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Survival Guide: How To Entertain The Kids At The Airport

Fat Mum Slim /

Brought to you by Brisbane Airport.

I love an airport. I do. There are so many stories to observe {I saw a man and young family all crying after this photo was taken and I wanted to know why – where was he going? What was happening? So nosey!} and so many adventures ahead of all the people waiting for their flights. There’s a good energy happening.

I am a big believer that holidays begin at the airport. I mean, first of all, calories don’t count. So I’m down with eating whatever I like, because I’m on HOLIDAYS already.

We’re that family that turns up to the airport as soon as our check-in opens, because we’re excited and because we have a whole pre-flight routine that I do with the girls to make our flight go as smoothly as possible. It’s a routine to create the most calm in both Shane and I, and then also a way to make sure the kids are going onto the flight happy and full tummied.

So, if you’ve ever wondered how to best entertain the kids at the airport {and then to assure that you have the smoothest, happiest flight ever}, this is it. I’m sharing how we spend our time at Brisbane Airport’s International Terminal, and hope that you find it useful!

Head to the lounge to feast, drink and be very merry

Hang on. I know you’re probably going to scroll past this one because I’ve mentioned the word ‘lounge’ and you think that’s reserved for the frequent flyers and the point-savvy people. Brisbane Airport has a lounge, Premium Plaza, that anyone can visit for a fee, and you’ll have access to drinks, fresh food, bathrooms, hanging chairs, lollies, and even a wellness spa {yes please!}.

Let them chillax in their own space

As soon as you board the plane, space is a rarity {unless you’re in fancy business class} so I like to find space in the airport to just be as a family. That means letting the kids get their wriggles out, or just lay down and watch the world go by. I’ve found a favourite spot at Brisbane Airport that not many people know about – it’s easy to walk past – as you come out of JR/Duty Free, head to the window to the right of the Windmill & Co Restaurant, you’ll find a little nook with lie back chairs. Grab yourself a spot and chill out!

Let the kids spend their pocket money

My kids like to sleep with something soft, so I give them the option to buy a smaller soft toy from the airport for the flight. It eats up a bit of time, and works as a great bribe as we check in and go through immigration {“Do you want a toy? Make sure you behave!}. News Travels has loads of cute things, and their prices are set to the same as non-airport prices, so it’s the same as them heading somewhere else to drop their hard-earned chore money.

Fill up their tummies

I know that airlines try hard to create yummy meals for their passengers, but sometimes they can be a little hit and miss, especially when it comes to fussy kids. I always try and fill the kid’s tummies before we jump on a flight, especially if it’s a night flight where I want them to go straight to sleep. Brisbane Airport has a whole heap of yummy eateries, including Sushi Sushi and Boost Juice, but also cafes where you can sit down and relax and eat something a little gourmet. Windmill & Co is yummy, and has colouring-in sheets for the kids to do while they wait, and I’m a fan of Brisbane River Grill too.

Let them play and share their sillies out

Once you board your flight, there’s not much else you can do but sit, relax and do nothing at all, so I like to spend the last 30 minutes before we board getting the kids to play and shake their sillies out. This might mean walking laps of the airport, or just playing on The Green with the interactive screens. We then head to the bathroom, change into PJs {the kids, not me… although I wish!} and then get ready to fly to our destination.

And once your flight is called, head to your gate and get ready for a fun adventure filled with lots of great memories. If you want to find out what I put in these pink travel bags to survival long haul flights, pop over and read this blog post.

Got any favourite things to do while you wait to board your flight {especially while at Brisbane Airport}? Do tell!