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travel with twins advice please

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travel with twins advice please

Postby Juliana » Tue Mar 08, 2005 11:24 am

Hi everyone,
We are planning to make a short trip to Bulgaria to see my father at the end of March. Alex and Nadia will be six months then, it will be our first 'big' trip together and I hope they will take the 3 hour flight ok. I was wondering if any of you have advice on what I should take or prepare for when flying with babies this age?
love to all and happy mother's day for those celebrating on 8 March,
juliana
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Postby DebraP » Tue Mar 08, 2005 1:46 pm

Juliana, I've got some good info I'll write out later this evening. I've flown alone with a baby several times so you can take my tips and double them up!

Chat later,
Debra.
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Postby Juliana » Tue Mar 08, 2005 3:34 pm

Hi Debra, thanks for your lovely message also on the other thread. I look forward to the tips and wish you a smooth move in the meantime!
By the way, you are so right when you say that the confidence that calm would be restored helps - and so the Gina routine also helps by maintaining that confidence in me! Last night when I put her to bed at 19.30 (we are half an hour later than Gina recommends, also in the morning - 7.30 to 19.30) my daugher screamed and screamed so much her brother was almost stuffing his ears with the sheets (he was so comical with a sad expression on his face mixed with incomprehension) and I wondered about the night ahead but then she fell asleep and that was that - almost - Alex talked to himself in teh night but was good enough to wait till 7 before he made louder noises. It's almost as if they know DH is away and I am feeling a bit more uncertain!
love,
juliana
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Postby DebraP » Tue Mar 08, 2005 4:47 pm

Hi, I'm so glad Nadia dropped off quickly, the worry that a long night might be ahead is always awful (although to be honest that we don't have that problem anymore).

Anyway....I went to the bookshelf to find the newspaper article I cut out and saved 2 years ago and....it's been packed by DF! I did find an excellent website though www.babygoes2.com which is a whole website about travelling with kids!

From my exp + what I remember of the article.

* always check in very early that way you're most likely to get free seats next to you if possible.

* Find out what happens to pushchairs before you get there. You might have to wrap it/them in bubble wrap whilst trying to hold onto the kids.

* if you're going to pre-book air-cots/bassinets, call to check, check again and then double check that the reservation is still showing. Email them to confirm and take a copy of any reply along. Your flight isn't that long but you don't want to hold onto a sleeping child for hours if one of them drops off. Air-cots usually mean putting you in the front row which can mean not being able to see the film.

* Change their nappies j-u-s-t before getting on the plane, the onboard changing tables have no padding and are tiny.

*Be very visible at the entry gate and nicely ask the staff if they let people with kids on first. Almost all will say yes but if you don't remind them, they often forget and you end up in the crowd being jostled as people try to get past you - esp. if it's free seating on board.

*Ask about bottle warmers on the plane, they often put them in the microwave for too long instead.

* Do they offer jarred baby food?

* Take the kiddy box/present even if it's too old for them. They'll like opening it and shaking the contents if nothing else.

* Take a mix of new and favourite older small toys. Books, rattles, tiny packets of things for them to try and open etc.

* a change of baby clothes (+ a few nappies) are a good idea!

* Take all the tiny bags of biscuits, condiments, plastic spoons, napkins, sickbags, straws, empty cups, magazines, newspapers offered and use them as entertainment.

* Take some small bags of dry biscuits, the ones onboard might be salty.

* People often say to give them a drink at take off + landing as the swallowing action can help with air pressure in their ears.

* If one/both won't stop crying, be VERY visible in your attempts to try to soothe the baby. Stand up and walk around, soothe them loudly, jiggle, sing, talk, play games, point things out, wave to friendly people etc etc. The other passengers will be less hostile if they can see you're doing your best. I had a horrible moment on one flight when the trolley was out and they wouldn't let me get past to change a stinky nappy. I had to stand in the aisle for over 5 mins (which was soooooo long) and became so stressed as Maya was SCREAMING, the other passengers could see I was trying to do something about the poo smell so there was little 'tutting' etc.

* If you're not in a rush to get off, wait until last and get help from the staff with the bags etc.

I've flown return journeys with Maya 5 times, never longer than 4 hours actual flying time, most of the time it's been fine but one or two flights have been horrible, usually when I've been alone. Being with DH will help you alot.

Good luck and don't forget some kids LOVE flying. They love the attention from the staff, all the new things to see, the windows, looking over/through the seats staring at the people behind! I once had a couple sitting behind who smiled, talked and waved at Maya for the entire flight. She was capitvated, all I needed to do was hold on whilst she waved back!

Enjoy showing your lovely babies off to all your family!
Debra
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Postby Juliana » Sat Mar 12, 2005 12:21 pm

Dear Debra,
Thanks so much for being so kind to write all this for us! I really appreciate having the support and hope the flights will be good. I thought your tip of soothing baby in a visible way was very clever. I have to admit i remember in the past I did not understood that sometimes you just cannot stop babies from crying. But if you see a parent trying it's easier to understand.
Alex and Nadia are very very easygoing normally but since they are on the routine, the disturbance would probably be a problem. Our flight on the way back is at 7am which means getting them in a taxi before 6am, that's not going to go down well I am afraid! on the way out, we fly at 10.30 am which should be ok. and we already asked and are allowed to keep the pushchair till the plane which is great!
I plan to give them just rice in their bottles to avoid messing about with baby food. it's just 3 hours and then if we are on time I should be able to feed them at my Dad's. i am so looking forward to showing them to my extended family and my grandmother (she is very difficult at 88, but even she will be moved at the sight of them I think). My father can hardly wait, he has seen them in October and they have changed so much!
Alex got a tooth through last week, bless his good little heart without any fuss!
Did you move already? Did you solve the problem of the new internet connection?
love and many thanks,
juliana
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Postby DebraP » Mon Mar 14, 2005 12:15 pm

Juliana, I'm taking a break from the move right now. I hate it all!

Glad the tips might help. Re. rice/food, you might want to take a couple of packets of prepared formula/rice/porrage just in case of a delay...a friend who flies with her baby to Seattle says that he often eats double his usual amount whilst on planes for some reason.

good luck and I'm sure your grandmother will love the babies!
Debra
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Postby Juliana » Fri Mar 18, 2005 9:41 am

hi Debra,
I can imagine the move is quite a hassle, I hate moving, have done it a few times too many in my life (about 6-7 times, and 4 times between countries...) Hope your move will be for the better - was there something about Maya's creche being closer or did I misunderstand?
We will take a thermos of hot water and the formula and rice in case they are hungry, cannot imagien being stuck with super hungry Alex. willlet you know how it goes
sooooo tired at the moment, Alex wakes up more often in the night and i've had so much work at work....
llove,
juliana
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Postby DebraP » Fri Mar 18, 2005 11:22 am

Hi...sorry to hear you're so tired. I totally understand! Since we moved, Maya hasn't slept through once. It's much colder and the ice is noisy when people drive to work. I think she's waking up as the first people set off at 0600 although last night was 0200, 0400 and 0430...argh! She's got a thick cold so that's the reason.

The nightmare move is behind us but the unpacking has slowed down. We're now stuck with all the stuff that doesn't have a natural place to live. I don't want to throw it all in the loft but it's tempting....

Like you I've moved WAY too many times, only twice to new countries but roughly 21 times in total - crazy. No more for a few years at least. Yes we are closer to the kindergarten now but we'll probably need to move back into town when she starts school in 2-3 year's time. There's a bilingual primary school that we'd like her to go to.

The flask is a good idea although you'll only want it mid-hot won't you? I used to give Maya it cold when necessary, she didn't mind.

Have a good Easter,
Debra.
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Postby Juliana » Fri Mar 18, 2005 1:07 pm

oh Debra, moving 21 times, you are practically a gypsy :D I love the idea of changing where I live and new places and people but the packing and unpacking of stuff and getting incredibly stressed in the process - yukl!
Do I understand correctly that you will have your EC 4 April? I will be back and keeping my fingers crossed and watching for news! I am amazed at your strength to cope with moving and downregging and the night wakings of the lovely Maya!
Where did you move to, by the way? I have been a couple of times to Norway and thought it was very beautiful. I taught a summer school in Kristiansand and have been to Oslo for work too, lovely nature, but I've only seen it in the summer. hard to imagine the ice waking Maya. We are so longing for spring that even the drizzle in the netherlands seems too much to bear...
have a nice Easter, some good rest and hope Maya sleeps!
love,
juliana
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