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Top Travel Gear for Babies and Toddlers

Published on: May 15, 2013

Winter has come to a close and our thoughts are turned to baseball season, spring cleaning, picnics and family travel! If you and your little ones have plans to hit the road, sky or water anytime soon, be sure to check out the latest and greatest in travel gear. From car seat carriers to travel trays, we’ve got options to keep your travels (almost) hassle-free and full of fun!

Ergo Travel Carrier

Ergo Travel Carrier

The award-winning Ergo carrier has been a lifesaver (not to mention back-saver) for parents; supporting your baby the way you would naturally, while distributing weight evenly across shoulders and hips. Made of 100% breathable cotton, the Ergo is versatile and can be worn in the front, back or hip position, letting mom or dad be hands-free. Check out Ergo’s different collections, from organic to travel. Combine with an Ergo travel pouch.

Why we love it: With kids and/or babies in tow, hands-free is always a good thing.

Best for: Anywhere, anytime

G-Lite Umbrella Stroller

UPPAbaby G-Lite Stroller

Whether you’re playing jet-setter with your toddler, exploring streets of a new city or on a road trip that requires lots of pit stops, having an umbrella stroller makes for quick, easy mobility. The UPPAbaby G-Lite is becoming the big (little) stroller on the block. Similar to the tried-and-true Maclaren Volo, the G-Lite offers even more features, including a removable cup holder, washable soft padded seat, extra sun shade and tall, ergonomic handles dads will no doubt appreciate. Hand-operating triggers save you from any fancy footwork, and the shoulder strap is indispensable for travel.

Not willing to pay over $100 for a lightweight stroller? Check out the Chicco Capri. This “budget” stroller still delivers on travel-handy features and weighs in at 11 lbs.

Why we love it: Weighing in at 8.8 lbs., the G-Lite is one of the lightest umbrella strollers on the market, offering more features than most (for a little less money). Plus, it is free-standing when closed.  

Best for: Airports, sightseeing, anywhere you need quick, simple transportation for your kiddo

Ultimate Car Seat and Booster Carrier Case

J.L. Childress Ultimate Car Seat and Booster Carrier Case

More than a bag, this deluxe carrier case features thick padding on all sides to protect your child’s car seat. The water-resistant, heavy-duty fabric cleans easily and protects the interior from moisture. Best part? Go hands-free and wear it as a backpack!

Tip: The bag is large enough to stuff in an extra booster seat, clothes, diapers, etc.

Why we love it: The carrier case is well constructed for maximum car seat protection, and we adore anything that converts into a backpack for hands-free travel!

Best for: Air travel

The Traveling Toddler Car Seat Strap

The Traveling Toddler Car Seat Strap

This simply designed car seat strap safely and securely latches your child’s car seat to your rolling luggage, transforming your carry-on into a “stroller.” Once adjusted, it’s simple to detach and reattach, and works with most major car seat brands plus a variety of carry-on suit cases.

Why we love it: It’s something small that makes a huge difference. And your kids will love their “new” stroller.

Best for: Air travel

Totseat Portable High Chair

Totseat Portable High Chair

Referred to as the washable, squashable high chair,” this soft harness attaches securely to an adult chair while snuggly enveloping your baby. Perfect for travel, it can be rolled up and popped into a purse or diaper bag.

Why we love it: It’s washable and it’s squashable! We also love the plastic clips — no fussing around with tying knots.

Best for: Anytime, anywhere

Lotus Everywhere Crib

Lotus Everywhere Crib

Guava Family’s Lotus Everywhere Crib is getting rave reviews from parent travelers. It’s light, extremely portable, and sets up in 15 seconds (no joke!). When packed, it converts to a backpack* that qualifies as a carry-on, so it’s great for airport layovers.

Why we love it: There’s a side door that can be zipped and secured, improving the “crib” experience for your child. It’s also great for when you want to soothe your child to sleep but don’t want to hang over the railing.

Best for: Hotels, air travel, road trips, camping

*Guava Family is the only company in the world that makes cribs that convert into backpacks.

Shrunks Tuckaire Travel Toddler Bed

Shrunks Tuckaire Travel Toddler Bed

For kiddos who have transitioned into “big kid beds” (and for parents who want to keep it that way), the Shrunks Tuckaire travel bed can be a great option. Completely non-toxic, it’s designed so that any sized sheet can tuck into the inner mattress, and the Jetaire electric pump makes for quick inflation and deflation.

Why we love it: Kiddos will love to have their very own special bed, which (hopefully) will make sleeping away from home a little easier.

Best for: Hotel stays, camping


 Califone Listening First Headphones 

Califone Listening First Headphones

Sit next to any kiddo listening to headphones, and you’ll probably be able to make out the words to the song of the hour. This can make for a long plane flight.  The around-ear, ambient noise-reducing ear cups of Califone Headphones deliver protection against exterior sounds, so no need for loud volume.

Why we love it: These cute, animal-themed headphones are designed with kids in mind, and they’re sturdy enough to endure many a family trip.

Best for: Air travel, road trips, camping    

StarKids Snack and Play Travel Tray

StarKids Snack and Play Travel Tray

Set your little globetrotters up for successful (and fun-filled!) travels. The StarKids snack and play travel tray provides a sturdy surface for toys, crayons, travel games and snacks. It’s made of soft, durable, 100 percent nylon with soft foam reinforcement that folds on impact. Easy and safe to use, it is also washable.

Why we love it: It’s a godsend for long car rides, and the two large pockets on each side can hold a lot of goodies for those kiddos with short attention spans. Also, the two-inch wall prevents things from falling off the tray (and parents having to crane into the backseat to retrieve them).

Best for: Road trips, airplanes

Itzy Ritzy Snack Happens Reusable Snack Bags

Itzy Ritzy Snack Happens Reusable Snack Bags

Go green with Itzy Ritzy's Reusable Snack Bags. These sweetly designed sacks are machine washable and feature a durable, water-tight lining. Thick and soft, they’re large enough to hold a full sandwich and are ideal for snacks, crayons, cell phones, iPods, cameras, etc. Best of all, the locking zipper feature contains crumbs and drips. Throw them in the laundry for repeated use.

Why we love it: They’re green, BPA-free and FDA-approved food safe. And there’s no loud, Velcro-ripping sound!

Best for: Air travel, road trips, camping and everyday use

allison-headshotAbout the author
Born and raised in Seattle, Allison spent her “early years” satisfying her wanderlust and now lives in Kirkland with her husband, 3-year-old son and (most would say) too many pets. A freelance writer, serious coffee lover (who isn’t?) and jogging stroller enthusiast, Allison loves to get out and explore her city, especially through the eyes of her child. Find more of her stories on her blog, Seattle Travel Mom. She took all the photos for this article.

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