Traveling with a Toddler on a Plane? Don’t Be THAT Parent

by Roni

Are you traveling with a toddler on a plane? It’s wonderful when parents travel with their young children and expose them to so many different things. However, are you one of those parents that seem to forget you have a toddler when you sit in your seat?

Here are 5 annoying things parents do when traveling with a toddler on a plane.

I was on a plane once and there was a woman sitting across the aisle from me who was traveling with four kids. These kids were acting like absolute monkeys (yes, I said it…monkeys) and the mother did nothing to stop the miscreant behavior. I am constantly amazed at how rude some parents can be when they are traveling with their kids.

If you do not fit into this category, then I am not speaking to you or your well-behaved children. For you, I am eternally grateful. This is for those other parents.

Please understand, I love children. I have a car seat in the backseat of my car and I’m constantly doing things with my nieces and nephews.  I have so many toys, books, games, clothes, and gadgets in my home for my nieces and nephews that someone came to my house and said, “I thought you didn’t have kids?” because they couldn’t believe how kid-friendly my home was.

However, I do not understand why parents will get on a plane and all of a sudden lose their minds along with their hearing. Here are 5 annoying things parents do on a plane when flying with children. Are you one of these parents? If so, please pay special attention because I am talking to you. Do you know some of these parents? Please send them this link so they can stop doing these things.

Not give your kids headphones

This is completely unacceptable. If your kids are playing games or watching a movie, they need headphones of some kind. No one but your kid thinks their game is super fun. No one but your kid likes the movie they are watching. No one around them should have to endure listening to the sounds of their entertainment.

You can buy cheap earbuds, there is no reason to spend tons of money but whatever you do, get some type of headphones. To not provide them for your kids is really inconsiderate.

travel, holidays, accomodation, Agoda

Let your kid grab the seat in front of them

Why would you do this? Your kids are cute. I get it. And you think the person in front of you couldn’t possibly mind that your child is grabbing their seat. Trust me when I tell you, they do.

It’s hard for your child to sit still for several hours and I think most people understand that. Just because your child can’t sit still does not give them the right to pull, kick, or in any way bother the seat in front of them.

It is totally unfair to the person sitting in that seat.  And you do not have the right to sit in your seat and act like you don’t see what your child is doing. You see it and you need to stop your child from doing it.

Constantly saying SSSSHHHHH!

If you want your kids to behave while flying, how about teaching them about proper plane etiquette BEFORE getting on the plane? Constantly saying SSSHHH doesn’t do anything because your kids aren’t responding to you.

Discipline is real and it’s necessary and kids respond to it when it’s done properly. Trying to start on a plane isn’t a great idea. If disciplining your child had started at home, when you say, “sssshhhhh” your kids would have listened to you.

Letting your kids shout

Why? Why do you think this is ok? Why do you let your kids shout to each other on a plane? Didn’t you teach them about their inside voices? They can just talk normally, they do not have to shout. Please stop allowing this.

Letting your kids sing at the top of their lungs

I get it. You think your kid is the next Rihanna or Taylor Swift. They are not. Stop them from singing because no one but you thinks it is cute. It is annoying and everyone on the plane wants to smack you and your child.

Now you know! Take a few minutes and a bit of money to prepare for traveling with a toddler on a plane. You will have a less stressful trip and those around you will thank you.


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Leave a Comment


nylse January 28, 2014 - 5:28 pm

My daughter is 21 and she was recently on a plane with a mother who had 3 children who were all misbehaving. She could not understand, because at that age she knew better than to act like that in public. She was more upset with the mother than the children and told me later I must have done something right.
Anyhow if no one speaks up, I usually speak to the child since the mother clearly wont do it.

Roni February 3, 2014 - 4:16 pm

I agree, I was more irritated with the mom than the kids!

Michelle February 3, 2014 - 12:38 am

The seat kicking thing drives me insane. Whenever my kids did it when they were little, I reprimanded them immediately and I was constantly watching to make sure they weren’t doing it. I get that it’s going to happen sometimes, but when it happens the whole plane ride…c’mon parents. You know they are doing it! We all paid for our seats too. I think people are understanding when they see the parents making an effort to keep things under control…it’s when they don’t seem to notice or care, that people get upset.

Roni February 3, 2014 - 4:37 pm

I think most people are ok it if happens every now and then, most people are nice. But it’s the constant kicking/pulling that drives people bananas!

Amber February 3, 2014 - 12:00 pm

When I flew with my toddler for the first time, I did my best to prepare ahead of time. I reserved a seat in the back of the plane, near the restrooms, and where I could quickly ask for help from the flight attendants, if I needed it. I had books, games and other activities she could do quietly, along with my iPod and a set of headphones. Everything went smoothly and the passengers around us were really helpful. I think people respond better when they see that you are making an effort to be courteous to their experience. I needn’t apologize for my kid being a kid, but I can do my best to manage her and not let things get out of control.

I think all of your tips are spot on!

Roni February 3, 2014 - 4:38 pm

Nope, kids are going to be kids. I think people get that and parents like you are NOT the problem. Thanks for stopping by!

K. Elizabeth February 3, 2014 - 1:35 pm

As a parent some things don’t bother me as much as they used to before having children of my own. However, I don’t like having my space invaded. And I don’t like it when other parents let their children roam around without supervision. I definitely think it’s important to be considerate of the other passengers and do what you can to keep your children calm and well-behaved. But just turning a blind eye and letting them go buck wild is a no-no and leaves a bad image or association of child and traveling.

Roni February 3, 2014 - 4:39 pm

That’s the thing…the turning the blind eye that drives people crazy, and I’m with you about my space!

Sara February 10, 2014 - 12:07 pm

I’m with you on the grabbing seats and no headphones. That’s just rude! Sometimes shhing, shouting, and screaming is unavoidable. You can try your best, but having 4 little ones confined can be extremely challenging!

Roni February 10, 2014 - 1:28 pm

Grabbing seats has got to be my biggest pet peeve. I guess cause I didn’t grow up in a house with screaming and shouting and no one in my family does that it’s always strange for me to experience. But hey, that’s what headphones are for! Thanks for commenting!

Dani June 29, 2015 - 12:51 pm

so one time when Roey was 2 he shouted “we’re not done flying yet!!” and i was mortified but people chuckled. The guy across from us said something like “he’s right you know!” people chuckled again and i felt a lil less mortified.

Roni July 2, 2015 - 6:54 pm

That’s hilarious.