Having the right gear can make a big difference when you travel with kids. Here are six stylish items that will make the journey as stress-free as possible.
Traveling with a child is more challenging plain and simple: You have to bring a lot more, and you have their needs to anticipate throughout the journey. 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 a can-do attitude and a sense of humor and you will get through it just fine and have fun along the way.
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These are my top items for traveling with kids:
When my son turned six months, we started traveling with a Babyzen YOYO; we haven’t looked back. No stroller is better for traveling or maneuvering narrow city sidewalks. It even folds up small enough to put in an overhead bin. The YOYO’s soft shoulder strap makes it easy to carry on and off an airplane and up and down stairs. If you’re traveling with an infant under six months, purchase the Newborn Pack which features a flat carry cot. YOYO frames come in white or black, but the canopy and seat pad are offered in a variety of colors. At close to $500 total, it’s steep for a stroller, but it’s incredibly durable. We’ve taken ours on bumpy cobblestone streets all over Europe, and we still haven’t had to replace the wheels. You can wash the canopy and seat pad easily.
JetKids by Stokke BedBox®
The luxury baby brand Stokke acquired the company JetKids and rolled out a sleeker version of the Bedbox in three colors: blue sky, green aurora and pink lemonade. It’s also possible to buy the older versions on Amazon. The multifunctional carry-on suitcase can be converted into a bed and leg-rest for children up to the age of seven during airline travel. Best of all, wheels and a handle mean kids can catch a ride as you navigate the airport. From $199.
Check out this video to see how it works:
Babybörn Travel Crib
The Babybjörn Travel Crib is lighter than 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 a child. From $299.
KidCo PeaPod Infant Travel Bed
After my son turned one, we started using the KidCo PeaPod Infant Travel Bed ($69.95) when we 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; 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 for shaded naps. We have the regular PeaPod but there is also a KidCo PeaPod Plus Infant Travel Bed which is slightly larger and retails for around $88.
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. My son 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 traveling with kids. The colors only show up when your child draws in the accompanying book; it’s impossible to get ink on the tray table. The Stow & Go is especially great for travel: It comes with its own lap desk with storage, a 12-page coloring pad and four miniature markers. Other Color Wonder Kits have themes like Paw Patrol and Disney Princesses. From $18.99.
Here are some tips for traveling with a baby.
Have a favorite item to use when traveling with kids? Please share in the comments below.