Pumping & Flying Like a BOSS

Pumping is probably the least glamorous thing ever, even more so when you are trying to figure out how to get it done while traveling/flying. But it IS possible! When I was interviewing for new positions, I took 4 flights in a matter of 10 days.  The nature of the positions I was interviewing for were remote/work from home admission positions for Colleges that were in different states, hence the flights.  So I figured out really quickly how to navigate pumping/traveling with breast milk in airports and flying.  So here are some of my tips!  Keep in mind, this was traveling without baby.


I bought a little mini canvas cooler, although I wish I did have a plastic one because as your ice melts it leaked through my cooler a little bit, nothing major though.  They will allow you to carry it on with you no problem and it doesn’t count as an extra carry on.
You will put it on the belt through security as you would everything else and then somebody will take you aside to check it.  They just run a test on the milk itself, and it is super quick.  Just a little awkward when they are pulling out your milk and everybody is looking 😉   Bring ice blocks if you have them because they typically will not make you throw those away.

To Bring:

  • Your pump, obviously and maybe 2-4 bottles to pump into at most, I recommend only using bottles while you are actually pumping and bags for storage
  • Mini Cooler
  • Ice blocks
  • Breast milk bags:  this is where I stored all the milk I pumped on the trip too, not bottles, bags pack so much easier in the cooler and you can fit more in.
  • Empty ziploc bags:  Just in case your ice blocks melt or are not as cool, you can get some ice from a restaurant or McDonalds in the airport.
  • Little mini wash clothes just in case of leakage or spill etc.
  • Hand sanitizer and/or wipes
  • Portable charge for your pump in case you are not able to find an actual outlet

In terms of actual pumping, most airports have a nice Mother’s Room with a comfy chair, outlet and sink.  Be sure to find out a head of time if this room is actually before or AFTER security as it does vary at some airports

Hope this helps! 🙂

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