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My kids are generally great travelers. They each had their first ride in an airplane well before their first birthdays and haven’t stopped traveling. Through all of those years, we have had lots of experience with packing activities into a carryon. An iPad or other device will almost always entertain kids but sometimes batteries die or maybe you want a break from technology. Through lots of trial and error, here are my 5 must haves for entertaining kids on planes.

5 Must Haves for Entertaining Kids on Planes

  • Triangular crayons and markers – These won’t roll off of the tray table (and down a few aisles) while the kids are coloring! The ones buy are from the “My First Crayola” line. We especially love them because they are washable.
  • Puzzle Books – If you have crayons, you need something to write on and my kids LOVE puzzle and maze books. There is no shortage of great options for all ages. Kumon makes some travel related books for the preschool through second grade set. Check them out here and here.
  • Stretchy Toys – Sometimes, super simple toys are the best. My kids love to stretch these stretchy smiley men, stick them to the plane window, and play pretend games with them. I couldn’t find our stash for a recent trip and all three kids were disappointed when I didn’t have any.
  • Color Coding Labels – When my kids were toddlers, they loved to just stick them on anything (these are removable). Now, I stick a few on a piece of paper and have them create a scene with or around them.
  • Water Wow Books – If you have a child who enjoys painting, the water wow books will be right up their alley. Since water is the only thing to paint with, you won’t have to worry about a huge mess. When picking books, you can go the educational route with this set that teaches numbers and letters or pick something with a theme like safari, farm, undersea and more.

Investing some time to curate a great travel bag has saved my sanity while traveling with my kids. You’ll know you’ve found something great when your kids stay busy, it’s easy to pack, and isn’t too messy.

What are your 5 must haves for entertaining kids on planes? Share in the comments!

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