by Shaelynn Miller, contributing writer 

Are you and your family traveling by air this summer? Make your trip easier with these five air travel hacks for kids.

Mini felt play mat

Small toys can be easily dropped or misplaced, especially during travel. You won’t have to worry about your kids dropping toys if they stick to a board. Try making your kids a felt board for your next flight.


  • One travel-size picture frame
  • Adhesive felt (larger than frame)
  • One cardboard or mat board
  • Kraft paper
  • Packing tape


  1. Remove the glass from the frame. Cut the felt so that about 1.25 inches hangs off each side of the frame. Cut out the corners in order to fold the felt over the cardboard.
  2. Tape felt to the board and place it into the frame, with the felt facing up.
  3. Add another piece of cardboard in the back of the frame and seal it with a sheet of Kraft paper and packing tape.

Scavenger hunt

Keep the kids busy during the flights and layovers with a scavenger hunt. You can create the list from your own computer and use pictures to help the younger kids.

Here are some ideas for your air travel scavenger hunt:

  • Airplane landing
  • Airport trolley/bus
  • Baby
  • Backpack
  • Boarding pass
  • Book
  • Business suit
  • Computer
  • Delayed flight
  • Earphones/headset
  • Escalator
  • Gate number
  • Pillow
  • Pilot
  • Roller bag
  • Safety instructions
  • Security guard
  • Stroller
  • Table
  • Television
  • Walkie Talkie

Snack pack

Don’t spend money on expensive airport food; instead, bring along snacks in a small, convenient container. For longer trips, try packing a lunch. Don’t worry about it getting warm; ice packs are allowed through airport security as long as they are frozen. Water bottles full of liquid are not allowed through airport security, but that doesn’t mean you have to pay for water at the airport. Bring empty water bottles, and fill them up once you pass security.

Movie time

“Are we there yet?” Keep your kids entertained with their favorite movie or show. If you have movies saved on your electronic device, put the device in a plastic bag and secure it with the tray holder for easy viewing. If you have a larger device, stand it up on the tray table. Don’t forget to pack earphones!

Surprise travel bag

If you have change to spare, purchase a few small toys and wrap them individually. Either for each new plane you board, or every couple hours, let your child or children open a new present. This will keep the trip exciting for your kids as they anticipate their next gift.

Getting from point A to point B can be a hassle, but with these five air travel tips, your kids will stay entertained during the long flights.