Flying on American Airlines?
If your trip includes flights on American, read their rules for traveling while pregnant and with children before you travel.
Traveling with children
Book as early as possible to improve your chances of sitting together, and choose seats when you book. You can always log in, check the seat map and change seats later.
If you can’t find seats together when you book, keep trying!
- Choose available seats when you book, and then log in and check the seat map periodically; seats often open up during the week before a flight.
- If you don’t have seat assignments together on the day of your flight, get to the airport early and ask an agent for help; he or she will try to accommodate you.
- You can check a stroller or car seat at the ticket counter or gate for no charge.
Traveling during pregnancy
If your due date is within 7 days of your flight, you must provide a doctor's certificate, dated within 72 hours of departure, stating that he or she has examined you and determined that you are fit to fly.
A passenger younger than 2 years (24 months) is considered an infant. We will accept an infant as young as 2 days old. Infants must be accompanied by a person 16 years or older or by the infant's parent (any age) in the same cabin. We recommend that you travel with a birth certificate if your child is younger than 2.
You have 2 options for traveling with an infant:
Infant (in lap)
On flights within the U.S., a parent or any adult 16 or older may travel with 1 infant (in lap).
On international flights, an infant (in lap) may require a paper ticket, and you may have to pay 10% of the published available adult fare and international taxes and surcharges. Taxes and surcharges are not discounted.
Occasionally, a number of passengers traveling with an infant (in lap) are booked on the same flight, and some will be required to travel on a later flight to ensure a sufficient number of life vests for all passengers.
Infant in a reserved seat
If your infant will travel in his or her own seat, you must buy a ticket and bring a safety seat approved by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
Acceptable safety seats
Safety seats approved only for aircraft use should say 'FAA approved in accordance with 14 CFR 21.305(d) approved for aircraft use only' and include a warning label indicating that it's not safe for use in motor vehicles.
Safety seats approved for use in aircraft and motor vehicles must have a solid back and seat, restraint straps installed to securely hold the child and a label indicating approval for use on an aircraft.
The label may include:
- This note: 'This child restraint system conforms to all Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards' and 'This Restraint is Certified for Use in Motor Vehicles and Aircrafts.'
- Approval of a foreign government or a label showing that the seat was manufactured under the standards of the United Nations
- FAA approval through an STC
- 'FAA Approved' in Accordance with 14 CFR 21.305(d)
- 'TSO C−100B'
The FAA strongly urges parents to secure their child in an approved child restraint system when flying. The safest place for a child on an airplane is in a government-approved child safety restraint system (CRS).
Restraint devices approved for cruise portion of flight only
Other restraint devices, such as belly belts and snugglies, are allowed only during the cruise portion of flight. These attach to the adult or his or her seatbelt.
Safety seat requirements
- Show your ticket and the child’s ticket when you board.
- To carry on a safety seat, you must have bought a seat for the child, or a seat must be available next to you.
- The safety seat can't be used in an exit row or in the rows on either side of an exit row.
- If you're travelling with 2 children in safety seats, seat them in the middle and window seats, with you on the aisle.
- The child must remain in the safety seat with the harness fastened during taxi, takeoff, landing and whenever the 'fasten seatbelt' sign is on.
- Install the safety seat in forward-facing aircraft seats according to the instructions on the label. Place the seat in the direction appropriate for the size of the child.