I Made A Travel Journal To Record My Sons Flights
Everyone knows that there are only two ways to get to Tasmania. One is by boat, the other by plane. Many families opt to take the boat with their own cars or caravans from the mainland, to explore our beautiful State. Kids on planes can be rather daunting, even though it is on a short flight from Melbourne to Tassie at that. However, one Tassie mum loves flying with her kids, having visited over 30 countries herself before settling in Hobart with her husband and two children Angus (6) and Bethany (3). This inspiring mum conceived the idea for this logbook after her son was born, having searched unsuccessfully for something to record details of his many flights for him to look back on in years to come.
Images: A plane flies overhead, and Launceston Airport. Images cutesy of V.Mann
Her solution - the Junior Flyer Log Book. The Junior Flyer Logbook was written and published by Vanessa Mann of Hobart in 2017. Filled with charming illustrations, the book is packed with trivia, facts about flying, profiles of common passenger aircraft, pull out maps, and most importantly, it has space to record details of up to 36 flights. “I wanted to create something a child can use to capture memories of flying, and in doing so, this book will become a beautiful and timeless keepsake.” We recently caught up with Vanessa to talk all things flying, with kids and how she manages to run her business from home!
Images: Waiting for luggage to be checked at Hobart , Taking off from Hobart, and Vanessa and her Children at a local market. Images cutesy of V.Mann
TASSIE4KIDS: Introduce yourselves:
VANESSA: I’m Vanessa and I published the Junior Flyer Logbook for kids who travel. I grew up in Wollongong, NSW, and spent about seven years living abroad before settling down in Hobart with my husband Rob.
Have you travelled a lot with your kids? Yes! I actually had to get a new passport once because I ran out of pages, even though it had two years validity left on it! We don’t travel quite so often now that we have children, although my son has done about 46 flights and my daughter has done 16 flights, so they certainly do get around. As a family we have toured all up and down the east coast of Tasmania and out to Strathgordon, as well as many trips to VIC and NSW and three overseas.
Images: Waiting for an early morning flight to Sydney at Hobart Airport, and a page about the Airbus A320 from the Junior Flyer Logbook. Images cutesy of V.Mann
Tell us about Junior Flyers: I sell a flight journal for kids as well as a few small travel accessories such as stickers and luggage tags. I operate from home, mainly doing online sales, whilst I juggle everything else that life brings!
Images: The Junior Flyer Log Book and accessories. Images cutesy of V.Mann
What inspired you to create your log book? When my son was an infant I made many quick weekend trips up to see family in NSW. I wanted to record details of all the flying he was doing, for him to look back on in years to come. I just couldn’t find anything suitable on the market, so I decided to make one myself! So just after my second child was born I teamed up with local Hobart designer Julia Dineen to bring this publication to life. I love her charming illustrations. The book contains facts about flying, profiles of common passenger aircraft, pull out maps, and most importantly, it has space to record details of up to 36 flights. I have created something a child can use to capture memories of flying, and in doing so, this book will become a beautiful keepsake.
Images: The Junior Flyer Log Book. Images cutesy of V.Mann
Did you design it yourself? It’s a beautiful journal! I wrote all the content and came up with the concept for the layout and pictures, and had a professional graphic designer bring my ideas to life. I wanted something with an olde-worlde feel, hard cover that would last the distance, with cute gender-neutral graphics and content.
Is it just for flying or can kids use it for road travel too? There are lots of travel journals on the market that kids can record details of a specific holiday or road trip, but this one is really just to keep a record of all the flights they took, which seat they sat in, where they were going, which airline they flew etc.
Images: Helping Dad at Hobart Airport, Luggage and Check in with the Junior Flyer Log Book. Images cutesy of V.Mann
Where can families buy them? The books are available online at www.juniorflyers.com.au as well as in a number of specialty bookstores and gift shops. Stockist details are available on our website.
What are your five top airplane travel tips for families?
- Allow extra time at the airport particularly in the bigger mainland airports where you can walk a long way, and the budget airlines usually get given the furthest gates!
- Take your own snacks and pack extra food and nappies in case of flight delays, but be careful to choose food that you can take through quarantine if it doesn’t get eaten.
- Take your own headphones for the kids so they can use in-flight entertainment, as the plane-supplied ones are usually too big. Make sure you download the airlines entertainment app onto your devices before you leave home!
- If your kids have crayons or pencils, stick a blob of blue-tac on the sides to stop them rolling onto the floor constantly.
- Buy the kids a new magazine or activity book that you can do together, to keep them occupied on the flight. Talk with them about what’s going on on board, engage with them, and don’t be too dependent on electronic devices.
Images: In the cockpit, The Junior Flyer Log Book and Vanessa and Angus engrosed in his book learning about planes before the flight. Images cutesy of V.Mann
What do you always pack when you fly? Wet wipes / baby wipes for sticky fingers; water bottles and snack food; books / magazines and pencils and pens.
The last in-flight movie you watched with the kids? Captain Underpants
Images: An Australian Airport with a Qantas plane, an airport in the UK, tand an airport in Japan. Images cutesy of V.Mann