Berkeley, California (EastBayDaily) — When given the choice between two airlines, most parents flying with a baby would choose the airline that offers a discount for their infant’s seat and provides baby food, toys, and diapers during the flight rather than the airline that offers no discount for infants and possibly doesn't allow babies to fly in rear-facing car seats even when a full price seat has been purchased. That is, unless the parents don’t realize how differently their family may be treated by competing airlines.
“The differences between airlines can be shocking when flying with a baby or toddler,” explains Shelly Rivoli, award-winning author of the revised and expanded Travels with Baby: The Ultimate Guide for Planning Travel with Your Baby, Toddler, and Preschooler just released at Amazon. “If parents have a choice of airlines, I want them to know what they’ll be getting for their money before they book a flight for their family,” adds the well-traveled mother of three.
True to her mission, Rivoli not only spells out for parents which differences they should be aware of before making airline reservations, but she provides an Airlines Comparison Table sharing important differences for family travelers between 46 airlines. The table includes valuable conveniences offered by some airlines, such as airplane bassinets for babies and baby food or children’s menus for kids, as well as money-saving tips worth noting, such as available discounts for infants and children seats, and also free baggage allowances for infants flying on laps.
Rivoli notes that, “While some airlines will count any baggage for your lap child toward your own allowance, usually hitting you with a second checked bag fee, others will let you check an extra 22 lb. or even a 50 lb. suitcase for your infant absolutely free.”
Money-saving tips aside, Travels with Baby also warns travelers hoping to use car seats on airplanes which airlines have unusual rules concerning child safety seats, such as a handful of air carriers that only allow forward-facing car seats to be used, and some others that do not allow babies younger than 6 months to use car seats on airplanes.
Just as the guidebook helps parents know which airlines they might want to steer clear of when flying with a baby or toddler, it also helps them know which airlines to opt for if given the opportunity. “There are plenty of airlines that will treat you like second class citizens when flying with a baby or toddler, but there are some airlines that will treat you like VIPs, with everything from a separate check-in counter for families with very young children and complimentary strollers to use at major airports to family seating areas on airplanes with certified nannies to help make sure you get some rest on the red-eye—even if your child doesn’t.”
Parents can uncover the best of the baby-friendly airlines and find dozens of tips and essential information for flying with babies and toddlers in Part 5 of Travels with Baby: The Ultimate Guide for Planning Travel with Your Baby, Toddler, and Preschooler available now at Amazon.com.
More about the guidebook:
The 418-page Travels with Baby also provides an in-depth guide to cruise lines and cruise vacations with babies and young children, as well as sections on train travel, road trips, camping, urban adventures, overseas travel with babies and young children, and more. The first edition of Travels with Baby (2007) received a NAPPA Gold Award in Parenting Resources and was a finalist for two ForeWord Magazine Book of the Year Awards (Travel Guides and Parenting). For more information about the new edition, visit http://www.TravelswithBaby.com.
More about the author:
Shelly Rivoli has changed diapers on four continents and several islands, and is the award-winning author behind the original Travels with Baby guidebook, Take-Along Travels with Baby companion guide, and the Travels with Baby website and blog. Among other accolades, she received the 2012 Bronze and 2013 Silver in Independent Travel Blogs from the North American Travel Journalists Association (NATJA). Ms. Rivoli’s tips and advice have been quoted by major media and numerous magazines, including Boston Globe, L.A. Times, American Baby, Parents, Pregnancy, Parent & Child, and TimeOut New York Kids. She has also made multiple radio appearances sharing tips and advice for enjoying travel with young children and was a recurring guest on ABC 7’s View from the Bay. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband and three children.