Holiday with a newborn baby: How to get on the plane and what to pack in hand luggage

What to pack in hand luggage for a baby?

Our first flight with our three-month old baby was a success, so I am sharing what we packed. This is what worked for us, personally. We formula-feed so there are things that will possibly be different for you, plus there may be rules around slings for different airlines, but just check before you fly.

In some airports, you can preorder things like nappies, formula, wipes etc, which then can be carried on as duty free. Be warned, some airlines make you fit it in hand luggage, and if you do decide to preorder, do it well beforehand – I tried a week before our holiday and that wasn’t enough notice.

  • Pre-prepared formula bottles and sterilised feeding bottles – I packed three for a two-hour flight, to take into account the time in the airport, after landing and during the flight.
  • Layers – Flights get cold, so we took socks and a cardigan, plus a jersey hat
  • Change of baby clothing – Two baby grows and a pair of leggings
  • Sunhat – In case the journey from the plane was out in the sun
  • Teething gel
  • Infacol
  • Calpol sachets and spoon
  • Antiseptic wipes
  • Ten nappies and nappy bags
  • Two bibs
  • Two muslin cloths
  • One baby blanket
  • Milton sterile surface wipes
  • Baby wipes
  • Four sterilised dummies
  • Adult paracetamol and ibuprofen
  • Bumbag with money and passports in – for ease of reach
  • Jersey Mezaya sling – I ended up not using this because she was awake and happy through the flight, but lots of friends have found it useful

*** Did you find anything else to be essential onboard a flight with a newborn? Let me know in the comments below! ***

How can we get the baby on the plane?

Rules are different for every airline, and, like having a baby, nothing will be like the experience of having to do it yourself. But, we flew with EasyJet in summer 2018 and could do the following:

  • Take a changing bag onboard, in addition to our hand luggage, which had the above packed into it
  • Take the pram up to the plane, where it was then collapsed and put in the hold – so do remove muslins, toys etc before that point to avoid fussing and losing bits/trying to stuff things into hand luggage
  • Check the car seat in at check in – take any newborn inserts out or tie them down in case they come loose. We found our car seat essential for taxis around on holiday. You can get Ubers or taxis with them fitted, but they are not often sized for newborns
  • Take a sling onboard – some people find this useful to get baby to sleep while walking up and down the plane. After talking to friends, it seems to depend on the air stewed as to whether you can take off with the baby in the sling on you, or not. We were given a special baby lap belt and life jacket
  • There weren’t any ‘sky cots’ on our flight (think they are for long haul), and there wouldn’t have been any room for any kind of sleeping pod in the normal row of seats we were in
  • We were lucky – we had a dummy and bottle ready and felt prepared for any kind of ear popping related distress, but she was fine and actually loved it, laughing or sleeping the whole short haul flight

*** Read more: Find out what we packed in our family suitcase!***

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