This list is a compilation of toddler travel tips that were suggested to us by friends as well things that we picked up along the way. Though this list could be utilized for any sort of travel, we found this to be a great companion for our trip to Israel with our daughter who was almost 2 years old. I should note that most of the stuff we brought with us was bought from Goodwill or the Dollar Store, that way if it got lost we weren’t out a lot of money.

  1. Tablet
  2. Headphones (some have volume limiting, which is great so your child doesn’t go deaf or anything). You could use these headphones with the tablet or you could also connect it to the in-flight music/videos.
  3. Really comfortable clothes for your child and yourself, plus a change of clothes.
  4. Comfortable shoes for walking your toddler up and down the isles of your flight
    • You could also take trips to the restroom if she’s going crazy and let her play in there. It’s tiny but it’s a change of scenery and she can sit on the changing table.
  5. Things that your child usually needs to sleep. Such as blankie, stuffed animal, a favorite bedtime story.
  6. Benadryl or melatonin to help your child sleep
    • This is really a last-ditch effort. We only used melatonin once and it was on our way home – while our child was really sick and couldn’t fall asleep even at midnight. But make sure to try it ahead of time, as some kids can have an opposite effect with either medicine. Our toddler got really hyper with allergy medicine and was jumping in her crib, thank Gd we tried it ahead of time! And, obviously, make sure to give them the right amount for their age and weight.
  7. Earplane Ear Plugs (adult and child versions). These help reduce discomfort from air pressure.
  8. Pre-make goodie bags that you can give the kids throughout the flight. Switch it up between bags. This makes snacking more entertaining. Some ideas include:
    • Bamba
    • Pretzels
    • Jelly beans
    • Fruit
  9. No mess Crayola finger paint & markers.
  10. Etch A Sketch
  11. Crayons or markers. I would recommend the easily washable ones.
  12. Coloring books.
  13. Watercolor. Just put a tiny amount of water in a cup on the plane tray
  14. Toys that lite up and make noise are fun. If you are traveling on a plane, maybe less noise for the other passengers around you.
  15. If your child likes pacifiers, make a baggy filled with different pacifiers. My friend who suggested this said her kids loved trying them all over the flight.
  16. Curlers, bottle caps inside another container, blocks. Things that you don’t care to get lost.
  17. Buy some new books that your child hasn’t seen yet and save them for the plane.
  18. Little toy people & animals that your child can play with on the tray table.
  19. A doll or teddy she can ‘take care of’.
  20. Stickers. Puffy stickers are great and easy to take on and off.
  21. Box of Band-Aids: use them like stickers, (let her peel and stick them anywhere!) Take paper with you and they can decorate it with band-aids. Pulling them open is part of the challenge.
  22. Model magic is great. It’s like playdough but not messy. Or you could always just bring playdough.
  23. A couple of friends suggested: and a cup of ice from the drinks cart! They said their kids ate tons of ice from the cart.

Remember, these days will pass. And when all else fails, bribe the kids with chocolate and tablet. It won’t scar them for life and it doesn’t mean you’re a bad parent when you are just trying to get through the flight/travel smoothly.

And don’t forget to take chocolate for yourself… and maybe some little bottles of alcohol.

Hopefully, these are some ideas that you can utilize in your travels with a toddler. Have other suggestions? We’d love to hear them! Please comment below.