Flying with 5 year olds

Discussion in 'Childhood and Beyond (4+)' started by mama_dragon, Mar 1, 2014.

  1. mama_dragon

    mama_dragon Well-Known Member

    I will be flying for the first time with my twins soon.  By myself.  I dread this on many levels.  I hate flying, I have a child with a severe peanut allergy and did I mention I hate flying.
    So one of my kiddos is still under 40 lbs.  Both boys are in a five point harness carseat and will be probably forever given their low weights.  Anyway how do you fly with two kids who need a 5 point harness carseat.  Do you take carseats?  When you arrive and get your car rental what do you do about carseats if you don't bring yours.  The carseats the boys are in currently are Britix Frontier.  They are heavy and I cannot imagine myself lugging the two carseats along with two kids through a busy airport along with our luggage.  I looked up information about renting a carseat from a baby rental place.  I think I trust them better then the car rental place and they have ones that would fit the kids and still provide a 5 point harness.  Anyone ever used one?
    Did I mention how much I truly hate to fly.  I am exhausted just thinking about it.
  2. gina_leigh

    gina_leigh Well-Known Member

    I can't answer anything regarding the allergy.
    But we took a trip last year where we had a car rental when we got to our destination. We rented car seats from the same company and didn't have a problem with it. They were basic seats, nothing too fancy, but they got the job done. I couldn't imagine bringing along a huge car seat. Mine just sat in the regular sit on the plane. 
    Flying with my two hasn't been bad in all honesty. We did a fair amount of plane travel last year and they handled it really well. I let them pack a small backpack with things to do on the plane- usually paper and pens/crayons/markers- and they seem content to do that. They also like looking out the windows a lot. DS especially became very interested in how airplanes work, so he and DH had some long discussions on that. (I'm clueless, so couldn't help lol.) And depending on who you fly with, there are options to rent movies on the plane. My SIL did that with our niece and she loved that. Mine watched a little, but not a ton. I did bring a few snacks to bring along too. 
  3. tarcoulis

    tarcoulis Well-Known Member

    Check in the carseats and get CARES harnesses for the airplane if you want something more than the lap belt. Your own carseats may not be legal (safety standard wise) if you are going overseas so if you're a stickler for the rules rent one, preferably from a baby rental place.  Don't get it from the car rental.  We took our 5 year old, just about to expire, carseats to Canada intending to get rid of them before returning home since we were due to get new ones anyway.  DH went home a couple of weeks before the girls and I and returned the rental car (we had my Aunt's car) forgetting about the carseats in the back until he was at the airport.  The rental company said no problem, they'd lock them in the storage room until we could come to pick them up.  When my cousin's husband got to the airport a couple of hours later, there was only one seat.  After frantic searching they discovered that another rental car company had rented it to some unsuspecting folks.  It was perfectly fine but faded, stained, generally ratty looking, almost expired, and not legal in Canada.  The rental company was very nice and had a brand new seat delivered to us that afternoon.  While it met Canadian safety standards, it would not be legal in the US.  We left it in Canada for my niece.  Lucky we were intending to buy new ones on returning home anyway. So, never get a carseat from a rental car company because it might be ours!
  4. Leighann

    Leighann Well-Known Member

    My girls have flown a lot and we have never brought our own car seats. We have either arranged with family/friends at our destination to borrow seats, or have rented them from the car rental company.

    5 year olds are great travelers because they can listen well and entertain themselves for longer periods of time. I would start talking up the trip now and tell them what you expect of them on the plane. Pack snacks (I usually also pack paper plates so they have something to eat on), cups (to have the attendant fill with water, juice or milk), coloring pages, small quiet toys or books, and maybe an iPad to DVD player with splitter and headphones. As for the peanut allergy, tell the airline, the gate agent, and the flight attendant.

    How long is the flight? Unless I'm flying southwest (where you don't have a seat assignment), I try to board at the last possible minute with a potty trip the last thing we do before getting on the plane. I pack a backpack and the girls have their own too with small toys and books. This way if we board last I don't care about overhead bin space because our backpacks fit under the seat (I prefer not to sit in bulkhead for this reason).

    Good luck and just know that however it goes, it's only a small amount of time in everyone's lives. :)
  5. SuzyHolland

    SuzyHolland Well-Known Member

     We flew last year and also 2 years ago.
    The boys were 5 then.
    The didn't need car seats.
    We flew from Amsterdam to Boston (with a stop over in Iceland)
    The first time I flew with Berber, she was 18 months, We had her on our lap..and very lucky with an extra seat next to us.
    Must say that in Europe I never have seen kids in car seats in a plane.
    only baby's
    We have rented carseats at the rental place.
    Good luck!!!
  6. ljcrochet

    ljcrochet Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    My girls have flown a lot. I think we only brought car seats on the plane once. And if we did we brought the .

    We rented from places either car rental or outside company. FIL bought car seats that where 5 harness then belt position to use when we visited.
  7. mama_dragon

    mama_dragon Well-Known Member

    Thank you all for the input and ideas.  I am going to skip taking carseats with us.  We have a few months to decide if we rent from the car company or another rental place. 
  8. Rollergiraffe

    Rollergiraffe Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    We take our carseats with us, but I have never flown alone with the boys. I definitely couldn't handle both ca rseats on my own. I would check with another rental place; the car seat rentals at certain companies are cruddy (I am looking at you, budget). We had a nightmare getting the seats installed last time and the rental attendants were so fed up with me that they finally just let me drive away in a very high end vehicle because they're all I could get a proper installation done in. I am pretty sure my performance is on youtube somewhere. There was crying. Anyway, the lesson learned was to see if you can find out the make of car seat you will be getting and then you can look up how to install it properly in the vehicle you will be renting. I think that's the site I used.
    As for the peanut allergy, most snacks are peanut free because of allergies. Also make a note when you book your tickets under the special diet/requirement, mention it to the gate agent, mention it to your flight attendant. A friend of mine has a fairly severe allergy and they will go out of their way to put him in a row of his own if they can and ask other passengers to refrain from peanut products. They don't want a medical emergency any more than you do!
    My boys are great on the plane; the only tricky parts are the bathrooms if the seatbelt sign is on. We make heavy use of the ipad and phones during flight, and I usually get them some kind of special toy or snack to keep them occupied.
  9. Sofiesmom

    Sofiesmom Well-Known Member

    My kids fly a lot, I mean a whole lot, having lived overseas their entire lives. I have taken car seats, but to be completely honest, you will not be able to manage 2 kids, carry-ons and 2 Britaxes. You just can't. So you either need help, or you check the car seats as hold luggage (in luggage bags) which I have done many many times, and then you stroller them to the gate and ask for help to get them onboard. I understand correctly that your twins are 5 right? Mine haven't been in their car seats in planes since 1 year of age. They just sit with the regular belt, tightly strapped around their waists. As for peanut allergies, check with the airlines, as some don't do peanuts anymore. Best thing to do is take alcohol wipes, and wipe down arm rests and tray tables. I would inform the airline in advance as well about this potential problem in case they still do serve peanuts, and tell the purser once you go onboard. At least you are making them aware.
    Be calm, be flexible ... it's really not that hard ... I just get a drink once we're all seated. I fly with them long distance by myself since the twins were 5 and even have stopovers, and this summer I voluntarily chose to do a 3 night stopover in Kuala Lumpur with 3 kids alone! I always take clean clothes, last summer I still had one of the twins pucking on our second leg from Dubai to Hong Kong, but must say staff on airliners in this part of the world (Asia) is still very service minded and helpful. I know in the US it's unfortunately not always the case. However, I've had good experiences in the US as well. All mine do is sleep, eat and watch TV (so bring an iPad or DVD player if you don't have IFE).
    Positive vibes, it's only a matter of a few hours and a drink will help you! :drinks:
    You'll be fine! Trust yourself and your kids!
    1 person likes this.
  10. Fran27

    Fran27 Well-Known Member

    We flew when the kids were 4 and just rented some car seats there too.
Similar Threads Forum Date
Flying with 2 4 yr olds The Toddler Years(1-3) May 13, 2014
Flying with one-year-olds The First Year Mar 5, 2013
Flying with 3 year olds? The Toddler Years(1-3) May 2, 2012
Flying with 21 month olds. Any advice? The Toddler Years(1-3) Feb 24, 2010
Flying alone with 10 month olds The First Year Sep 11, 2009

Share This Page