Need to Know: Flying Ryanair with a baby or toddler

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Will you be flying Ryanair with a baby, toddler or young child soon? Some of their rules and fees for babies and toddlers might come as a surprise to some families.

Here’s a guide to important information and details to know before flying Ryanair with a baby or young children.

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tips for parents flying Ryanair with a baby or toddler

Flying Ryanair with an infant less than 2 years old:

Infants and babies less than 24 months flying on laps:

Minimum age for travel: Infants must be at least 8 days old to fly on Ryanair.

Lap infant fares: For both domestic and international flights, Ryanair charges a flat fare of 25€/25£ each way for a lap-held infant or child less than 2 years old.

Seating requirements: Be sure to reserve a window seat for whichever adult will hold the baby because only these seats are equipped with two oxygen masks on Ryanair.

Infant baggage allowance: Lap-held children are not allowed a carry-on bag or checked suitcase of their own. However, parents are permitted to bring a diaper bag with essentials weighing less than 5kg (dimensions: 45 x 35 x 20cms) into the cabin in addition to their own carry-on cabin baggage.

See baggage rules below for information on checking baby equipment (including strollers, car seats, bassinets) for your infant.

Lap children can now be booked online on Ryanair.com. If you need to add an infant to an existing reservation, you’ll need to call the airline.

Infants and toddlers up to 24 months flying in paid seats on Ryanair:

IMPORTANT: Ryanair does not allow babies less than 1 year old to fly in their own seat for all portions of the flight (see note on “infant comfort seat” below).

If your child is between 12 months and 2 years and you would like them to fly in an airplane seat with the CARES flight safety harnes or a car seat for all phases of your flight, contact Ryanair.

See more details below in Using car seats on Ryanair or the CARES harness:

What is an “infant comfort seat” on Ryanair flights?

It is possible to purchase what Ryanair calls an “infant comfort seat,” eg. an extra seat for a child less than 2 years old who will not fly with an airline-approved flight restraint (car seat or CARES harness to occupy during the cruise portion of the flight.

However, you can only make this reservation by phoning Ryanair’s call center (find the number to call from your country here).

Using car seats on Ryanair or the CARES harness:

CARES safety harness for kids flying without a car seat
The CARES safety harness for kids 1 year and older flying without a car seat.

IMPORTANT: Ryanair allows only forward-facing car seats (child safety seats) certified for air travel. Alternatively, they accept the Kids Fly Safe CARES flight safety harness. For more, see my full review of the CARES harness here – and see note about avoiding counterfeit CARES.)

Your car seat must have either of the following certification labels:

  • Car seats from the U.S. must be labeled the “Certified for use in motor vehicles and aircraft”
  • Car seats from Europe must have the European Standard Mark.

Contact reservations well in advance to ensure your child will have an appropriate seat where either restraint may be used.

Ryanair also advises your child’s car seat be no more than 17″ wide — though car seats narrower than that are hard to come by. For the best U.S. market toddler car seats for travel, including the narrow and folding Pico WAYB car seat, see my recommendations here.

Ryanair airplane about to land at airport.
Photo: Pixabay/DirkDanielMann

Ryanair baggage allowance for baby equipment:

Free checked baby gear: Ryanair allows two free checked pieces of baby equipment per infant. These can be a pushchair or stroller plus either a car seat or bassinet.

Strollers and Pushchairs: Collapsible pushchairs/strollers may be used right up the gate. However, other items must be checked at the ticket counter (closes 40 minutes before flight).

Checking additional baby equipment and gear? You can check up to two additional pieces of baby equipment or child travel items for a fee.  Pay 15€/15£ per item when included in your online booking, or 25€/25£ when paid at the airport (for car seats, safety boosters, travel cots, etc.).

Renting baby gear at your destination: If it’s more convenient, you may instead be able to rent baby equipment at your destination. See the Worldwide Directory of Baby Gear Rentals for more.

See next note for information about child discounts on Ryanair.

Praise for Shelly Rivoli's Travels with Baby guidebook for parents

What parents should know about Ryanair Family Plus

Some kids can fly free on Ryanair with Family Plus

When booking your Ryanair reservation, it’s possible for kids under 12 years to get free seats on flights with a paying adult under the Family Plus bundle option.

How many kids fly free? Remarkably, for an airline known for nickel-and-diming passengers, up to 4 kids under 12 years could fly for free with one paying parent booking a Family Plus bundle.

However, you may be limited to seat availability on certain rows, which will be shown in your options during the online booking process. Be sure to book your reservation as early as possible.

Why else would families want to book a Ryanair Family Plus bundle?

The Ryanair “Family Plus Bundle” is available to all bookings (single reservation) with up to six passengers that include at least one child up to 15 years old. Note: Kids 16 years and older are priced as adults on Ryanair flights, and only kids under 12 years qualify for free seats.

With the Family Plus bundle, the whole family receives the following baggage allowance:

  • 1 small cabin bag or carry-on bag for the entire group, up to 40x20x25 cm and will fit beneath the seat in front of you
  • 1 10 kg. checked bag for each group member on the reservation
  • Free seats for any children under 12 years on the reservation
  • 1 20 kg. checked suitcase for the whole family (must be checked at the Bag Drop Desk).

Have your choice of airlines? Remember you can compare any available discounts, special perks, and amenities for travelers with babies and young children among 46 different airlines in the Airlines Comparison Table in Part 5 Travels with Baby: The Ultimate Guide for Planning Travel with Your Baby, Toddler, and Preschooler.


You might also like:

Flying with a Baby or Toddler Advice Index (Start here!)

Seven Easy Ways to Get Your Car Seat Through the Airport

Tips to Help Babies and Children Avoid Ear Pain in Flight

How to Travel with a Car Seat (Without Losing Your Mind)

How to Plan Your best Vacation with Baby

Directory of Baby Equipment Hire Agencies in Europe

Best Lightweight Travel Strollers and Pushchairs

Ten Essential Tips for Planning a Great Vacation with Grandparents

Car seats in Taxis and What You Need to Know


More Need-to-Know Airline Posts:

Aer Lingus with a Baby or Toddler

Virgin Atlantic with a Baby or Toddler

American Airlines with a Baby or Toddler

Southwest Airlines with a Baby or Toddler

Alaska Airlines with a Baby or Toddler

China Airlines with a Baby or Toddler

Gulf Air with a Baby or Toddler

Safe journeys,

Shelly Rivoli, author of the award-winning Travels with Baby guidebooks

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Curious about this content? See my editorial content disclosure.


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