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Air travel with children

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Leigh Ann
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Air travel with children

Postby Leigh Ann » Thu, 26 Jan 2006 3:08 am

Or a child, in this case.


Mydaughter is four and always flies in her carseat. She's 31 pounds and it's recommended for children under 40 pounds. But we've never done more than a three hour flight, before, either. So it's not a big deal.

We are going to be flying to Singapore in April. We have three legs on our flight: 5 hours, 12 hours, six hours. Then the reverse coming back. I was just talking to a representative at Singapore Airlines about the carseat. She said we are welcome to use one. But she also said the only times they really do get used are for infants. Once in the carseat is in the seat, you can't take it out. That means we won't be able to recline the seat for Katy to sleep and it's likely that her tray table will not completely lower, either. The seat configuration is 3-3-3. I was hoping it would be something like 3-5-3 and maybe we could be in the middle and might be lucky enough to have an empty seat. But that's not going to happen!

I am going to get a Tote-N-Go for use while we're there. I know it's not the greatest thing, but we won't take many taxis at all. And realistically, we're not going to, say, haul a carseat with us for five hours at the zoo or something.

Given the safety of air travel, I'm really thinking it's not going to be worth the hassle of having the seat. I think it'll make a long miserable trip even longer and more miserable. I hate to bring up the "we survived" line, but we did survive all those long flights just fine without it!

I don't think it'll be a problem with Katy sitting still on the plane. We'll get up for plenty of walks up and down the aisle and for trips to the potty.
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Bubbles
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Postby Bubbles » Thu, 26 Jan 2006 6:34 am

Hi Leigh Ann

How old is your daughter? If she's walking, she will be too big for the crib they put up on the wall.

As for car seats, I've never seen anyone use one on a plane before. It will be really cumbersome.

The thing with modern planes is, even if you get a spare seat, the armrests do not now push up. Some do a little, but some are fixed so it'll be difficult, perhaps, to lie her down.

But she can't be that big that one seat won't fit her, when reclined, to sleep. They have baby seatbelts that she could use when awake, but most folk just hold their little ones when awake. Or you could try to convert a set of baby 'reigns' as they're called in the UK. I don't know how, perhaps have some extra strapping on the ends and tie to each armrest, her between you.

They sleep lots though, but if she doesn't it's a case of walking the walk with her, I'm afraid.

When you break your trip, try getting her to run around the airports you land at, to tire her out. It's either that or you chasing her on the plane.

It's never easy, is it, travelling with tiny ones?

Best of luck.
PS Singapore is so hot you'd be shattered carrying a car seat around, unless it's one of those that turn into a pushchair. And talking of pushchairs, you'll definitely need one in Singapore, the weather is too hot for you to carry her all the time, or even some of the time, and she'll get too hot to walk herself for long distances.

If she's not walking yet and you bring one of those slings you put around your body, best of luck to you, I think you'll be sweltering hot. But maybe folk don't agree.

Bubbs.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Dylan Thomas.

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Bubbles
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Postby Bubbles » Thu, 26 Jan 2006 6:39 am

Sorry, just read she's four.

Surely she shouldn't need a carseat to travel, she's quite a big girl now? She is nearly at school, yes? I can't imagine a child of her age in a carseat on a planeseat.

She'll be absolutely fine in the normal seatbelt, and should be able to sit without it when the sign goes off.

I travelled with a one year old and a three year old many times, alone, back and fore to the Middle East, with no special seats, not even for the baby. And there's two of you. There are also Sky Nannies now, who'll come and chat, and bring books etc.

I know the flight is long, but you have breaks, and the child will get tired. My bet is that she'll sleep quite a lot of the time.

I still think you may benefit from a pushchair though.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.



Dylan Thomas.

Leigh Ann
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Postby Leigh Ann » Thu, 26 Jan 2006 6:48 am

She's four, but she's only 31 pounds and the FAA recommends children under 40 pounds be in a carseat (CRS).


"The FAA recommends that a child weighing:

Less than 20 pounds use a rear-facing CRS
From 20 to 40 pounds use a forward-facing CRS
More than 40 pounds use an airplane seat belt "


We've always done it and on short flights it's not a problem. I did send SIA an e-mail question about the armrests. The seat won't fit if the armrest won't raise. It's just a little bit wide.

I lived in Singapore 10 1/2 years, so I know how hot it is! We won't be using the regular carseat while there. They make some little harness that weighs about four pounds, stuffs in a backpack and is safe. And we plan on using the MRT a lot! I've only ridden it once, since it was operational only after we left, but it sure was nice!
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Postby Wham » Thu, 26 Jan 2006 2:34 pm

Leigh Ann,

My wife and i have dragged two infants all over the globe without ever using the airplane car seat. We now have a 4 yr old and a 2 yr old and while we did once drag a car seat along on a journey (when we were new parents and paranoid - and then didn't use it) we now just take along a travel stroller (McClaren spider thing) and then use regular car seat belts in the cabs and the regular ones on the planes. I am sure that we break a few FAA and Safety rules in the process, but there are a lot of compromises one makes when travelling with kids. Go ahead and leave the seats at home!!! and don't feel guilty - just use a regular car seat belt while travelling on the road - and then go back to the normal rules when you get home.

Good luck, Wham

PS - And don't forget something to much on for the little one while gaining and losing altitude. We use either Cheerios or Raisins - seems to do the trick with the pressure adjustment. ...though it was a bit funny when the little one yelled "hey! i can't hear! My ears feel funny!" REALLY LOUD
"He who makes a beast of himself gets rid of the pain of being a man." Samuel Johnson


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