The thought of travelling with an infant gave me so much anxiety, I googled tips and tricks, I read so many blogs.
What were we getting ourselves into? What if she cries hysterically on the plane over? What do we take for her? How do I sterilise bottles in a country where we can’t even drink their water? She loves to move around now and crawl everywhere what if we can’t keep her still? These were just a few thoughts that would bother daily before we flew out to Fiji.
It annoys me that infants aren’t given a luggage allowance unless you pay extra at the time of booking your flight, funnily enough Zephaniah’s luggage was the heaviest out of our families, she just scraped under the 23kg limit by 100 grams. We were lucky enough to be travelling with my mum and my siblings therefore we were able to merge some clothes into one suitcase which freed up a free suitcase for Zephaniah to take.
To name a few of the things we packed for Zephaniah:
- 2 tins of formula
- 5x bottles of 1.25L of water
- Swimming nappies
- Lotions and soaps
- Spew Rags
- 5 day outfits
- 5 night outfits
- Raffertys Garden Food Packs
- Rusk sticks
- Baby Sunscreen and insect repellent
On our carryon luggage for her we took her nappy bag and we put the following in it:
- Sterilised bottles
- Morning tea
- Baby Panadol
We were able to walk our pram right to the gate at the airport which was a huge relief, as I was preparing to carry my 7kg baby the whole time through the airport. Also we soon discovered that having a baby and going through an airport gives you special treatment, you get to skip the queue from customs all the way down to boarding your flight.
The flight over to Nadi Fiji was Zephaniahs first flight, we prepared her bottle and started to feed her when the plane started moving on the tarmatt however we were too early in feeding her, by the time we taxied to the runway she had finished her bottle and rejected her dummy being shoved in her mouth to encourage a sucking motion to help with her ears. The first hour was really good she played with her toys and sat between Aiden and I (we had a spare seat between us). However after the first hour she started crying hysterically and rubbing her ears, not only were her ears giving her grief she was overdue for a nap and very overtired. I managed to cuddle her and rock her to sleep and the moment she would close her eyes and drift off the infant sitting behind us would start screaming and it would wake Zephaniah up and then she would start screaming, it was like a domino effect. Her screams quickly became painful screams I could tell she was in pain which made me start to cry, we gave her Panadol and Aiden decided to go to the back of the plane and settle her down. Once she was taken away from the other baby she settled right away and slept for an hour and a half in the back. When Zephaniah woke up we were getting ready to land so we fed her some solids along with a bottle and once we landed she was back to her cheery happy self.
The transfer to the hotel was a 2 hour trip on a bus, we didn’t take a car seat however the bus had one on board ready for us to use, Zephaniah slept for most of the bus ride.
Once we got to the hotel there was a cot, steriliser and baby bath all waiting in our room for us.
Our days would consist of breakfast at 8am where we gave Zephaniah a selection of fresh fruits and yoghurts. Then we would take her to the grassy areas to let her crawl around for a while, then we would laze by the pool and take her swimming. Lunchtime we would give her bits and pieces of our lunches such as veggies, chips and bread and then we would walk around for a bit with her and whilst we lazed around the pool she would nap in her pram. Then at night we would bath Zephaniah and feed her before dinner then once at dinner she would fall asleep in her pram. We had such a relaxed family holiday and I honestly have no idea why I had so much anxiety about these little things, they ended up turning out just fine.
The flight back to Australia was the roughest!
This time we had our timing better, we gave Zephaniah some Panadol as we soon as we sat in our seats and we fed Zephaniah her afternoon bottle right before the plane took off so she was still feeding whilst in the air. Immediately Zephaniah started crying and wailing after her bottle, again she was pulling on her ears and she didn’t want to sit still. After 30 mins of crying and wailing Aiden again took Zephaniah to the back of the plane and sat with her and tried to settle her however she would not settle, by this time it was the witching hour and if you’ve read my blog on the witching hour or had a baby you will know exactly how painful this hour can be. Because it was witching hour all of the infants and toddlers on the plane cried and screamed and threw tantrums, I must admit I did feel a bit of relief that all of the babies were going off because this meant no one could give us dirty looks and blame the disturbances on our little girl, HA! In saying that most of the passengers were understanding to our situation and comforting. After 3 ½ hours of a screaming baby on a plane Aiden has vowed to never fly with her again until she is older, however I have assured him we will be fine on our next international flight with her.