Flying with a baby can be pretty stressful, but it does not have to be. If you plan well, it can go better than you think. In this blog post, I’ll be sharing with you some breastfeeding tips when you’re travelling on a plane with your little one.
Last year, we took two trips during my maternity leave.
During both trips, I breastfed her on the plane either when she was hungry or needed to be comforted.
I’ve learned some breastfeeding tips and would like to share them with you.
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Here are 7 breastfeeding tips you’ll need to know before getting on a plane:
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1. Choosing Your Seat
When choosing your seat, I would recommend one of two seating.
First, if you can get the baby bassinet row (with three seats), try to get that first. It’ll really help with you and your spouse taking the aisle seating in the row and the baby in the middle. It’s free to book if your plane has the baby bassinet feature. I found that it’s very helpful, especially on a long haul flight.
Usually, they’ll only assign you two seats and one being empty on the aisle seat.
However, I find that most people do not want to sit with a baby so that seat would be empty.
Having the empty seat in between you will help your baby eat and sleep more comfortably across you and stretched over to the other seat. Also, if your baby is mobile, having the bassinet seat will give them more space to move around.
The only downside to this is that you will not have any storage space at the bottom and only the overhead compartments.
The second seating I recommend is the window seat.
One reason is for privacy, where you can just turn your body towards the window and block off the distractions as much as you can.
The other reason is that you do not need to move if someone in your row needs to go to the washroom.
When you choose these seating, it’ll make your experience more comfortable on the plane and cause less anxiety when you’ll need to breastfeed your child in the midst of hundreds of strangers.
2. What You Should Wear
It’s so important to think about your outfit before you head to the airport.
You will be wearing that outfit for quite a number of hours. It needs to be comfortable and also great for nursing.
Think about nursing tops like these ones and leggings. Unless you want to wear jeans, that’s fine too.
Bring a jacket or a scarf because the airport and airplane can get cold fast.
Layers really help because you can take off or put on if you need to. However, choose tops that you can button up and down or with zippers.
It may be challenging to wear a pull over hoodie and need to remove it every time you’re breastfeeding your baby on the plane.
3. Bringing Bottles to the Airport
Based on my experience, it’s perfectly fine to bring baby bottles and hot water to the airport.
You’ll have to let airport security know that they are for your baby.
They’ll check it quickly and let you through.
Once, we went through security and I was wearing Baby K (my daughter) in our baby carrier. M, my husband was behind me and carried the diaper bag.
The airport security questioned why we had a bottle of hot water. He said that it was for the baby. She asked, “what baby?”. He proceeded to point to us. The airport security lady was fine to check after that.
Be sure to stay nearby and not just walk away with your baby if a family member is carrying the liquids for the baby.
I decided to include this point because some of you will want to bring your pumped milk or formula on the side. If you are worried that you might not produce enough milk on the plane ride, you can also bring your pumped milk or formula with you on the plane.
4. Take Off and Landing
To help with ear pressure, feed your baby upon take off and landing.
We also bought my daughter this baby earmuffs to minimize the sounds that she’ll hear on the plane. It was also great to use at Disney during the really loud shows and performances.
If they are sleeping, don’t feel the need to wake them up as it might not bother them.
However, if they are awake, you’ll want to feed them when the plane is about to take off and when it’s about to land.
It’s because if they are done drinking before the plane actually takes off (you know how long a plane can sit on the runway waiting for the taking off signal), they’ll be really uncomfortable and not want to drink at all.
That really makes a cranky baby which is no fun for any parent.
5. Nursing Cover
Nursing Cover is an important item to bring on the plane with you when breastfeeding on the plane.
It creates a sense of privacy for your baby to enjoy breastfeeding without the lights and people walking around. Those can be highly distracting and your baby might be more interested to look around instead of drinking their milk.
With my daughter, I found that it was easier to breastfeed her with the neck strap one. I’m not sure if it is because she can see my face better or she just doesn’t like the scarf one.
Every baby is different. You’ll know which one your baby would prefer and are comfortable with.
6. Neck Pillow or Breastfeeding Pillow
It can be pretty tiring to breastfeed your baby on the plane and be stuck in a seat for a period of time.
One thing that I found really helpful is to have a neck pillow like this one under my arm when I breastfeed my baby on the plane.
7. Don’t stress
This is the most important breastfeeding tip that I’m going to give to you.
Do. Not. Stress.
You are prepared for the plane ride. Do the best that you can.
Feed the baby when he or she is hungry or need some comfort. If you’ll need to pull out your pumped milk stash or formula, do it.
If your baby cries because they are in an unfamiliar environment, comfort them the best that you can.
Otherwise, you won’t see most of these people again, unless you’re going to the same destination or hotel.
Trust that you’ve got this!
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- Travelling with a Baby: Bringing Diapers
- Visiting Disney World’s Magic Kingdom with a baby
Thank you so much for reading my blog post on “Breastfeeding Tips On The Plane”. If you like what you read, please pin the image below and share it with others. Thanks!