Travelling anywhere with infants can be testing, but nowhere is the struggle more real than on a plane. It's dark, it's boring and it's super cramped – uncomfortable enough for adults let alone infants. But there's no reason you can't come prepared and, particularly for long haul flights, a little preparation goes a long, long way

Booking your tickets

Each airline has different requirements for travelling infants, so it's best to either book through a travel agent or contact the airline directly. While most airlines don't charge for infants under two, they will still need a ticket registered in their name.

Choosing your seats

As mentioned, infants under two are not usually charged for flying. However, this is because they share the seat with you. You'll decide whether you want to pay a child's fare and book the seat next to you – probably preferable for a long haul flight.

In this situation, seat choice can make or break your comfort. Provided you've booked early enough, you should be able to exercise some discretion. Seats at the bulkhead (with no seats in front of you) provide extra leg room and mobility, while those in the aisle ensure you won't be disrupting others if moving about frequently.

Also keep in mind that seats forward of the wings tend to be quieter and experience less engine rumble. Again, it is a good idea to contact the airline directly to see if they can offer further assistance or advice.

Packing your baby essentials

Your baby will have a baggage allowance to cover all the requisite nappies, wipes, blankets, clothing changes etc. You will even be able to bring baby food, formula, bottled milk and juice – an exemption from the restriction airlines have on fluids over 100mL. Your pram will have to be security screened, and you will probably be able to take it right up to the gate, but it is unlikely that you will be able to take it on board the flight due to cabin space restrictions.

It's a good idea to check with the airline what their procedure is, along with their allowance for bassinets. And remember: it always pays to pack extra essentials in case of annoying delays!