It is undoubtedly easier flying with a breastfed over travelling with a bottle-fed baby. All you need is your boob and maybe a cover and you are good to go. But what about when you are flying with formula fed baby? There are so many rules for flying with baby formula that it can get confusing! In this our essential guide to flying with formula fed baby we answer all your questions to help take the stress out of your travels!
Updated: July 2019
The rules and regulations of flying with formula
First the good news – the 100ml carry-on limit for liquids doesn’t apply to formula milk or sterilised water. This means that you can bring on enough liquid for baby to last the entire flight.
Unfortunately that doesn’t mean that you can take unlimited supplies in your hand luggage but you are permitted to carry enough to keep you going for the flight and a bit extra just in case of delays.
Traveling with formula fed baby through airport security
Now if you are traveling with formula fed baby through airport security I would advise allowing yourself a bit of extra time! Now obviously some airports are easier to travel through than others but when you are travelling with formula you will often have to have each liquid go through its own liquid scanner! This can take time so leave yourself a bit of extra time to take away some stress! There is nothing worse than the feeling of running through an airport except perhaps having to run through an airport with a baby!
How to fly with formula fed baby – Airport Security Baby Formula Tips and Tricks
One of the biggest questions people have about how to fly with formula fed baby concerns airport security! To help speed up the process of going through airport security when travelling with baby formula here are my top airport security baby formula tips including how to pack formula for air travel:
- As with all liquids, remember to pack your milk in see through bags
- Remove all liquids from the nappy bag.
If you are flying with remeasured formula and water I would recommend not using a vacuum flask as it may cause issues when you pass through security.
At time of writing, the TSA advises that formula should be removed from bags before the screening process. Liquids of more than 3.4 ounces or 100 ml of liquid are allowed when travelling with infants but need to be screened separately! You may also carry freezer packs and other cooling accessories however these may also need to be screened as they can count as liquids!
One of the main concerns I had when travelling with baby formula is what would happen if security asked me to open liquids to taste going through security such as the sterilised water. If this concerns you, you could consider buying a newborn ready feed kit. The formula milk in these are 70ml so you don’t need to open them as you pass through security. Warning however this is the most expensive option.
Otherwise, you can order formula to be collected at some airports once you have passed through security Be sure to check with your airport if this is an option and also the timeframes for doing so. Many airports need a minimum of 5 days warning to do this! In the UK airport this service is offered by branches on Boots which are in the airside terminals!
Traveling with baby formula – what type of formula should you take
Are you wondering about traveling with baby formula? Worried about which one to take? In truth you have several options.
You could take remeasured formula and water. If you do this method be sure not to use a vacuum flask to store it in as this may cause you issues at security! Lots of people have concerns about travelling with sterilised water through security but is is allowed!
Personally we use ready made formula. Undoubtedly taking ready made formula on plane is the more expensive option but it does offer ease. All you need to think about is putting the milk in a sterilized bottle. We actually use chilli peeps teats when traveling instead of bottles. These teats can fit onto all bottled ready feeds. You can simply screw on the teat to the bottle of ready made formula and you are good to go. This saves a massive amount of space in your nappy bag and we all know space is a premium when travelling with a formula fed baby.
Another option is to buy the formula airside. Check which airport you are flying from to see if this is an option. Some of the airports allow you to preorder so check if this option is open to you.
How to travel with baby formula – how much should I take?
One of the biggest questions we receive about how to travel with baby formula involves the quantities you should pack in your hand luggage! If you are worried about how much to pack remember to pack enough to allow for delays and remember that the dry air on the plane may make them thirstier than usual.
How to pack formula milk for travel / how to pack formula for air travel
One of the main drawbacks to travelling with bottle-fed baby is that there is just so much more stuff to pack! Here is our guide to how to pack formal milk for travel in checklist form to make sure you don’t forget anything important!
- Baby Bottles and Teats
I would pack more than you think you are going to need! Usually the crew will help by providing hot water but it can be difficult to clean bottles and teats on an airplane so having extras is never a bad thing! An alternative we used was the Chilli Peeps System with Ready feed bottles! This meant we didn’t have to clean bottles on the plane!
It can seem tempting to not pack formula with you when you travel however I recommend taking your own with you especially when you are travelling with very small children. Changes of formula can upset a little ones tummy so it is easy to have your own with you!Obviously this is not always possible when going on extended trips but it can be worth looking up if your regular formula is sold in your destination country and if it has a different name! Sometimes we would pre order formula that was the same from home to be waiting for us at the hotel or AirBnB with the accommodations permission of course! If you opt for using formula on the plane instead of ready feeds our number one tip is to use premeasured formula so you don’t have to worry about doing this on the plane! We really love the Sectioned Formula containers as this means the formula is in one place and easy to find in a nappy bag but means you don’t have to worry about measuring!
- Muslin Cloth
There is nothing worse than a baby burping up on you mid flight!
- Sterlising Equipment
Another tip we have for how to fly with baby formula is to make sure you have extra zip lock bags to separate the clean from dirty bottles! You don’t want to contaminate the clean ones by putting all the bottles together!
We also always carry sterilising wipes with us to clean the plane area we are sitting in!
Do you have any other tips for how to travel with formula on plane? Please leave a comment you have any other handy hacks for formula and flying!
When Should I formula feed my baby while flying?
I would advise sticking to your normal feeding routine when traveling but if you can time it so you can get your baby to feed during take off and landing this will help with ear popping and will reduce discomfort for baby! Some recommend waiting until the plane has actually taken off so the baby gets the benefit of feeding one the cabin pressure has actually changed. If your baby refuses to feed at this timothy and use a pacifier instead as the sucking motion does help them pop their ears!
How to travel with formula fed baby – sterilising concerns
When traveling with my little I always try and carry enough bottles to last the entire journey so I don’t have to worry about sterilizing while traveling. If you are limited on space we like to use bottles with attachable teats such as the Chili Peeps Teats which fit most bottles and save on space!
Once you are at your destination we recommend looking for accommodation that has a microwave in the room to help with sterilising! Otherwise we would also fly with Milton Tablets and a sterilising bag to help us sterilise even when we have minimal facilities to do so!
Other tips for travelling with formula fed baby
- Look for accommodation with a kitchen or at least a microwave and fridge to make sterilising and bottle prep easier!
- Looking for some places that are easy to travel with a baby then why not check out some of the family friendly places we have been with our baby from the Best European City Breaks with babies to taking a beach break in the Maldives with a baby!