Tips for travelling with kids

Tips for travelling with kids

If you're flying with kids, you know that planning ahead is key. A lot of questions are probably knocking about in your head… It requires a lot of patience and effort. You realise that you must stay more focused on the things that are truly important, and less on what’s not. We have prepared some advisory tips to make your boarding process much easier, and to make clear any issues that you may not have even thought of yet.

1. Infant or child? What's the difference?

Let's clear up any uncertainties about the difference between infant and child. If your child is under two years of age, than you can categorize your little one into the infant group. This means that you can get a discount on your child's ticket – 90% off of the regular fare (excluding taxes). All airlines generally consider a “child” to be aged between 2 and 11. What sort of an extra does a child in this category receive? – a 25% discount. And remember – all passengers over twelve years of age are considered adults, and must therefore pay the regular adult fare

2. Keep your kid happy on board

When boarding the airplane with your child, he or she might be stressed; if the flight is a long one, then even more so (even if it's not a relatively long flight, time passes slowly for children ). Forget your tablet or smartphone! Our cabin crew will gladly help your child pass the time with a calming chat and a complimentary "kid entertainment" activity set. It includes a colouring book with cute pictures to keep little ones entertained. If you're worried that this might not work on your child, take along some of your child's favourite toys from home! We bet that every parent has at least one tried-and-trusted game, toy or activity that keeps everyone occupied. Try to play it! If none of these options seem to be working, bring your child's attention to the aircraft's window, so that he or she can enjoy the bird's-eye view and the fluffy clouds.

3. Lunch on board? Sounds like a plan!

Hungry child on board? If your kid is hungry, then he or she will surely let you know! To stay on the safe side (until the inflight meal is served, which can be either pre-ordered online, whilst booking your ticket to your desired destination, or during the flight), bring along some favourite snacks in your carry-on. Of course, infant nutritional needs (including water and juice), as well as medications, are permitted to be carried on board in the quantities you need. Nothing is more important than your child’s health!

4. Early boarding

Take the opportunity to pre-board! Families with children are always allowed to board the plane before all other passengers.

5. Baggage hack

Infants can travel with one piece of checked baggage, up to 10 kg in weight, free of charge. And you know what? If you have purchased checked baggage for yourself, you are permitted to combine your 20 kg with the 10 kg of your infant's free checked baggage allowance, ending up with a total of 30 kg allowed checked baggage.

6. Use the extra space under your seat

If the overhead lockers are already full with other passengers' luggage, make your life easier and more convenient by placing your handbag under your seat! It's a nice option in terms of not having to get up and disturb your neighbor every time you need to get anything for yourself or your infant during the flight.

7. Let your child fly alone

Granny wants to see her grandchild this summer at her country house in Dubrovnik, but you don’t have the time to accompany your child? There's a solution to that – our Unaccompanied Minor Service! What does that mean, and how does it work? If your child is travelling alone, you can be sure that he or she is going to be safe on their way from point A to point B. Basically, the airline crew will take care of your little one from the moment of check-in to the final arrival of the flight. But be aware that this service is available only for children ages five and over! And if two children are travelling on the same reservation, only one service charge applies. Be sure your child has all of the necessary travel documents: the flight ticket or a printed-out reservation, a valid passport, and a notarized document issuing consent (in case your child is travelling out of the country of his or her citizenship, or out of the Schengen area). Once your child has arrived at his or her final destination, please make sure that their designated caretaker shows up on time, so that the “little passenger” has no need to become nervous or scared.

8. Take a collapsible stroller or car seat with you

Worrying about how you're going to lug your child AND all of your carry-on bags to the gate? Or wondering if there is any need to pay extra baggage fees for a stroller, car seat or collapsible pram? We will accept one fully-collapsible stroller/pram or car seat as checked baggage, at no additional charge if you are travelling with an infant. These types of "baby transport" items can be transported free of charge on top of the free 10kg checked baggage allowance. You can register your collapsible stroller/pram at check-in and have it immediately loaded as checked baggage, OR, you can register your collapsible stroller/pram at check-in and notify the check-in desk that you will be taking your stroller-pram through security and to the gate yourself. Before boarding the aircraft, leave your stroller at the airplane's door, and airline staff will load it along with the checked baggage for you. When you arrive at your destination, your stroller will be waiting at the gate for you! 

Written specially for airBalticBlog by Eugenia Krupenkina.

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