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  1. #1
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    Question need advice on flying 12hrs from L.A. to Switzerland with 18mts old twins

    good day,

    I am looking for people that travelled with swiss airlines (or probably any other international long distance flight) and small children with their convertible carseats. we're just trying to get an idea what to expect and see if we're missing out on anything important.

    we are flying with our boy/girl twins which will be 18months by the time of departure, september.
    I have 2 confirmed bulkhead seats for and 2 seats right behind those, hoping when we check-in, we'll get the whole bulkhead row...they won't give the 2 other bulhead seats to me now, they are blocked until check-in at airport. so at least with the bulkhead, the kicking in the front row would not be an issue, also the legroom should be fine for them, and us
    the 2 blocked bulkhead seats are apparently not given out until right before departure, for possible families with small infants....

    I am just hoping now that if there would be too many families with small infants, that they won't take away the 2 bulkhead we have, could they do that?
    the airline's response on carseat was following:
    maximum width and length of BASE of carseat: 15.7" x 15.7"...good I called because website said 17.3"

    so with the new info of the 15.7", our choices for conv carseats are wider, yeah, our kids are now 14 months old (twins) and barely 19lbs but just exceeded the length of our snugrides, so we are getting convertibles now...looking at the Evenflo Advance Triumph and the Cosco Scenera...

    from what I read on this forum, the Cosco would be easier to travel with? I do want seats that they can use for a very long time...I don't mind about bulky for travel, we need them in switzerland for our rental car anyways...

    thanks and any input appreciated...
    alexa

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  3. #2
    Carseat Crazy rochelle's Avatar
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    Re: need advice on flying 12hrs from L.A. to Switzerland with 18mts old twins

    mine was with JAL for a 7 + 9 flight.

    we used Cosco Scenara as it was light and cheap.

    we got bassinet seating and we were allowed to board the plane with the first class passengers. JAL allowed parents with car seats to board first. you might want to check with swiss airlines.

    you might also want to ask how many bassinets on your plane. our had 8 bassinets so we were guranteed bassinet row (4 seats at center with 2 bassinets) so we could change diapers on the bassinet instead.

  4. #3
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    Re: need advice on flying 12hrs from L.A. to Switzerland with 18mts old twins

    Quote Originally Posted by rochelle View Post
    mine was with JAL for a 7 + 9 flight.

    we used Cosco Scenara as it was light and cheap.

    we got bassinet seating and we were allowed to board the plane with the first class passengers. JAL allowed parents with car seats to board first. you might want to check with swiss airlines.

    you might also want to ask how many bassinets on your plane. our had 8 bassinets so we were guranteed bassinet row (4 seats at center with 2 bassinets) so we could change diapers on the bassinet instead.
    thank you for your reply , I heard about the good deal and good reviews on the cosco scenara, I was just hoping I could get a seat that will last longer, weight wise....
    can I ask you, before checking in, what seats did you have confirmed? I have 2 of the 4 bulkheads, but again, hoping I am getting the 2 other ones at check-in/gate. did you have special bags for the carseats or just the lugagge on cart and that's it? just trying to figure out the logistics of all the lugagge, we will also have the kids in our light weight double stroller, this one we will gate check.
    swiss is the same, 4 bulkhead seats where there are 2 bassinets. plus 2 and 2 more bulkhead to the sides....
    any other tips are greatly appreciated.

  5. #4
    Carseat Crazy rochelle's Avatar
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    Re: need advice on flying 12hrs from L.A. to Switzerland with 18mts old twins

    there were 8 bulkheads on both the planes. 2 rows of 4 bassinets, we got the 4 center bulkhead seats that is just behind the business class. so we were just behind the "kitchen" and very near the entrance/exit

    we travel off-peak. we got the agent to pick the flight date that is the less popular as we had a few days to pick from. our plane was half empty on one leg and 70% full on the 2nd leg.

    our travel agent checked for us and told us that we had the only kids on board who needs bassinet (less than 1yr do get priority) so we are good for the center bulkhead (4 seats 2 bassinets). but we still had to go to the airport 3hrs ahead to get our boarding pass as it was reserved but we could lose one bulk head seat if there were more than 6 babies on the flight. once we got the boarding pass, they wont change our seats so you are good once you got your boarding passes.

    for our scenara we just carried backpack style. its v v light. its also v easy to install forward facing. my boys outgrew the scenaras by height at age 3.
    JAL even let DH test install the scenara while waiting for boarding time to make sure it fits well.

    we just needed to show them the sticker on the scenara that says its safe to use on airplanes. the words are red on the sticker which is at the side of the scenara.

  6. #5
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    Re: need advice on flying 12hrs from L.A. to Switzerland with 18mts old twins

    hi rochelle,
    thanks for your input, I guess the only difference between yours and mine is that yours still were infants so you got whole row of bulkhead...mine will be 18mts so we get only 2 for now, rest at airport, if nobody else with smaller kids.
    and you're right, off season is better, we are actually flying off season as well, so hopefully that will help.

    I know one step ahead and checked out their travel gear, just a bit pricy, I wonder why I would need bags etc. for carseats if they just go straight from cab onto dolly and then on plane and from plane into rental car....am I missing something? probably....

    oh fyi, we are probably getting the evenflo triumph advance lx, got great reviews and a friend of mine has them for her twins and I looked at them yesterday in her car and even put my kids in, it seems great for them.

    thanks again and if I forget something...please let me know, we still have some months to go

    alexandra

  7. #6
    Carseat Crazy rochelle's Avatar
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    Re: need advice on flying 12hrs from L.A. to Switzerland with 18mts old twins

    You would want to make sure the evenflo triumph advance lx has the "This restraint is certified for use in motor vehicles and aircraft" printed on it. Otherwise, you may be asked to check the CRS as baggage. "

    http://www.faa.gov/passengers/fly_children/crs/

    we printed this brochure to show to the check-in counter (it helped as the ones that were on duty was not sure about the car seats rule.)

    http://www.faa.gov/passengers/media/childsafety.pdf

    the brochure says <= 20lbs for rear facing on aircrafts. we forward face our car seats as we had no experience with car seats and didnt want to do our first rear facing install on an airplane.

    also remember to get your international drivers license.

    the air stewardess(s) gave us boiling water, free diapers & wipes, free formula, free bottles so that makes our trip much easier. it help that we were just behind the kitchen. they also heat up the baby food for us.

  8. #7
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    Re: need advice on flying 12hrs from L.A. to Switzerland with 18mts old twins

    thanks again Rochelle, I keep all your information handy, I let you know how it all goes, I bet I'll have more questions coming up with departure getting closer.

  9. #8
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    Re: need advice on flying 12hrs from L.A. to Switzerland with 18mts old twins

    Australia 14+ hours depending if we have connecting flight.

    We take the Safety First Uptown on the plane. Roughly same size as the Scenera, but more padding include a type of SIP foam, and the harness slots are higher so it lasts child longer. They're not as easy to find now, but the Safety First Avenue is a newer version of it. THat's at Sears or Kmart.

    One thing with bulkhead row is that you can't raise the armrests to install a seat. I can put the Uptown in without raising the arm rest. It is a little more difficult though. I normally put the arm rest up, install seat, then put it back down again. Some seats are so wide that you have to have the arm rest up the entire time, so you don't want one of those seats.

    I personally don't like the bulkhead as you can't put anything on the floor. We did it once when DS was under 12 months and in the bassinet. I had to keep things that I wanted on our laps and DH had to keep getting up to get us things. We've got a system down now where DS's backpack with toys is under the seat in front of him, my diaper backpack is under the seat in front of me, and we pull out drinks/snacks to put in seat back pocket.

    As for the kicking, that took us some time, but from about 3 yo onwards DS knows where he can put his feet. DS can put his feet on his car seat, on the window, on my leg etc. We have a whole airplane routine where we go through the rules as soon as we're seated on the plane. But that won't work at 18 months. An option is to have 1 parent and 1 child in bulkhead, and 1 parent and 1 child in row behind, so other passengers don't get kicked.

    To get through the airport, I strap the car seat to the stroller with a bungee cord through the FF beltpath. Then I strap DS into the car seat. Now that we don't use a stroller, the car seat is strapped to a $20 folding luggage cart, and DS can still ride in it if he doesn't want to walk.

  10. #9
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    Re: need advice on flying 12hrs from L.A. to Switzerland with 18mts old twins

    hello niccig,

    thanks for all your tips, the armrest that don't move in bulkhead could be an issue, I called swiss and somebody will call me back from that service department, I know the base of the evenflo lx advance triumph is only 15" but the widest part of the seat (where kid sits on) is about 20", so maybe swiss can give me measurement from seat up to armrest so I would know if that would fit in there, if armrest is above seating padding of carseat, it would not really be a problem.

    I don't think they can give me all info, so I hate going to airplane and then find out bulkhead does not work, and then we might not be able to get seats together? ....

    with swiss, it's up to crew if you put stuff on floor in bulkhead, you can't though when plane takes off and lands, but in air, it's up to them.

    well I see what their response will be....

    as for getting it all to plane, we will use a double side by side stroller where kids sit in, which we gate check. so I am not sure yet where and how to get the carseats to plane, but we'll need a big cart anyway with all the other lugagge, ha!

    thanks and let me know if there is anything else that comes in your mind, I'll keep you updated on info from swiss.

    alexandra

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