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Guest Blog: Flying Solo for the First Time…as a Ten-Year-Old

This year Rob and I decided that Demi was going to fly by herself for the first time to visit family in new Hampshire. I looked at this as a life-enhancing experience that would help her become more self-confident and independent. Rob basically wanted to puke. However, we decided that sometimes you’ve gotta let your kids spread their wings and FLY (by themselves)! (Rob and I did track her plane with the Flight View iPhone App which was awesome!)
I thought that other parents and children may enjoy hearing about the experience from the child’s perspective. Here’s Demi Murgatroyd’s first ever blog about her first flight on a plane by herself.

Hi, I am Demi Murgatroyd and I am ten years old. For the first time I flew on a plane by myself from Atlanta to New Hampshire. At first, I was excited, but I was also definitely scared! A couple days before the flight I was nervous about flying without my parents, but luckily I have flown on a plane before with them and I know exactly what I need to do. On the day of my flight, I arrived at the Atlanta airport and got in the Delta “unaccompanied minor” line. (I sort of felt like I wanted to throw-up and have diarrhea at the same time.) While in line, I met another ten-year-old girl who told me that she flew from Atlanta to California when she was only six years old! When I heard that, I felt a lot better about my flight. After I checked in, they gave me a wrist band and a sticker to put on my shirt. It told everyone I was an “unaccompanied minor”, something that definitely didn’t make me feel very cool! After I got my ticket, my Smother (my word for Step-Mother) took me through security. Next, we grabbed some breakfast and sat at the gate. While I was eating my breakfast, the gate-agent called for all “unaccompanied minors” to come to the desk. As an “unaccompanied minor” you get to board the plane way before anyone else, which is really cool, but I was not expecting to be called that early. I gave my Smother a big hug goodbye and… then came the waterworks. I was crying because I was going to miss my parents and also I was scared. But I had to go, so off to the plane I went. The flight attendant helped me put away my carry-on and made sure I was ready for flight. Then I began to write in my diary, here is my first entry.

“I am soooooo scared right now. I really miss my parents and friends. I really wish I could stop crying because it is getting embarrassing.”

But, I did stop crying and it actually wasn’t as bad as I thought! After a few minutes, I forgot all about it and started watching movies on my iPod. The best thing about flying is FREE REFILLS! And no one is there to tell you what you can get, so of course I had a whole can of Coke! (Keep that on the D.L. and don’t tell my parents) About two and a half hours later the flight landed. I had to wait for everyone else to get off first so the flight attendant could walk me off the plane (how BORING!). Once we got to the gate, I saw my Memere (which is French for Grandmother) waiting for me. She had to sign a paper and I was free to go! The return flight was a breeze and I can’t wait to fly alone again! So, if your a kid and you’re going to be flying by yourself, I know you’re scare but don’t worry, it’s easy! Here’s a little secret, it’s actually more fun than flying with your parents!

Demi’s tips for flying alone:

1. Bring a DVD player, iPod or MP3 player so you can watch movies, TV shows or listen to music. Make sure you bring your charger so you can have it for the return flight too!

2. Bring a couple books or magazines to read while the plane is taking off and landing because you’ll have to shut off all electronic devices.

3. Bring a comfortable neck pillow and blanket for longer flights so you can take a nap.

4. Bring a couple of snacks on board for longer flights so you don’t get hungry.

5. Remember, if you need anything, just hit the flight-attendant call button, she’ll show you where it is:-)

6. HAVE FUN! It’s easy!

If any kids reading have any questions about flying alone, just post a comment or send me an email through my parents.

B4N (“Bye for now” for those non-texters),

Demi

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18 Comments

  • Reply Yana Stowe January 9, 2009 at 8:23 am

    Wow, great job Demi!!! I’m glad you had a pleasant flight experience and thanks for sharing it with us ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply Memere and Papou January 9, 2009 at 8:28 am

    Demi,
    Great job with your blog. Now that you’re a pro, we expect to read something about every place you go.
    Love,
    Memere and Papou

  • Reply David Tilton January 9, 2009 at 9:56 am

    Demi,
    What a wonderful piece on your first experience flying alone. It looks like you have a great future as both a lucent writer/blogger and a world traveler!

  • Reply Stephanie January 9, 2009 at 11:56 am

    I’m so proud of you, Demi! This blog is awesome ๐Ÿ™‚ You did a super-fabulous job! I’m glad you had fun – although I can only imagine the sugar rush from that can of Coke! LOL ๐Ÿ™‚ And you are so adorable as your picture. And I agree with yoru Memere & Papou, I want see more Demi blog posts in the future ๐Ÿ™‚ –HUGS, Stephanie

  • Reply Katie January 9, 2009 at 9:53 pm

    Great post! I too traveled a lot to visit family as an unaccompanied minor. You’ll be ahead of the game when your friends begin to fly on their own and hopefully you can pass on this advice!

  • Reply Anna Durrence January 10, 2009 at 8:56 pm

    Hey Dem Dem!!! I’m very, very proud of you!! Excellent writing….you kept me interested the entire time! Love you very much! Aunt Anna

  • Reply Anna Durrence January 10, 2009 at 8:58 pm

    Oh, can’t WAIT to see what you write about taking a trip with your boring ole aunt and uncle to DISNEY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! lol ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply Katie Schelzel January 11, 2009 at 9:42 am

    Wow! Great job! It sounds like you had a blast! I promise never to tell your parens about your soda-spree ; )
    Keep blogging, Demi, you’re fabulous!

  • Reply Todd March 4, 2009 at 4:51 pm

    Cute, maybe the best blog on the site!

    I think I was 24 the first time I flew alone!

  • Reply Rungpruhat S. April 28, 2009 at 2:04 am

    all i know is keep blogging Demi! after i read your blog, i told my 14 yrs old nephew to fly alone and it works

  • Reply oppondene May 5, 2009 at 12:51 am

    eh.. luv it..

  • Reply Paulita May 12, 2009 at 3:35 pm

    Thank you so much for writing this. I just sent it to my kids (11 and 10) who will be flying by themselves for the first time to England! We all are nervous!

  • Reply Bobbie! May 19, 2010 at 10:45 am

    Hey Demi,

    I just read this for the first time. I have a five-year-old great-niece who splits her time between California and spending vacations and summers with me. She is a pro at flying back and forth between the coasts, but it is getting expensive for adults to have to fly back and forth with her. We know she will be traveling by herself sooner than we would like. Six is a little young; we might wait until she is eight. But thank you for your sage advice about carrying a DVD, Mp3 or iPod with her. For such a long flight, she will be able to download a few of her favorite movies and watch them. I am sure it will help pass the time quickly. That is terrific advice. Same for the snacks too! Great job. I hope you keep blogging. You have a knack for it.

  • Reply 50 Articles and Blogs That Offer Tips for Flying June 28, 2010 at 9:15 am

    […] Kids Flying Solo for the First Time: Ten-year-old Demi shares her experiences and tips for other kids traveling alone for the first time. […]

  • Reply drew October 18, 2010 at 5:22 am

    i am scared to travle today for the first time without my mum i am goin withjust a few friends help any ideas? not to wrorry ๐Ÿ™ i am 12 btw x

  • Reply hunter December 18, 2010 at 11:58 pm

    hi!
    demi i am a girl your age i am about to fly by my self ur blog rellay helped me thank u!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! : $ … !!!!

  • Reply hunter December 19, 2010 at 12:00 am

    GOOD JOB !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Reply Megan April 15, 2011 at 7:43 pm

    Heyy demi,
    Great Job !!
    I’m just wondering cause my dad lives in Australia and I really want to go see him in July but I don’t want to fly alone !?!?! The journey is split into 3 different flights and it will be a looong day. Should I do it ??
    Megan xx oh and I’m 13 btw soz ๐Ÿ™‚

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