When the time comes and you need to fly internationally with a baby, what do you need to do to be prepared? One of the biggest questions is when you're on a long flight, you'll need to have a place where baby can get some sleep. Most airlines these days have skycots or bassinets that attach to bulkhead walls. Below are what's available and the rules in reserving skycots for that next long-haul flight with a baby.
Air France allows travelers to request a bassinet on long-haul flights in the Business, Premium Economy and Economy cabins, subject to availability. They are are designed for infants weighing less than 22 pounds and measuring less than 27 inches. Bassinets must be reserved at least 48 hours before departure and travelers need to phone in to check availability. The carrier offers parents traveling in the Première, Business and Premium Economy cabins on long-haul flights, a baby kit is available that contains a bib, a diaper, Nivea wipes and more.
American Airlines accepts infants as young as two days old. Infants must be accompanied by a person 16 years or older or by the infant's parent (any age) in the same cabin. Bassinets are available on a first come, first serve basis at the gate for travel only on the carrier's Boeing 777-200, 767-300 and 777-300 aircraft.
British Airways has skycots available for children up to two years old.
They are free, but the carrier warns they are subject to availability onboard the aircraft on the day of travel. They will be given to the people sitting in the skycot/child seat positions on a first-come, first-served basis. You can reserve a skycot in advance, using the Manage My Booking function on the airline's website.
Delta Air Lines offers free bassinets for passengers assigned to a bulkhead seat on equipped aircraft for some of its international flights. Bassinets can be requested by contacting Delta Reservations before arriving at the airport and then speaking with a gate agent. The airline cannot guarantee a bassinet due to a limit of two per aircraft and weight restrictions. Only infants weighing 20 pounds or less and be no longer than 26 inches in length can use bassinets. Infants must be held during takeoff and landing.
Hawaiian Airlines offers bassinets to select cities on its international flights. Infants cannot weigh more than 20 pounds. Travelers can reserve a bassinet on Airbus A330 flights to seven international cities:
- Auckland, New Zealand
- Beijing, China
- Brisbane, Australia
- Incheon, Korea
- Haneda-Tokyo, Japan
- Osaka-Kansai, Japan
- Sydney, Australia
To complete a reservation, call Hawaiian Airlines Reservations and request a bassinet. The traveler must also buy an Extra Comfort seat in Row 14 (AB CD, EG, or HJ). Once the seat is purchased and bassinet is reserved, a reservation is confirmed.
For those who don't want to buy an Extra Comfort seat, they can see an airport customer service agent at check-in on the day of departure to see if a bassinet is available. The airline will accept up to two requests per flight.
For those traveling on the carrier's Boeing 767s, bassinet cannot be reserved for flights to Sapporo, Japan, and bassinets are not available on flights to and from American Samoa and Tahiti. Travelers can request a bassinet from an airport customer service agent when checking in on the day of departure. The carrier will accept up to two requests per flight, and confirmed bassinets will be assigned at boarding.
United Airlines bassinets can hold an infant weighing 22 pounds or less. They can't be used during taxi, takeoff or landing, or when the seatbelt sign is illuminated.
A limited number of bassinets are available for use, free of charge, on international aircraft in BusinessFirst on select Boeing 757, 767, 777 and 787 aircraft and in Economy on Boeing 747, 757, 767, 777 and 787 aircraft. Request a bassinet by calling the United Customer Contact Center at 800-864-8331 within the U.S. or the Worldwide Contact Center for other countries. The airline cannot guarantee a bassinet due to limited availability.