Air travel with kids
Car seats aren't required for children on airplanes. If a child is less than two years old, they can be carried free of charge onto a plane and sit on the lap of an adult. They don't need a ticket, but they may need a document verifying their age. It's best to check with the airline on what your clients will need.
Though they're not required, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) recommends car seats for children who weigh less than 40 pounds, so a ticket must be purchased for them. The car seat must be approved for use in cars and airplanes (surprisingly, not all car seats are airplane-compatible), which is generally stated on the car seat's label. Learn more about the FAA's car seat rules on airplanes from their dedicated web page.
Every airline has different policies for the children's items travelers can carry on to the plane or check, like car seats and strollers. United Airlines, for example, allows travelers to carry on a diaper bag, breast pump and child seat in addition to their own carry-on baggage. Again, it's best to check the airline's policies before your clients travel so they know what to expect.
Passports for kids
There are some important things to know about kids and passports. First, children traveling internationally, even infants, need a passport. And anyone under the age of 16 applying for a passport must do it in person, with the consent of both parents/guardians. Also remind your clients that passports for children under 16 are only valid for 5 years, so they should check the validity well before their travel dates so they have time to renew it if necessary. Learn more about children and passports on the State Department's website.
Family travel resources for you
VAX has a resource center dedicated to family travel, complete with family travel stats, trends, engagement tools and on-demand webinars. We want you to feel prepared and confident to plan and book the best family vacations for your clients.