If you’re traveling with a baby, you’re likely wondering if you can bring baby food on an airplane.
The answer is yes – but there are some things you need to know about bringing snacks and homemade purees on an airplane.
In this blog post, we’ll discuss everything you need to know about bringing food for your little one on a flight!
Baby Food and Airplanes 101
If you are traveling with a baby, you may need to bring some of their food on the plane. But what exactly do you need to know?
Whether it is in solid or liquid form, the TSA and other regulations have limits on how much of this type of food can be packed in carry-on luggage.
TSA states that baby food is allowed in reasonable quantities in carry on bags. Remove these items from your carry-on bag to be screened separately from the rest of your belongings.
Formulas and breast milk in amounts greater than 3.4 ounces are considered medically necessary liquids that don’t need to fit into quart-sized bags when carried on board – plus, you won’t have any trouble bringing along essential baby/toddler food such as puree pouches or cooling accessories like ice packs for your precious cargo!
There are also restrictions on where the food must be stored while onboard the airplane. Knowing more about these regulations can make your travel experience smoother and less stressful.
Tips For Storage: Preparing Your Baby Milk and Food Ahead Of Time
How do you pack baby food for air travel? Making this process easy starts at home! There are several tips that can help you keep your baby’s food properly stored and easy to prepare when it comes time to eat.
For formula or breastmilk, it’s best to store them in clear or translucent bottles. If your liquids cannot be successfully scanned by the Bottle Liquid Scanner, you might be asked to open these containers. It’s easier to open and close a bottle rather than try to open and reseal a bag or patch.
If your baby drinks formula you can bring water for preparing the baby formula in your carry on bag as long as it’s a reasonable amount.
Baby foods are best stored in puree pouches. Whether you buy these from the store or you are storing homemade baby food, a pouch is a lightweight nonbreakable container that can be easily carried in a bag or cooler until it’s ready to be eaten.
By using a puree pouch you can also bring a variety of flavors so you can offer your baby different things. These pouches are usually individually portioned and can help you avoid food waste.
Squeezing and feeding directly from the pouch will also help keep things clean.
Getting Through Airport Security: Traveling With Liquid Foods
According to the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), baby food or containers of liquid baby formula should be screened separately from other items in your carry-on luggage.
The best way to make this process efficient is to separate your own items and then declare and place them in bins after the food has been scanned. Regardless of what type of food you are carrying, it should be packed in an easily inspectable container; otherwise, they may require further inspection.
Keep in mind that all baby food does not have to fit within a single quart-sized bag if it is being put into your carry-on luggage and that tampering with canned goods or any other non-liquid items may mean additional screening procedures will be required.
As long as the containers can pass through the X-ray machine, you should have a smooth journey through airport security.
Preparing Baby Formula On The Airplane
Even with all the best tips and tricks for formula feeding, you might still be wondering how to navigate making a formula bottle on the airplane.
If your baby is used to drinking warm milk, preparing a warmed formula bottle on the plane may seem tricky. Here are some ideas for how you can have warm water on a plane.
Bring a thermos bottle filled with water you boiled at home. The insulated bottle will keep the water warm for a few hours. Alternatively, you can ask flight attendants if they have hot water on board.
Once you have warm or hot water ready to go, add the formula to the water in a baby bottle. Shake to mix completely and then feed your baby.
Bring a formula dispenser like this one, as its it your best bet at getting forumla into a bottle without a mess. You can also measure out what you need ahead of time.
Baby Foods To Avoid Bringing on The Airplane
Now is not the time to try new foods! Stick to foods your baby is used to eating for the best results.
Just like any other time, avoid foods that could be a choking hazard for your baby. Things don’t want bring as baby food on a airplane include:
unrefined nuts and seeds
Avoid bringing large items or large chunks of food. Keep in mind that your baby may not be able to eat a large apple or carrot during flight.
Depending on where you are going, some countries have specific restrictions regarding what you can bring in that might require a declaration form.
For example, the US Customs and Border Protection requires parents to declare formula and other baby food when arriving from abroad.
Additionally, some specific items such as cheese, meat, fruits, seeds and nuts may be subject to inspection. Being fully aware of the regulations and restrictions prior to traveling can help ensure a stress-free trip with your little ones.
Airplane Food and Babies
If your baby has reached the solid food eating stage, airplane food might be a potential option.
Most airlines that offer meals during the flight provide options that are suitable for babies, like mashed potatoes or cooked vegetables. However, if you want to make sure your baby is getting something specific, it’s best to bring your own meal from home.
Some airlines such as American Airlines have introduced toddler-friendly food options for purchase. You can order meals that include Greek yogurt, applesauce, whole grain pouches and other items off the menu that you know your baby will like.
Baby Feeding Essentials To Take While Traveling
Look for products such as insulated bottle totes to keep everything cool and easy-to-clean bibs that dry quickly.
Clearly identify beverage containers and seal them in seperate bags to prevent spills on other things in your carry on bag like formula and snacks.
Liquid filled teething toys can be brought on the plane, and they can be partially frozen or slushy.
You can also bring ice packs, freezer packs an gel packs to keep baby milk and food cool.
Most importantly, bring plenty of patience and flexibility because unexpected moments are inevitable with little ones!
Tips For Feeding Your Baby On The Plane
Pack more food than you think you will need for the flight. It’s better to be overprepared than to be under prepared and faced with a screaming hungry baby mid flight.
Bring a distraction toy to keep them occupied during feeding times and be sure to include some wipes, just in case of messes.
You should also consider bringing a change of clothes for both you and your baby in case any spills occur.
If you are breastfeeding, make sure you are dressed comfortably and bring a cover-up if necessary.
Finally, if your baby takes a pacifier, be sure to pack some extras in case one should get lost during the trip.
Traveling with a baby can be an exciting but stressful experience. By being proactive and taking the necessary steps to prepare for the flight, you can make the journey much easier. From bringing portable feeding accessories and plenty of food to researching any regulations or restrictions prior to departure, these tips will help ensure that your trip is as smooth as possible.