Just a quick note: I flew down to Florida with the girls (no wife) on Wednesday. We’ve flown with them lots, but I haven’t had the joy/opportunity of/to fly with them alone.
When we all flew together in December, I told Scarlett (age 5) to stop kicking the seat in front of her 17 times. How do I know? Because I counted and told her each time (ie, “That is the 13th time I’m asking you to stop kicking the seat in front of you.”) In her defense, at that age their feet stick straight out, and they’re pretty much bouncing all the time, so it’s not so much as they’re kicking the seat inasmuch as the seat is in the way of their foot that is constantly bouncing. Small consolation to the person in front of us, but there ya go.
I brought iPads for both the children on this trip, hoping that would help at least part of the 3 hours fly by quickly. I remember flying down to Florida to see my grandparents on Eastern L-1011s and trying (barely) to watch the movie on the screen 17 rows in front of my while sticking plastic tubes in my ears (space age!).
Scarlett took the iPad and watched movies for 3 straight hours (while plying herself with snack after snack). Sage pooh-poohed the iPad and watched a movie on her seatback ($6 well-spent). For people who travel with children, how much easier has it gotten over the past 2 years or so? Just a few years ago you had to pack a crate full of stuff to keep a 4 or 5 year old entertained on an airplane. An iPad filled with movies and games pretty much does the trick (fine, I’m a terrible parent. Sue me.) It makes everyone’s life on the plane vastly more pleasant.
I’ve also noticed that when I fly alone, I’m thinking about legroom and service and eating and all the other nonsense we bloggers tend to blah blah blah about. But honestly – the girls wanted me in the middle seat (horror!) and I gladly took it. I never noticed the pathetic 31″ pitch (no exit row with 3 year olds), and I took no food nor drink from the flight attendants. I don’t even remember if they came around to ask me. I was so thrilled that neither of the 2 were complaining about being bored or having to go to the bathroom 37 times, that it was the best flight I’ve had in a very, very long time (business class to Europe included).
I know that if you don’t have children this makes no sense whatsoever. But for those with kids, is there anything better than knowing your kids are occupied when you’re flying? (Read: that they’re not torturing you about boredom?) Thanks, iPad!