Do you have an upcoming trip planned or want to go on vacation but have NO CLUE what you need to bring to travel with your baby or toddler? Check out this list of toddler and baby travel essentials!
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There are so many toddler and baby products out there, and it can be super overwhelming to even start thinking about what you might need. These tiny people seem to require a LOT of stuff!
This is our list of tried and true toddler and baby travel essentials that have made traveling much smoother and less stressful for us.
We consider some of these products to be absolute essentials for our travels, and others are just nice to have, but we might leave them behind if we are wanting to travel lighter.
Do NOT feel like you need to go buy a million things for your upcoming travels. Sometimes less is more.
I find many of my toddler and baby travel essentials second-hand. Often times they have hardly been used and are in like-new condition. This is an option if you are willing to search around and want to save money.
Look at this list and decide if you think any of these products would make you feel more prepared or at ease during your travels.
Toddler & Baby Travel Essentials
This is our list of things that we ALWAYS bring when we travel and would feel lost without.
1. Portable Sound Machine
This was definitely a game-changer for us when it came to getting our son to sleep. He now knows when we turn the sound machine on that it means it is time to sleep, and it helps drown out any background noise that is going on while he’s sleeping.
There are many portable sound machines to choose from. We have this portable sound machine. We take this on the go and use it as our regular sound machine at home too. I like that it is small, easy to move around, neutral-colored, and has great battery life.
2. GB Pockit Stroller
We LOVE the GB Pockit Stroller. I have a more heavy-duty stroller that I use at home for walks, but this one is perfect for travel.
It’s so easy to fold and unfold and fits into the overhead bin on an airplane. It is nice not having to check or gate-check the stroller because we are able to use it longer, and I know that it won’t get beat up or broken during the flight.
3. Baby Carrier
A good baby carrier is very useful when running errands, getting things done around the house, hiking, traveling through the airport, walking in a crowded place, etc.
I have tried many baby carriers, and the most comfortable I have found is the original Ergobaby carrier.
We also have the Ergobaby Omni360, which is breathable and allows the baby to face outwards, but I don’t think it is as supportive for me and sometimes rubs/irritates my son’s skin on his legs and arms. Both Ergobaby carriers work for babies 7-45 pounds.
4. Feeding Essentials
We love these snack cups for on the go.
I always try to bring one silicone bib when we are out and about. They are super easy to clean and the little pouch is clutch for “recycling” all of the food baby/toddler drops.
Face & Hand Wipes
These are awesome. All you need is this bag, a little bit of water, and a microwave. You can use one of these bags 20+ times, so you likely only need to bring one if you are going on a trip. I use these to sterilize bottle and pump parts, as well as pacifiers or toys that are dropped on the germy floor while traveling.
This pump bag has worked well for me. It holds my Spectra pump, bottle brush set, extra pump parts, a couple of bottles, charger, hand sanitizer, bottle soap, and sterilizer bag pretty easily.
* Pro-tip: A pump bag is considered a medical device, so it doesn’t count as a personal item and can be brought along for free when you are flying. You can bring a diaper bag for baby/toddler for free as well.
*PLUS you can bring breast milk, cow’s milk, formula, and sealed water bottles through airport security if you let personnel know they are for your baby/toddler.
Bottle Brush Set & Soap
Don’t forget bottles, pump parts, sippy cups, etc. I usually only bring 2-3 bottles and 1-2 sets of pump parts when traveling because I am able to wash them, sterilize, and set them out to dry each night using the products above.
5. Pacifiers + Pacifier Clip
This is one of our most important baby travel essentials! If your child takes a pacifier, make sure to bring a few on your trip so that you always have a backup handy.
Pacifier clips keep the paci handy in the car and off the dirty floor on an airplane or in a public place. Bonus – pacifier clips can double as a chew toy. 🙂
6. Muslin Blanket(s)
I always bring a couple of these muslin blankets on our trips because they are so versatile. I have used them as a nursing cover, a light blanket for baby when it is just a little bit chilly, a place for baby to play or be changed, as a burp cloth, a stroller cover, etc.
7. Diaper Changing Pad
We use this portable diaper changing pad all.the.time. It is definitely one of our top baby travel essentials.
I love that it has a place to keep diapers, wipes, and cream. We have everything we need right in this one little compact bag. I don’t have to dig through the diaper bag for everything and have it all conveniently ready to go.
Bonus: We always try to bring Ziplock bags or a reusable wet bag for clothes that get wet or messy – you know it is bound to happen at the most inconvenient time!
I also like these diaper smell sacks when we are on the go, don’t have a good place to throw out the diaper, and don’t want it stinking up the car or hotel room.
8. Travel Crib or Portable Bassinet
We used the Chicco Lullago Portable Bassinet as the primary sleeping space for our son for the first six months or so. It was super easy to move around the house and take with us when we traveled or visited family.
A good travel crib that folds up compactly is super nice for babies and toddlers. It is recommended for use from newborn to 3 years. We have the Baby Bjorn Travel Crib and love it. It is lightweight, easy to fold and unfold, and fits inside a suitcase for air travel. Full disclosure, I found ours on Facebook Marketplace, and it was a lot cheaper and basically like new!
9. Breathable Blackout Crib Cover
Another game-changer in the sleep department for us. Our son sleeps so much better when it is completely dark. This blackout cover is awesome when staying in a hotel because we can still have lights or the TV on while our son is sleeping in the same room as us, without disrupting his sleep.
Snacks, stacking cups, teethers, books, and your child’s current fav toys are some of our best on-the-go entertainment ideas for baby/toddler. Click here for more ideas on baby and toddler travel entertainment.
11. Sun/Warm Weather Essentials
We like this sun hat that has a strap. Our son is pretty bald, so he wears this pretty much whenever we are out in the sun, and it has fit him for over a year.
Beach Bucket Set
Not necessarily a toddler or baby travel essential, but we absolutely love this durable and cute sand bucket set!
12. Cold Weather Essentials
“Nice to Have” Travel Products
These are products that have been very useful for us on many of our adventures, but we don’t always bring them with us.
13. Portable Fan
We like this portable fan that easily wraps around the car seat or stroller bars. We have had this for over a year and the battery life is still great.
14. Travel Booster Chair
We use this all the time. This travel chair is a nice place for your little one to sit and play, and it doubles as a highchair/booster seat.
We take this with us if we are going to stay with family or staying in a hotel or Airbnb. We also use it if we are grilling out or want to eat outside at our own house.
The tray can be easily wiped down or put in the dishwasher. The only thing I don’t like about this chair is that the fabric does not come off the chair, so it is hard to get the fabric part clean. I would love to find a version that has detachable fabric so I could just throw it in the washing machine.
15. Diaper Backpack
We have this diaper backpack, but there are many different versions out there to choose from. The backpack style keeps you hands-free, which makes juggling baby, luggage, and whatever else you might be holding onto much easier to manage.
16. Pop Up Sun Shelter Tent
We have used our pop-up sun tent at the beach, in our own yard, at ball games, at National Parks, all over the place. I had to watch a Youtube video to figure out how to fold it up, but once you get the hang of it, it is super easy and convenient.
The tent is very compact when folded, and when you pop it out, it provides a great place for baby or toddler to play and stay out of the direct sun.
17. Lightweight Carseat
This is the car seat we always take with us if we are flying. It weighs about 12 pounds, so it is easy to carry around.
This car seat is very affordable, works for children from 5-65 pounds, and can be rear or forward-facing. It is also slim, so most cars can fit 3 of these car seats across and they leave more room for any passengers who are riding next to the child.
18. Car Seat and Stoller Carrying Bags
These carrying bags keep your stroller and car seat safe if you check them for a flight. I especially love the car seat bag because you can carry it on your back quite comfortably.
This stroller bag can be used if you are checking your stroller under the plane or for gate check. Most airlines let you check your car seat and stroller for free.
19. Stroller Sun/Bug Cover
I have used this stroller cover on our infant carrier car seat/stroller combo, our GB Pockit stroller, and our jogging stroller. It is very versatile and protects baby/toddler from the sun while still allowing you to see them and allowing them to see out.
20. Baby Monitor + Owlet
We used the owlet foot monitor until our son was about one, and it was such a relief for us. We slept so much better and felt reassured when using the owlet.
A video monitor is great so you can have “eyes” and “ears” on baby or toddler, but can still be doing what you want to do after they go to bed or while they nap. We use our video monitor on trips and every day/night at home.
We registered for the Infant Optics DRX-8 video monitor and didn’t love it because it would lose signal from our room to our son’s room (probably only 20-30 feet range) and beeped obnoxiously all night every time it lost connection.
Now we have this cheaper dual video monitor that has worked great for us so far. It has good range and has a split-screen and shared sound so you can see and hear two babies in different rooms at once.
⇒ Travel Tip: If you forget your monitor and you are in a pinch, you can always Facetime someone who is with you from your phone and leave your phone near the baby, and watch/listen for the baby from their phone. Make sure the other person mutes their phone so your baby can sleep in peace!
21. Inflatable Duck Tub
This cute little duck tub is not essential, but it is useful if you are staying somewhere that doesn’t have a tub or if your baby is too small to be placed directly in a big bathtub.
Plus it is super cute, and it could also be fun for an older baby or toddler to splash around in if you are going somewhere warm!
22. Pain Reliever + First Aid Kit
I try to always bring children’s Tylenol or Motrin along just in case – fever, teething, ear troubles on an airplane, etc.
I also like to bring a portable first aid kit, especially if we are going to be hiking or doing physical activity.
23. Portable Infant Lounger
Not a necessity, but this portable lounger provides a nice, safe place to set your baby down when out and about and it is easy to transport.
24. Packing Cubes
Packing cubes help keep everyone’s clothes organized and separated. These are especially helpful if you are taking a road trip and not staying in one set place the whole time.
25. Disinfecting Wipes or Wet Wipes
On an airplane or other public transportation, at restaurants, really anywhere in public where baby or toddler will be touching and mouthing a million germy things. Enough said.
26. Travel Laundry Bag
This travel laundry bag zips up nice and small but unzips into a pretty large capacity bag. This is great for keeping dirty clothes separate from clean in your bag. Plus it is better for the environment than using the plastic ones the hotels offer (plus those ones always seem to rip and break).
27. Beach/Picnic Blanket
Our final item on the list of toddler and baby essentials is this tarp-like blanket. It is super affordable and provides a great place for your baby or toddler to play, as well as a place for you to sit while at the beach or park.
I hope this list of toddler and baby travel essentials was useful for you!
What are some baby travel essentials that you can’t live without?