Travelling with children

Travelling with kids is an adventure. The wonder of their first flight, the family memories made. You may also wish you had six extra hands, and a back-up for that beloved toy left at the gate.

Booking flights for babies and toddlers under 2 years old

Infant fares (under two years old)

Babies and toddlers are welcome onboard Air New Zealand flights. They're very special passengers, so there are a few extra rules.

  • A carer over 15 years old must accompany the infant, except for flights to and from Canada where the adult must be 16 years or older.
  • On all flights, infants sit on their adult's lap and not a seat. If you're travelling in Business Premier, infants cannot use their own paid seat during taxi, take off, landing or during turbulence.
  • You can only have one infant sitting on your knee. If you have more than one infant, you'll need to purchase a child fare and seat one of the infants in an approved car seat.
  • If you're travelling with an infant you're unable to be seated within the exit row.

When you fly within New Zealand, infants travel for free. While you need to book their flight, they won't receive a ticket or receipt as they don't pay a fare or occupy a seat.

When you're flying internationally, infant fares are 10% of the adult fare.

Can I book a ticket for a child or baby online?

Yes you can! If the child will be travelling with an adult, just add them when booking your ticket. You'll need to include their passport number on international flights.

Booking flights for your baby before it's born?

Unfortunately, you can't book an infant fare until your baby is born. You can book everyone else's ticket, of course, and we can add your baby after the big day. Simply get in touch with us and have your booking reference ready.

Travelling with a placenta

New parents often ask us about bringing a placenta on their flight. There are a few simple rules to follow.

If you're flying overseas, or if your placenta is frozen or medically preserved, contact our Cargo team. There are special conditions we must follow, and they can help.

Otherwise, seal your placenta in a leak-proof container, and pack it in your checked-in baggage. You can't bring your placenta on board in your carry-on baggage.

Booking flights for children over 2 and under 12 years old

Children older than two years will have their own seat onboard the flight. They need to travel with someone who is at least years 15 old, or book as an unaccompanied minor.

Children's fares are:

  • Same as an adult fare within NZ, Tasman or the Pacific
  • 75% of the adult fare on long-haul international flights
  • Same as adult fares when travelling in Business Premier™

Children 12 years and older pay adult fares.

Flights to/from Canada

All children under five years of age must be accompanied by a person who is at least 16 years old in accordance with Canadian law. Our airport staff will facilitate the allocation of seats for children under the age of 14 with accompanying adults during check-in in accordance with Canadian Law if seating hasn't already been pre-allocated.

Children's baggage allowances

Kids need a lot of stuff! It can feel like you're taking enough for a small army, and leave you wondering how you'll fit your own clothes.

You can include two items from this list for every infant and child in your group, as part of your baggage allowance:

  • Pram, stroller or buggy
  • Car seat
  • Bassinet or port-a-cot

This is in addition to their normal baggage allowance:

  • Child fares have the same baggage allowance as an adult fare
  • Infant fares include a carry-on bag but no checked-in baggage.

Bassinets

Bassinet seats are available on many of our flights. They're at the front of the economy cabin, and we can attach a bassinet to the wall for your baby. They're very handy for giving baby a chance to sleep comfortably, and to give your lap a rest. Beds are made up with sheets, a pillow and blankets for added comfort.

Your baby will need to be able to safely fit the bassinet:

  • They are designed for infants up to 8 months old and 11.8kg (26lb)
  • The bassinet is 73.66cm long and 34.29cm wide (29 inches x 13.5 inches).

We'll try to give you a bassinet seat when you check-in with your baby, but availability is limited. It's a good idea to reserve one ahead of time with Seat Select. There's a small charge for choosing the seat.

You can book a bassinet seat in Seat Select. Choose a seat with the bassinet icon.

Traveling with your baby? Reserve a bassinet seat early. 

Bringing extra seat restraints

Car seats

Your car seat can be comforting and familiar to your child on a long flight. It also provides extra protection.

You're welcome to bring a car seat for a child with a paid seat. Your car seat must:

  • Be in a safe working condition
  • Be able to seat your child with their arms and thighs within its frame
  • Fit between your seat's armrests, and allow the seat in front to recline
  • Show a certification label approving it for use on aircraft

These are some of the main certification symbols:

Safety logos

For safety, your car seat can't block access to the aisle. Be sure to use Seat Select to choose an appropriate seat for your child:

  • A window seat
  • One of the middle seats of a centre row
  • The window end of an Economy Skycouch. Please remove and stow the car seat if you want to raise the seat footrest or lie down.

Car seats are not permitted in the Business Premier cabin.

Your flight attendant will help fit your car seat to the seat. If you have any questions please contact us.

CARES Harness

A CARES Harness gives your child torso support. You're welcome to bring one to provide extra protection for your child.

Your CARES Harness must be in a safe working condition, and be the right size for your child. It also needs to be FAA approved, and show a certification label.

Your flight attendant will help you fit your CARES Harness to the seat.

You can't use a CARES Harness in an exit row seat, or in Business Premier.

Front Packs and Infant Slings

For taxi, take-off and landing, seat your baby on your lap with an infant seat belt. You're welcome to put your baby into a front pack or sling only after take-off.

If the seat belt sign illuminates, you must fasten an infant belt around your infant and the sling or front pack.

MERU TravelChair

This postural support chair is for children aged 3-11 with a physical disability.

There are some restrictions for the MERU TravelChair. Talk to us as early as you can before travel so we can prepare for your flight. Email us at specialhandling@airnz.co.nz or call us on +64 9 255 7757.

You can use a MERU TravelChair on most seats, except for Business Premier lie-flat seats.

Prohibited equipment

For safety reasons we prohibit non-aviation certified products on Air New Zealand aircraft. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • Car booster seats
  • Inflatable comfort accessories e.g. Fly-Tot and Plane Pal
  • Jetkids Bedbox bag
  • LegsUp leg hammocks
  • Knee defenders

Strollers and prams

Prams come in handy when travelling with kids. They help you walk a long way with a tired toddler, strap in a runaway, and give your arms a break.

Better yet, you can take a stroller and a car seat on your flight for no extra charge. They don't count as part of your baggage allowance. You can even take a pram or stroller if your fares do not include checked baggage.

You can bring a single stroller all the way on to the aircraft if:

  • It's completely collapsible and fits in the overhead locker
  • You're flying internationally
  • You're flying domestic on 777-300, 777-200, 787-9 and A320 aircraft

If the flight is full, we may ask you to check-in your stroller at the gate.

Prams, three-wheeled buggies and large strollers don't fit in the overhead locker. Please check these in on all flights.

Flying Skycouch™ with children

Our award-winning Skycouch gives everyone the space to relax and spread out on your couch in the sky.

It's perfect for travelling with kids and safe for even our youngest travellers. We offer a Skycouch infant harness, belt or pod. Whether your little one is on a seat, your lap or lying down, they can be safely buckled at any time.

Skycouch infant harness and belt

To secure your infant in their own seat, they wear a harness which is then fastened by a belt to the window seat. You can adjust the belt for a snug fit to keep you child safe.

Secure baby on an adult's lap by looping the adult's seat belt through the back of the Infant Harness.

The harness comes in three sizes:

 
Small

< 5kgs

< 65cm

 
Medium

5 - 10kgs

65 - 85cms

 
Large

10 - 18kgs

85 - 110cms

Infant pod

The infant pod lets babies sleep comfortably and securely with you on a Skycouch. There are a limited number of infant pods on each flight.

Your baby will need to fit within the infant pod. Its dimensions are:

  • 700mm long
  • 320mm wide at the top and 220mm wide at the foot
  • 150mm deep

Both the harness and belt, and pod are free for Skycouch customers.

Find out more about booking a Skycouch.

Air New Zealand Economy kids meal.

Meals and activities packs

Keeping kids fed and entertained can be a full-time job when travelling. Here's what's included with your fare, and what you can bring onboard.

Infants

If your baby is on solids or formula, you can bring your own baby food and feeding equipment on board. Please note we don't have facilities for sterilising water or equipment.

If your flight has a meal service, you can ask for an infant meal on long haul flights. You can request an infant meal when you book your flight. You can also add an infant meal on the Air NZ mobile app or online.

Children's meals

We'll keep little tummies happy with healthy options, and a few good kiwi treats too.

We only serve snacks on our domestic flights, but you can ask for children's meals on:

  • All long haul international flights
  • Pacific and Tasman flights when your ticket includes a meal

To order, select the children's meal option when you book. If you've already booked, you can request a children's meal on the Air NZ mobile app or online.

Here's a taster of a typical children's menu.

  • Main meal: Waitoa free range chicken tenders with roasted kumara and broccoli. Or penne pasta with beef bolognese. Served with Kapiti ice cream, cheese stick, fruit juice and sliced apple.
  • Breakfast: Cinnamon hotcakes with apple and raisin compote. Fresh fruit salad, muffin and juice.
  • Snacks: Available on long haul or to purchase on short haul - Rookie Cookie, potato chips and fruit juice.

We try to serve the kids before the adults so you can help them eat, before relaxing with your own meal.

BYO snacks

Kids like familiar foods, and eating on their own schedule. To make your travel a little easier, you're welcome to bring your own food on board. Some things to remember:

  • We can't heat or refrigerate your food
  • Don't get caught out by airport security restrictions on liquids, pastes and gels
  • Don't take any leftovers past border control. Leave them with us for safe disposal.

Special dietary requirements

A selection of special meals are available on our long-haul international flights. We cater for a range of allergies and dietary restrictions. You can order one of our available special meals when you book your flight. If you've already booked, you can choose a special meal using the Air NZ mobile app or online.

Please request your child's special meal at least 24 hours before you depart.

If your child has an allergy, we can work with you to manage allergies when travelling.

Entertainment

Kids' activities packs

Sometimes you just need to pull out something new to keep the kids busy. When you book an international flight and order a children's meal, we include a fun kid's pack.

Inflight entertainment

Select the "Kids" button on our inflight entertainment screens. It gives your kids access to age-appropriate movies, TV shows, music and games.

Special situations

Travelling with more than five children

Air travel can be a fun adventure for children, but it can also be a little overwhelming. To keep everyone happy, safe and relaxed, it's best to travel with at least one adult for every five children.

Travelling with someone else's children

Airlines are careful to ensure all young people are safe when they travel. They may be cautious if you're travelling with someone under 18 and you're not their parents. We recommend you carry:

  • A letter of consent signed by the child's parent or lawful guardian
  • A copy of the child's birth certificate.

Travelling with someone else's children from a French Territory

French laws are very specific about travelling with children.

If you're leaving a French Territory (other than Noumea) with someone else's under-18 child, you must carry:

  • The child's passport with a visa, if applicable
  • A permit to travel, also known as an AST or l'autorisation de sortie du territoire. It must be signed by the child's parent or legal guardian.
  • A photocopied ID document of the parent or legal guardian who signed the permit to travel

Travelling in a different cabin to your children

When flying Air New Zealand, you can travel in one cabin class and leave your children in another. The only exception is our service between London and Auckland, NZ001 and NZ002.

  • Children must all be at least five years old
  • You will need to pay the full adult fare for their seat
  • You must collect and care for your children at the end of the flight, and during any stopovers

Some airlines don't allow your children to fly in a different cabin. If you're connecting to a codeshare or partner flight, please check with them for their rules.