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Tips to prepare 12 yo boy travelling as unaccompanied minor

Sydney, New South...
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Tips to prepare 12 yo boy travelling as unaccompanied minor

Hi there,

I am flying my 12 year old son from Sydney to Hong Kong in April with Cathay Pacific.

He has flown quite a few times before but always with family and feels a little anxious about the upcoming experience. He's a cautious kid and not overly mature or confident but not shy. He is now in Year 7 (first year of high school).

I want to prepare him for the experience. His father will take him to airport staff after which he will be cared for by ground and then flight staff. I will receive him in Hong Kong.

Can other parents or past UMs (now adult) offer me any suggestions or tips for preparing him and otherwise making this as easy as possible?

Thanks very much,

KimT

Sydney, New South...
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398 posts
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21. Re: Tips to prepare 12 yo boy travelling as unaccompanied minor

Hi.

Yes. All his previous travel has been with me. This would be his first time unaccompanied & for me, the first time I have used this UM service.

Sorry for any confusion.

Kim

22. Re: Tips to prepare 12 yo boy travelling as unaccompanied minor

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Sydney, New South...
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398 posts
70 reviews
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23. Re: Tips to prepare 12 yo boy travelling as unaccompanied minor

Sorry if I am upsetting some folk here. Not intended.

Thanks everyone for your patience. I am greatly indebted to the TripAdvisor community for so many things over the time.

Happy travels,

Kim

Illinois
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24. Re: Tips to prepare 12 yo boy travelling as unaccompanied minor

The main thing I would recommend is that he and you both have cell phones that will work in Hong Kong. My daughter flew as a UAM to Paris and they never brought her to the UAM meeting place in CDG (this was Air France). My cell phone wasn't working so she couldn't contact me, so I had to go to the info desk several times to get them to call AF to bring her. In retrospect, she would have been better flying on her own (she was 15) except she had a connection and I was afraid she would get stuck in DTW and not be able to get a hotel room.

On a nonstop flight, that's not such a big deal. Will they let your husband take him to the gate for his departing flight? A lot of times airlines will give out a gate pass to get through security. It may be that all he needs is that and the assistance through immigration. My daughter says she'd rather not go than fly as a UAM again. Of course she had a 7 hour layover in DTW (because she couldn't fly on the last flight of the day so I couldn't book the preferred connections) and had to sit in a room with nothing to do but watch cartoons. Fortunately she can amuse herself as she doesn't like cartoons. That won't be a problem on a nonstop flight, however.

Sydney, New South...
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398 posts
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25. Re: Tips to prepare 12 yo boy travelling as unaccompanied minor

Hi, Just popping back here quickly to say that all went well with Qantas & my son flying as UM.

Like many of us flying economy he didn't like the food served much (but had his own snacks) and found it hard to sleep (but it was a day flight so no biggie).

But he got to meet the pilot and see the cockpit (while on the ground) so that was a nice bonus.

We really enjoyed Hong Kong but we came back to reality yesterday.

Thanks again for all of your help.

Kim & Ashley

26. Re: Tips to prepare 12 yo boy travelling as unaccompanied minor

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