How to Air Travel With Infant? Everything You Need To Know

Airlines are notoriously strict when it comes to air travel regulations to ensure the passengers’ maximum security and safety. But they’re more forgiving when it comes to children below 2 years old. Regardless, parents and travel companions must take the responsibility of observing these air travel rules for infants to ensure that their baby stays safe and comfortable throughout the flight. Here is everything you need to know about the air travel with infant.

Ticketing and Seating Requirements

Airlines have different ticketing procedures and rules for infants. But generally, guardians of children under 2 years old have the choice to sit the baby on their laps. This means they don’t have to pay for an additional ticket or seat for the baby. Airlines have a 1:1 the ratio of paying adult (at least 18 years old for United Airlines) and nonpaying infant. You have to get a special boarding pass for your infant if you’re choosing this option. For example, if you’re flying Southwest Airlines, get a Boarding Verification Document at the boarding gate.

International flights have stricter requirements. Some airlines may require you to purchase a ticket for 10 to 20 percent of the regular fare, even if your baby will be sitting on your lap. In this case, it’s better to have a separate seat for the infant so you’ll both be comfortable. You have the option of choosing and bringing your own stroller, Federal Aviation Administration-approved child seat, and other equipment you may need. Some airlines allow babies to have these extra pieces of equipment on top of the baggage allowance for no extra charge.
But if you are planning to air travel with infant in an airline that doesn’t, you can cut costs on baggage fees by renting the necessary baby equipment. For instance, you don’t have to bring a stroller if you rent one and have it delivered to your destination airport or hotel.

Rules for Carrying Baby Food

The Travel Security Administration (TSA) exempts babies’ travel guardians from the 3.4-ounce rule. You can carry breast milk, formula, or juices over the limit, as well as ice packs and frozen gel packs to keep them cool. If these items are slightly slushy, they may undergo additional screening. The TSA also allows you to bring liquid-filled teethers and baby food, as long as you keep all of these in your carry-on.

The Food and Drug Administration says consuming food and beverage that underwent X-ray screening has no health implications. Although you can still inform the TSA if you’d rather not have your breast milk, formula, and juices X-rayed or opened.
Note that you don’t have to be traveling with an infant to carry breast milk.

Screening Process

All passengers must undergo the airport’s security screening process, even babies. Put all the equipment, such as a stroller, baby seat, carrier, and toys, on the scanner along with your carry-on luggage. Carry your baby as you go through the metal detector. Toddlers may walk without assistance, so you can send your child through the detector alone.
Pack your baby’s liquid belongings in a separate clear pouch. You need to remove these from your carry-on bag since they’ll be screened separately. Don’t forget to declare all food and liquid items, so the airline and TSA know what you’re carrying.
Each airline has its own allowances, restrictions, and fees for flying with infants. Double-check the airline’s website and make sure you have everything you need before your trip, so you know what to do when you get to the airport.

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