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Holidays can be stressful, especially navigating busy airports and sitting on planes for hours. Throw your kids into the mix and the experience can be daunting.
Airlines are increasingly aware that being family friendly is important and that it can be a deciding factor for parents, especially on a long-haul flight. Most airlines are willing to offer free goods and services to make your flight more bearable, but what priorities are the most crucial when choosing an airline?
This summer, Reassured Insurance looked at 24 carriers departing from UK airports to compare what they offer to travelling families. They used various criteria including:
- Priority Boarding
- Children’s meals
- Child specific entertainment
- Free checked luggage including a carry cot and pushchair
British Airways, Qatar Airways, Emirates and Qantas came out top, offering the most perks, with American Airlines, Jet2, Flybe and Ryanair at the bottom, offering the least.
The low-cost carriers weren’t a surprise but as a national carrier, American Airlines stands out.
Looking at specific criteria is one thing, but in my experience, a bigger factor is really the general friendliness and helpfulness of the cabin crew and other staff. That’s harder to predict, as all airlines have some great (and some not so great) staff, but I still have my favourites.
For example, flying Economy long-haul with my then very young (and noisy…) baby many moons ago was disconcerting. However the trip was made so much easier with the charm and good humour of the Singapore Airlines crew, who even scooped up my distressed little one at frequent intervals to give me a break! That’s the sort of thing that you never forget and really does build loyalty.
Does your favourite ” family friendly” airline make Reassured’s list? Let us know what you think in the comments below.