Tips For Flying Internationally With Kids
Each year, a large number of American families make the decision to take a family vacation. Is your family planning on becoming one of those families? If so, do you know where you want to go? Although there is a good chance that you may want to stay in the United States, there is also a chance that you would like to travel to a foreign country. Not only could it be a fun and exciting vacation, but it could also be a learning experience for your kids.
Once you and your family have decided that a visit to a foreign country is just the way that you want to spend your next family vacation, you will have to start making travel arrangements. This most commonly includes choosing a final vacation destination, booking airline reservations, and overnight hotel accommodations. After these travel arrangements have been made, you will need to wait for the “big day,” to arrive. However, once that day comes, it is important to remember that you are traveling with children. For that reason, extra accommodations may need to be made.
Perhaps, is it best if you determine what these accommodations are before your flight is scheduled to take off. In fact, it is advised that you start preparing for your trip early, especially if you are traveling with children. This is because, when it comes to international flights, the preparation, even for children, is different than domestic flights. You will find that, in most cases, the guidelines and procedures change. For starters, the proof of identification that they will need drastically changes.
When minor children fly on domestic flights, they do not need to show identification, if they are traveling with a parent or a guardian. Often times, proof of a parent’s identification is enough; however, it is not enough on international flights. Depending on where you are traveling to, you will find that your child may need to have a passport. If your child does not already have a passport, they will need to get one. This process could take a few days, or even a few weeks. While arranging your child’s passport, is also advised that ensure that yours is valid as well.
In addition to having the proper forms of identification, for international flights, you will also find that your child or children must go through the same security screening as everyone else. This means that they will have their carryon luggage, as well as their checked baggage thoroughly examined. This examination may include an x-ray screening or a hand check. Should a problem arise, they will likely be pulled aside, like any other passenger. The only difference is that you should be able to accompany them, if and when this does occurs.
In international airports, passenger screening is just as important as baggage screening. For that reason, your child, no matter what their age, will also have to be checked out. This mostly entails removing their shoes and walking through a metal detector. In the event that the alarm sounds, your child will likely be subject to additional screening. However, it is important to note that this additional screening is required and it is the same that all other passengers will go through, if need be.
The above mentioned situations are just a few of the many that you will have to prepare for if you are flying internationally with a child. The rules, restrictions, and guidelines that you must follow tend to vary from international airport to airport, as well as with airlines. Although many of these rules are the same, there are some differences. All international airports are given the ability to add-on their own air travel rules, if they choose to do so. For that reason, it is advised that you directly contact the international airline that you will be flying with or the international airport that you will be leaving from, for additional information.