Travelling with children
Travelling with children can be a challenge, but we're doing everything we can to get your family holiday off to a good start - from porters to help with your bags, family friendly restaurants and kids zones. We're committed to trying to help families and have put our support behind Family Friendly, the new nationwide scheme that puts families first. Let Family Friendly know about your experience at Gatwick today.
Find out what's on offer for families travelling through Gatwick:
Book your parking in advance for our best deals. All our parking options are family-friendly and our valet parking and return valet services are perfect for families. Check all our parking options to see which suits you best or book valet parking now.
If you’ve got lots of luggage, but not enough hands our porter service could be just what you need. Pre-book and a porter can meet you from the train or forecourt and help you to check-in. On your return they can meet you in the baggage reclaim hall and help you to your point of onward travel.
Find out more or book a porter
We’ve created special assistance lanes for both departing and arriving families. Our separate security lane gives families travelling with young children in buggies extra help through security. Simply follow the signs for assistance lanes after you've checked in. Following on from the success of our security assistance lanes, working with UKBA, we've also introduced assistance lanes through immigration to help families arriving back at Gatwick. Our staff will be on hand during busy times to give some extra help.
We’ve created the ideal area to keep your little ones entertained while you’re waiting in the departure lounge. Our new kids zones provide a separate area for the kids to play and watch TV with plenty of seating for parents. They're free of charge to use and make keeping an eye on the kids just that little bit easier.
The play areas are located upstairs in the South Terminal departure lounge opposite Café Rouge and behind Boots in North Terminal departure lounge.
If you’d like to have the use of a lounge during your time at the airport, then both the Servisair and No.1 lounges offer designated areas for families with children under 12. With TVs and board games for the kids, as well as all the usual facilities you’d expect to find for adults, this is the perfect way to start your holiday.
In the South Terminal, the Servisair Lingfield lounge is specially geared for the kids with a separate children’s area with video games and computers. In North Terminal, the new No.1 lounge has separate family areas for the under 6's, a games room and even a cinema for older children.
All our restaurants and bars will be happy to help families travelling through Gatwick. We've got a range of family friendly restaurants to suit everyone's tastes and budgets.
See our A-Z of eating for a full list of our family friendly restaurants and cafes.
And remember, any of our restaurants, cafes and bars will be happy to offer you a glass of tap water, free of charge.
Specially equipped rooms for feeding and changing babies are indicated by either a bottle sign or a babycare symbol. Changing facilities are provided in the check-in area, en route to the gates, in the transfer area and after passport control in arrivals. There are also fold-down tables provided in some male and female toilets.
You may carry enough baby milk or baby food for your journey in your hand luggage. However, you should pack the rest in your checked-in baggage. Please be aware that you may be asked to taste baby food or milk as you go through security. You can also pre-order cartons of baby milk to collect from Boots in the departures lounge by calling the relevant Boots store. Boots pharmacy also supplies other baby and toddler essentials including nappies, formula milk and baby wipes.
English Mum blogger, Becky Wiggins, has put together some great advice for travelling with kids. You can also read her latest blog after recent Gatwick visit:
Becky Wiggins shares her top tips for families to help counteract the stress that can be induced when travelling with children:
- Go with the flow and treat the journey as an adventure - if you don’t get stressed, then the kids won’t pick up on it.
- Pack your child’s rucksacks with interesting things to do: crayons, colouring books, a favourite book or toy (make sure you check if they want to help – although my son once packed scissors and a spud gun!)
- Save a couple of surprises to be whipped out when things are getting stressful
- Most airlines load children first, but It’s not always best to be first on board – sometimes taking an extra few minutes of freedom before being cooped up on a plane journey is a bonus
- Distribute essentials between bags - in case the one with all the important baby items goes missing
- Scan everything and email it to yourself - passports, tickets and travel insurance – you never know when things need replacing on holiday, and it’s much easier if you have all the details
- When travelling with younger children, pack an emergency bag - wet wipes, tissues, change of clothes and most importantly a sealable plastic bag
- Leave plenty of time to get to the airport – then add an hour – airports are great places to explore and an extra hour at the airport is preferable to a meltdown in a traffic jam worrying about missing your flight