Being on an airplane with a bored child is not a fun experience. Young children cry or whine, older kids might try to run up and down the aisle or annoy the person in front of, or next to them.
Parents can ensure a more pleasant trip for themselves and those surrounding them by planning ahead and packing engaging activities for their children.
For older children, consider bringing a deck of playing cards. There are many card games children enjoy playing, and you can get complete game sets that are great to pass the time. You can even buy a book of card tricks for them to practice on the way.
Pocket versions of popular board games will entertain the kids and won’t take up much room in the carry on bag. Most pocket or travel versions of board games are magnetic to minimize the risk of pieces getting lost or falling off the board during play. Try classics like Battleship, Connect Four, and Monopoly. For older kids you can even get chess or checkers.
Drawing toys such as Etch-a Sketch ®, and Magna Doodle ® allow your child to draw, write, or play games such as hangman without burning through a lot of paper. If your child prefers drawings they can keep – Crayola Color Wonder makes drawing easy with no worry about mess.
Good old fashioned coloring books and crayons are still a great option. They’re light and don’t take up a lot of room in the carry on bag. They’re great for children of all ages – even mom and dad.
Be sure to bring along your child’s favorite books. Reading a well known and loved book is comforting and will help your child feel more secure on the plane. The new Kindle Fire HD 8 Kid’s Edition is also a great option for taking a ton of books in a very small space.
Parents and children can take turns telling a progressing a story. One person starts by giving one or two lines of the story, the next person continues with the story until they have no more to add. Continue around until the story is finished. It might be fun to record the story on your cell phone to listen to later or share with family and friends at your destination.
With a little planning, your child can stay busy and have fun. Who knows, you and your child may come to enjoy flying and playing games together.