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  • Writer's pictureJenna van Bentum

Why My Kids Fly With Backpacks

I like to keep things simple. Not complicated. Just well thought out.

Anything to make a flight more enjoyable for the kids and for us as parents too.

I also like my kids learning how to be self-sufficient. Giving them some responsibility and letting them feel proud when they achieve something. Carrying their own bag throughout the airport and being in charge of their own belongings is one way I teach them this.

For all those reasons and many more, my kids take a backpack when they fly.

Here are a few more of my reasons.


They can carry it alone.

Make sure they have a backpack that is the correct size for them. Even a small toddler backpack can be very useful as it can carry their most important things like their comforter, something to play with, some snacks and a drink. As they get a bit older you can pack more things into their bag or even their entire luggage for a carry on only flight. Making them responsible for their backpack is an important lesson for kids to learn.


You can carry it easily if needed.

If your child needs to sit in the stroller then simply put it on your back out-of-the-way or on the back of the stroller. Time and time again a backpack proves it’s worth, especially when it can be carried in the most out-of-the-way place possible – on your back!


They fit under the seat in front of you.

Have you counted how many times you have had to climb up and get things out of the overhead locker for your child? Or loaded up their seat pocket only to get death stares from the person in front as they are constantly being poked in the back? Having their backpack at their feet not only gives them access to it during the entire flight but also a sense of independence as they are self-sufficient during the flight.


You don’t have to fight for overhead locker space.

Have you ever had your bag placed in the overhead locker 10 rows away because your one was full? Imagine if that was your baby bag or kids bag. Another advantage of under the seat in front of you backpack placement!



Having a backpack with separate pockets is great for sorting the stuff inside. A food and drink pocket can help prevent other items getting soiled should something leak. I do recommend packing food and drink items into a plastic bag to avoid this too. Having a pocket for items that need to be removed for security makes that process quicker and easier. My kids have an iPad pocket in their bags so that we can quickly remove their iPad when going through security if need be.


ID Bag Tag.

You usually find a kid’s backpack on their back, right? I know they can take them off but generally when walking through an airport or when out and about, they have their bag on their back. This means that the ID bag tag on their bag with important contact information is attached to them in case they get lost or loose you. I find that in a situation when my child becomes worried the last thing they would think of doing is grabbing their little suitcase to take with them when looking for you or a safe person to help them. A backpack should already be on their back making it less likely for them to leave it and the important information on the ID bag tag behind.


So these are a few of my reasons for why my kids carry a backpack when we fly and generally when we are out and about.

I would love to hear what your preferred method of carry on is for your kids? Please do let us know as some things work for some and not for others.

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