Flying on LOT Polish Airlines

mommycat

Well-known member
I was asked a question about flying with LOT Polish Airlines and I am going to answer here since it is convenient and might also help others.

Here are my other threads where I discuss the flight or the research before hand:
Trip Review:
http://car-seat.org/showthread.php?t=102030
Reviewing seat options, again (Yes I have issues):
http://car-seat.org/showthread.php?t=85103
Airline Crap and related research - the stuff I copied and pasted though seems to have been removed from their website!:
http://car-seat.org/showthread.php?t=75611
Reviewing seat options, part 1:
http://car-seat.org/showthread.php?t=68772

So, first off - their website has rather vague carseat info linked and pasted in below - I am positive there used to be more but it seems to be gone from the website! see the Airline Crap link above for more info:
http://www.lot.com/Info/EN/aspx/Content__FAQ_List.aspx#
When flying LOT with a small child, is the pram included in the restrictions concerning the luggage carried on a given route?
A folding pram/stroller, baby basket or a child car seat are not included in the limit of luggage carried free of charge and are taken onboard subject to space availability. If no space is available, they are transported free of charge in the luggage hatch.
So, the carseat should not count against the baggage limits, i.e. 1 carryon, 1 personal item + his carseat. They also seem to suggest that they will let you keep these items on board if possible, and gate check them if not. I was able to put the umbrella stroller in the overhead bin on the way home (we used rolling carry-on to attach the seats to on the way there). I would print this out and have it with your ticket in case there are any questions at the gate.

The agent at customer service when I called insisted that while the <2yo would be allowed a carseat, there would be no way that my 4yo could have his. I called several times. Every time but once I got the same guy. The answer was always the same. Since the ticket was through Air Canada but a codeshare with LOT, seat assignments were automatic. I hadn't insisted hard enough with Air Canada agents on the phone that i NEEDED to have window seats assigned and had center row seats, so I was worried that I would need to have my seats switched at the gate - I thought that only window seats were allowed for carseats so as not to block anyone in, but I think that maybe the center row is fine since there is an exit on either side. When I got to the gate I went up to say I thought I might need to switch seats with someone because of the carseats, and the ground staff looked at me like I was crazy and said that neither kid could use the carseat. I took out my folder with all my printouts and said, um, it says here I CAN. They quickly sent a lady down to the plane to ask the flight crew, and came back to say that of course, I could use the carseats where ever I wished. No one asked about the kids' ages. I would go on with the attitude that you CAN use the carseat, and if you are told differently then ask to keep it on board (Radian may fit folded under the seat or in the overhead bin) or at worst, gate check it. I think your chances are pretty good that it will not be an issue. And especially so close to 2yo he might squeak by and not get asked his age even if they aren't as agreeable.

With a choice of the two seats you have, the Signo and the Radian, I would go with the Radian. I would either use rolling carry on, a stroller it can strap into securely or a luggage cart. I would probably choose the luggage cart or the stroller, myself. The luggage cart would probably give you a good chance that the seat might roll all the way down to your seats - the stroller and Scenera would not fit in the narrow aisle in Economy class.

Will you have a second pair of hands? The tough part is getting all the bags from the door to the seats. We had way too much carry on to go with the 2 carseats and had to make multiple trips. Luckily in both directions the flight crew was amazing and helped a lot. Ask for the seatbelt extender as soon as you get to the door, too. Sometimes it takes them a while to get it and you need all the time you can get, even with pre-boarding.

I would install FF for a 2.5 yo, with the base recline extended - just take the RF foot in your carryon so you are sure to have it for the car (also don't forget your locking clip since so many cars in the EU don't have locking seatbelts!! and may not have isofix). You can recline the whole seat along with the plane seat if he falls asleep, he will be able to see the TV screen (big bonus) and he will be able to use the tray table with the Radian. And you won't have the person in front of him trying to recline their seat into his. The only thing you will need to worry about is dropped toys and kicking the seat in front, which my son couldn't really do - his legs were *just* short enough to only reach with his toes.

I didn't use my Radian so I am not sure about the exact install, but it wasn't that hard. It is a little cramped, but installing the Radian FF should be easy with the open belt path and access to it through the cover. The seatbelt extender should help as well - I am not sure if you would even need it with a Radian but it can't hurt to have the option so ask for it up front. Shorten down the seat's own buckle down to the seat cushion, attach the seatbelt extender, put it through the belt path, latch it up and tighten the belt. When you uninstall, you just flip open the buckle by the seat cushion, outside the seat.

You MAY end up with a buckle on or near his back but because the belt path on the Radian is recessed a bit it should again not be an issue. If it is, you can try to use the belt extender to balance the location of the buckles for the best positioning, or put their small pillow or something behind him - I personally wouldn't worry about that as a safety issue on an airplane.

Please please come back and let us know here how the trip went!
 
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