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Saturday, April 30, 2011

13 Organizing Tips To Make Traveling With Children by Plane A Breeze


13 Organizing Tips To Make Traveling With Children by Plane A Breeze by Marilyn Bohn

With preparation and organization traveling with children can be a pleasant experience. Here are some organizing ideas and organizing tips to make your holiday traveling easier and less stressful.

Pack everything the child will need or want in a carry on bag that can be used in the airport and will clear security. It might be a favorite toy, simple electronic gadgets, and favorite foods. If they are old enough to understand explain what to expect when arriving at the airport starting at the ticket counter, proceeding through security and then the wait before boarding the plane. Because many airlines charge for checked bags make the best use of children's carryon bags by using a larger ones for them. By doing this you may be able to check fewer bags.

If your child is old enough let them have their own carry on with treats, books, music, phone etc. This will be their personal item that is allowed—like a lap top or a purse for an adult. It will be most helpful to you if their carryon is a backpack that the child carries. Bring an empty water bottle for liquid, juice, water etc. that you can fill up after you leave security and before you board plane.

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has the following tips for easy and safe travel with the minimum of hassle:

Parents or guardians of children with disabilities should... Inform the Security Officer if the child has any special needs or medical devices.

Inform the Security Officer if you think the child may become upset during the screening process as a result of their disability.

Offer suggestions on how to best accomplish the screening to minimize any confusion or outburst for the child.

Ask the Security Officer for assistance during the process by helping you put your and the child's carry-on items on the X-ray belt.

Know that at no time during the screening process will you be separated from your child.

Know that if a private screening is required, you should escort and remain with your child during the private screening process.

Tell the Security Officer what are your child's abilities are. For example: can the child stand slightly away from equipment to be hand wanded, walk through the metal detector, or needs to be carried through the metal detector by the parent/guardian.

Know that all no time should the Security Officer remove your child from his/her mobility aid (wheelchair or scooter). You are responsible for removing your child from his/her equipment at your discretion to accomplish screening.

Know that if your child is unable to walk or stand, the Security Officer will conduct a pat-down search of your child while he/she remains in their mobility aid, as well as a visual and physical inspection of their equipment.

TSA can even pat down children. This is something that could be practiced at home in anticipation of your child having this experience. Role play with the child doing a pat down so they will know what to expect if it happens to them or a family member. With organization and planning you can have a happy and pleasant travel experience during this busy holiday season.

The TSA is currently allowing 3 ounce bottle or less (by volume) in carryon luggage (go to tsa.gov for updates). You can have as many 3 ounce or less bottles/containers as will fit in a quart size zip plastic bag, but do not exceed 3 ounces per bottle/container.

Exceptions to the 3 once rule:

Declare larger liquids: Medications, baby formula, breast milk and food, are allowed in reasonable quantities exceeding three ounces and are not required to be in the zip-top bag. Declare these items for inspection at the checkpoint.

The TSA offers the following guidelines you can choose to follow that will speed up the security lines.

3-1-1 for carryon = 3 ounce bottle or less (by volume) ; 1 quart-sized, clear, plastic, zip-top bag; 1 bag per passenger placed in screening bin. One-quart bag per person limits the total liquid volume each traveler can bring. 3 oz. container size is a security measure.

Be prepared. Each time TSA searches a carry-on it slows down the line. Practicing 3-1-1 will ensure a faster and easier checkpoint experience.

If you are in doubt, put your liquids in your checked luggage.

Remember to call the airline to find out what time they recommend you check in at the airport. Each airline and airport may vary.

Happy and safe traveling!

Marilyn is a professional organizer who works with women and seniors in clearing clutter and providing organizing tips. Visit her website http://www.marilynbohn.com/ for free organizing tips on her blogs, articles and videos.

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