March 16th, 2010
01:15 PM ET

Fly and cry: Babies divide air travelers

A. Pawlowski

You're stuck in a cramped metal tube with hundreds of strangers for hours, when it invariably happens: A baby starts screaming and the passengers' collective blood pressure seems to rise along with the decibel level.

The issue of crying babies and unruly children on flights is a passionate one for air travelers.

Many say they're exasperated by parents who seem to do little to quiet or control their offspring, while others counter that fliers should be more patient and understanding.

The comment section of a recent CNN.com story about a smelly passenger being kicked off a flight soon diverted to a heated discussion about children.

Keep reading...

soundoff (10 Responses)
  1. Lisa

    Traveling on a plane is one thing, what gets me is when uncaring parents bring babies and toddlers to R rated movies on a Friday/Sat. night when couples are out trying to have a date night. Can't they wait until the 10AM or 4PM twiliight show? They come at the 7-9PM movies and disrupt and spoil the $40 experience (if you get popcorn and drinks) for the rest of the audience. Babies at movies should be banned and no child under 10 should be allowed in an R rated movie, even with parental supervision.

    March 17, 2010 at 7:28 am |
  2. iibw

    Why not keep all babies together in one section of the aircraft? The way it is now, babies are scattered all over, irritating passengers in every cabin. If everyone knows where the baby section is in advance, the noise can be tolerated better because it's anticipated.

    March 17, 2010 at 2:38 am |
  3. Mari

    First, let me say I am the mother of four, and I am a grandmother. Parents need to use some common sense when flying with their children, especially with babies and toddlers: don't travel when the poor child is tired, hungry or sick. Also, parents of young children need to be aware that not all travelers appreciate a crying baby for 2 hours or more.

    My husband travels for business, often he is flying home exhausted, sometimes with a headache from a long day. To have him have to sit in an aircraft with screaming or crying children is downright....... cruel.

    My suggestion is, family flights. Or like in the days when smoking was allowed, a separate section.

    PS. we did fly with our four children, no they did not cry. We made sure that they were entertained, well rested, healthy and we did not allow them to kick people's seats.

    March 16, 2010 at 8:05 pm |
  4. sue r

    I agree that parents need to do the best they can to keep there children from being miserable on a cramped plane. I would rather sit next to a crying child ,,then sit next to a smelly passenger.

    March 16, 2010 at 6:54 pm |
  5. AKricket

    Having flown only once with a ten month old, I can only say it was a great experience. He entertained the whole plane and everyone was laughing. He kept standing up and turning around and smiling and waving at everyone and the more they laughed the more he entertained them. Think maybe their could be a moral there?

    March 16, 2010 at 6:51 pm |
  6. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    Unruly children and babies crying are usually people who are supposed to be adults and the flight crew has to be the parent.

    March 16, 2010 at 5:51 pm |
  7. Tara- Dallas, TX

    Point blank, babies cry. The parents of the crying babies are doing what they can to comfort and calm their baby and are just as uncomfortable as those on the plane. This society has lost all compassion, empathy, and patience with one other. So next time your on a plane with a crying baby instead of being annoyed and giving that parent a dirty look think to yourself what would I do in that situation, how would I feel?

    March 16, 2010 at 4:59 pm |
  8. Dara Schwartz

    As a parent of a toddler, I know that flying with a little one is not easy. We happen to have an extremely active child who makes flying difficult, but it's not going to stop us from getting on a plane to visit his grandparents and family that live across the country. We've had "that kid" on the plane and were miserable trying to distract him with toys, snacks, and videos...walking him up and down the aisles, and have been subject to peoples rude comments. It's not as though we weren't trying to control him, but there is only so much you can do. This is life and children are a part of it. People need to learn to "share the air"...we're not going to stop making trips to see family because it might irritate a few people for a few hours. Put on your headset and tune out the kids...we were all kids once.

    March 16, 2010 at 4:17 pm |
  9. Tim Gibson

    While we may have to make the most of certain situations, the fact remains that many people do not teach their children public manners much less private respect and manners at home.

    Children do cry, that cannot be avoided, yet some parents seem to be outside the situation and let it ride on everyones lap. That is when it is a problem.

    March 16, 2010 at 4:09 pm |
  10. Denise Barlow

    I guess you could say I'm lucky in several different ways. First, my children love to travel so I never had a problem with them flying. Second, being a retired pre-school/daycare teacher I've worked around crying babies....ALOT! So they don't bother me. As for other passengers, sometimes you just have to roll with the punches.

    March 16, 2010 at 2:33 pm |