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active toddler on a plane

  1. #1
    m2cw2mhk is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    WanChai, HK

    active toddler on a plane

    I know there are lots of threads with travel advice but I thought I'd see if anyone has any recommendations for ways to keep a VERY active toddler (17 months) happy on a plane for 12 hours. We haven't flown with her since she was 6 months old and she is a handful now! I already have in my bag of tricks: old calculators (pushing buttons), pipe cleaners, tape, a scarf for playing peekabo, a small puzzle that has the pieces attached by ribbon, a little spinning top, a few dress up things (she loves to put necklaces on). I was thinking of either a small box or cup for her to take things out and put things back in. Of course the DVD player (although movies don't tend to hold her attention that long.)

    It's a daytime flight so I'm not optomistic about how long I can get her to sleep either...I'm nervous! My 5 year old, I am not worried about but the toddler - ACK!

    Anyone have any really successful toys/methods of occupying an active toddler?

  2. #2
    cyberfish88's Avatar
    cyberfish88 is offline Registered User
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    Aug 2007
    Lantau Island
    Another suggestion for your bag of tricks....stickers. I got my active toddler to stay still for at least 30 minutes on our last flight as she moved each sticker from its sheet to a book. Went through about 100 stickers but I was happy!

  3. #3
    Bumps Guest
    Bubble wrap!

    Play dough

    A doll with clothes that can come off - (pretend to get it ready for nap time...)

    Google colouring sheets of their favourite character at the moment.

    Finger puppets - can get them at IKEA

    A 'surprise' bag that can contain a few of their favourite toys and they can choose one at certain times

    A couple of feathers of different colours


    A few sensory items such as dried pasta, a few bells..

    Pictures of where you are going or who who are visiting....

    Have fun!

  4. #4
    mazamarie's Avatar
    mazamarie is offline Registered User
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    Feb 2008
    If your daughter is very active don't try to confine her to the seat. Take her for lots of walks around the plane. I travel a lot with my daughter (20mths) and this keeps her entertained. The last couple of flights we have been on most people on the plane smiled, waved and a few even played peekaboo with her and that was the best entertainment for her.

    Obviously if the seat belt sign is on you won't be able to do this but you will have the toys/activities you have already mentioned to entertain her then.

    Having a nap on the plane I have found doesn't always work but you'll find if she is tired she will have a sleep, it just won't be at the normal sleep time. Try to create a tent over her seat with the blankets that they give you. This at least will try to reduce the visual distractions.

    Good luck.

  5. #5
    m2cw2mhk is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    WanChai, HK
    Oh good ideas! I've done bubble wrap in the past (my older daughter loves it) but I have had people sit near me tell me they were annoyed by the sound. I can't believe anyone could hear bubble wrap over the drone of the jet engines but that's what they said. I try to stay away from anything that makes noise to avoid disturbing other passengers.

    Great ideas, I will add them to my list right now!

  6. #6
    fingerscrossed is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Tin Hau
    A portable DVD player or your iphone with kids apps on it...that's if you want your child to watch 'TV'.

  7. #7
    carang's Avatar
    carang is offline Registered User
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    Sep 2004
    Sai Kung
    there's no way i'd take bells... yikes! that would drive me mad, can't imagine what other passengers would think

    sorry, other ideas are great~ but i found that it wasn't nearly as bad as i thought it would be when i took my two.

  8. #8
    karmah1's Avatar
    karmah1 is offline Registered User
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    Apr 2008
    Sydney, Australia (but would like to return to HK)
    My son (18 months) loves books, and on our last long haul flight I bought alot of new books with his favourite characters in. He kept still for ages! He was also kept amused by opening and closing the shutters on the windows. And lots of walks up and down the aisle, we hung out alot down the end of the plane as he watched the air hostesses go about their business.

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