Kids’ Airplane Etiquette

Chad and I recently took our two youngest kids on their first airplane ride.  I chatted up the flight attendant and asked her advice on kids’ airplane etiquette.  Here are a  few manners and tips to remember when flying with children:


Don’t let your kids kick the seat in front of them.

Make sure children don’t unload the magazines in the seat pocket.

Clean up your area- crumbs, magazines, garbage, etc. before exiting the plane.

Get every child a seat if at all possible- even if they qualify as a lap sitter.  You can bring on your carseat if it has a hard bottom, a hard back, and an internal buckling system.  This will keep your child safe and seated.  Here is an informative blog post on buckling up infants on the plane if you need to be convinced.  We got Locke his own seat.   He loved having his own seat and our flight (and our neighbors’) was much more enjoyable.

Children should sit near the window, not in an aisle seat.  This way they are contained (and entertained) and their fingers and toes won’t get bumped by the beverage cart.

Keep kids buckled as much as possible during the flight, and they definitely need to be buckled for take off and landing.

Sit between your child and another passenger.  Be the buffer zone. You are used to them pestering you, others aren’t.

There are federal regulations on where children can sit in a plane, so you might have to be moved once you get on the plane.  Comply with the flight attendants and don’t make a fuss- just move.  They know things you don’t.

Bring quiet activities for the kids to work on.

Teach the children what the overhead buttons represent, but don’t let them abuse them.

When the beverage cart comes around, you can ask for lids for the kids’ drinks.  Kids may ask for seconds on snacks, but stop there.

Why: Make sure to teach your children ‘the why’ behind these airline courtesies.  Remember that a plane is a public form of transportation and we want to make sure everyone has a safe and enjoyable flight.

Enjoy your flight!


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