New Zealand to Ireland with 2 children

December 6, 2011 0 By Little Gulliver

Jude said: December 6 2011 9:19 AM

Hi,

I just purchased a Cares harness for long haul flight from New Zealand to Ireland with 2 children on my own. I wanted to avoid lugging the bulky carseat around airports esp as I haven’t got the spare hands! Air NZ specify the cares harness but unsure of Aer lingus, where can I get a letter for crew if I come across any problems?

Many thanks.

Ben @ Travel Toddler said: December 6 2011 11:07 AM 

Hello Jude,

Thanks for your CARES query and your order, the parcel will be shipped to you today.

The best approach with Aer Lingus seems to be the approach followed by a customer recently on the USA CARES facebook page. Back in Sept 2011 they said they emailed Aer Lingus saying they were using the CARES and received the following email:

New Aer Lingus statement:

AMSAFE CARES harnesses are permitted on board, but not as the primary restraint. The harness must be used in conjunction with the aircraft seat belt.

Harnesses by other manufacturers such as CRELLING require special Irish Aviation Authority authorisation. This authorisation requires some extra time to arrange, therefore passengers who require such a harness should contact Aer Lingus special assistance; specialassistance@aerlingus.com as soon as possible in advance of the flight. The make and model of the harness should be included along with details of any other particular requirements.

The CARES customer then received a further Aer Lingus email:

And my final follow up-Received an email this morning from aer lingus stating CARES is permitted and that cabin crew have now been made aware and given instruction on how to use it. This is from the Aer Lingus head office in Dublin.

It’s also worth noting that Aer Lingus are not very clear with their car seat approval process either and seem to leave it at the discretion of the staff on the day. This is from their website:

Please be advised that with the number and variety of infant car seats available on the market it is not possible for us to guarantee in advance that any particular seat is suitable for use. In the interests of safety, Aer Lingus reserves the right to refuse permission for the use of certain types of car seats on the aircraft or during take off and landing. In these circumstances the infant must be carried on the adult’s lap (under 2 years) or in a seat using the standard lap belt (2 years and over). Safety is always our first consideration.

We’d recommend taking a copy of our airline list (attached) that shows what our local airlines say on their website about the approved use of CARES. Also, try and have it noted on your booking that you intend to use the CARES harness. Also, show any curious airline staff the tag on the CARES unit that states FAA approval and “Approved for Aircraft Use”.

Hope this helps, have a great trip.

Kind regards

Ben