This weekend marked a major milestone in The Weekly Flyer’s and Baby Weekly Flyer’s travel record. It was the first flight for Baby Flyer and my first time traveling with a baby. I have new respect for families that travel with kids and learned a lot in the process.
We gave plenty of time before departure (left 3 hours before departure) in case anything went wrong. And we fully anticipated the time it would take to park, check a bag, go through security, and prep Baby Flyer for the first flight.
Gone are the days of leaving the house only 1 hour before departure and timing the boarding process right when we clear security. Traveling with a baby takes time.
Getting to the gate meant we first had to park the car. Taking a taxi or car service with a car seat just didn’t feel right for the first trip, so we drove to the airport and parked in our secret close long term parking spot at the Atlanta airport.
There is no more using the escalators due to the stroller. Instead, we waited in line for the many elevator trips throughout the journey.
We had to check bags for the first time in years. Since Mrs Weekly Flyer is not an elite member, and has no Delta credit card, we had to pay for one of our THREE checked bags for a long weekend wedding trip. Baby Flyer brought some extra stuff (clothes, chair, stroller, etc) along for the trip which required us to pack heavy. We used the Platinum Amex Mrs Weekly Flyer got through the 100k sign up bonus to pay for the third non-elite bag. The card will credit the statement for the bag fee making it free. On the return we learned the third bag would be free due to my Platinum status.
One great thing we learned is there is a dedicated security line for strollers. We jumped to the front of the security line since we had a baby. What a time saver.
After security we headed to the SkyClub to prep Baby Flyer for the first flight. We’ve read that feeding a baby before a flight works well. So we timed the schedule right and Baby Flyer was fast asleep on the way to the gate.
New Upgrade Dilemma
We’ve had upgrade dilemmas in the past. They’ve always resulted in Mrs Weekly Flyer taking the upgrade and me being stuck back in coach. But with three of us traveling, this presented a new problem. No way would both of us clear the upgrade list on a Thursday afternoon to West Palm Beach. And we wanted the first test run to be short and in coach in case the baby didn’t do well on the plane. So I took the upgrade requests off each of our reservations. This way we ensured we’d sit next to each other back in coach.
We headed to the gate and boarded before first class. I put the stroller in the bag, plane side checked it, and headed inside the plane with Mrs and Baby Flyer. We were the first people on the plane.
Our seats were the economy comfort seats on the MD80 two seater side. So we had plenty of leg room and the entire row to ourselves.
Later this year we are taking a longer journey with Baby Weekly Flyer and we’ve secured three seats together in economy comfort. The three seat economy comfort row looks huge and plenty of space for a small family.
The first flight went great. Baby Weekly Flyer caught a 1.5 hour nap to South Florida and we even got compliments that people didn’t realize there was a baby in our seat. Talk about making a father proud.
Return Trip From PBI
On the return trip we went through the same pre boarding routine and ended up in the West Palm Beach Delta SkyClub.
We met the bartender and he was proud of his Bloody Mary Mix, so we fired one up to test it out for all our readers. It certainly lived up to the hype. It was garnished with a pickle, celery, lime, and olives.
After a quick visit to the SkyClub we headed back to the gate for pre boarding. I have to admit, traveling with a baby is more difficult than I expected, but the small things like pre boarding really help. We packed up the stroller and headed to our economy comfort seats for the 1.5 hour trip back north.
Thanks to all of you for sharing tips on how to travel with an infant in arms. Special thanks to Mommy Points for all the great information. Baby Flyer’s first trip was a success. No crying and a nap the entire trip made it an easy adventure.
The next flight for Baby Flyer isn’t until the late fall, so I doubt Baby will earn elite status this year:).