14 of the best travel essentials for baby and toddler

Whether you're travelling on a plane, train or car with a baby or toddler, these products will allow kids to be comfortable, calm and entertained on long journeys

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1. Mountain Buggy Bagrider, £99, MadeForMums Awards Joint Gold Winner for Family Product over £30

Another game changer from Mountain Buggy, the Bagrider allows you to convert a standard carry-on case into a ride-along for your toddler. Anyone who knows the fear of traversing a vast airport with little ones in tow, struggling with luggage and buggies, will appreciate this super-practical Gold Award winner.

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The handy – and roomy – 2-wheel carry-on suitcase transforms into a travelling seat for toddlers up to 15kg. You just twist a dial to convert from one to another function, and it also comes with a cushioned seat and 5-point safety harness.

It’s a genius solution for airport-bound parents – and a fun ride for little ones to boot!

What our MadeForMums Awards judges say about the Mountain Buggy Bagrider:

“The suitcase is a fantastic cabin bag size, and the seat attachment is very sturdy, but completely foldable, so would easily fit in a handbag. The mechanism is incredibly quick and very fluid. There really is no faffing around. This product has changed my life. I am now planning several more trips to see my little one’s grandparents, because it’s just so simple now! ” Mum of 1, Joanna

“This is such a clever idea, and well executed. I love the fact that it has real longevity as the harness and soft seat can be removed and stored away, and that it can fit in air aeroplane as take on luggage. It also looks very robust.” MFM Reviews Editor Magda Ibrahim 

You can buy the Mountain Buggy Bagrider from: Amazon and PreciousLittleOne


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2. Splash About New & Improved Happy Nappy, £10.99, MadeForMums Awards Gold Winner for Family Travel Product under £15

As an unforeseen leak during baby swimming can shut down a pool for an entire day, having the right protection for your little ones is crucial. It’s not much fun being responsible for ending everyone’s splash-about fun!

The new, improved reusable swim nappy by Splash About is fantastically practical and available in some wonderful designs. If you’re planning a holiday by the pool or sea, the Happy Nappy will save you from packing – or buying – a load of bulky disposable swim nappies.

Approved by 95% of UK swim schools, it is designed to be worn alone and ensure a leak-free swim. It has specialist pressure fabric ribbing at the waist and legs to secure a comfortable seal, and a unique gusset that moves as baby moves.

It also provides UPF50+ sun protection and is quick drying, so it’s perfect for frequent dips during holidays.

What our MadeForMums Awards judges say about the Splash About Happy Nappy:

“Quick drying, lovely design, and comfortable for baby.” Laura Carter

“This is a wonderful product, easy to use. Perfect for the swimming pool.” Mum of 3, Meena

“The bands around the legs look so much comfier than the standard swim nappy! If you swim with your baby a lot, these would be a worthwhile investment.” Broadcaster and mum of 2 Sarah Cawood

You can buy the Splash About New & Improved Happy Nappy from: Splash About and Amazon


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3. Skip Hop Stroll & Go Portable Soother, £17, MadeForMums Awards Gold Winner for Family Travel Product £15-£30

It’s great if you have a go-to soother for on-the-go – something your little one is used to and can calm him at a push of a button. The Stroll & Go Portable Soother in its cute owl design is small enough to be taken anywhere, so you will never have to be without soothing sound at the touch of a button. Our Bronze Award-winner easily attaches to strollers, carriers, bags and car seats, and has a nice selection of melodies and sounds to sooth little ones. 

We also really like the selection of timer settings – which include a full hour – and it’s very easy to use. A great little addition to your holiday travels!

What our MadeForMums Awards judges say about the Skip Hop Stroll & Go Portable Soother:

“My little girl loves this. I’m not normally one to buy lots of gadgets and white noise machines. But she really calmed down when this was turned on when we were out and about. She was asleep in minutes!” Mum of 2, Kate

“Although I probably wouldn’t have bought this myself, it has come in handy on a couple of occasions and would make a nice gift. We like the design, it’s portable, easy to use and easily cleaned. My baby can nap on the go in a pram or car seat if we are moving, but struggles if we stop, so this has helped to settle him on those occasions. It also has options to play for 15 mins up to an hour and the four sounds are soothing.” Mum of 2, Lisa

You can buy the Skip Hop Stroll & Go Portable Soother from: Amazon and Boots


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4. Splash About Go Swim Vest, £17.99, MadeForMums Awards Joint Silver Winner for Family Travel Product £15-£30

Buoyancy aids can be very bulky, taking up precious suitcase space, but Splash About’s Go Splash Swim Vest is ideal for travel. It’s lightweight, compact and packs flat, so saves a lot of space. Crucially, however, it delivers great buoyancy to provide a safe, learn-to-swim experience for children.

The vest has puncture-proof foam floats around the chest and back and allows free movement and a natural swimming position. It’s also quick drying, provides UPF50+ sun protection, and as with all Splash About products comes in wonderful designs – there’s sure to be one that appeals to your little swimmer.

What our MadeForMums Awards judges say about the Splash About Go Swim Vest:

“What a great product! Great design and great idea. The pattern was lovely and the fit was good for the age range. A fantastic way to keep your mind at rest as a parent but also have your child looking adorable!” Mum of 2, Jamie

“The Go Swim Vest is incredibly easy-to-use, just zip it up and let your kids splash about! We took this product on holiday and it’s light, easy to pack in a suitcase and the neoprene feels durable. With UPF50+ sun protection, too, it gives you extra peace of mind that your child is safe in the sunshine as well as in the water.” Mum of 1, Ruth

You can buy the Splash About Go Swim Vest from: Splash About and Amazon


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5. Amazon Fire HD 8 Kids Edition Tablet, £129.99, MadeForMums Awards Joint Silver Winner for Family Travel Product over £30

Everyone knows that a bit of screen time can be a life saver when it comes to keeping the kids entertained – and tantrum free – on journeys long and short.

The Fire HD 8 Kids Edition Tablet allows parents to offer their kids suitable entertainment on their own, tamper-proof tablet. It comes with a year’s access to thousands of Amazon’s age appropriate videos, apps, games and books.

It also features a kid-proof case and 2-year guarantee, impressive storage up to 256GB, with the option of expanding further, and parental controls to manage kids’ usage and to allow you to set educational goals. Parents can also get involved via the Amazon Parent Dashboard and Discussion Cards to encourage interaction.

With hours of fun and activities, this is a great addition to your travel case.

What our MadeForMums Awards judges say about the Amazon Fire HD 8 Kids Edition Tablet:

“I’m pretty amazed how good this is. It’s fast, has a generous-sized screen, is easy to use and comes with a strong case. But this is just the half of it – you get Fire for Kids, which is a huge amount of videos, books and games. It’s far better than anything comparable I’ve used because of the sheer amount of options. I’d definitely recommend buying it. In fact, I’m now planning on buying a second one as I have two children.” Dad of 2, Anthony

“As a first tablet for kids I’d definitely recommend this product. It’s brilliant value for money, a fraction of the price of an iPad. The parental control settings mean mum and dad can relax in the knowledge their kids can’t get up to anything untoward, or spend hours looking at the screen, as they can restrict what and when they watch things.” Mum of 2, Maxine

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You can buy the Amazon Fire HD 8 Kids Edition Tablet from: Amazon

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