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Early Morning Flight Tips For Families

On our recent family vacation to Grand Cayman, our first flight was at 5:55 am. Since our ultimate destination was another country, we were expected to be at the airport two hours in advance – 3:55 am! Waking up before 3 am isn’t exactly easy, but the earlier you leave, the earlier you arrive and start your vacation.

You can sometimes get some great flight deals with these early flights too. If you are flying from an area with flight delays, it can be a good idea to leave early before Here are 6 early morning flight tips for your next family flight.

6 Early morning flight tips for your next family vacation with an early morning flight with kids.

Early Morning Flight Tips For Families

Know what time the airport opens

In the past, I’ve arrived 2 hours before my flight departs only to find that I was the only person at the airport – arriving even before the airport security. Call ahead to find out what time the ticket counter and TSA open – you may be able to get a little more sleep!

Keep in mind that sometimes security and the ticket counters open even before restaurants and coffee shops. So when I have an early morning flight, I usually pack breakfast bars in my suitcase so I don’t have to worry about finding an open place for breakfast.

Early Morning Flight Tips

Set several alarms so you wake up on time

When I have to get up early, I don’t always get restful sleep. I’m worried about oversleeping. Setting several alarms is a good way to feel more confident that you will wake up on time.

If I’m at a hotel that offers wake up calls, I also do that. It’s a good extra step in making sure you can get as much sleep as possible.

Leap Day Deals

Prep the night before for your flight and trip

You already have to wake up early. Make sure you can get as much sleep as possible. I usually wake up early and then

For our early morning flight to Grand Cayman, my kids slept in their clothes so they would be ready to go. I usually shower the night before and wash and dry my hair. Then, the next morning, I take a quick shower wearing my shower cap just to help me wake up.

I also make sure that all of my bags are packed as much as possible. I leave a list with last-minute items by my toothbrush so that I am sure to pack them right before I leave.

Check in to your flight the day before. Pay for your checked bags in advance, and double-check your seat assignments. That will help you save some time at the airport. Of course, if you can just carry-on, you’ll be able to go right to security, which means you can arrive a few minutes later.

Plane wing over land

Be ready for a nap on your flight

After I’m settled on the flight, I usually want to go right back to sleep. So, I wear no/minimal makeup and skip putting on my contact lenses until I’m at my destination. If it’s a long flight, I pack a blanket and a pillow for each of us so we can get some sleep before we arrive.

Early morning flight tips
Suitcases packed for our Italy vacation

Pack everything in advance

You want to be almost 100% ready to go in the morning, so be sure to pack everything except the few last-minute items that you need in the morning. I also recommend that you make a list of the bags you are bringing, and stack them by the door so you are ready to walk out of the house. That way, you won’t forget an essential suitcase, garment bag, briefcase, or other carry-on bags.

Have your transportation to the airport set in advance

If you are leaving at a very early hour, you’ll want to make sure you have your airport transportation set up in advance. Rideshare services may be tough to get at such an early hour, and you don’t want to risk missing your flight.

When I’m home and flying early, I often plan on driving myself to the airport. Even if you do decide to do that, you’ll want to make sure you have enough gas in the car and are ready to go.

If you are relying on someone else to get you to the airport, schedule it in advance. Confirm the day before so you are all set in the morning.

Do you take early morning flights with your family? What are your tips?

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Tony @PasationTravel

Saturday 13th of September 2014

Great tips Jodi! I remember arriving early for an international flight, not realizing that the airport did not open until 1 hour prior to take off. The travel agent advised me to be there 3 hour prior. So there I sat in the parking lot for 2 hours listening to "why can't we go inside the airport Dad" Lesson learned. I'll remember to use multiple alarm clocks next time. Safe travels, Tony

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