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How to keep kids entertained on a plane

While it’s exciting to travel with kids, it’s not always a walk in the park. The truth is, the initial excitement of being on a plane can soon wear off, so it’s a good idea to have a few tricks up your sleeve to ensure your little ones stay feeling happy and entertained, from take off to landing.

How to entertain a toddler on plane

So, how do you entertain a toddler on a plane? From fine tuning your airport experience, to packing toys, snacks and everything else in between, we’ve got a range of helpful tips to bust the boredom for your next flight.

Arrive with plenty of time

When you’re travelling with your family it can help to arrive at the airport with plenty of time. Not only will you be less rushed as you make your way to the check-in desk, through security and to your gate, it also means that your little ones will feel calm and relaxed as you take your seats on the plane. With any luck, this should help set you up for a smooth flight. 

To make your airport experience even easier, and especially if you have tiny tots in tow, it can help to book your parking spot in advance. This means you needn’t worry about finding a place to leave your vehicle upon your arrival at the airport.

Another useful travel extra that may be available to you is fast track security. At Liverpool Airport, our Fast Track option significantly reduces the amount of time you spend queuing at security, which can be particularly beneficial during peak times.

Book a window seat

Especially if your little one has yet to travel by plane, there’s no doubt they’ll love to peer out the window during take off and landing. By booking a window seat, your child will be able to gaze in awe at the clouds.

You could even make a game of it. Why not play ‘eye spy’ taking inspiration from the view? You never know what you might spot.

Pack lots of fun activities

Regardless of whether your flight is an hour or you’re travelling long-haul, it’s a good idea to pack lots of fun activities for your kids to get stuck into to pass the time.

For example, you may find that sticker books are a huge hit with your littles, and colouring books are perfect for children of all ages - just don’t forget to pack the crayons and pencils. You might even want to invest in some mess-free colouring activity packs, or water magic colouring books which can be used over and over.

An LCD writing tablet provides another fantastic way to keep your kids occupied. Little hands can doodle to their heart's content, giving them somewhere to draw and write with the tablet stylus before using the erase button to clear the screen and start again. What’s more, these slim, lightweight devices won’t take up much space in your cabin luggage.

It’s also wise to pack a selection of small toys for the journey ahead. This could be anything from tiny figurines and fidget spinners, to travel puzzles and mini Montessori style toys.

Take a stash of books

Books are a great way to keep your kids amused during a long flight. Taking a selection of fun, engaging reads will prevent little ones from getting bored.

For toddlers, board books with plenty of bright, colourful illustrations are your best bet. You might even want to pack some ‘lift the flap’ books, as well as stories that feature textured pages for sensory input.

Make use of technology

When you feel like you need a little peace and quiet, don’t be afraid to make use of technology. It’s a good idea to download your little one’s favourite TV shows and films to your smartphone or tablet ahead of your flight. From Netflix to Disney+, there are plenty of options to choose from.

While technology will keep your kids entertained for a while, it also gives you the chance to sit back and relax. In addition to films and TV shows, you could download some educational, age-appropriate games to your device too.

Stock up on snacks

Since in-flight food options can be hit and miss, it’s a good idea to stock up on your own snacks for the journey ahead to stop little tummies from going hungry. 

There are a wide range of healthy, tasty treats you can take with you onboard, including boxes of raisins, pretzels, crackers, fruit, rice cakes, granola bars, yoghurt bites and vegetable crisps. You may even want to take a selection of special treats too, such as biscuits and small chocolate bars.

To take your snack game to the next level, you could create your own travel snack box. You can do this by investing in a plastic lunch box with divided compartments and adding your treats to each section. There’s no doubt your little one will love grazing through their own snack pack.