Traveling alone with two children under the age of two is not an ideal situation for any parent, as it is already a task itself traveling with one child. Some parents around the world must fly solo, however, so we’re here to help you get to your destination safely and make it as stress-free as possible. Here are a few tips for surviving a trip with two under two:
1) Try to book your flights around nap time or bed time. A seat must be booked for at least one but preferably both of the children, as one parent cannot hold two children on his or her lap. This will require you to call the airlines for booking the flight instead of booking online. (Most airlines will not allow you to book 2 children under 2 online as it is a special reservation.) I suggest bringing a carseat for both kids to keep them secured in their seats during the flight. You can check-in one of the car seats (the one for your infant or youngest child) and carry on the car seat for your toddler or oldest child to use on the plane.
2) Once your flight is booked, reserve a baby bassinet for your infant (if available) and request a kid’s meal option for your tot to eat on the flight.
3) Buy new toys and snacks to keep your children busy and satisfied. Keep the toys a surprise until the plane takes off! It will give busy hands something new to do.
4) Try to limit your belongings to only a diaper bag and one carry-on or piece of hand luggage. Check as many items of luggage and accessories as you can before going through security. You want to keep your hands as free as possible while also being prepared for any unforeseen accidents. I recommend keeping a change of clothes for both children, plenty of diapers and wipes, medications, milk, bottles, blankets, and other necessities in your carry-on luggage. (Breastmilk and formula are admitted through TSA.)
5) Leave for the airport at least 3-4 hours in advance with 2 under 2, especially if you’re flying internationally! This gives you an ample amount of time to get through security, change diapers, take care of feedings, and get yourself and the kids settled before a long plane ride.
6) Babywear! Again, you want to keep your hands free, so put them in a baby carrier! Personally, I like to baby wear my infant and push the double stroller containing my toddler on one side and my diaper bag/carry on sitting in the empty seat, along with the toddler’s carseat. You should consider using a Carseat Travel Cart to roll your 2-year-old and his/her carseat in while wearing your infant and then simply renting a stroller once you arrive at your destination.