Traveling With Kids: 8 Activities For the Airplane

Remember when I polled ya’ll for my recent trip across the country? Well, I’m back and so excited to share some of the things I learned while traveling with a 2 and 4 year old.

The first leg of our trip included our adventure to the airport (we were almost late for our departure!), 2 1/2 hours on the plane, a layover, and then another 2 1/2 hours. None of which corresponded with a normal nap time! I assumed the key to our flying success would be distraction. Don’t think that you can’t run or wiggle, don’t take a moment to get worked up or uncomfortable. That meant lots and lots of age appropriate activities.

I packed these toys and activities in “surprise bags” so there was an element of excitement each time they opened something new. Each cloth bag was handmade by my mom (amazing, I know) with a zipper so they couldn’t see inside before the designated unveiling. Each bag had a small snack too. These surprise bags were big players in our flights going 10x better than I expected!

traveling with kids - 8 activities for the airplane

Window Clings — Find them at the $1 store!

Melissa & Doug Reusable Princess Stickers — My daughter’s pen pal mailed these to her as a traveling send off and they were such a huge hit!

My Little Pony Pop Starter Kit — These ponies come unassembled so kids can pop out each piece, assemble and then decorate with stickers.

Magnet Books — Let your storytelling skills fly with this fun little magnet book.

$1 Coloring and Workbooks — Another $1 store win – lots of thin coloring books and preschool reading and math options.

Magic Grow Animals — We flew Southwest on our way to Texas and the flight team was sooooo family friendly! I packed these magic grow animals in hopes we could get a cup of warm water and make a tiny water mess on our flip down trays. So much fun and the flight attendants thought it was awesome too!

Cheerio Play Book — Mix snack time with story time, perfect for all ages!

Books on Tape — Download audiobooks onto your old iPod or borrow CDs from the library to play in a portable CD player. This was by far my 4 year old’s favorite activity.

What activities and small toys have your kids enjoyed on airplane flights or long car rides? Chime in! If you’ve traveled with kids, I consider you a mama expert in this field!

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Gretchen hails from the beautiful Pacific Northwest along with her husband and two young children. Before transitioning to life as a stay at home mom, Gretchen worked in sales and marketing while earning her Masters in Management and Organizational Leadership. Now her days are focused on managing meal plans and nap times while organizing her sewing stash and children's toy bins. My oh my, how life changes in the blink of an eye! Gretchen writes frequently about natural parenting, becoming more environmentally conscience, her affinity for thrifted treasures, and hopes of making it out of yoga pants each day on her blog That Mama Gretchen (www.thatmamagretchen.com).

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