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Ask LP Kids: what should you pack in your carry-on when travelling with kids?

in Blog
Created: 21 September 2018

Advice and recommendations from the Lonely Planet Kids community on how to pack the perfect carry-on when flying with kids.

The post Ask LP Kids: what should you pack in your carry-on when travelling with kids? appeared first on Lonely Planet Kids.


Advice and recommendations from the Lonely Planet Kids community on how to pack the perfect carry-on when flying with kids.

The post Ask LP Kids: what should you pack in your carry-on when travelling with kids? appeared first on Lonely Planet Kids.

A suitcase can double as a seat but your carry-on has to work harder when travelling with kids © Michael H / Getty Images

The perfectly packed carry-on is the holy grail for many travelling parents. You want to be able to handle every emergency, ensure your kids are happy, occupied and nourished, and arrive at your destination with the whole family feeling as fresh, calm and clean as is realistically achievable…

Our Lonely Planet Kids community have clocked up thousands of air miles between them so these are the right brains to pick on the quest to get that carry-on spot on.

The expert view

‘Always assume that the in-flight entertainment may break (as mine did on a recent flight) so come armed with books, colouring pencils, stickers, tablet etc. Also kids’ headphones, snacks (remember: some countries don’t allow you to bring certain foods in so you may need to leave leftovers on the plane), wet wipes, travel pillows and eye masks. I also pack a change of clothes for all, just in case of spillage/vomit/flight delays/lost suitcases.’

– Family travel blogger Nicola Burke from Jetlag and Mayhem

Our Twitter community says

Snacks! Sticker books/water wow books and colouring books are a winner. iPad if a longer flight with headphones. Wet wipes and sweets for sucking on the way up and down to help with the ear pressure 🙂#asklpkids

— Havekidswilltraveluk (@KidsTravelUK) August 11, 2018

We don’t pack much at all actually. A pair of pj’s, change of underwear for when we get to hotel at the other end, kindle fire and headphones, he chooses a magazine with toy at the airport (got sick of picking so many toys off the floor of the plane) and some snacks/extra drinks.

— Little Explorer Adventures (@esther_and_noah) August 11, 2018

Our daughter loves to draw so pens/pencils and paper are a must along with headphones and mobile devices/Macs as many airlines now have movie streaming apps, oh and Uno. Don’t forget the Uno 🙂#AskLPKids

— Normans Running Wild (@normanadventure) August 11, 2018

Our Facebook fans say

The above comments and more family travel tips can be found on our Facebook feed.

Want to investigate further? Try these helpful extra resources:

1. The flying site ifly.com has a useful article on what to take in your carry-on for kids.

2. Blogger Kate Ellison has filmed the content of her kids’ ‘plane bags’.

3. Lonely Planet Pathfinder Jurga shares why she never takes toys on a plane in her article on what to pack for kids on a plane.

4. Lonely Planet’s article on how to pack for travel with kids includes tips for your carry-on.

5. Older kids might enjoy our Boredom Buster or Round The World Quiz Book on the plane, while younger children will be kept busy sticking and colouring with our Let’s Explore series.

Do you have a question you want answered? Email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or Tweet us @lpkids using #asklpkids.

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