Travelling Abroad With A Baby: Madness?

Travelling Abroad With A Baby: Madness?
27 April 2016

If you waste as much time online as I do, you're bound to have seen this dad's funny account of taking his baby abroad for the first time. Unsurprisingly, it went viral.

But incase you missed it, the Mail reports:

"Matt Coyne, 41, from Sheffield, documented how his fears about heading overseas with six-month-old son Charlie matched up to reality. The frank and comical post - which covers topics such as sitting next to non baby-friendly people on the plane and their stroller being destroyed in the baggage hold - has now attracted 45,000 likes, 14,500 shares and 10,000 comments."

Not all of Coyne's post is fit to print but among other things, he writes:

"One of our worries about the flight was that we'd get seated next to someone unhappy about being near a baby. We hoped to be sat next to a kindly old Angela Lansbury type, with a soft spot for babies. In the end we got sat next to a woman who had a face like a cat's *rse being burned at the stake."

We've all been there, haven't we?! And, as Coyne points out, you don't have to board a plane to encounter someone who seems to have an innate dislike of children. I've come across them everywhere from the supermarket check-out queue to the flipping library.

I particularly identify with Coyne's comments about taking a baby somewhere sunny:

"Just a note on suntan lotion... let it dry off before picking them up or anything, otherwise it's like wrestling a seal that's just left a massage parlour , Charlie was in less danger from the sun than he was from me juggling him like a bar of soap."

I'll never forget the summer I smeared that funny coloured sun lotion all over my firstborn, believing it to be a brilliant way of keeping an eye on whether all his extremities were suitably smothered in sun protection. Well, he might not have suffered from sunburn that summer but he also retained a distinctly blue hue for about six months thereafter.

So Coyne's post cracked us up in the Playpennies office but it also got us wondering: what's the worst / toughest / thing you least expected about travelling with kids?

And if you've travelled abroad with little ones and survived to tell the tale, tell us this: what's your top tip for surviving a flight with a baby in tow?


  • Nicole L.

    We found taking our 4 month old daughter abroad easy and stress free! This year we are now taking a three year old and nearly two year old and that frightens me more! Lol I'd turn back time for the ease anyday:joy:

  • Claire S.

    We took our son away when he was 12 weeks old and never looked back :airplane::airplane:

  • Yasmin A.

    For me, it is not so much the travelling with children. It is people making you feel bad taking children on holiday and "ruining" their flight. I have to say, my girls are good...doesnt stop my anxiety though lol X

  • Nicola C.

    No point wouldnt enjoy the hol with my screaming brats and its too hot for their skin :smiley:

  • Jill D.

    I have taken my toddler on many flights and holidays since he was born 4 years ago. We just had a holiday to Australia and he was amazing on the plane through the whole 30 hour trip. Think that it teaches them too how to travel. Not had problems with him, would never take the opportunity for him or us away just cos he is a baby!

    • Rebecca B.

      We're taking our 18 month and 3.5yr old to Spain soon. Any top tips on how to stop their ears from hurting with the change of pressure?

    • Nicola M.

      Lollipops to sook on the way up and down x

    • Jill D.

      I just give my little one something to eat a biscuit or sandwich or a bottle of milk to drink. He didn't need anything on this last trip and we did 5 flights. They seem to cope better when they know what is coming. But anything to chew to get their ear canals moving and open.

    • Rebecca B.

      Great, thanks to you both.

  • Carrie A.

    We took our daughter just before she was one and it was perfect. Wee blow up boat between two sun loungers under a brolly :thumbsup: I've seen others abroad with a travel cot doing the same. Now she is 7 and her brother 4, we are constantly checking they haven't wandered off, drown etc etc :joy: make the most of the baby stage!

  • Sharon B.

    Just home from a week in span with 2yr old twins..and they coped with the traveling and new surroundings better than I expected...plenty of snacks and a few toys they haven't seen in a while helped for us x

  • Kelly G.

    Nearly 2 and nearly 4 when we took ours. Only regret was , we didn't do it sooner . Nothing to worry about x

  • Sarah T.

    Since he was born 2 years ago we've taken my little boy to France, Scotland, Greece, Indonesia, New Zealand, Singapore and Germany. We all loved every trip and never had an issue either on the plane or in a foreign country. Amazing memories. :heart_eyes::airplane:

  • Kerry C.

    I've travelled with my little one since she was 12 weeks old and she's been fine The hardest but is listening to people moaning about babies being on the flight before you've even boarded

  • Layla W.

    Ah I wish his whole story was there :joy::weary: xxx

  • Danielle A.

    Must-do without a doubt! Just wish we had the funds to do it more! It's such an experience for little ones. They love the beach, pool, and new experiences. Then we have extra special memories of them at that age, and sunny photos to look back on! :blush:

  • Kelly R.

    My little girl is nearly 2 and a half with an anaphylactic allergy but has been abroad 3 times (once in snow & 2 in the sun) with no issues.

    They have been great experiences for her and she loves the airplanes/travel, water, eating out, trying new things, exploring. She's very confident I believe due to our travels.

    TRAVELING TRICKS: a little surprise toy for every half hour on plane. Colouring book, cards, cars, book.


    WORST THING HAPPENED: Opened her juice bottle on plane and It squirted everywhere due to pressure!!! Lol.

  • Alana L.

    Took our first flight when my son was 6 months old. He's now 5 and has been on 12 trips abroad. Every single flight was hell but it's worth it! I actually say go go go with a baby, because once they are mobile and active it's horrendous travelling! People tend to worry too much, I remember the first couple trips going way over baggage weight allowance but you've got to remember they have babies abroad and you can buy things when you get there.

  • Emma G.

    It's no holiday!

  • Alyson G.

    We first took our wee girl abroad when she was just over a year old. Yeah ok, the flight can be a bit challenging trying to keep them amused. But SO worth it seeing them having fun when on holiday and making memories! Don't understand why people don't want to take young ones abroad, don't think I've ever seen a young child hating being on holiday! We are heading to Tenerife in 2 and a half weeks. My little girl is just over 3 now so I'm sure she'll have an even better time than first time! Xxx

  • Toni A.

    We took our little en when e waz 10 months old bt bit of bother we going away again soon he'll be nearly 3 I'm hoping it's all in planning toys activities etc to keep him occupied

  • Yasmin K.

    Flying with one child is easy. .. I found two children a bit more tricky. .. my almost 2 year old is a pain in the bum on the flights. My now 6 year old went on her first flight when she was 12 weeks old ..she is well behaved compared to her diva sister..I think kids should travel from an early age. People moan on the flight but bad luck we have paid for our seats too and if they don't like it they can put their head phones on watch TV and drown all the noise out. :-)

  • Louise J.

    Took our son to Florida at 23 months so he was free! He and we loved every minute! Who cares if they can't remember. We always will :)

  • Maeve C.

    Take a baby sling for when you get off the aircraft. You normally don't get your pram back until baggage reclaim and it's generally quite a distance. Especially if you are carrying a baby plus a bag.

  • Nicky K.

    We drove to the south of France. DVD and a potty was all he really needed x

  • Samantha M.

    Just do it! We have aeroplaned a couple of times including long haul from uk to Boston with no issues, but by choice we holiday with Eurocamp the last few years. We have driven to Spain, Italy, Holland, Switzerland in the last few years, fantastic prices can take everything you need, the sites are miles better for kids than your all inclusive holidays and they list their sites by factors such as "toddler friendly" and no it's not all tents they have lots of different accommodation, but even the bog standard tents come with electricity, fridges, oven, proper little beds etc...

  • Melanie B.

    I'm taking my 3 month old to Portugal. Slightly worried now with people commenting saying about being made to feel bad before they get on the plane as that would really get to me :/

    • Rosie S.

      I'm in Portugal now with my 4 month old 3 weeks away all amazing just stick to known water brands :grinning::grinning:xx

  • Hannah C.

    My granddaughter went to France at 8 weeks by ferry to see my dad, and be will flying to Cyprus in July at 5 months old to see my mum. Not a lot of choice really as this is where my parents chose to retire too.

  • Victoria S.

    I'm from NZ and have taken my 3 children back quite a few times. (Once on my own with a 10 month old and 3 year old. I don't suggest that!) My eldest was 7 weeks when we first went. And he's now 10 and been 7 times. The easiest time to travel with them is when they are tiny. Once they can crawl / walk it gets quite a bit more difficult. So take lots of snacks and toys and be prepared to be walking around the plane a lot, and not getting much sleep!

  • Laura M.

    We did three holiday with out son at 1, 1.5 and 2 It was good but hell never remember We have a 2nd child now and won't be going away til she's 3+

  • Julie C.

    Baby yes but toddlers.... noooo! Taking my boy again this year now he'll be nearly 4. Kids club will keep him entertained :)

  • Susan F.

    We are just back and took my 3 year old and 4 month old NEVER AGAIN till my youngest is at least 3 or 4. Not a relaxing holiday at all

  • Pamela C.

    I took my 4 year old to Spain this year and he was great on the plane but I couldn't be bothered taking a baby with taking prams, car seats etc. I have flown over 100 times and only ever once moaned about kids on planes as 2 kids aged about 4 and 8 screamed, whined, shouted and ran up and down the plane most of the way. When we landed they preceded to climb on the carousel at baggage reclaim and not once did the parents try to control them.

  • Hannah B.

    We took our 5yr, 3yr and 18month old away in April.... We were dreading it, but they were a breeze on the plane and just happy to be enjoying themselves in some warm weather! I think as parents we probably over analyse the situation and make it worse in our own heads sometimes. It doesn't really matter if they get upset on plane, or don't sleep as they would at home because when you look back on the pictures your only going to focus on all the fun you had :grinning:

  • Laura E.

    Must do :) I've taken an 11 month old, a four month old and next month nine month old :) great fun and great memories :)

  • Rebecca L.

    We took our daughter when she was 1.Had I known how great Thomson Family Resorts were, I would have taken her when she was younger.

  • Edel M.

    Not mad at all. The hardest part is making sure you pack everything. And parents need a holiday! :yum:

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