First international flight — The Bump
International Bumpies

First international flight

I'm a FTM and my LO and I are flying to the states from Japan June 30-July 15. I was wondering if anyone had tips or advice for what to pack and how to navigate airports and experiences on flights from the staff. Thanks!

Re: First international flight

  • How old will your LO be when you fly?
  • He'll turn 7 months on the 3 of July so on our trip.
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  • I flew from Europe to US when my LO was 7 months old. I took a Babybjorn to carry him around instead of a stroller (it worked well for us). Most airlines will supply a baby food meal for infants but you have to call & request it at least 24 hours prior to the flight. At his age, a small favorite toy or book is appropriate (I didn't need much at this age to keep him occupied but it was much more important at 18 months). The airline staff was accommodating & friendly. We had 3 flights & LO acted heavenly for 2 of them but didn't nap except for 1/2 hour. So, the last flight he screamed for the entire 1 1/2 hour flight. The airline staff was so kind & reassuring to this stressed, tired mamma! Even the other passengers were so kind to us! as to what to pack, keep your carry-ins light with all necessary baby supplies; bottles, brushes to clean bottles, pacifier, enough extra changes of clothes (I'd say at least 3), lots of diapers (you never know when you'll be stranded overnight!), baby food, etc. The biggest hiccup was getting our baby food through US Customs. They gave us 4 options; throw it all out, open all the bottles & test (but then they would all go bad quickly!), test the outside of all the bottles & then past down my husband & I and search all our carry-ons or we could put it all in a carry on & go back to check the bag (for free). We chose the last option since it was late night & we had one short flight left. Oh, and some international airports (at least here in Europe) have special security lines for families which can be much faster. Hope all this info helps. I found flying with a 7 month old so much easier than flying with an 18 month old! Good luck!
  • Flying with kids who can't walk isn't so bad! Will you be breastfeeding? I was when I traveled with my 6 month old to America. Made life very easy. We also used the baby carrier in the airport etc. It's great to have your hands free. We flew from Australia and spent the night in LA on both ends of the trip to break it up for the baby. I made sure to have a spare shirt for myself in case of any spit ups... Had 2 spare outfits for baby. We flew virgin Australia and they had enough baby food which we checked in advance. Get the bassinet seat if you can. My lo mostly slept on me but it was nice when the food came. He sat up in there and looked around etc.

    This is the time to fly
  • Great suggestions ladies! Thanks! I'll keep it in mind when I'm packing and heading out. I know I'm taking our stroller and baby carrier and hopefully I'll get a bassinet on the flight. I also decided not to take a suitcase since I'm doing the stroller. I'll take a backpack for LO and a shoulder bag for me. Most things I need I can buy stateside so I don't need to pack much and a suitcase is heavy and a pain to check/wait for. I'm worried about diapers though >_> and I don't breastfeed anymore (had issues and had to stop around 3.5 months) so I'll do bottles. A little worried about how to do that as well. Any tips?
  • We were bottle feeding. I brought dishwasher fluid in a travel size container and washed in the airport bathrooms (not ideal but it worked). I forget how many bottles I brought...sorry! I saw this product recently and will probably get it when traveling with my new LO...OXO-Travel-Drying-Bottle-Brush. I remember asking for warm water to heat up bottles on the plane & asked for hot water at airport coffee shops! When they see a baby, people are usually helpful. I brought plenty of formula & diapers since I'm always afraid of being delayed overnight with no way to get more diapers & formula (been delayed overnight a few times before having the baby!). Also, get the bassinet if you can but my baby at 7 months was too heavy & long for the airlines requirements so you might check that out!
  • MommyMoru said:

    Great suggestions ladies! Thanks! I'll keep it in mind when I'm packing and heading out. I know I'm taking our stroller and baby carrier and hopefully I'll get a bassinet on the flight. I also decided not to take a suitcase since I'm doing the stroller. I'll take a backpack for LO and a shoulder bag for me. Most things I need I can buy stateside so I don't need to pack much and a suitcase is heavy and a pain to check/wait for. I'm worried about diapers though >_> and I don't breastfeed anymore (had issues and had to stop around 3.5 months) so I'll do bottles. A little worried about how to do that as well. Any tips?

    When you say you are worried about diapers... If you mean for when you arrive, order them online and have them delivered to your destination. I am a pregnant FTM but planning to do that when we move back to the U.S. with our ~6-8 week old at the end of the summer. I will use Amazon or Diapers dot com.
  • amark11 said:

    MommyMoru said:

    Great suggestions ladies! Thanks! I'll keep it in mind when I'm packing and heading out. I know I'm taking our stroller and baby carrier and hopefully I'll get a bassinet on the flight. I also decided not to take a suitcase since I'm doing the stroller. I'll take a backpack for LO and a shoulder bag for me. Most things I need I can buy stateside so I don't need to pack much and a suitcase is heavy and a pain to check/wait for. I'm worried about diapers though >_> and I don't breastfeed anymore (had issues and had to stop around 3.5 months) so I'll do bottles. A little worried about how to do that as well. Any tips?

    When you say you are worried about diapers... If you mean for when you arrive, order them online and have them delivered to your destination. I am a pregnant FTM but planning to do that when we move back to the U.S. with our ~6-8 week old at the end of the summer. I will use Amazon or Diapers dot com.
    Oh no! Sorry that wasn't clear. I am worried if running out of diapers during the flight. From Tokyo to the states is about 13 hours and then I have layovers for about two hours each way so I just am probably over thinking it haha
    virginiaunicorn11
  • I had diapers hidden in every bag that I had on board and checked! My son had a bad belly the first leg of the trip And I was grateful I did!
  • Sorry to bump this up but my trip is in five days and I had another question. My little guy currently is crawling and pulling himself up and standing a lot. I'm wondering if any moms had advice for LO's who are/were doing this on previous flights and how you let them 'exercise' their need to crawl and stuff. Thanks!
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