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How To Travel With Newborn On Airplane


Modified: December 28, 2023

by Greer Daniels



Traveling with a newborn can be an exciting and memorable experience, but it also requires careful planning and preparation. Whether you’re embarking on a family vacation or visiting loved ones, traveling with a newborn on an airplane requires attention to detail and a few essential travel accessories. From choosing the right time to travel to navigating airport security and coping with jet lag, this guide will provide you with valuable tips and insights to ensure a smooth and enjoyable journey.


Before you embark on your adventure, it’s essential to take into consideration the age and health of your newborn. Most airlines allow infants as young as two days old to travel, but it’s always recommended to consult with your pediatrician before making any travel arrangements. Additionally, always check the specific airline’s policies regarding traveling with infants, as they may have specific requirements or restrictions.


Traveling with a newborn can have its challenges, but with the right preparation and essential travel accessories, it can also be a rewarding experience. So, let’s dive into the world of travel essentials and accessories for your precious bundle of joy!


Choosing the Right Time to Travel

When planning your trip with a newborn, it is crucial to consider the timing of your travel. Selecting the right time can make a significant difference in how smoothly your journey goes. Here are a few factors to consider:

  • Age: Newborns require extra care and attention, especially during the first few months. It is generally recommended to wait until your baby is at least two to three months old before embarking on long-distance trips. By this time, your baby will have developed some immunity and be more adaptable to new environments.
  • Weather: Consider the weather conditions at your destination. Extreme temperatures or erratic weather patterns may not be suitable for your newborn, so choose a time when the climate is moderate and comfortable.
  • Peak Travel Season: If possible, try to avoid peak travel seasons when airports and flights tend to be more crowded. This will help reduce stress and make it easier to maneuver through the airport with your baby.
  • Flight Duration: Think about the duration of your flight. If you have a long-haul flight, it may be more challenging with a newborn. Consider breaking up the journey with a layover or selecting a flight with fewer stops to minimize travel time.

By considering these factors, you can choose the right time to travel that will ensure a more pleasant experience for both you and your baby. It’s essential to be flexible and prepared for any unforeseen circumstances that may arise during your journey. Now that you have chosen the right time to travel let’s move on to the next step, which is preparing your baby’s documents.


Preparing Your Baby’s Documents

When traveling with a newborn, it is essential to have all the necessary documents in order to ensure a smooth journey and comply with international travel regulations. Here are the essential documents you should prepare for your baby:

  • Passport: If you are traveling internationally, your baby will need a passport. Check with the relevant authorities in your country for the specific requirements and process to obtain a passport for your baby. Keep in mind that the application process may take some time, so plan ahead.
  • Visa: Depending on your destination, your baby may require a visa. Research the visa requirements for your destination country and apply well in advance if necessary.
  • Birth Certificate: Carry a certified copy of your baby’s birth certificate to confirm their age and identity. Some airlines and immigration authorities may request this document during check-in or immigration procedures.
  • Consent Letter: If you are traveling alone with your baby or without the other parent, it is advisable to carry a consent letter from the absent parent. This letter should state that they have given consent for you to travel with the baby.
  • Medical Documents: It is a good idea to have copies of your baby’s medical records, including vaccination records, in case it is needed during your travels or in case of any medical emergencies.

Ensure that all documents are up to date and stored in a safe and accessible place. It’s also a good practice to keep digital copies of important documents on your mobile device or cloud storage as a backup.


Remember to check the specific requirements of your destination country and the airline you are flying with, as they may have additional document requirements. Being well-prepared with the necessary documents will help avoid any unnecessary delays or complications during your travel.


Now that you have gathered all the necessary documents, it’s time to move on to packing essentials for your baby.


Packing Essentials for Your Baby

When traveling with a newborn, it’s important to pack smart and have all the essential items to ensure your baby’s comfort and well-being throughout the journey. Here is a list of essential items to pack for your baby:

  • Diapers and Wipes: Pack enough diapers and wipes to last for the duration of your journey, including any potential delays. Place them in a separate diaper bag for easy access.
  • Changing Pad: A portable changing pad is a handy accessory for diaper changes on the go. It provides a clean and convenient surface to change your baby’s diaper.
  • Clothing: Pack extra sets of clothing, including onesies, sleepers, and socks, in case of any spills or accidents. Dress your baby in comfortable layers that are suitable for the destination’s climate.
  • Blankets and Swaddles: Carry a few lightweight blankets and swaddles to keep your baby warm and cozy during the flight or while napping.
  • Feeding Supplies: If you are breastfeeding, carry a nursing cover for privacy. If you are bottle-feeding, pack enough formula, bottles, and a bottle warmer. Don’t forget to bring bibs and burp cloths.
  • Pacifiers and Snacks: Bring your baby’s favorite pacifier to soothe them during takeoff and landing. For older infants, pack some snacks, such as crackers or baby food pouches, for fuss-free feeding.
  • Medication and First Aid Kit: If your baby has any specific medication needs, be sure to pack them along with a small first aid kit containing essentials like band-aids, saline drops, and a digital thermometer.
  • Toys and Comfort Items: Bring a few small toys or comfort items to keep your baby entertained during the flight or when waiting at the airport.

Remember to pack everything in a well-organized manner to easily access items when needed. It’s also a good idea to pack a change of clothes for yourself in case of any unforeseen mishaps.


Keep in mind the airline’s baggage restrictions and weight allowances when packing for your baby. Most airlines allow a certain number of free items, such as a stroller and car seat, which can be checked in or used up until boarding the plane.


Now that you’ve packed your baby’s essentials, it’s time to move on to preparing for the flight with your baby.


Preparing for the Flight with Your Baby

Preparing for a flight with your baby is crucial to ensure a comfortable and smooth journey for both you and your little one. Here are some tips to help you prepare:

  • Choose a Baby-friendly Airline: Look for airlines that offer amenities and services tailored to traveling with infants, such as bassinets, priority boarding, and assistance with stroller and car seat handling.
  • Select the Right Seat: When booking your flight, choose a seat that suits your needs. If you need easy access to the aisle for diaper changes and feeding, consider selecting a seat in the bulkhead or aisle seat.
  • Check the Cabin Facilities: Find out if the airline provides baby-changing facilities or has a designated area for nursing or comforting your baby. This will make it easier for you to care for your baby during the flight.
  • Bring a Baby Carrier or Sling: Carrying your baby in a carrier or sling can provide comfort and allow you to have your hands free during the flight. It can also help with soothing your baby if they become fussy.
  • Entertainment and Distractions: Pack small toys, books, or soft rattles to keep your baby entertained during the flight. Interactive toys or toys with different textures can be engaging for your baby.
  • Comfortable Clothing: Dress your baby in comfortable and breathable clothing that is easy to change. Opt for onesies or outfits with snaps or zippers for quick and hassle-free diaper changes.
  • Carry Extra Supplies: Pack extra diapers, wipes, and a change of clothes for your baby in your carry-on bag. Be prepared for any unexpected delays or accidents during the flight.
  • Prepare for Ear Pressure: The change in air pressure during takeoff and landing can cause discomfort for your baby’s ears. To help alleviate this, feed your baby or offer a pacifier during these times.
  • Stay Calm and Relax: Babies can sense your energy, so it’s important to stay calm and relaxed throughout the flight. Take deep breaths, be patient, and remember that this is just a temporary phase.

By following these tips, you can help ensure a more pleasant and comfortable flight for both you and your baby. Now, let’s move on to the next section, which focuses on navigating airport security with a newborn.


Navigating Airport Security with a Newborn

Going through airport security with a newborn may seem daunting, but with some preparation, it can be a smooth process. Here are some tips to help you navigate airport security with ease:

  • Arrive Early: Give yourself plenty of time to go through security, as the process may take longer with a newborn. Arriving early will help reduce stress and give you ample time to complete the necessary procedures.
  • Check Security Requirements: Familiarize yourself with the airport’s security regulations. Know what items are allowed in your carry-on bag and what needs to be placed in separate trays for screening, such as liquids, formula, or breast milk.
  • Prepare Your Documentation: Keep your baby’s documents, such as passport and birth certificate, easily accessible. You may be asked to present them at the security checkpoint.
  • Restrictions on Liquids: Note that there are restrictions on carrying liquids through security. However, certain exemptions are made for baby essentials, such as formula, breast milk, and baby food. Be prepared to declare these items and have them inspected if necessary.
  • Stay Organized: Have a separate bag for your baby’s essentials, such as diapers, wipes, and extra clothes. Keep these items easily accessible, as you may need to remove them for separate screening.
  • Be Mindful of Electronics: Remove any electronic devices, such as laptops or tablets, from your carry-on bag for separate screening. Take out any electronics that your baby may be carrying, such as a baby monitor or portable sound machine, and place them in a separate tray.
  • Security Screening Procedures: When going through the metal detector, you will need to carry your baby in your arms while the stroller and other baby gear go through the X-ray machine. Be prepared to walk through the scanner or go through a manual pat-down if necessary.
  • Stay Calm and Cooperative: Remember to stay calm and cooperative during the security screening. Follow the instructions of the security personnel and be patient throughout the process.

It’s important to remember that airport security procedures are in place to ensure the safety of all passengers. With a little preparation and understanding of the process, you can navigate airport security smoothly and efficiently with your newborn.


Now that you’ve successfully passed through airport security, let’s move on to the next section, which covers feeding and diapering on the airplane.


Feeding and Diapering on the Airplane

Feeding and diapering your newborn on an airplane can sometimes be challenging, but with a little preparation, it can be manageable. Here are some tips to help make the process easier:

  • Takeoff and Landing: During takeoff and landing, the change in air pressure can cause discomfort for your baby’s ears. Breastfeeding, bottle-feeding, or providing a pacifier can help relieve ear pressure. If your baby is asleep during these times, you can try gently waking them to feed.
  • Bring Extra Supplies: Pack more diapers, wipes, and a change of clothes than you think you’ll need. It’s better to be over-prepared than to run out of supplies during the flight.
  • Use the Changing Table: Most airplane lavatories have a changing table, which can be folded down for diaper changes. Carry a small foldable changing pad for added cleanliness and comfort.
  • Dispose of Diapers Properly: After changing your baby’s diaper, double-check that the diaper is securely wrapped and disposed of in the designated trash bin. Airlines may provide special bags for this purpose.
  • Stay Hydrated: It’s important to keep yourself and your baby well-hydrated during the flight. If you are breastfeeding, drink plenty of water, as breastfeeding can be dehydrating. Carry a water bottle or ask the flight attendant for water to ensure you stay hydrated.
  • Pack Snacks and Formula: If your baby is already on solids, pack some age-appropriate snacks for the journey. For formula-fed babies, carry pre-measured formula powder in a separate container or use ready-to-feed formula if it is more convenient.
  • Nurse or Bottle-Feed during the Flight: If your baby gets fussy during the flight, breastfeeding or bottle-feeding can provide comfort and help them relax. Consider feeding your baby during the quiet periods of the flight to minimize interruptions.
  • Be Mindful of Food Safety: If you are carrying homemade baby food, be cautious about food safety. Pack insulated bags with ice packs to keep perishable food items cool and safe for consumption.

Remember to be considerate of your fellow passengers by being discreet and maintaining cleanliness during feeding and diapering. Most passengers understand that babies can be unpredictable and may cry at times, so try not to let any anxieties about your baby’s behavior on the plane stress you out.


With these tips in mind, you’ll be well-prepared to feed and change your newborn during the flight. Now, let’s move on to the next section, which covers dealing with air pressure changes.


Dealing with Air Pressure Changes

Air pressure changes during takeoff and landing can cause discomfort for both adults and babies. But there are several strategies you can employ to help your baby cope with these pressure changes:

  • Feed or Offer a Pacifier: Breastfeeding, bottle-feeding, or giving your baby a pacifier during takeoff and landing can help alleviate ear discomfort. The sucking motion helps equalize the pressure in their ears.
  • Encourage Swallowing: If your baby is not feeding, encourage swallowing by offering a small drink of water or a piece of fruit to munch on. Swallowing helps to naturally equalize the pressure.
  • Keep Your Baby Upright: Holding your baby in an upright position during takeoff and landing can help reduce the discomfort caused by pressure changes.
  • Consider Earplugs for Older Babies: For older infants, check with your pediatrician about using specialized earplugs specifically designed for air travel. These can help regulate and equalize the pressure in their ears.
  • Stay Calm and Comforting: Your baby may become fussy or restless due to discomfort, so provide extra comfort by holding, cuddling, or singing to them during the pressure changes.

It’s important to note that different babies react differently to air pressure changes. Some may experience more discomfort than others. If your baby seems particularly distressed, consult with their pediatrician before your trip for further guidance.


By employing these strategies, you can help your baby minimize the discomfort caused by air pressure changes during the flight. Now, let’s move on to coping with jet lag for your baby.


Coping with Jet Lag for Your Baby

Traveling across different time zones can disrupt your baby’s sleep patterns and result in jet lag. While it may be challenging to completely avoid jet lag, there are steps you can take to help your baby adjust more smoothly:

  • Gradual Adjustment: Start adjusting your baby’s schedule a few days before your trip by gradually shifting their sleeping and eating times closer to the new time zone. This can help minimize the shock of a sudden time change.
  • Natural Light Exposure: Expose your baby to natural light during the day, as sunlight helps regulate their circadian rhythm and adjust to the new time zone.
  • Stick to Routine: Try to maintain your baby’s routine as closely as possible, including regular feeding and nap times, to provide a sense of familiarity and stability during the transition.
  • Help with Day-Night Differentiation: During the day, keep the environment bright and engaging for your baby. At night, create a calm and dimly lit atmosphere to encourage sleep.
  • Be Flexible: Understand that it may take a few days for your baby to fully adjust to the new time zone. Be patient and allow for flexibility in your schedule to accommodate their needs.
  • Ensure Adequate Sleep: Help your baby get enough sleep by creating a comfortable and soothing sleep environment. Use white noise machines, blackout curtains, or a favorite blanket or toy to promote good sleep habits.
  • Stay Hydrated and Well-fed: Proper hydration and nutrition are essential during travel. Ensure your baby is drinking enough fluids and eating regular meals to stay nourished and energized.

It’s important to remember that every baby is different, and their ability to adapt to jet lag may vary. Be patient and understanding as your baby adjusts to the new time zone, and provide them with extra comfort and support during this transition.


By implementing these strategies, you can help reduce the impact of jet lag and promote a smoother adjustment for your baby. Now, let’s wrap up this article.



Traveling with a newborn can be both an exciting and challenging experience. With proper planning and preparation, you can ensure a smooth and enjoyable journey for you and your baby. From choosing the right time to travel to navigating airport security, packing essentials, and coping with jet lag, this guide has provided you with valuable insights and tips to make your trip more successful.


Remember to check the specific requirements of the airline and destination country regarding traveling with a newborn. Prepare all the necessary documents, such as passports and birth certificates, well in advance. Pack essentials like diapers, wipes, clothing, feeding supplies, and comfort items for your baby. Familiarize yourself with airport security procedures and tips for coping with air pressure changes during the flight.


Flexibility and patience are crucial when traveling with a newborn. Be prepared for unexpected situations and be mindful of your baby’s comfort and well-being throughout the journey. Remember to stay calm and relaxed, as your baby can pick up on your energy.


Whether you’re embarking on a family vacation or visiting loved ones, traveling with a newborn can create beautiful memories. With the right planning, essential travel accessories, and a positive mindset, you can make the journey with your little one an enjoyable and rewarding experience.


Safe travels and happy adventures with your newborn!