best baby travel gear

Family travel in Marseille, France. Image: Taraneh Jerven

Planning a spring or summer family holiday? The most adventurous family travelers started practicing when their child was a baby. For all you Kits parents, we know traveling with a baby seems daunting, but it can be easy if you have the right baby travel gear.

Let’s face it: you have to pack every time you leave the house with a baby anyway, even if it’s just for a small errand. You may as well go somewhere interesting.

Here are five pieces of baby travel gear that are worth it curated by Vancouver family travel experts Small Folk Travel. And before you rush into our neighbourhood’s posh baby boutiques including Hip Baby and Crocodile Baby, check out the classifieds to see if you can get a better deal on used baby items.

Travel stroller

best baby travel gear

Image: Maclaren

You’re going to be carrying luggage and squeezing into cabs and airplanes. Many airlines will require you to check standard strollers with luggage. Not only does this mean a high risk of damaging your fancy stroller, you’ll also be stuck juggling your carry-ons and your baby as you make your way through the chaotic airport security.

Skip the hassle by investing in a light, easy to fold travel stroller. Not only can you bring it to the airplane gate, it’s small size ensures that you can use it for other tricky scenarios such as folding it up before getting onto Paris metro, squeezing into petit European shops, and even rolling it up to the table in lieu of a high chair at nice restaurants that allow kids, but don’t cater to them.

Check used strollers first to see if you can get a deal. Otherwise browse classic travel brands such as Uppa G-Lite, Joovy, or Maclaren.

Travel crib

best baby travel gear

Image: Guava Family

Sometimes hotels, vacation rentals, and relatives have a crib you can use when you arrive. If you trust the source, go for it. But if you travel a lot it’s worth investing in a travel crib such as the Baby Bjorn travel crib or Lotus travel crib. Babies sleep better in a familiar environment and when they always get the same cozy nest and bedding, they can feel at home when traveling. Both of these beds work 0-3 , have a 15-second set up time, and can double as a playpen.

Baby carrier

best baby travel gear

Image: Alan

Baby carriers are great for keeping your hands free and getting extra cuddle time your tyke. They’re especially useful in urban experiences with cobblestones, like Prague, Lisbon or many of the other gorgeous historic European destinations. For urban experiences, soft baby carriers like Ergo work fine.

When you start hiking with your baby, you’ll probably want to invest in a hiking baby carrier with more storage, more support, and a kickstand. It also helps to have a frame so that if you stumble, they are more protected. Trusted baby carrier hiking brands include MEC, Deuter, and Kelty.

Travel high chair

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If you want to enjoy a meal with a baby at a restaurant that allows kids, but doesn’t cater to them, you’ll need to find a way to seat your little one. The easiest solution is a lightweight travel high chair.

Sturdy travel “diaper” bag

best baby travel gear

Image: Herschel Supply Co.

Diaper bags are often impractical tote bags with too many tiny pockets. They slip off your shoulder every time you attempt to lift bag and baby. In addition to being awkward to carry, they will topple a light travel stroller if you hook them onto the handle bars.

Instead, invest in a sturdy, good-looking backpack such as a Herschel or a Sandqvist. You can wear these with a front baby carrier. Bonus: you can keep using it when you no longer need a “diaper” bag.

Note: Car seats are bulky and difficult to get through an airport. We don’t bring them. Other options include advance booking a cab with a car seat, using UberFamily,  booking a rental car with a carseat, renting baby gear on arrival, or sticking to public transport.

Last modified: February 6, 2017

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