The holiday season is upon us and it’s time to start getting Santa’s list in order. Traveling with kids can require a lot of gear, so why not get the frequent traveler in your life something that will help make family travel easier and more fun? I’ve tried a lot of products over my almost six years of experience flying with young kids and know what products work well.
There are THREE gift guides coming your way within the next week (before Thanksgiving and Black Friday), so come back to check for more soon. Next up: Gift Ideas for Traveling Kids, followed by Gift Ideas for Traveling Parents.
But first we start with the youngest travelers – toddlers & preschoolers. Here are some tried and true gift ideas that will be a hit with your little travelers. I own most of these products and the few additional ones have been recommended to me by travelers I trust.
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Gift Ideas For Traveling Toddlers & Preschoolers
- SkipHop luggage: SkipHop has some of the cutest and most functional carry-on bags for little kids. Our daughter’s owl roller bag goes with her on every trip. Choose from four animals – owl, ladybug, dog, and monkey.
- Little Passports Early Explorers for Preschoolers: The makers of the popular Little Passports monthly travel subscription service recently launched a new product for younger kids which is a great gift for little ones. Early Explorers subscriptions include activity books, stickers, maps and more. While the Little Passports subscription for older kids focuses on specific states or countries, the Early Explorers version targets more general travel-related themes: animals, landmarks, natural wonders, and more.
- KidCo PeaPod travel bed: One of the challenges when traveling with toddlers is that they aren’t quite ready for hotel beds but are too big for Pack N Plays and hotel cribs. The solution is the PeaPod travel bed, which is small and light enough to fit in a backpack or other carry-on for travel. Our 14 month old son has used his on trips for naps as well as at the beach and outdoor events. The tent-like structure contains little ones and makes sleeping a bit of an adventure.
- Richard Scarry’s A Day at the Airport: Prepare your toddler or preschooler for flight with the classic Richard Scarry characters they already know and love. A cute and inexpensive read that would be a great stocking stuffer.
- Fisher Price Travel Doodler Pro: The travel version of this classic toy is small enough for airplane carry-on bags and great for road trips. It’s the perfect alternative to electronic entertainment (at least for some of the time!).
- Yumbox: I always pack my kids a bento meal for travel since we usually fly cross-country on our travels. Airplane snacks just don’t cut it for that length of time. Yumbox is my new favorite bento-style lunch box. It is easy to open for preschoolers but easily contains even messy food without leaks. Little kids will love the cute colors and designs.
- Disney Mickey Mouse Travel Pillow: Driving or flying to Disney this year? This cute travel pillow that looks like Mickey would be a fun addition to your trip. Also available – Minnie and Frozen.
- Crayola Color Wonder Travel Tote: The keys for travel with arts and crafts are 1) no mess and 2) limited number of pieces to lose. Crayola Color Wonder products fit both requirements perfectly. This travel tote (containing 4 markers and one starter coloring pad) is the perfect size for travel. Better yet – you can refill it with coloring pads featuring a variety of animated characters like Doc McStuffins, Spiderman, and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.
- Frozen Luggage Tag: If you have a Frozen obsessed child (who doesn’t?), you can tag their luggage with Elsa & Anna on your holiday travels. At $5, it’s another great stocking stuffer.