When packing your carry-on for the plane ride, use this list as a starting point:
- Comfort item: Consider packing one of your toddler's favorite comfort items in your carry-on for mid-flight snuggles. If the comfort item is a pacifier, be sure to pack more than one, lest it gets flung down the aisle or on the floor.
- Sanitizer, wipes, pull-ups, and diapers: You'll want these critical items within reach at all times during your travels. Not sure how many diapers to throw in the carry-on? One diaper per hour of travel is recommended.
- Electronic devices: If there is any time to let up on strict screen time rules, it's when you're traveling. Make sure that whatever device you're bringing is fully charged and ready to go—and don't forget the chargers for the flight back. Consider pre-loading the tablet or phone with your kids' favorite movies or shows for offline viewing.
- Kid-size headphones: Be sure to follow the basic rules of travel etiquette and pack comfy headphones your little one can wear while enjoying their favorite games or shows. Have more than one kid in tow? Consider investing in a splitter so both can enjoy the show with their own set of headphones.
- Art supplies: A small box of crayons and blank paper can go a long way when it comes to entertaining your toddler on a plane. Mix things up and pack some fun stickers or even plain sticky notes to add to the excitement.
- Plastic bags: You never know when you'll need an extra bag for wet clothes, a dirty diaper, or even just for trash, so pack a few extras.
- Water bottle: Toss an empty clean water bottle into your bag to fill after you get through security. Just make sure that it's leakproof!
- Healthy and fun mess-free snacks: While you don't necessarily want to load your kid up with sugar just before take-off, consider packing a mix of healthy and fun snacks that are relatively mess-free to keep their bellies full and happy. Cheerios, pretzels, crackers, string cheese, and granola bars are good options.