There are certain things that some places just do better.
I, for one, thought the level of service and (positive) attention that we received when flying in Asia with our baby was outstanding. Some will agonize over the thought of bringing children (or not) for the long haul flights to get to get to Asia, but that is another post in itself. Let’s just imagine that you have already made your way to this lovely continent and are about to explore a few different countries. You are already there. Welcome to Asia.
Victoria Harbour, Hong Kong
You may now board your flight.
Boarding with small children still takes a priority as it does most places. This is always helpful and though you have to pass by all the eye-rollers, I really do appreciate the time I have to get my stroller down the jet bridge and get my little one situated pre-flight. Once you stroll to the bottom of the jet bridge, there are airline reps waiting for you to help you fold and bag your stroller and car seat. Yes, I said bag. This is helpful if you haven’t been traveling with your reusable stroller and car seat bags.
Cathay Pacific Lounge
As soon as you board the plane the flight attendants want to help you. I would name specific airlines but for now this was generally found on many of the flights during our time traveling Asia. Once we found our seats we were greeted and welcomed again with a smile and given an infant life belt. The infant life belt can be your best friend or your worst enemy depending on your little one’s mood at that very moment. It is an easy little contraption to figure out, you simply slide your safety belt through the loop of the infant belt, click your belt closed, wrap the infant belt around said infant and click that closed.
My infant is super duper fond of safety belts (oh wait, no she’s not) so she was pleased as pie to see not one but two belts that she could constantly unhinge from their fastened state. As a parent I was excited about the requirements that Asian airlines have in place for infants. I felt an additonal bit of comfort having this provided safety device. We received these on Thai Lion Air and Cathay Pacific two totally different products but mimicking the exact same policy each time we flew them.
When we flew Cathay, we were sitting in Business Class and in addition to immediately welcoming us with the infant safety belt, the second time they came to our seats (again with a small sense of urgency and a pleasant smile) they greeted us with a small pack for the baby. This pack included two diapers, diaper creme and a facial creme. They also reminded us that if we should need any help with the baby during flight to let them know.
Cathay Pacific “Baby Amenity Kit”
I feel like I should mention that when I flew American to and from Asia I was approached by flight attendants who offered the same “help” with my baby. For instance if I needed to use the lavatory or during dinner the flight attendants offered to hold my baby. I was not flying alone and Kyle and I do a lot of rotating during meals so this was not necessary, but it is so helpful to have this kind of support if you are flying solo with babe.
I used to think that I would not be able to fly with the baby without Kyle or another adult, but surprisingly, the more flights I complete with Lucy the more I know I could conquer a “solo” mission. I recently boarded a short flight from New York to Pittsburgh (I boarded first with baby as Kyle dealt with the stroller) and as I was boarding another passenger* sitting at the front kindly asked if they could help me with my bags.
*passengers are not always as excited to see an infant walk onto their aircraft.
However, I must circle back to the level of service on these Asian flights in particular as it was blatantly obvious that the level of service and mostly attention that the flight attendants gave was just a step above most of the other flights I have been on with Lucy.
This isn’t so bad
Flying in Asia with an infant might sound less than exciting to most, but it was so pleasant in fact that I thought it deserved it’s very own post. Don’t let the distance deter you and your babe – it is totally worth every mile.
This seems to be the service standard in Asia, but what about high levels of service elsewhere? We’d love for you to share your experiences with us in the comments!
-XO Carly & Lucy