The long flight to Florida can be challenging even for well-behaved adults, so keeping little ones occupied can be a daunting prospect! Florida expert and “Disney Mum” Janine Pipe has given us her top tips for keeping young children entertained on the flight to Florida…
1. Pack a bag of goodies: These do not have to be hugely expensive items, more like colouring books, comics, small figures, stickers etc. Try to give them out once an hour to break up the journey. You can even wrap them to make them more exciting.
TOP TIP: if these goodies are in a Trunki (a God-send once you reach Immigration) make sure you have a separate bag inside that you can remove, so you’re not having to constantly open and close a Gruffalo!
2. Take a tablet: Don’t rely on the in-flight entertainment being to your toddler’s taste! Load your tablet or phone with games/shows they enjoy before you go. Just remember to set the device to flight mode. Bring toddler-safe earphones too. These will fit your child better and have the necessary volume control.
3. Take a pillow or favourite snuggly: We bought a Mickey pillow pet and Tink’s favourite blanket and soft toy (Mickey). She slept most of the flight home as she had familiar items with her.
4. Bring snacks: Sweets are a great distraction for a child and can be vital in protecting their ears for taking off/landing. If you are careful about what your child eats usually, let them have a treat on the flight. Crisps could be a life-saver if they will not eat the aeroplane food.
5. Swap seats: This works best if you’re in a bigger party, but even if there are just 3 of you, swapping from window to aisle, to aisle to middle etc can be entertaining to a little one as it is a change of scenery. If there are others in your party somewhere else on the plane, this works even better.
6. Walk around the plane: This is recommended to avoid DVT anyway but a small walk up and down the aisles – even if it is to the loo and back – can be fun for tots. If there is room at the front or back of the aircraft, and the crew don’t mind, let them have a little play on the floor, especially if they are very small.
7. Make up a quiz! Questions about where you’re going, fun facts about the parks, teasers about any treats planned can be great fun for the whole family, not just the kids. Make sure the questions/facts are age appropriate – pictures work well for toddlers. And don’t underestimate the classics!!! Eye-spy can while away many a dull moment.