We recently made a trip to Belgium and this time I knew I needed to prepare a little more for the upcoming flights. During our last flight Adam was still more of a baby, less of a toddler, and it was only a 3-hour flight. I was also still breastfeeding him at the time, which has always been my go-to soothing method to get him to take a nap on the plane. With an active toddler of 15 months, a 7-hour flight and no more nursing to result to, I knew we needed to make sure Adam had some entertainment to keep him happy (And us sane ;-) ) throughout the whole flight.
Of course you could rely solely on the in-flight entertainment system and we did take a tablet with us as well, but these things often don`t capture Adam`s interest for long. Most of the time what fascinates him about this technology is the actual equipment, not the movie played on the screen or the game he can play. I actually tried to have him watch something on the in-flight entertainment system, but all he was interested in was pushing the button that turns the screen on and off. :-D
However, there was another toddler, similar in age to Adam, sitting just a few feet away from us that actually sat on her mother`s lap the ENTIRE flight, playing a game on the in-flight entertainment system! She definitely didn`t need anything else to occupy her, but... that`s not Adam. ;-) Some parents might have thought I was a little strange with my fully packed diaper bag stuffed with busy bags, but I sure was happy I took the time to prepare... :-) It really made a lot of difference and I hope our busy bags can serve as inspiration for you and your little one in case you`re travelling soon as well!
1. Mini pompon drop
If you read this post you know that Adam has loved his pompon drop, so I decided to make him a mini version we could play with on the plane...
Post-its were Adam`s favorite throughout both flights we took! He loves taking them apart and peeling them from places I stuck them like the seat, the wall in front of us (We were sitting in the first row), ...
Stickers are also a great activity on the plane: you can stick them on any surface and have your toddler try and peel them off!
4. Electronic gadgets
As I mentioned earlier, Adam is really into figuring out how technology works. He loves cables, wires, anything that has little buttons or flickering lights he can press and touch. This busy bag consisted of several (old) electronic items I had lying around the house: an old phone, an old iPod, old cables, a small flash light, ...
I`ve felt it became time to start introducing Adam to some animals and their corresponding sounds. I used these animal cards for him to look at, while I named the animal, described it and made the corresponding sound. Fun!
6. Key chains
In Qatar people travel frequently, so when friends or colleagues get back from a trip they usually bring some kind of souvenir and often it`s a key chain. Adam loves key chains, so I gathered all the ones we`ve had lying around the house and this made a nice bundle for Adam to explore and play with!
7. Bubble wrap
I packed some bubble wrap and we had fun popping bubbles on the plane, or more so: I popped the bubbles and Adam was fascinated by the texture and sound of the bubble wrap!
8. New books
If you`ve read our previous posts (here and here) you know Adam loves books. Most toddlers do! For this trip I made sure to buy some brand new books for him and this as well was a major hit and kept him happy and content for some time!
If I`ld have to give you a top 3 of what turned out to be the most successful busy bags, it would look something like this:
1. New books
3. Mini pompon drop
Did you make any busy bags for travels? I`ld love to read your ideas!