Traveling with a child is more challenging plain and simple. You have to bring a heck of a lot more. You have their needs to anticipate throughout the journey and dozens of others passengers to consider. I’ve found that having the right gear from the perfect compact travel bed to a good pair of headphones for watching movies can make a big difference when you travel with kids. Add to that a can-do attitude and a sense of humor and and you will get through it just fine and have fun along the way.
*I have not been paid to write about any of these products. With the exception of the JetKids BedBox®, these are all items I have used multiple times while traveling with my son. They have made traveling easier and more enjoyable. I plan to get a BedBox® soon.
These are my top items for traveling with kids
When Wylie turned six months, we began traveling with a Babyzen YOYO and we haven’t looked back. There’s no better stroller for traveling or maneuvering narrow city sidewalks. The Babyzen YOYO folds up small enough to place in an over head bin. It has a soft shoulder strap so that you can carry it on and off the airplane and up and down stairs. It is possible to use the YOYO for a baby that is younger then six months if you purchase the Newborn Pack which features a flat carry cot. YOYO‘s have a white or black frame. The canopy and seat pad come in a variety of colors. At $499 total it’s steep for a stroller, but I think it’s well worth it. It’s incredibly durable and sturdy. We’ve taken ours on bumpy cobblestone streets all over Europe. We still haven’t had to replace the wheels. You can wash the canopy and seat pad easily.
JetKids by Stokke BedBox®
This suitcase is going on Wylie’s Christmas list. The luxury baby brand Stokke acquired the company JetKids and a new version of the Bedbox is available for pre-order now (it will ship November 1, 2018) in the Blue Sky color pictured here as well as Green Aurora and Pink Lemonade. It’s currently available in white with blue and white with red on Amazon. The carry-on size suitcase is multifunctional. It can be converted into a bed and leg-rest for children up to the age of 6 or 7 during airline travel and it has wheels and a seat so your child can ride on it as you navigate the airport. It retails for $199. Check out this video to see how it works.
BABYBJORN Travel Crib
The BABYBJORN Travel Crib is lighter weight then a Pack ‘n Play and I think it’s much easier to fold up and down. The pad and frame get zipped up into a carrying case with a handle making it easy to move. The crib is too large to carry on so you will need to check it. It will count as a piece of luggage unless you’re flying Alaska Airlines which checks Pack ‘n Play type beds for free. This was our go to for our first year of travel with Wylie and we still use it sometimes. $299.
KidCo PeaPod Infant Travel Bed
After Wylie turned one, we started using the KidCo PeaPod Infant Travel Bed ($69.95) when we really wanted to travel light. The tent-like bed folds up small enough that you can fit it inside a large suitcase. Wylie actually likes sleeping in this. It’s more comfortable then it looks as it has a built-in sleeping pad. You can really use it anywhere when you travel with kids; in a hotel room, on a camping trip or even on the beach as place for your child to take a nap. We have the regular PeaPod but there is also a KidCo PeaPod Plus Infant Travel Bed which is slightly larger and retails for around $100.
Ailihen Kids Headphones
These soft Ailihen Kids Headphones in a variety of fun colors adjust with a simple slide mechanism so you can get them to fit your child’s head just right. Wylie isn’t a big fan of headphones, but he will wear these. The volume isn’t too loud. Use them with an iPad loaded with movies and TV shows (Wylie loves Spirit Riding Free on Netflix) or with any in-flight entertainment system. $19.98.
Crayola Color Wonder Mess Free Coloring Kit
Crayola Color Wonder Art Kits are the most ingenious toy for travel with kids. The colors of these seemingly colorless pens only show up when your child draws in the accompanying book, so it’s impossible to get ink on the tray table. The Stow & Go is especially great for travel as it comes with its own lap desk with storage, a 12-page coloring pad and four miniature markers. Other Color Wonder Kits with themes that include Paw Patrol and Disney Princesses come with paper, pens and stamps that also only work with the paper in the kit. From $14.92.
For some useful tips for traveling with a baby go here.
Have a favorite item to use when traveling with kids? Please share in the comments below.