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  1. #21
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    Re: So I assume everyone here frowns on flying with "babe in arms" or lap babies, right?

    Quote Originally Posted by LISmama810 View Post
    In my experience, many airlines DO discount the full-fare price...except almost no one pays full fare. Like, I last time I flew with an infant, I could have gotten 50% the full fare, but that would have been more expensive than the "Internet price" or whatever. It's all a big game anyway.
    This is what I have found to be the case as well.

    And I think the FAA is correct in their belief that if people had to pay for babies, then more people would drive, which is less safe. We were considering a trip to Disney this summer (aren't going after all). Money is a factor, as it is for most people, and when we were figuring the difference between driving (with hotel stays, food, etc) vs flying, it is pretty much a wash if we're paying for 4 airplane tickets. However, paying for 5, and suddenly driving is a lot cheaper. So if you're saying, "if we can't pay for tickets for everyone, then we don't go," what do you do in that situation? Do you not go to Disney unless you can pay for everyone to fly? Or do you drive? Where do you draw the line? Would you not go to a destination 12 hours away (driving) unless you could pay to fly? It's not always as simple as not going if you can't pay for the lap baby to have a seat.
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  3. #22
    CPS Fanatic Brianna's Avatar
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    Well once baby is 2, you'll have to pay for 5 tickets. In that situation, I would put the trip off until I could afford the 5th ticket or drive.

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  4. #23
    CPS Technician Ninetales's Avatar
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    For me, I just act as though there is no free lap baby policy. Perhaps I'm just lucky enough not to be able to foresee a situation where I would ever need to fly my whole family somewhere on short notice, but for me it really is that simple. Everyone gets a seat, or we drive, or we don't all go.

  5. #24
    CPS Fanatic bubbaray's Avatar
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    My children never flew as lap babies even when they were under 2

    If I couldn't afford to buy the child a ticket I would rather not fly vs do the lap baby thing. Our best friend is a commercial pilot and he is really opposed to lap babies. Thankfully DH listened to him.

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    DD#1, April 2004, FFg in a Pink Harmony Literider & Onyx Parkway SG
    DD#2, January 2007, FFg in a Pink Monterey & Purple with Pink Hearts HBTB

    Riding in my 2010 Toyota RAV4 and DH's 2011 Ford 150 Crew Cab

  6. #25
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    Re: So I assume everyone here frowns on flying with "babe in arms" or lap babies, right?

    Quote Originally Posted by Brianna View Post
    Well once baby is 2, you'll have to pay for 5 tickets. In that situation, I would put the trip off until I could afford the 5th ticket or drive.

    Sent from my DROID4 using Car-Seat.Org
    (Bolding mine)
    That's kind of my point, and also the FAA's point. If you decide to drive since you can't afford the 5th ticket, then you're doing something *less* safe than taking a lap baby.

    In fact, if you cancel the trip altogether and instead take a series of family outings around your area in your car, you might end up being less safe than flying with a lap baby, depending on how much you end up driving and what other activities you end up doing.

    I just think it is interesting that this particular issue is (apparently) so black & white to some people, when other budget-related safety issues are not. For example I don't really hear members of this board encouraging people to spend money they don't really have on big convertibles to keep a 2 year old rear facing, even though that is safer than turning that 2 year old forward facing.
    Cutie #1 (13 years) 5-stepping
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  7. #26
    CPS Fanatic Brianna's Avatar
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    I guess i just don't see much of a difference if baby is 6 months or 2 years. Want would you do once the youngest child is 2 and can't be a lap baby?

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  8. #27
    CPS Fanatic bubbaray's Avatar
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    I understand what you mean about driving instead. That isn't the situation we are in because the places we fly arent driving distance for us. I agree that driving instead of flying doesnt make statistical sense.

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    Melissa

    DD#1, April 2004, FFg in a Pink Harmony Literider & Onyx Parkway SG
    DD#2, January 2007, FFg in a Pink Monterey & Purple with Pink Hearts HBTB

    Riding in my 2010 Toyota RAV4 and DH's 2011 Ford 150 Crew Cab

  9. #28
    CPST and ketchup snob ketchupqueen's Avatar
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    Re: So I assume everyone here frowns on flying with "babe in arms" or lap babies, right?

    Of course, driving statistics are also based on the fact that most children are not properly restrained and even many adults still don't wear their seatbelts/wear them properly... So members of this board are probably safer while driving than the general statistical everyman, though that's hard to quantify.

    But yeah, it doesn't make financial sense to us to fly where we can drive anyway, almost all the time. When I fly it's to places that are so far gas plus time off work etc. would be as/more expensive or places I can't drive to (like Hawaii, or Europe, or...)
    CPST and Mom to Emma, 15, Bridget, 13, Maggie, 11, Katie Sue, 6, Jimmy, born May 2019,
    and Becky, waiting for us as part of our eternal family.
    Our '02 Odyssey, car seats, and seatbelts saved our lives. Now riding in a '13 Odyssey!

  10. #29
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    Re: So I assume everyone here frowns on flying with "babe in arms" or lap babies, right?

    Quote Originally Posted by Qarin View Post
    The FAA has (or should have) no profit motive in allowing under-2's to ride free as lap babies, and they have long maintained that it is, actually, motivated by safety:

    They maintain that if infants and toddlers were required to have paid-for seats, more people would drive; driving is much less safe and more likely to result in death.

    http://www.faa.gov/news/press_releas...ontentKey=1966
    I just re-read this and noticed that the scope of their study may not have been limited to infants or children:

    The risk for fatalities and injuries to families is significantly greater on the roads than in airplanes, according to the FAA. Last year, nearly 43,000 people died on America's highways as compared to 13 on commercial flights.

    "Statistics show that families are safer traveling in the sky than on the road," said FAA Administrator Marion C. Blakey. "We encourage the use of child safety seats in airplanes. However, if requiring extra airline tickets forces some families to drive" then we’re inadvertently putting too many families at risk."

    The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) supported the FAA's decision based on current FAA and NHTSA studies that show a mandate could result in another 13 to 42 added family member fatalities over 10 years in highway accidents.
    Does "added family member" = infant under 2?

    I'm not an actuarian or statistician, and I'm not challenging the assertions or conclusions of the study, but that averages out to "only" (yes I know every life is precious) 1-4 more "added family member fatalities" per year. I'm shocked that calculations based on the sheer VOLUME of people and miles traveled over 10 YEARS would only yield a significant difference of 1-4 lives each year. That margin seems so slim that one might suggest it doesn't (statistically) matter whether we transport our children under 2 unrestrained on a plane vs. secured in a child seat in a car (if we're excepting all other ethical, political, or financial factors and we're just looking at safety data alone). Perhaps not tightening your child's seat straps properly, or using an outgrown shell or car seat that is expired or has already suffered a car accident might be way more dangerous (statistically) than choosing to drive vs. flying (I'm not sure, just saying there could be other factors with more significant consequences).

    Or am I interpreting their findings incorrectly (or is the press release paraphrasing or misquoting the results of NHTSA's study)?
    Last edited by BMWBig6; 04-22-2012 at 07:38 AM.
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  11. #30
    CPS Technician Ninetales's Avatar
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    Same for me. Flying is expensive, even for one person, that we drive everywhere. Not to mention the enormous PITA that is getting to the airport (closest major one is already two hours from me), getting through security, waiting forever, probably dealing with layovers. For anywhere I need to go, driving is usually faster and cheaper.

    Everyone with kids over two has to buy them a seat. If the airlines really wanted to keep people safer they'd make it cheaper and less of a hassle to fly for everyone. Or offer child fares or something. I really don't think lap baby policies are there to protect passengers from the dangers of the road. It's just something they've always done.

  12. #31
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    Re: So I assume everyone here frowns on flying with "babe in arms" or lap babies, right?

    Canada and the U.S. ban "belly belts" for safety reasons. With a loose lap baby, at least they stand a chance of surviving if they aren't thrown too hard. Strapped to you, they don't have a prayer in forward impact. This is why baby carriers are also not allowed on take-off and landing (who can actually sit down with one of those awful Bjorn crotch danglers anyway??) I could sit down nicely with a ring sling though

    European airlines justify the use of belly belts because they don't want the baby to fly through the cabin and injure someone else. So they feel if you save money by flying with a lap baby, your baby should take the risk, not other passengers. The FAA at least wants them to have a fighting chance...

    I've been forced to fly with a lap baby because I've actually flown on European airline who don't allow car seats at all, only their nationalities' car seats or were in a package that didn't give us a own-seat option for a baby. The FAA does protect a parents' right to fly safely with their child much better than foreign companies do.

    Tough for me as a Flight Attendant (former, I quit after having kids) because I've had to look at the yukky pictures and read the accident reports. Some coworkers are fine with it though because they're confident in the safety of air travel in general.

    The FAA is under heavy pressure from the airlines to keep in place the lap baby rule. They claim they can't impose car seats on passengers (those who don't have them, don't have the right ones), providing their own (one ground agent quipped that Orlando would never have enough supply!) and all the issues with competing with foreign companies...

    That business with people driving instead of flying is kind of empty. I mean, we fly between Europe and California and honestly, I've never considered driving it But seriously, if that really were the case, they'd at least require them on long haul/international flights but they don't.

    When I wrote the article (link in my siggy) I promoted car seats and the posters here actually wrote me and told me that was good but the real problem was the car seat issue at the destination. Parents checking car seats as luggage, using rental car company seats, etc. The real threat to your children is on the road, not in the air, so any decisions about flying with a lap baby should take this into consideration. Bring the car seat to the gate, try to use it in a free place if available, gate-checking instead of luggage checking it, etc.

    Please don't say that it's expensive. Trust me, after I quit the airlines, I had to pay the same fares everyone else does. I know. We bought tickets for under 2's and tried to book U.S. companies whenever possible. It wasn't cheap but worth the money for both peace of mind and comfort.
    Former Flight Attendant, 13 years, 2 companies in 5 countries
    3 trilingual, international travelers with two nationalities
    http://flyingwithchildren1.blogspot.com

  13. #32
    CPS Technician An Aurora's Avatar
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    Re: So I assume everyone here frowns on flying with "babe in arms" or lap babies, right?

    For the FAA, it is profit driven. The NTSB has been pushing for child restrains to be required on airlines for many, many years. The FAA turns it down as the airlines pitch a fit since they will lose customers--and thus money. It's all very political.

    Here's a list of links to info
    http://ashsd.afacwa.org/?zone=/union...fm&HomeID=2777

    DH did his senior project on the NTSB v. FAA on the subject of child restraints. It was fascinating--and very frustrating--to see the politics involved and the lack of progress despite 20 years of effort on the NTSB's part.
    Anna~ RN and expired CPST (hoping to recert soon!)

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