Airborne with your firstborn
Airborne with your firstborn
As summer approaches, if you’re lucky enough to be going on holiday with a young family, you might be feeling anxious as to how to manage travel with your littlest one. For many people, a sling or baby carrier will already be an integral part of their baby equipment. If not, it’s time to get to know them.
At the airport
Many families opt to leave their pushchair at home and rent one at their destination for the duration of the trip. That way, you can avoid the risk of it being damaged in-flight. If you’re set on having your own pushchair for the holiday, consider checking the pushchair in with the rest of your hold luggage. It’s one less thing to think about when boarding, plus it makes getting through security a breeze. That’s not to suggest you carry your little one on your hip – how are you to try on sunglasses or buy travel-size shampoo without use of both hands? Instead, wear your child in a carrier. Some carriers are ‘structured’ which means they’ll be bulkier and heavier to carry. For travel purposes, it’s best to find a carrier which is lightweight and adjustable. We love this hybrid version from Izmi. It’s somewhere between a wrap and a structured carrier, so it’s perfect for those looking to hold their baby close while keeping them supported.
Dos and Don’ts when on the plane
DO: Feed during takeoff and landing
The fluctuation in cabin pressure can be painful for your baby’s little ears. It’s a good idea to nurse or bottle feed during take-off and landing because the process of swallowing keeps the baby’s ears open so that pressure doesn’t build and cause discomfort. When it’s time for your baby to sleep, wearing them in a sling means you can walk up and down the aisle safely, with full use of your hands to support you should there be unexpected turbulence. Once your child is asleep, you can sit down and get some rest yourself, safe in the knowledge that your little one is comfortable and supported.
DON’T: Board early
It can seem like a good idea to be the first on the plane so you have time to get settled before take off, and many aeroplanes allow you to board early if you’re travelling with small children as a courtesy. However, it usually takes in excess of half an hour for everyone else to board. The plane won’t leave without you, and the less time in a cramped seat, the better.
Unless you’re fortunate enough to own a property abroad, chances are your holiday location will be unfamiliar territory for your baby. Carrying them in a sling allows you both to see the sights while maintaining body contact, which means your little one is far less likely to feel anxious in new places. While many tourist sights are wheelchair and pushchair accessible, there’s no guarantee. Plus, just because it’s possible with a pushchair doesn’t mean it’s easy. Avoid the hassle and carry your baby in a sling to make the most out of cultural trips.
Another factor worth considering is the weather at your destination. Remember that the carrier is essentially another layer over your baby’s body, and you don’t want them to get too hot. Izmi offer a hot-weather model of their award-winning carrier, called the Izmi Breeze. Mesh replaces the cotton on the front of the carrier, allowing for better airflow and a cooler temperature, so you don’t need to worry about your baby getting too hot.
Whether it’s a beach holiday or a city break, and whether you’re with pushchair or without, a baby carrier is sure to make your trip run smoothly.
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