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10 Essential Carry-On Items For The Travelling Toddler

It’s difficult deciding what to pack when you’re bringing your tot out on excursions, especially so when you’re going on a flight, what with being 40,000 feet in the air and all. We’ve compiled 10 items that will help you tackle any mid-flight incidents.

#1 Diapers

A baby staple, diapers are key whenever you’re bringing your tot anywhere. Pack five diapers for a short flight, and 10 for a long one (over five hours). It may seem like a fairly large number, averaging one an hour, but the extras are in case of any sick stomachs when the flight takes off.

#2 Water / Baby Bottle

While you are not allowed to bring a filled water / baby bottle on board planes for safety reasons, bring an empty one so you can request for the air stewardesses to fill it up for you. Never try to use those airline plastic cups with a tot – it only creates unnecessary stress.

#3 Milk Powder

If your child is still drinking baby formula, then pack a few servings into an air-tight container. When you’re on the flight, you can request for hot water from the air stewardesses.

#4 Change Of Clothes

Bring at least one set of change of clothes for yourself and your child, preferably two for longer flights. In the event they make a mess during meal times, you won’t have to sit through the rest of the flight with stains on your clothes. 

Seed Heritage Bunny Spring Collection 2017

Left to right: Baby Girl Strip Bunny Tee, $24.95 and Girl Bunny Pocket Dress, $44.95 from Seed Heritage


#5 Baby Wipes

With minimal lavatories on board, the baby wipes will come in handy whenever you need to keep yourself or your little ones feeling refreshed throughout the flight. Here are the 7 baby wet wipes that we recommend.

#6 Plastic Bags

It may seem like a silly thing to put on the list, but plastic bags can actually be lifesavers! Especially useful for items that need to be discarded quickly or for dirty/wet clothing that needs to be put away until arrival, make sure to at least pack two pieces in your carry-on. 

#7 Their Favourite Toy

Being up in the air may not sit so well with your little ones, especially if it’s their first time on a plane. So pack their favourite toy and use it as a diversion especially when the plane is experiencing any turbulence.

#8 Activity Books

Unlike the adults, our tots can’t use the in-flight entertainment system to occupy themselves throughout the flight. As such, bring along some activity books (colouring, puzzles etc.) for them to do on the flight. Having them focused on their activity books will also allow you some precious “me-time”, even if it’s only for a short while. 

#9 Healthy Snacks

Besides baby food, do remember to pack a small container of their favourite healthy snacks just in case they get hungry when meal time is over. Healthy food will also be especially useful for long flights as they’ll help combat jet lag. 

#10 Small Blanket

There’s something comforting about having your own blanket, and our children require that same sort of security too. Keeping them tucked (not too tightly though!) into the blanket will invoke a sense of security, meaning they will be able to have a good sleep through the flight.

Originally published in “10 Carry-On Tips For The Travelling Tot”, written by Lee Yang Yi and Teo Kuan Yee, in Singapore’s Child May 2011.

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