Monday, May 18, 2009

Flights: Lap tickets or buy a seat?

What would you do for a flight that is four hours long, (but costs quite a bit) if you had a 17 month old girl? Someone recently told me there is no way she would carry her child on her lap because the child is currently fidgety to the extreme and to save her sanity would need his own seat. However, I'm very interested in saving money. Am I insane to buy a cheap "lap ticket" which means I have to carry Charlie on my lap the entire trip? This is not the 19 hour flight from Addis back home.. for that one we are going to try and get a bassinet in the bulkhead.

Waiting to see what type of personality she has was not an option (neither was waiting until the legal adoption to settle on her legal name) the tickets had to be bought even before court. So technically I don't even have a daughter yet but had to name her officially and had to buy a lap ticket in advance. I hadn't even completely settled on the name Charlie, but having to buy tickets will make you firm up a name decision pretty quickly. I'm not complaining as this will be a wonderful trip to which I'm really looking forward. I'm just letting you know in case you fall in the same situation where you are planning travel before your court date. It's a bit of a gamble. Luckily, the lap tickets are cheaper than adult tickets (10% of adult tickets in international flights, free in some national) in case something goes wrong with court, although I doubt they are refundable.

Four hours of possible tantrums in your lap vs. saving $$: your opinion?

PS Contest players, a 10 point question coming up as son as I can think of one :-)


J-momma said...

well, in my experience, there is NO way i'd fly holding a child on my lap. it's just exhausting and the seats are small enough with just one adult. plus, with a child on your lap you have no room to entertain her with anything. when we flew with Mateo, i brought my laptop with a movie in it for him to watch but it wouldn't have fit with him on my lap. but that's just me. i tend to be more on the claustrophic side. but i'd say for you, depends on time of day. will it be during the day when she's wide awake or a red eye? do you think she'll be exhausted for the flight? if you think she'll sleep and it's a short flight, go for the lap. if you think she'll be awake, i'd buy a seat. it was definitely worth it for me for Disney, but then again, much cheaper. is your daughter 17 months? i was under the impression she was younger. i'm curious how her adjustment will be with you. hopefully it will go smoothly.

oh, and about the ebay tip...thanks. it's a good idea but i hate ebay. i'd much rather use the consignment store nearby or craigslist. but the baby really doesn't need any more clothes. the problem is that i can't seem to not go into the baby section while i'm, say, shopping for groceries at walmart. and then i always see something i "just have to buy" (as i tell my husband). it's more of an instant gratification thing. oh, and if you already have a name, why the poll on the side column?

Jenny and Matt said...

We did a lap ticket for a 22 month old from Addis! It worked out fine. Remember that you'll be up and moving some anyway to entertain/soothe the child. The hardest part about it was eating because the kid was in the way of the food tray...

Adopting1Soon said...

J-mom, the poll is still there simply because I forgot to take it off. Coming to the name Charlie has been a long process, trying it out, trying out something else (in my head), etc. So when it finally stuck, there wasn't any "moment" when a decision was made. Plus I'm still curious which name will ultimately win. But yea, I've pretty much settled on Charlie.