Get ready for a new experience!
These are the questions I get most frequently from new parents looking to travel with their tots. Let me know what if I missed something you are curious about!
Can I take breastmilk/formula through security?
Yes! If you are traveling with bottles that have less than three ounces of liquid, they will not need to be tested. If you have bottles or bags (frozen or thawed) with more than three ounces, TSA will pull your bag and test the milk. Ensure you add a little extra time to your airport plan to account for this.
If I travel with a lap child, do I get an extra bag?
Depends on the airline but every time I have flown the answer has been yes, you get an additional carry on if you travel with an infant, even if that infant doesn't have a seat. This will change from airline to airline, so check the site of whomever you are flying. You would be surprised how much you can fly with when you add a child-most airlines will also let you carry on a breast pump.
What about my stroller/carseat?
Again, this will differ from airline to airline so check the specifics with the brand you are flying, but every airline I have flown (including budget airlines in Europe), I have been able to check a stroller and carseat free of charge. You can do this at the gate if the airport will allow and you would like to use these items before boarding and immediately after landing, or can check them to your final destination. If you have a layover but are flying connecting airlines, you most likely can gate check your stroller/carseat to your final destination so you don't have to wait for it while trying to make your connection. Some airlines will also let you check an additional baby item, like a travel bassinet. You can usually find this information for the specific airline on their "special baggage" page.
Stroller or baby carrier? Which is easiest through the airport?
The answer to this question depends on a lot of variables. What is the time of the flight? How long is your travel? Does your baby prefer one over the other? For our first trip, this was easy because Presidente Bella hated the baby carrier, and we had lots of long layovers so the bassinet attachment on the stroller was incredibly convenient. A stroller is also nice when I travel alone with her because it gives me someplace safe to put her for bathroom breaks, when I need to pump, or when we are both sweaty and tired. If we purchase a seat for B, the stroller is a lifesaver so we aren't lugging her carseat through the airport. For quick flights or short connections, however, we have found a baby carrier to be a great help in efficiency (no waiting for your stroller or hunting for the elevator). If it is your first time flying, try bringing the stroller, with your favorite baby carrier stowed underneath (a ring sling doesn't take up much space and is easy to put on!), and if you hate lugging the stroller around, check it before security on your way home!