Mini Flyer

So last week was Mini’s first trip on an airplane and seeing as how we are set to be inhabiting this little island on the edge of the Atlantic for some years to come, we wanted to make sure it was as much of a pleasant experience as possible for her so she wouldn’t come to associate holidays with consternation and stress-things which are much better suited for her parents!
With that in mind, I’ve compiled some tips on how to ensure flying with your little monster doesn’t produce terror at 30,000 ft.

Firstly, it goes without saying, make sure you factor in plenty of time to negotiate the tedious task of traversing the airport. The last thing you want is to be rushing frantically for the gate, laden down with Junior’s impressive amount of paraphenalia with a screaming infant in your arms. And laden down you shall be, as although you must pay for baby’s passage, the little mite gets no baggage allowance and airports are becoming increasingly strict on the only one item of hand luggage per person rule.

What I did was take a bigger bag- into a side pocket of which I could put important things such as wallet, passport, tickets and then popped Mini’s changing bag into that bag. We flew with Ryanair and they did what I am sure must be sacrilege for them-they did not charge us for the extra kilo of weight in our check in bag. So it would seem that they are a bit more lenient and understanding when there are small children involved in flying. Abuse this act of decency at your peril as I cannot see it being extended to more than one supplementary kilo and the charge for the luggage being overweight now stands at €20 per kilo!
Formula, either made up or in powder form, breast milk and any solid food is permitted to be taken in your carry on luggage. It’s a good idea to have your little one either eating, drinking or sucking on a soother at both take off and landing to help soothe their delicate ears so make sure you have plenty of these. And be sure to bring plenty of distractions in the form of toys too as babies never seem to take too kindly to being strapped into strange and confined places.

You may take your buggy or pushchair with you free of charge all the way through the airport until you board the plane where it will be folded and stowed in the undercarriage of the plane. You will have to fold it up and place it on the conveyor belt when going through luggage screening. Any other infant item such as a car seat or travel cot will have to be checked in and will incur an additional fee-usually in the region of €10-€25 one way.

If your mini is younger than 2, then they travel on a parent’s knee and are charged a flat infant rate.With Easyjet this equates to £25 one way, with Ryanair €30/£30 one way. Now as low cost carriers have frequent sales on, you may notice that the cost of your return flight as an adult can be significantly cheaper than the cost of your mini’s who in effect has no seat to speak of. Do not in any way try to cheat the system and buy an adult ticket for your baby as you will have to pay the infant fare at the airport on top of what you have already forked out for. Never try to outsmart the low fares airlines.You simply will not win. Something else to watch out for is that if your mini should celebrate the joyous occasion of turning 2 during your holiday or trip abroad, you must ensure you have purchased a full price ticket for him or her for the return leg of the journey and not an infant one, because as everyone knows,you become an adult at the age of 2.

Bon voyage!

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