of Earl
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We got moved ahead to the quick lines through both immigration and customs on the way back into the US, no concessions in the foreign country we visited (but the lines were also shorter there).


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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2013 1:57 pm 
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Location: Aarhus, Denmark
Thanks Tofulish, I'll PM you about where we'll be staying and maybe you'll have some suggestions for us! And refinnej, it's always good to know someone else has done it and survived. One thing in our favor is that tiny wu won't be on solid food yet, so that's one less thing to worry about.

What I am not looking forward to is the three travel days in a row--3 hour train trip to CPH the first day, and then two flying days. It would be great if we could have done it differently but since we're traveling around the Easter holidays tickets are so price-sensitive!

Ha, I'd definitely take other kids' noise over being the one everyone is glaring at! But I decided today there's no point in worrying about that since either tw will be adorable and charming and everyone will love her, or she'll be horrendous but at least we'll never see any of those people again.


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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Wed Nov 06, 2013 6:19 pm 
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We're on a plane on Monday morning, only a 4 hour flight but it will be Westiebaby's first. I'm packing snacks, water, a couple of books, some toys she's not played with for a while, some she's familiar with, and generally hoping for the best!

Any super baby-on-a-plane tips? She's 10 months old.


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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Thu Nov 07, 2013 5:29 am 
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The times we've flown (to US and UK) or taken the train, tw gets too interested and excited and generally wound up to nurse,even if she's tired or unhappy. I feel like everyone says, oh just nurse at take-off and landing and it'll all be great... well. just be prepared, she may not want to.

Sorry, that wasn't a tip at all, but at least you can be mentally prepared just in case!

We flew at 9 months and the best weapons were a couple lift-the-flap books and a small pouch filled with "real stuff" like old bus tickets, some measuring spoons, a kiddie wallet and business cards, etc.


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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Fri Nov 08, 2013 1:20 pm 
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If you have the space, bring a change of clothes for whoever will be holding the baby on the plane (in addition to a change of clothes for the baby, of course). My kiddos have been really good at having huge spit-ups or pooping on me when we're on a plane.


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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Sun Nov 10, 2013 4:33 am 
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Thanks Helbury and ScandinaVegan, we're heading to the airport at 8 in the morning, fingers crossed for an awesome trip!!


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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Sun Nov 10, 2013 8:03 am 
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Semen Strong
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No tips, sadly, but I hope you have a wonderful and easy flight and trip! You've mentioned a bit about the destination and it sounds like Paradise! I'm excited to see pictures of the westies at the beach!

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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Sun Nov 10, 2013 6:15 pm 
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Ditto to the suggestion of an extra shirt at least, for the grownups. :) Also, if westiebaby will drink from a sippy cup (or is happy with her snacks), that can help with the ear/pressure thing as well. Supposedly, it tends not to be much of an issue during ascent, but only on descent/landing.

We spent a lot of time on each of our flights just looking at stuff..looking at the clouds out the porthole (or the sea one time when we were flying eerily low), walking the aisles, playing with the television, etc.

Good luck tomorrow!


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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2013 12:16 am 
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Chip Strong
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Eek, I'm going to be flying cross-country this week with a 16 month old. The last time we flew she was 5 months and she just nursed and slept, but now she's running all over the place. The flight will probably be the least miserable part of visiting my partner's family, though, so I could just think of it that way.


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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2013 12:18 am 
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Chip Strong
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Oh, and there is no way we are paying for her own seat until the day she turns 2 years old so I should mention that the lack of space is my main concern, especially since Scarlett is really big for her age.


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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2013 10:55 am 
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The Real Hamburger Helper
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Just talk really loudly as you board the plane about how tired and crabby Scarlett is and your fellow passengers will be fleeing for the empty seats. :p Really though, we've had much kindness shown to us wrt people moving seats to give us space. If you can still call the airline, you might be able to fudge your way into getting the bulkhead seats for free as you're traveling with an "infant" (under age 2). United did this for us just last month and clearly there was no way that Freya was gonna be sleeping in one of those baby bassinets (which is why they sit you there). The arm rests don't flip up in those rows sometimes because the TV, etc. is in there, but the extra leg room/floor space is invaluable, imo.

At the airport, definitely talk to the flight attendants as you board the plane. They are super helpful with asking passengers about their willingness to change seats...happy baby is a much easier time for them too, after all.


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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Thu Nov 14, 2013 1:13 pm 
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When we took Malka at 17 months she spent the entire first flight walking up and down the aisles, to the dismay of the flight attendants (who were not helpful in any way whatsoever, even though Malka is sweet and adorable). On the way back we were prepped with videos loaded onto the iPad and she was able to sit for most of the flight. I will not take a flight with her without the iPad again.


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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Thu Nov 14, 2013 1:22 pm 
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mooo wrote:
Oh, and there is no way we are paying for her own seat until the day she turns 2 years old so I should mention that the lack of space is my main concern, especially since Scarlett is really big for her age.

Ha, yeah. I flew from Seattle to Germany by myself with Inez in my lap when she was 21 months. It was stressful (going was worse, coming back was better) but no way in hell was I buying a seat on an international flight if I didn't have to.

Good luck! Pack lots of distractions. Stickers bought us some time. And yes to a tablet if you've got one.


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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Thu Nov 14, 2013 10:55 pm 
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Chip Strong
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The way here today was super easy! Yessss!! Unfortunately she isn't used to watching tv or using an iPad so she was totally uninterested in that. We basically read the sky mall and ate for 5 hours. She ran around and shrieked in the terminal before we got on the plane and I think other people were not thrilled about her being on their flight, but she ended up doing great!


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 Post subject: Re: International travel with babies
PostPosted: Tue Nov 19, 2013 9:59 pm 
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I updated about our trip in the other thread but thought I should add some flight-specific stuff here.
Things that were awesome: not that it's probably helpful to anyone else here, but the Air New Zealand staff were excellent, I was offered about 10 times by half a dozen different staff members that they would help with anything I needed help with, when we boarded they asked whether I was breastfeeding and gave me a 1.5l bottle of mineral water to help with hydration because I was, and they pointed out which was the largest and most comfortable of the toilets/changing table stations on the plane.
The bassinet was great for a playpen surface, she was reasonably content to sit in there for short blocks of time with some toys and books, especially because she was so high she could see everyone in the seats behind [very nosy baby here!]

Things that were less than awesome: I wasn't allowed to wear her in our Manduca for takeoff/landing, which I found annoying when she was perfectly happy there, and their little baby seatbelt was a bit of a joke and definitely made her less secure.
The aisles are so freaking narrow!! I thought we'd spend a lot of time walking up and down the plane, but it was hard to do without feeling like we were bumping the people on either side of the aisle, so we instead spent a lot of time walking circles outside the bathrooms!
Waiting in the immigration queue. Annonyingly, her and I have 'smart' passports, and there's a speedy queue coming back into Auckland, but she's not allowed to use it till she's 16 so we had to wait in the long slow queue when she'd already done so well in staying still and quiet for four hours on the plane and it was way past her bedtime.

All in all, she did incredibly well, I think, and I'm a lot less hesitant about flying with her again, though I don't know how we'd do on a flight that was any longer!!


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