Hand luggage checklist – children on board

When families travel, many things must be packed, especially when flying. To make sure you don’t forget anything for your little ones in your hand luggage, we have put together a checklist and packing list for you.

Photo by Paul Hanaoka on Unsplash

Photo by Paul Hanaoka on Unsplash

Travel documents:

  • Booking code of the e-ticket or flight ticket: This is of course needed for everyone. Even if you book online, it is advisable to take a printout of the e-ticket with you. Some countries want to see a return or onward ticket when you enter the country. You will need the six-digit booking code.
  • Passports: Please make sure that the passports are valid for everyone, including babies and small children.
  • Visa: A valid visa for all travelers and countries you plan to visit.
  • Travel authorization: This is required if only one parent is traveling.
  • Vaccination certificates: All U-examinations and vaccinations should be up to date.
  • Maternity certificate and fitness to fly: Pregnant women must carry the maternity certificate in their hand luggage as proof of the current weeks of pregnancy (important e.g. when traveling to the USA). Some airlines no longer accept pregnant women after one week of pregnancy without a medical certificate (Ryanair requires this certificate from the 28th week of pregnancy).
  • Health insurance card, travel health insurance abroad, and proof of travel interruption insurance
  • Means of payment: Before departure, get some cash in the local currency for the bus or taxi (money exchange at the airport is usually expensive). Traveler’s cheques are cheap and safe. With the right credit card, you can pay conveniently in most holiday countries and withdraw cash cheaply. If you have several, take at least two different ones. Also, don’t forget your EC card (Giro or Maestro card) in your baggage.


  • Reservation confirmation of flight special services: A computer printout or written confirmation from the travel agency confirming the booking of special services such as seat reservations, ordering children’s menus, booking a baby bassinet, and registering or confirming the use of a child car seat in the passenger cabin can be very helpful if there is any uncertainty at the counter or on the plane.
  • Hotel vouchers, car rental vouchers, holiday home rental contract: To avoid any problems on arrival, you should have the above vouchers to hand. Addresses, contact numbers, and directions to the holiday destination are also important.
  • Driving license, international driving license if necessary: If you rent a car abroad, you must often have an international driving license in addition to a valid German driving license.

Food and drink:

  • Bibs and spoons
  • Thermos flask with already warmed porridge
  • Water bottle: filled or unfilled, depending on how accommodating the staff at the security checkpoint are. Tip: If you are not allowed to keep water bottles, either drinks them up or ask to take them with you empty. Then simply have them refilled with water on the plane (it’s easier for children than drinking from unstable plastic cups).
  • Enough baby food for the flight: Many airlines advertise that they have jars and nappies for their little guests. Don’t rely on this! If it comes down to it and there is no baby food on board (which has happened), you will look old. Stock up on your favorite jars and the milk powder you are familiar with before the flight.
  • Nibbles and fruit to fortify older children and pregnant women: Airplane meals, including children’s menus, are not for everyone. Be prepared and pack enough biscuits, cereal bars, and other filling nibbles to get you through the flight without airplane food in an emergency.


  • Toothbrushes, children’s toothbrushes, brush, comb, deodorant
  • Handkerchiefs
  • Wet wipes
  • Disposable nappy changing pads
  • Nappies: enough nappies for the flight and any unexpected longer waiting times
  • Wound cream
  • Disinfectant: for the very careful, disinfecting armrests and folding tables