A guerrilla approach to flying with kids

"No, we can't have a snack yet."   

"Please don't run through the security line."

"You don't have to take your shoes off anymore."

I can sense those travelers who fear my active 3-year-old as we head toward the airport security line.

If you're not lucky enough to get into the child-free section of an AirAsia airplane, which recently announced seven rows of kid-free sitting, I promise you have nothing to fear from me. As we approach the X-ray machines, my child and I go into guerrilla traveling mode.

I've packed almost everything we need into my hiking backpack, the contents of which I lay out on the conveyer belt: the computer with Sesame Street episodes, a snack bag including two 8-ounce milk boxes (I alert security officials to the milk, which doesn't violate the 3-ounce liquid rule because it's for a small child) and jackets, belts and shoes.

I carry her through the security screening machine -- she cries when I try to get her to walk -- and we wait for our things to clear security. A security official waves a magic wand over the milk. We get dressed, pack, buy expensive water and get to our gate on time.

You, too, can survive your flight and earn brownie points from childless travelers. As families head to the airport for holiday travel, here are a few of my family's travel-tested suggestions to have a better trip.