First flights--equipment question x-posted

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First flights--equipment question x-posted

Postby Skeely » Fri Apr 08, 2011 9:31 am

I am cross-posting this in the Strollers and Travel forum (but there isn't much traffic there).

Somebody please help me out--I'm just trying to figure out the logistics of this. We are planning 2 trips and I don't know how to deal with the gear on the airplane and beyond. My DD will be 5 and 6 months respectively when we plan to travel. I do not think we will be traveling with a car seat because she will be in a convertible by then since she is about to grow out of her infant basket style one.
First trip my question is, if I wheel her to the airplane gate in an umbroller type stroller, will I have to pay the checked bag fee to have them store the stroller? I could also wear her through the airport in her Ergo but then we will not have a stroller at our destination. We will have to have my grandma buy a new car seat to come to pick us up I guess, since I do not see that it is practical to carry a convertible on the plane.
Second trip is a professional conference and the closest airport is 30 miles from our destination city, but there is a shuttle bus that runs between them. Again, we will not have a car seat (but that is OK because we will not have a car) but can I bring a baby on a shuttle bus? What are the rules for babies and buses? And, what about the airport shuttle buses that run from long term parking or between terminals? Can you carry a baby in arms, stroller or soft carrier on those? You would think I would remember if I had ever seen a baby on one of those things but I don't.

I would appreciate any advice and tips from seasoned mommy travelers.
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Postby VAmommy » Fri Apr 08, 2011 11:00 am

We traveled with DS around 5 months too and I think its a great age for travel :) As for the airline we used, they considered the umbrella stoller as a carry on. You can stroll them up to the gate in it and then they store it for you up front. It did not cost since it was one of our carry-ons. I am sure you could check it but then it would cost and you wouldn't have it in the airport. I recommend checking the airlines website on their rules on baggage just to make sure.

As far as the shuttle bus goes, I don't know. Maybe someone else can help you out!
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Postby CamsMommy » Fri Apr 08, 2011 11:10 am

Most airlines will let you check one baby item. I saw a couple that was traveling with an infant and they had their whole travel system and they really had a hard time checking it and then getting it back after we arrived. I would highly recommend taking an umbrella stroller.

For Christmas when we flew home my lo was 6 months. We checked his car seat and used a bigger umbrella stroller through the airport. When boarding the plane they will give you a tag to attach to your stroller and will gate check it for you, meaning that you leave it at the door to the plane and then when you get to your destination they will have it waiting for you when you get off. As far as the Ergo, I saw a lady that was wearing one with her lo and there was no problem for her getting through security.

The bus thing I have no clue on. I would assume that they would be accommodating. I mean people travel everyday some with kids. I wouldn't worry too much on that. I would call if you are concerned about it.
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Postby RadioKitten » Fri Apr 08, 2011 11:50 am

We traveled when DS was 9 months and the the convertible carseat was really no big deal. Of course, there were two of us, so that makes a difference. If the flight is not full, most airlines will allow you to bring your carseat on the flight and take up a seat for free. :D We did that on our way there and gate checked the umbrella stroller. On the way back, the flight was full so we gate checked the stroller and carseat at no charge. Also, make sure you take your child's birth certificate. They require them even if you haven't purchased a seat and the baby is obviously under 2 yrs.
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Postby Skeely » Fri Apr 08, 2011 1:30 pm

Thanks for the good tips. It is very good to know that we can carry on or gate check the umbrella stroller. Also that maybe we can carry on the convertible car seat. I would hate to have to check it since checking it both ways would be more than buying a new one. But it sure would be nice if we ended up with a seat for her in her car seat. LO will not enjoy being held for over 2 hours--she likes her space! :D
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Postby nauticaboo » Sat Apr 09, 2011 5:09 am

I've flown alone with DD twice: at 11 months, and at 20 months. Both times she was a lap child. At 11 months, I wore her through the airport, and on the flight. We were going to California/Disney and didn't need a carseat, so I used her stroller to push everything through the airport (pump, diaper bag, carry-on, etc.) while I wore her, and then I checked the stroller at the gate.

We used the shuttle from the airport to the hotel and back to the airport when we left, and I just wore her then too. I called the shuttle company before we travelled, and while they recommended a carseat (of course they have too), it wasn't REQUIRED, and nobody even blinked an eye when I didn't have one. I just didn't see the point of lugging that thing back and forth with us when she only would use it for 15-20 minutes of the trip (and I practice ERF with my DD, so I'm definitely not lax when it comes to carseats).
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Postby Skeely » Sat Apr 09, 2011 9:19 pm

Thanks for the advice--good idea to move the gear in the stroller too.
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Postby Em » Thu Apr 14, 2011 10:32 am

Depending on what kind of stroller, it shouldn't be a problem to gate check it at no additional charge. Would she be able to use an umbrella stroller though if she's not able to sit upright yet? DS couldn't use one until about 5 months when he could sit on his own -- unless there is an umbrella kind that reclines a bit? I'm seriously lacking in baby product selection here so don't know what's out there.

Wearing Adelaide in the airport will be a breeze, but any airport security I've been through has required me to remove DS from the carrier and put it through the scanner separately. I then walked through the detector with DS in my arms and put the carrier back on on the other side.

As for the car seat -- depending on the airline and routes there are different restrictions. I know Air Canada will allow me to check DS' car seat at no extra charge and it is in addition to my regular baggage allowance.
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Postby Tiffaney » Fri Apr 15, 2011 3:26 pm

I have flown 3x with DD at different ages.

at 3 mo's we flew with her whole travel system (carseat, stroller, etc.) and it was nice to have it all. You do have to scan it at security so I wore her through that part. that big of a stroller is a big pain to get onto the belt and through the hole for scanning.

then last year (about 18 mos and 22 mos) we flew again and just used an umbrella stroller which worked great. Again, you do have to put it through security so I just carried her around when I didn't have the stroller. in these cases we had a carseat available at our destination so we did not take one with us and honestly I would hate to go anywhere that I had to haul one.

one thing to think about even with checking your carseat is that it could get pretty banged up. same thing to consider with a stroller. I took a $20 umbrella stroller because if it was broken I could cheaply replace it and no big deal.

as for the bus - I just wore DD or held her on all the bus/shuttle rides. no one said anything. I think I personally would feel more comfortable holding them than having them sit in the stroller.

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Postby ~*~Amanda~*~ » Mon Apr 18, 2011 9:22 am

I just flew with Ds. A lightweight or umbrella stroller is free. You CANNOT use a carseat unless you buy the baby a seat. If you take carseat and a stroller and didn't purchase a seat to use carseat in, they charge you to check one item.

You can ride busses and shuttles without a carseat, I took Ds in his stroller.

He was on my lap the way down since iy was full and on the way back he had an empty dear. They said I must hold him for take off and landing though... that tsa requires passengers be in assigned seats during that time.

There was a younger baby on the flight home, with the full travel system and they were charged to check it based on weight and size.... since the carrier doesn't fold down like a stroller they had to pay $25 at the gate to check it and could not use it on plane since they did not get baby a ticket.

There were many stroller and wheelchairs at the gate.

There is a convertible carseat w wheels and a handle available, its expensive though. And again you would have to check it unless you buy a ticket
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Postby Skeely » Mon Apr 18, 2011 11:02 am

Em wrote:Depending on what kind of stroller, it shouldn't be a problem to gate check it at no additional charge. Would she be able to use an umbrella stroller though if she's not able to sit upright yet? DS couldn't use one until about 5 months when he could sit on his own -- unless there is an umbrella kind that reclines a bit? I'm seriously lacking in baby product selection here so don't know what's out there.

We have a McClaren (sp?) which reclines a little and she has been able to be in it for about a month--as soon as she held her head up it was OK.

I do worry about it getting banged up a bit but I will just keep my fingers crossed. For our first trip we have already decided my family will buy a cheap car seat on the other side. Thanks everyone for the advice--it has been very helpful. I'm getting very excited for our trips!
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Postby Em » Mon Apr 18, 2011 11:12 am

Skeely wrote:
Em wrote:Depending on what kind of stroller, it shouldn't be a problem to gate check it at no additional charge. Would she be able to use an umbrella stroller though if she's not able to sit upright yet? DS couldn't use one until about 5 months when he could sit on his own -- unless there is an umbrella kind that reclines a bit? I'm seriously lacking in baby product selection here so don't know what's out there.

We have a McClaren (sp?) which reclines a little and she has been able to be in it for about a month--as soon as she held her head up it was OK.

I do worry about it getting banged up a bit but I will just keep my fingers crossed. For our first trip we have already decided my family will buy a cheap car seat on the other side. Thanks everyone for the advice--it has been very helpful. I'm getting very excited for our trips!


Ok - I have a Maclaren stroller too but mine doesn't recline. I'll probably get the reclining model for my next LO since we'll be selling this one here when we move in the summer. Side note - I love how easy Maclaren's are to open and fold with only one free hand!

As for the stroller getting banged up, maybe order one of these to protect it? I think they're pretty durable.
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Postby RadioKitten » Mon Apr 18, 2011 1:00 pm

~*~Amanda~*~ wrote:I just flew with Ds. A lightweight or umbrella stroller is free. You CANNOT use a carseat unless you buy the baby a seat. If you take carseat and a stroller and didn't purchase a seat to use carseat in, they charge you to check one item.



Again, this depends on the airline. I flew Southwest in Oct and we used our carseat on the flight on the way there w/out paying for a seat. All I did was ask the gate attendant if the flight was full and she said, "No...you are welcome to bring your carseat on and put it in a seat." On the way back, the flight was full and we gate checked a stroller and a carseat at no charge.
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Postby Tiffaney » Tue Apr 19, 2011 3:23 pm

RadioKitten wrote:
~*~Amanda~*~ wrote:I just flew with Ds. A lightweight or umbrella stroller is free. You CANNOT use a carseat unless you buy the baby a seat. If you take carseat and a stroller and didn't purchase a seat to use carseat in, they charge you to check one item.



Again, this depends on the airline. I flew Southwest in Oct and we used our carseat on the flight on the way there w/out paying for a seat. All I did was ask the gate attendant if the flight was full and she said, "No...you are welcome to bring your carseat on and put it in a seat." On the way back, the flight was full and we gate checked a stroller and a carseat at no charge.


same here. when DD was 3 mos old we took the whole travel system on Frontier airlines and we were able to gate check the carseat (infant carrier) and the stroller, both for free and we didn't buy a seat.

since then I've only had to gate check an umbrella stroller and no carseat.
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