Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Family Class Travel

Yes, it is that season again when one must spend 20+ hours in transit with a toddler in the tantrum stage.

Searching for all advices possible on the web, the questions that must've puzzled millions of parents before arise once again.

On airplanes:

- Why is there no family class, where parents with "special needs" can pat each other on the back while admiring their toddlers' harmonious symphony?
- Why is there no playground that is regulated to abide safety measures, where childrens' access energy can be put into good use?
- And why isn't there a special class of stewardesses, certified for baby sitting on board?


Um Naief said...

i can completely understand why there isn't any of these things on a plane. except for family class. the play area is just too risky. if your child is playing and something happens all of a sudden, then the child could be seriously injured... leading to lawsuits, and they'll never allow it because of that. plus, how long would it take to get kids back to their seats in a hurry!!??

as far as babysitters on a plane... i SO DISAGREE w/ this. it should be the parents responsibility to take care of their own child. if you think about it, how many freakin babysitters would they have to have to satisfy all parents?? i just think that if you don't want to watch your child, then don't travel. plain and simple.

but i do agree that there are lots of passengers that don't want to hear screaming children whiled flying. i used to be this way. hated listening to kids crying.. but now w/ my own, i understand.

Cairogal said...

Agree w/ Um naief...parents should babysit their own kids. One word for those long flights: Benadryl

Saudi Stepford Wife-Daisy said...

I hate to admit it, but I agree with Cairogal(hey, I'm a veteran long-haul flier and my youngest girl's traveled more than most adults) I prefer dramamine for kids given when they're already dozy but can't nod off because they're wired:P
I usually schedule my flights or adjust my children's sleep schedule so that the longest stretch of flight is when they're due to sleep and not during daylight hours. I also take a special trip to the dollar store/ riyalain/poundstore and buy a load of "special" toys just for the trip. This cache of toys is magically produced from my carry-on just when I've exhausted all other means of calming them but not all at once so they don't loose appeal too fast. And if your traveling with hubby, get him to take your toddler a few hours before you're scheduled to leave and you GO TO SLEEP! Chances are babba will sleep on the plane while you're doing toddler duty (even if your kid sleeps!) If you'd like more tips send me an email and I'll reply with a book.

Aysha said...

Yeah, you bet some questions there are exaggerated wishful thinking, but yeah why not go wild on the thought if you might encourage some other COOl ideas ^_^

I hear that benadryl is good, but I fear putting my toddler in a mood that I'm not familiar with. If he's sleepy but not falling asleep, it might just make him cranky!

SSW I hear ya! All the websites I've been to seem to agree with you on the one dollar store trick. I better make a visit today. Also, my kid can go on reading books and magazines for hours. So I'll try buying some new ones, plus the toys, and of course: tons of crackers. They were his first word :S

Please go into as many details as you can from your trips with babies. I am all eyes today and tomorrow.

Cairogal said...

SSW probably has the right idea-give them to hubby and let him wear them out for a few hours before flying. Since he's going to sleep anyway, at least they'll go down with him. Do you have one of those laser lights that people use as cat toys, Aysha?

If you're going home, please bring back some photos-would love to see what your corner of KSA looks like. :)

أبو سنان said...

Benadryl doesnt always work. Some kids, like my Sinan, often go crazy with it. Sometimes it knocks him out, other times he acts like you gave him speed.

Imagine toddler on flight, having a hard time, on speed? Doesnt sound great. Lets face it, sometimes there is little that can be done.

I feel for the people without kids who have to put up with it. I know, I have been one of them before.

I think they ought to offer seat back videos, like on the 777, but with kiddie stuff like Elmo and Little Einsteins. These would keep my two busy for several hours at a shot.

Cairogal said...

Good point, AS. Tylenol PM for children? It's a shame more US airlines don't invest in those seat back entertainment kits. They've become 'almost' commonplace on lots of transatlantic flights.

Aysha said...

Just want to thank everybody for their advice. The trip was amazing! As mean as it sounds, whenever I heard a baby crying the devil inside of me showed a full teeth grin!
What worked for me was: books, books, books. Songs. Milk bottle just about nap times. Crackers. Not worrying about his loss of appetite. And most importantly, giving in to his occasional "ta ta?" which meant it was time for another walk.

What didn't work was Benadryl, when I thought I'd try it at a point where he was cranky, but would't fall asleep. It was like giving him water, he remained just the same.

Surprisingly, the flight was full of kids! No, the surprise is not there. It is in Lufthansa having this much kids on board + the European passengers not being cross with the children, as a matter of a fact many would offer lots of friendly compliments to moms and dads.

5-10 years ago, when I would take the same airline, passing through "Frankfurt", people were not even half as friendly. They seemed like they couldn't stand kids at all. I wonder whatever happened to the world ^_^

Thanks everybody!
I wish you & your families many relaxing trips to come.