Long-Haul Flight With Kids? Buy These 8 Essential Items

Going on a long-haul flight with your kids? Buy these items to make the journey more enjoyable for everyone.

Kids love getting on planes. But as a parent, there is a massive amount of planning that goes into making a plane ride as smooth as possible — for your kids, yourself, and for your fellow passengers. That’s especially true if you’re on a long-haul flight.

Here are eight items we bought for Harriet and Luca ahead of their first long-haul flight across the Atlantic.

1. Pop Fidget Toy

Pop toys have been a classic item since we were kids. On a plane, however, you don’t want to take the individual poppers; it won’t take long before they vanish under a seat, never to be seen again.

This pop fidget toy is a great alternative. The pieces are large enough that they are easy to keep an eye on, and the fact they all link together in a jigsaw-like way adds an extra layer of entertainment to keep kids busy.

Buy Now: Pop Fidget Toy

2. Amazon Fire Tablet

We don’t like giving Harriet and Luca too much screen time, but on a long plane trip, a tablet is a must-have item.

You could opt for an expensive tablet like an iPad, but for young children, it is an unnecessary cost. The chances of them breaking, dropping, or damaging the tablets are too high to warrant such a large expenditure.

Instead, choose the Amazon Fire Tablet for kids. Depending on where you are in the world, you might even get some added bonuses, like Amazon’s excellent Kids+ app, thrown in for free. The app offers videos, games, educational content, and more.

Buy Now: Amazon Fire Tablet for Kids

3. 3D Eye Masks

Depending on the time of your flight, there is a good chance you will want to try and get some sleep for a few hours. And if you can get your kids to sleep as well, it’s even better.

Unfortunately, unless you are lucky enough to be travelling in first class, sleeping on a plane isn’t easy. Even if you’re on an overnight red-eye flight and the cabin crew dims the lights, the person in front of you might be using their personal light to read a book or do some work.

As a result, an eye mask is essential. We recommend this 3D model — the design means there is no pressure on your eyes themselves, meaning you can rest easier and are more likely to drift off in comfort. They come in different sizes for kids and adults.

Buy Now: 3D Eye Masks

4. Melissa and Doug Water Wow Books

Colouring books are a standard item to throw in your kids’ backpacks on a long-haul flight. But they have downsides — broken crayons, the risk of them drawing on something they shouldn’t, crayons rolling off the table and under chairs — the list goes on.

Water books solve this problem. Just fill up the included pens with water from the tap and let the kids start “painting”. The books will change colour as they apply water to reveal a picture underneath.

These Melissa and Doug books are high quality, contain several images for them to paint, and can be reused hundreds of times.

Buy Now: Melissa and Doug Water Wow Books

5. Munchkin Lunch Box

Food on planes isn’t exactly known for its quality. And while as adults, we might be just about able to stomach it, it is a different story for kids. Even though most long-haul airlines now offer kids meals if you book in advance, it’s still essential to pack some food that you know they will love.

You might already have a lunchbox for school, but we’d recommend buying a lunchbox that you only use for trips, and fill it with special things that your kids don’t eat day-to-day.

It will add an element of excitement to the journey, put a big smile on their faces, and help to keep them in a good mood.

We use this Munchkin model. It has plenty of compartments and comes with a slot for a fork and spoon.

Buy Now: Munchkin Lunch Box

6. PowerLocus Kids Headphones

A pair of kids headphones on a plane serves two purposes.

Firstly, they mean your kids can watch their videos without disturbing their fellow passengers (don’t be that family that lets their kids watch Cocomelon on full volume for hours at a time!).

Secondly, they complement the eye masks to help your little ones get some sleep. By blocking out the engine noise, the tannoy announcements, and the chatter of nearby people, they are more likely to get some high-quality rest while you are in the air. And as any parent knows, high-quality rest means better moods upon arrival!

This PowerLocus model comes in a variety of colours and includes a case.

Buy Now: PowerLocus Kids Headphones

7. Copper Compression Socks

Movement is limited when you’re on a plane, especially if you’re stuck in the middle of a row and can’t jump up as easily as you can in an aisle seat.

These prolonged periods of sitting down can cause fluid to accumulate below the leg. At best, it’s going to lead to swelling and discomfort. At worst, you could end up in a medical emergency.

Using compression socks helps to alleviate some of these risks. If you can, get some with copper included. Copper conducts electricity and helps to keep the circulation flowing well in your legs.

Buy Now: Copper Compression Socks

8. Etch-a-Sketch

For an easy way to waste an hour, we bought another classic toy: an Etch-a-Sketch!

Because it can’t make a mess (and the pencil is attached with a string), it means they can play with less supervision while you tuck into a good book or movie. If your children have never seen one before, we guarantee the novelty value will last for a long time.

Buy Now: Etch-a-Sketch

What Do You Buy for Long-Haul Flights With Kids?

Our seven picks are something we couldn’t travel without, but we know every family has their own tips and tricks for making long-haul flights with kids run smoothly.

We’d love to pick up some ideas for our next journey, so let us know your recommendations in the comments below.

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