Military Families

need help (flying)
April 24, 2013 at 12:04 PM

My dh is going to graduate basic, we are on a tight budget and we are trying to find out how much we need to set aside for everything.

Where is the cheapest place to find flight, hotels, car rentels?

DS will be between 20months-2 years old. What all can you bring as a carry on? And what can be checked? like his stroller? the carseat? If he is under two he will share a seat, can it be checked for free? Or will it count as a Checked item and cost?

What as fas as carry on items can we bring ( I know the small carry on suitcase, And personal item like a purse) But diaperbag? Or if he has a small backpack?

And really anything else that you can tell me.


  • Mrs.Brugger
    April 24, 2013 at 12:10 PM

    him having a small backpack won't count towards YOUR carry on items, because it'll be his (I think...). I have no idea about the rest. When I flew with DS and DD, I used the stroller, and used it through the airport and up to the gate, and they put it under for me and brought it back up when we got off the plane so I couldnt use it. It didn't count as any of my carry-ons and it wasn't checked so i didnt pay for them to store it during the flight.

  • chrlstoncharmed
    April 24, 2013 at 12:13 PM

    On Southwest, your first bag can be checked for free. You can have one carry-on and one personal item (purse). Carry-ons have to be stowed in an overhead bin or under the seat, therefore, they must meet specific dimensions. The car seat would be checked at the ticketing counter. You can gate check the stroller. Call the airline to inquire about any fees for that. Your child will not require a seat if he is sitting on your lap. Do you have a backpack/diaper bag combo? That's what worked out best for me when I was traveling with a baby. I even stuck my purse items in there so I didn't have to fumble around with multiple bags. 

  • adrianna1043
    April 24, 2013 at 12:19 PM
    I always bring the stroller and car seat with me on the plane. It's always been free to gate check baby items.
  • chrlstoncharmed
    April 24, 2013 at 12:23 PM

    For car rentals, just be aware that most places will tell you they do NOT accept debit cards. So if you plan to use a debit card, shop around first. They will also put a hold of $200-$500 on your card, so be sure you have enough funds available or else the hold will tie up all of your money. In other words, you need to have enough available to cover the entire cost of the rental plus the hold. 

  • DvlDogWfe
    April 24, 2013 at 12:31 PM

    I've flown quite a few times since my son has been born. He is now two, but yes, he sits on your lap and his ticket is free. You can check his carseat for free as well as the stroller. If you choose to bring the stroller to the gate with you, you can wait to check your stroller then. As far as bags go, I have packed a carry on that goes in the overhead bin, as well as brought a bigger purse to hold what his "diaper bag" or son's carry on bag will not. So yes, you can carry on as much as 3 bags for you and your baby. I have had no problems with flying American Airlines or Delta this way.

  • lizzielouaf
    April 24, 2013 at 12:45 PM is a good price comparison website for flights, cars, hotel. Once you get a ticket, if I were you, I would just call the airline directly to get their rules because each one is a little different. I get the price from Kayak but then book directly with the particular company because often there are discounts booking with them directly. When I booked our hotel room through Choice Hotels there was a military families discount rate, so look for those also. It'll take a little bit of research on your part but you you should be able to save a decent amount. Good luck

  • TippyD
    by TippyD
    April 24, 2013 at 3:49 PM

    look into if it would be cheaper to drive. we do NOT check our car seats. :( too much risk of them getting damaged.  plus you will need to buy insurance for your flight or not buy till closer to his graduation, JIC something happens and he gets pushed back a class:/

  • averagemama0609
    April 24, 2013 at 4:07 PM

    Don't check the car seat. They throw them around way too much and it will probably be damaged. The safEST option is to buy him his own seat and use the car seat on the plane but it you can't, then gate check it and the stroller. You're usually allowed to carry on like a diaper bag and a purse, a small backpack for him would probably be fine too.

  • usmclife58
    April 24, 2013 at 4:41 PM

    Personally, I would leave the stroller and buy like a little umbrella stroller or something at a Walmart or Target. A kid, carseat, carry-ons, AND a stroller? No thanks. That is too much to lug around for me.

  • JMmama
    by JMmama
    April 24, 2013 at 8:32 PM
    I agree with this.

    Quoting TippyD:

    look into if it would be cheaper to drive. we do NOT check our car seats. :( too much risk of them getting damaged.  plus you will need to buy insurance for your flight or not buy till closer to his graduation, JIC something happens and he gets pushed back a class:/

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