This summer we are going on a big trip, so in anticipation, I created these plane travel puppets as a fun airplane activity for toddlers and kids! I’ll be sharing lots of travel tidbits in the next few months, so stay tuned! But meanwhile, you can check out my posts from our last trip 4+ years ago – including these super popular travel sheet printables. Disclosure: this post contains affiliate links.
If you’re in a hurry, you can download the plane travel puppets small set here and full set here. Otherwise, scroll down for my tips for actually bringing these on the plane as an activity and for an explanation of each puppet! You’ll have another opportunity to download them again in the middle and at the end.
One of the most commonly asked questions before a long-haul flight with little ones is “How am I going to keep them sane for all that time, cooped up in a box?!”
The last time we traveled, M was a toddler, and the solution that worked best? A never-ended stream of travel activities for toddlers! Last time, we literally filled a toddler carry on with endless activities, because you never know what they’ll want to do.
Preschoolers and little kids are just as challenging – and sometimes even harder to entertain.
This year, we are going to be traveling from New York to Tel Aviv via Istanbul – that’s a 9+ hour flight followed by a 2+ hour flight! And then there’s the return trip with an almost 4 hour layover… Plus we have two kids this time: an almost six year old and a three year old. So I’ve been working hard on producing new activities, buying loads of things, and of course researching ideas… and I’ll be sharing the ones that worked best for us with you.
First, this fun craft that kids can actually do on the plane while learning all about the workings of the airport.
These plane travel puppets are designed to serve as a fun airplane activity for a large range of ages. Toddlers can have fun scribbling them, and your eight-year-old can do a more polished job.
They are also a great teaching tool for air travel and how things work!
Just a reminder, you can download the plane travel puppets small set here and full set here. Or, scroll down for my tips for actually bringing these on the plane as an activity right below followed by an explanation of each puppet! You’ll have another opportunity to download them at the end.
How to turn these plane travel puppets into an airplane-friendly activity for kids:
- Print the puppets (I recommend card stock for older children who will want them to be good enough quality to use afterward).
- Cut out the puppets in advance (you can’t bring scissors on a plane). If you have a long trip to the airport, you can let older children do this in the car, and then let them leave the scissors behind.
- Place the cut-out puppets in a zip-seal bag with the following:
- Coloring supplies (consider crayons for younger kids who will make a mess). An 8-pack of crayons is enough for the youngest children. Or, send along some novelty crayons that the kids can lose as they wish…
- Adhesive craft sticks. Glue is a liquid and would need to be under 100ml and in a clear zip bag with your other liquids. You can do that too, but it’s a pain – and I recommend keeping things simple with these craft sticks!
You then have an extremely portable airplane activity and craft!
Your kids can not only assemble it and have fun crafting, but it also gives them a travel-themed toy that they can use to talk about their travel experiences.
These plane travel puppets also make a wonderful activity for a binder-style busy bag. I’m still debating how we’ll be packing all our activities – I’ll let you know once I figure it out!
The travel characters in these color-in puppet crafts:
I created a total of fourteen puppets including the following:
- Airplane staff: A pilot (4 shoulder stripes), a copilot (3 shoulder stripes), a male flight attendant and a female flight attendant.
- Ground staff: A TSA security official, an air control tower employee (with the headset), a ground control employee (with the signals and reflective vest), a baggage person.
- Travelers: A family of four – mom, dad, boy, and girl, (If you want a different family structure, simply print the puppets as needed) a business traveler, and a tourist.
You can get the full bundle of travel puppets here.
Want to save a little and don’t need all of it? You can get the smaller bundle with the following characters here: 4 airplane staff, business traveler, and tourist.
I hope you enjoy! Have a safe trip and don’t forget to tag @momsandcrafters in your photos and share them with me – I love seeing what your kids do with my crafts!
And if you want more fun travel activities, you can check out my printable easy paper airplanes templates (includes a free printable full-color and color-in model as well as bigger packages). Don’t forget to subscribe so that you get updates on new kids travel posts!