BA • February 2020

How does BA… make kids happy travellers?

Going on holiday with a young family is joyful in many ways, but it’s rarely a totally stress-free event. Fortunately British Airways has come up with various ways to ensure that the whole experience runs more smoothly...

Pre-book your seats

Travelling with a child aged two or under? You want to be sure that you’re all set for a comfortable flight. BA offers child seats and carrycots free of charge on long-haul flights – so that’s one less thing to stress about. You can reserve a carrycot/child seat position in advance here. If you don’t choose a seat beforehand, BA will choose a suitable one a few days before your departure (although this might not be in a carrycot/child seat position). Even with older kids, it’s a good idea to pre-book your seats to ensure you’re all sitting together. Although, children under 12 will always be sat with an adult on the same booking.

Seating arrangements

Pre-order their meals

Hungry tummies can make for grumpy little travellers. BA’s specially curated children’s meals hit the right note taste and nutrition wise, plus the airline's ‘Feed Kids First’ policy means they will be fed and watered leaving you to enjoy your own food without (too much) interruption. Make sure you order your child’s meal at least 24 hours before you fly via Manage My Booking. If you are flying long-haul in First, Club Class or World Traveller Plus, you’ll be able to order their main meal online in advance too.

Feed kids first

Bring your own

It’s always a good idea to pack extra snacks, especially for longer flights. For wee ones, some tinned baby food is available on long-haul flights, but BA recommends bringing your own unopened baby food, sterilised bottles and any other related equipment in your hand luggage. Cabin crew are not allowed to sterilise bottles or provide sterilised water. Always check which restrictions the airport you’re travelling to/from has in place for carrying baby milk and food in hand luggage.

Meals for everyone

Pack strategically

When travelling with BA, children aged two to 11 have the same baggage allowance as adults so there’s no need to cram your whole family’s holiday wardrobe into two bags. And, if you have a child aged two and under, you can bring an extra bag for them on a long-haul flight, which will be included in your allowance. Perfect for stashing away some little toys, books and emergency craft activities to keep them busy on board. Nightwear and spare clothes are always a good idea for little ones on a longer flight too, to get them in the sleep zone and keep them comfy on board.

Baggage allowance

Don’t rush through the airport

Rushing with kids in tow never ends well, especially if you want to start your holiday on the right note. Check in online 24 hours before if you can. And ask about dedicated 'Family Lanes' when you drop off your baggage – many airports have them to help families get through security stress-free. There will be plenty to keep them entertained as you wait to board – many terminals have play areas and seven of BA’s lounges at Heathrow and Gatwick now include dedicated My 1st Years Kids Zones. Meaning you can relax as your children burn off some energy riding on mini aeroplanes or playing musical instruments. When it’s time to go, BA invites families with infants under two and young children in pushchairs to board first so they can get settled.

Don't rush

Quality screen time

When the novelty of their new toys or books and the complimentary on-board activity packs starts to wane, turn to BA’s in-flight entertainment system, which families travelling on longer flights can enjoy. With a plethora of family movies, TV shows and audio content, there is hours of entertainment for everyone to enjoy, including the airline’s youngest customers. A dedicated Skyflyers Kids' Zone makes it easier for parents to find suitable content while a parental lock lets you relax knowing older kids won’t be able to access anything they shouldn’t.

Light entertainment

Take the kit

Worried about tired little legs at their airport or faffing about with rental car seats? There’s no need. Family passengers can take up to two of the following items – a fully-collapsible pushchair, car or booster seat, travel cot or baby back carrier – free of charge (as checked baggage) when travelling with BA. If you have a small, fully collapsible and lightweight pushchair you can choose to take it right to the aircraft door, and collect it as soon as you get off the plane. Check BA’s website for dimensions. Otherwise, if your pram is too big or you’re flying alone with a babe-in-arms, taking a sling on board can be very handy for carrying the baby and keeping your hands free for baggage.

Take the kit

Give them the travel bug

Kids love flying? Get them involved in the planning for your next trip. Talk about the places you’ve been and find out where they want to go. They’re never too young to start collecting Avios to make their dream trip a reality. The British Airways Executive Club Household Account lets adults and their children pool their Avios, meaning you have more to spend on rewards when you want them. Avios can be used by up to seven members living at the same address and it’s free to join, regardless of age.

Avios for the whole family

This article has been tagged BA, Travel Tips