Taking the Kids and Flying Safely with Young Children
I just don't get it.
Parents wouldn't think of driving anywhere without securely strapping their baby in an appropriate safety seat and spend countless hours considering which safety seat to buy.
But on airplanes, it's a different story. Everyone from the
"Why wouldn't you want your child to be as well protected as you are?" asks
Everything on a plane -- including coffee pots -- has to be restrained during takeoff and landing and in times of turbulence, notes Marshall, a former flight attendant. Everything, that is, except young children sitting on a parent's laps.
More than 7 million children under the age of two fly on parents laps on American carriers each year, according to government estimates. But you are not required to purchase a seat for your baby until they turn two and airlines don't charge for families to check a car seat. That is the crux of the issue that has stymied safety experts and pediatricians for years and has perhaps lulled parents into a false sense of security.
"I don't believe she'd be much safer in a seat. Having flown hundreds of flights, I've never experienced turbulence so strong it would cause me to lose grip of a child," emails
"Much easier to nurse," added
"It's cheaper and we are trying to take advantage of the savings before having to buy her a seat," says
In fact, the
But the NTSB counters that "considerable analysis of real-world air and road vehicle data found no clearly defined relationship between diversion from air travel and highway accidents an injuries," including after the
Parents don't appreciate that the use of safety seats can be -- and has been -- a matter of life and death, argues
Take the case of the United Airlines DC-10 that crashed in
Five years later a USAir Flight crashed in
Now, in the wake of the investigation into a horrific private plane crash nearly two years ago in
In this most recent case, three young families -- including two sisters and their children -- were on their way from
The NTSB has been arguing for more than 15 years that each passenger should have their own seat, pointing to private plane crashes where children survived because they were properly restrained. While this
The NTSB, though, can only make recommendations. It is up to the
Meanwhile, it is up to you. Yes, that means you would have to buy a seat for your baby. Tell all your friends they should too.
If you don't want to lug your safety seat to the gate, check out www.kidsflysafe.com, which makes CARES, the Child Aviation Restraint System, an
I know in this economy it is tough to justify buying an extra plane ticket when you don't have to, but isn't your child's safety worth it?
"There's a difference," says Marshall, "Between what's allowed and what's safe."
- Walking Tours Bring Europe's Cities to Life
- Taking the Kids to Oahu Beyond Waikiki
- Taking the Kids and Flying Safely with Young Children
- Travel Essential: Suitcase Guide
- Are Loyalty Programs Worth It?
- Big Exhibit? Avoid Lines and Hassle
- The Continental - United Merger: What's New
- Munich: Metropolis with Small-Town Charm
- Grown Ups Have as Much Fun Aboard Disney Magic as Kids
- Coping with Europe's 'Season of Strikes'
- 'Private Sale' Sites: Deals on Luxury Hotels and Cruises
- 7 Clauses to Beware of in Your Cruise Contract
- Glamour Camping
- Flying? Get on the Web
- Glamour Camping
- Spain: Parties and Processions in Andalucia
- London: Taming London in a Week
- Taking the Kids to Mesa Verde National Park
- Fall Vacation Travel: A Great Season
- Airfare Searches: Know the Right Places
- 'Tax Free' Airport Stores: Bargain or Hype?
- Organize a Tour and Travel for 'Free' But with Strings
- Oh No You Didn't! 5 Ways Travelers Have Lost Their Manners
- Travel Complaints That Fail: 5 Kinds of Emails You Should Never Write
- Air Travelers Let Your Voices Be Heard
- Car Rentals: You Missed the Scratch on the Roof
- Hey, What Happened to My Internet Connection?
- Taking the Kids RVing in Colorado
- Taking the Kids to Nantucket
- Praying and Partying in the Streets of Istanbul
- Revenge of the Hotel Clerks: Things They Do to Difficult Guests
- Sorry We Forgot About That $500 Change Fee
- Beware of Tour Operator 'Savings' Claims
- New Vacation Rental and Hotel Options
- Steven Slater Airline Meltdown Hardly a Surprise
- Taking the Kids to Boston Time Traveling Back in History in Boston
- Stockholm's Island Getaways
- Shorter Vacations? Tighter Budgets? Welcome to the New 'Normal' in Travel
- Do You Really Want to Take Your Pets Along?
- Travel Taxes: Bad, Getting Worse
- What to Pack for a Weekend Getaway
- Naughty No More: New York's 42nd Street
- Taking the Kids to NYC for the First Time
- Taking the Kids: Grandparents and Kids Take on the Big Apple with Elderhostel
- The World's Top Architecture Museums
- Taking the Kids: Seeing More Than the Typical Sites in New York City
- Rambling Through the Ruins of Europe's Castles
- Taking the Kids to NYC for the First Time
- Eco-Friendly Camping is About Putting Nature First
- Take a Magical History Tour
- Fall Travel Bargains Will Abound and Here's Where to Find Them
- If It's Called Secure Flight, Why Do I Feel So Insecure?
- Using Opaque Travel Web Sites Effectively
- Eldergadget: Creative or Condescending?
It's vacation and the teens are awake and ready to roll before 8 a.m.! The 22-year-old White has come down to Grand Cayman, his parents and sister in tow, to inaugurate Skate Cayman an 11-week summer program
Taking the Kids Camping & the Great Outdoors
Just being in a tent is an adventure for young kids, says Nancy Ritger, an Appalachian Mountain Club naturalist who has camped with her three teens since they were bab
Whether you want to learn to dive with your tween or snorkel with your kindergartner, teach your grade-schooler to sail or fly on a trapeze, you'll find plenty of opportunities at Caribbean resorts -- at prices that are surprisingly affordable.
Kids on a Plane! 5 Fixes for Unruly Junior Passengers
Kids on a plane. No four words incite more acrimonious debate among air travelers. On one side, you have childless customers who just want a little civility while they're locked inside a pressurized aluminum tube. Talk about oil and water.
Children in First Class: 3 Suggestions for the Kids 'Up Front'
The overwhelming number of travelers I spoke with said kids should be able to fly in first class if their parents could afford to pay the freight. But they were quick to add that they expected the children to behave.
(c) 2009 EILEEN OGINTZ DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.
World-renowned chefs with an extraordinary passion for food, share that passion. They make great cooking easier than you ever imagined. Each feature includes both an expert tip and an easy recipe - exactly what you need to transform your home cooking from acceptable to delectable.
Recipes Click Here
Movie Reviews, commentary and more. Plus Trailers from movies currently in theaters and available on DVD.
Movie Reviews Click Here