Traveling with a toddler can be stressful, especially if you’re carrying all the essentials to be ready for any of the situations an unpredictable toddler can create.
You need to pack everything from diapers and wipes to toys and snacks so that your little one is happy on the trip.
With this in mind, we have compiled this list while searching for the best bag for traveling with toddlers. To be considered it must include has multiple compartments, comfortable straps, and plenty of room for all of your needs.
So before getting on with the recommendations, let’s take a look at some quick tips to help you choose the right bag for you to travel with your toddler.
Note – Please know, some of the external links in this page are affiliate links, this means that if you purchase after following one, I make a small commission from the sale at no additional cost to yourself.
Top features to look for in a great bag for traveling with toddlers
Every parent knows how difficult it can be to leave the house with your baby for a few hours, and what’s even more difficult than that is traveling with your infant. But the right travel bag can be toddler travel essential.
You certainly already know that a bag for traveling with an infant is not the same as your regular travel bag. For any type of travel with a baby, whether a short trip or extended one, you need a specially designed bag that will comfortably contain all your baby gear and essentials, while also giving you easy access to its contents.
Baby travel backpacks are usually designed to have a lot of pockets for proper organization, and you can find some with special pockets for storing wet items like towels and soiled clothes, insulated bottle pockets, pockets for wipes, bibs, pacifiers, toys, dry clothes, snacks, keys, passports, and other essentials.
Some baby travel bags also come with a changing pad to provide you with a neat surface for a quick diaper change. There are also baby travel carry-ons that double as portable cribs, these are particularly important because they provide you with a comfortable place to lay your infant down during naps.
There are tons of family travel bags on the market and finding the right one can be a daunting task, however, there are certain features that can help you zero in on the right bag. Here are some tips on what you should look for in a bag for traveling with your little ones:
- Sturdy construction with a roomy main compartment and multiple pockets to help with organization
- High quality fabric and sturdy zippers that glide smoothly and can be opened and closed easily with one hand
- An added changing pad, special compartments for baby bottles (preferably insulated), a laptop sleeve if you need one,
- Lightweight and carry-on size, with comfortable and well-padded carry strap
We selected some of the best bags for traveling with your infant, with reviews on what makes them great. And before we continue, check out our list of top 10 best bags for traveling with kids.
Reviews On Our Best Carry-on Bags/Backpacks For Travel with kids
- GITIBAB Diaper bag for traveling with toddlers
- Bag Nation Diaper Travel Bag Backpack
- H HIKKER-LINK Women’s Large Floral Waterproof Bag
- YOUHA Mummy Travel Bag for Baby and Toddler
- UARERISE Mommy Handbag for traveling with toddlers
- Hafmall Mom and Dad Diaper Bag for traveling
- Wildkin Kids Overnighter Travel Duffel Bags
- Fordicher Foldable Travel Duffle Bag
- Skip Hop Diaper Bag for traveling with toddlers
- Hafmall Diaper Bag Backpack for traveling
1. GITIBAB Diaper bag for traveling with toddlers
The Gitibab Diaper bag and basinet combo is an impressive backpack designed for busy parents to seamlessly balance work and family life.
This travel backpack is stylishly designed with a large main compartment and a lot of zippered pockets for proper organizations of baby stuff, including 3 insulated pockets for baby formula, side pocket for water bottles, and a laptop compartment for the parent. It’s the perfect size for either day trips or extended travel.
This Gitibab travel backpack also comes with a detachable portable baby crib and easily transforms into a travel bassinet to provide your infant with a comfortable place to sleep. The travel baby bag has a sturdy water-resistant material with well-cushioned and adjustable straps, and it can be carried either as a tote bag or a backpack. The bassinet is detachable, so you can remove it once your baby gets older and doesn’t need it anymore.
- Great travel bag, waterproof and durable
- Portable travel bassinet
- Adjustable straps are well padded and comfortable
- 3 Insulated milk pockets and plenty of pockets for organization
- The changing mat has very little padding
- The fabric and material is not of the best quality
- It comes with no instructions on how to set up the removable crib
2. Bag Nation Diaper Travel Bag Backpack
This backpack from Bag Nation is a baby carry-on backpack designed for the parent to stay organized when traveling with their toddlers. To aid proper organization, it has a total of 14 pockets including an internal large compartment, an insulated bottle pocket, an easy-to-reach wipe pocket, and several other compartments for storing both baby and important mom stuff.
The Bag Nation is a unisex diaper bag and fits both mom and dad, it has padded straps that are easily adjustable for custom fitting. To ensure that it lasts long, the baby travel backpack is made with high-quality water-resistant polyester, reinforced stitching and high-quality smooth zippers, and it comes with a lifetime warranty.
- Has 8 interior and 5 exterior pockets
- Compact and spacious bag
- Comfortable shoulder strap
- Soft and water-resistant fabric, comes with a lifetime warranty
- The backpack doesn’t sit upright when packed full, it tips forward
- The seams tend to come off below the zip
3. H HIKKER-LINK Women’s Large Floral Waterproof Bag
This is a beautifully designed tote bag with a large capacity and high quality waterproof material. It comes with a total of 12 pockets including a 14” laptop compartment, an insulated milk bottle pocket, 4 mesh pockets, an inner zip and front pocket, 2 side pockets for water bottle.
With a beautiful floral design and adjustable shoulder straps, the Hikker-link carry-on bag is a great fit for the working and fashionable mom. It also comes with a changing mat which matches the beautiful floral design of the bag. This travel handbag can only be carried as a tote bag, but it has a sturdy and adjustable carry strap.
- Very spacious and great for everyday use
- Very sturdy bag with high quality fabric
- Has a good number of pockets for proper organization
- Heavy duty and durable for daily use
- The fabric is a bit dull, it’s not as shiny as the photo
4. YOUHA Mummy Travel Bag for Baby and Toddler
The Youha mummy baby/toddler bag is a travel backpack that doubles as a portable and mobile baby bed. It has a plethora of pockets, including an insulated compartment with an aluminum foil insulation for heat preservation, and it can store up to 3 baby bottles, plus side water bottle holders. This mummy travel baby has a large capacity with stroller clips for attaching to a baby stroller, and it can easily transform to a travel bassinet, great for air travel.
The mobile bed provides a comfortable sleeping place for your baby on-the-go and also acts as a padded changing station. It’s features also include an outer scratch-resistant and waterproof material, an inner polyester-cotton material, and double open hardware zipper for easy open and close.
- Easily transforms from a backpack to a travel bassinet
- Waterproof and tear-resistant material
- Stroller straps and adjustable carry straps
- Insulated pockets with aluminum foil
- Padded and ventilated harness system
- No sternum strap
- Doesn’t attach to a rolling luggage
5. UARERISE Mommy Handbag for traveling with toddlers
Elegant and fashionable are two words that precisely describe this tote-style travel carry-on, yet it’s both practical and versatile. The Uarerise Mommy bag is styled in a unique novel shape with a large capacity and 8 exterior and interior pockets.
It’s a multi-purpose carry-on tote bag with enough pockets to fit in diapers, baby bottles, snacks, towels, change of clothes for babies, and a few of your own stuff, great for a family road trip.
The quality also doesn’t disappoint as it’s made with durable waterproof nylon fabric, making it easy to wipe in the event of a spill. The Uarerise mommy tote bag also comes with a changing mat and two stroller clips for hanging it on a travel stroller.
- Elegant with large storage space
- Super lightweight, water-proof and easy to clean
- Easy to carry and sturdy zipper closure
- The zipper feels secure and moves smoothly
- It’s really dip, and you’ll have to do some digging to find an item stored deep within the bag
- The shoulder straps are not comfortable
- No water bottle pocket
6. Hafmall Mom and Dad Diaper Bag for traveling
The Hafmall diaper bag is a multi-functional and practical family travel tote bag designed for both mom and dad with a neutral gray color. It’s a durable and stylish carry-on with a large amount of storage space; up to 12 pockets and an expandable bottom. It has a 13.3” laptop/iPad compartment, two insulated compartments for storing infant formula and dry/wet compartment for storing soiled clothing.
This Hafmall baby bag is made with 100% high density polyester fabric with a water-resistant finish, plus reinforced seams in carry straps, and double high-quality hardware zippers. This is a big bag, and it’s easy to carry with well-padded and easy-to-adjust shoulder straps and can be used for travel with or without kids. This bag is great for its versatility, and a perfect choice for shopping, mini travel or overnighter bag.
- Adjustable and well-padded shoulder strap
- Luggage strap at the back for attaching it to a luggage/suitcase
- Very stylish and has tons of room
- Very good quality, waterproof and durable
- It doesn’t open from the top
- The empty bag its self is heavy
- It’s almost too big for a hand luggage
7. Wildkin Kids Overnighter Travel Duffel Bags
The Wildkin Overnighter is a great kids carry-on designed to accompany your kids to sports practice, slumber parties at their friends, daypack or a weekend-long visit to grandma’s place. This is a great option if you want the kids to carry their own bag, it’s beautifully-designed and comes in different vibrant colors and patterns that appeal to little kids, both boys and girls.
This kids overnighter bag is perfect for 4-year-olds or bigger kids, and it has enough space to fit your kid’s belongings like a few pairs of clothes and a small blanket. It has a roomy interior and exterior zippered pockets for storing other small items. This is a beautiful lightweight bag with carry straps that are perfectly designed for kids, and it’s made from 600-denier polyester with a moisture-resistant nylon interior for durability.
- Comes in different colors and patterns
- Has enough room for a few pairs of clothes
- Cute little duffel bag, sturdy and well-made
- Overnight bag for quick trip to grandparents or sleepovers
- It’s not as durable as it seems
- It’s moisture-resistant but not waterproof
- Has no water bottle holder
8. Fordicher Foldable Travel Duffle Bag
This is a multi-purpose travel duffle bag that’s stylishly designed with premium nylon construction. It has a roomy interior compartment with a zippered closure and several zippered pockets for load organization. The Fordicher foldable bag isn’t specifically designed as a baby bag, but it certainly can serve as one.
It’s able to fold into a really compact size to fit into a small bag, and it can expand to a large storage bag in just a few seconds. This bag is excellent as an emergency storage option for any occasion, and it has enough storage space for extended travel or short business trip. It’s a great choice for labor/delivery, hospital visits, vacation, or extended family trip.
- Very sturdy and spacious carry-on
- Folds small and compact
- The fabric is thin, but it does seem solid
- Multipurpose duffle bag; great for gym, weekend getaway, airplane carry-ons, travel with kids
- The zippers slide very smoothly and the straps are comfy and durable
- The carry straps are thin and tend to cut into the skin when the bag is fully packed
9. Skip Hop Diaper Bag for traveling with toddlers
Perfect for weekend getaways and short family vacation, the Skip Hop duffle bag features a roomy main compartment and storage spaces for insulated side pockets to hold baby bottles, and compartments for other items. It comes with two multipurpose mesh packing cubes to help with load organization, and a large front pocket for stashing small essentials like cellphone, keys, etc.
The Duo Weekender is an elegant and classy bag for the fashionable mom, and it has a beautiful gray color and an excellent quality material. The Duo Weekender bag can be worn as a tote or cross-body bag, it has removable and adjustable straps plus a luggage sleeve for attaching it to a rolling suitcase.
- It’s sturdy and well-made, with nice pockets
- Fabric is also great for easy cleaning
- Carry straps are padded, comfortable and easily adjustable
- The bag is compact and easy to carry
- Also comes with stroller clips and sleeve for attaching to roller bags
- The changing pad is very small and can only fit a newborn
10. Hafmall Diaper Bag Backpack for traveling
The Hafmall diaper bag is both a stylish and functional baby travel backpack, it’s constructed with high-quality water-resistant polyester fabric and has sturdy and smooth-sliding zippers. This backpack has a wide zipper opening for easy access to the bag and a total of 14 compartments for storing all your baby stuff.
It has a wet/dry pocket for soiled clothing, easy access baby wipes, two insulated pockets for holding baby formula, a keychain to hang keys, front pocket, etc.
This Hafmall bag is classy, it’s great if you want to travel light and can be used in a variety of other occasions, including shopping, family vacation, walking, hiking, and a day out with your infant. It’s a beautiful duffle bag and comes in many color options with straps to carry either as a travel backpack or handbag.
- Sturdy construction, very secure stitching
- Water-resistant fabric and strong zippers
- Enough pockets for organization
- Insulated compartment for baby bottles
- Stroller clips have to be purchased separately
- Zipper has metal lining, making it difficult to unzip with one hand
Best bags for Air Travel with Kids – Buyers’ Guide & FAQs
Different types of bags for traveling with kids
Here are the various type of travel bags, plus why they are good and when you may want to consider one or not.
Backpacks: travel backpacks are most suitable when traveling with children because it frees up your two hands for holding the kids or pushing a stroller through a crowded airline terminal. Backpacks are best when traveling with babies or toddlers because you need your two hands to be free.
Tote-styled bags and duffle bags: not everyone fancies a backpack, which is why there are great tote and duffel bags specially made for traveling with kids. These bags are usually very versatile and easy to travel, but not always easy to carry. A carry-on-sized duffle bag will make a great under-the-seat bag, and if your bag can fit under airline seats, then you can avoid any extra charges for weight.
Roller suitcases/bags: if the thought of hauling bags for the most part of your trip overwhelms you, then you should definitely consider rolling luggage with wheels. This is also a great choice if you have an older kid and a toddler. Roller bags generally provide lots of packing space, which is excellent for a family vacation.
Hardshell bags: similar to the roller suitcase, hardshell luggage are also easy to carry because they often come with two wheels and a retractable handle for pulling them behind you. And you don’t have to worry so much about weight. But unlike the other options, they don’t afford you the luxury of quickly grabbing an item from an exterior pocket.
How to choose the best bag for traveling with kids: Key points for consideration before buying?
Lightweight and carry-on size
When looking for a travel baby bag, you want something that is large enough to contain all your kids luggage and some of your own stuff too. But at the same time, the bag shouldn’t be so heavy that you find yourself lugging a dead weight. Also remember that you’ll be flying with this bag, and you certainly want to take it as a carry-on on the plane.
It should be compact enough to fit under airplane seats or overhead compartments. Therefore, the ideal baby travel backpack should be within an airplane carry-on size, and be within the recommended weight limit for airlines carry-on as this makes it perfect for air travel.
Durable waterproof material
A durable backpack made with high-quality materials will last you for years (a minimum of 2 years is fine), probably until your baby is no longer an infant. The best travel bags are made with high-quality and with polyester or nylon fabric with a waterproof finish, and they come with sturdy zip closures such as YKK-grade zippers. And the zipper should glide smoothly so that you can be able to quickly unzip and zip it with one hand when you’re holding your baby on the other hand.
This is one of the best features in a bag for traveling with a kid or infant. Since you’ll probably be carrying your baby bag for most of your journey, it should be very comfortable to carry with well-padded carry straps. And if it’s a backpack, then it should have contoured shoulder straps with a ventilated mesh back to prevent you from your back from overheating and sweating. Sore shoulders and back are a real thing, which is why comfort is a very essential feature for a carry-on bag.
You can find more on finding the right bag fit in our best backpacks post. While not specific to toddlers, it will still have plenty of useful information.
Insulated/side bottle holder
Baby travel backpacks without insulated bottle compartment or side bottle holder is less than ideal because toddlers need bottles or sippy cups, and you really cannot travel with a baby without these items, therefore you need somewhere to store them safely.
If you’re going for a baby bag without a bottle compartment, then you’ll certainly need a special breast milk cooler bag that’s compact enough to fit into the baby travel bag. You may not need an insulated pocket if you’re traveling with older kids, but a side bottle holder is still necessary.
Quick access pocket
The best baby travel backpacks come with a decent number of quick access pockets for easy organization including wet/dry pockets for stashing soiled items, and zip pockets and compartments for storing baby toys, pacifiers, bibs, diapers, and snacks you can easily access to quickly soothe a crying baby.
These pockets should be easy enough to access so that you can quickly grab something without having to frantically dig into the bag. Pockets and compartments in a children’s carry-on also aid with load organization, since toddlers need so much stuff, and packing can be tiring. But pockets can literally make your packing and organization easier.
What do I need to pack?
Figuring out what to pack for international travel with a toddler can be pretty confusing because there is just too many items to remember. And everything is pretty much as important as the other. Here’s are some of the most important items that you certainly need to take with you when traveling the world with your toddler;
- Diapers, wipes, diaper cream, and changing pad/travel potty (if potty-trained)
- Extra outfits, pairs of warm socks and pajamas
- Cold-weather gear (during cold season)
- Travel stroller
- Backpack carrier
- Baby car seat
- Travel backpack for toddlers
- Pack-and-play/travel crib and sheets or baby bed rail
- Baby monitor and batteries
- Your passport, your child’s passport or birth certificate
- Any medications your child needs
- Grocery-size plastic bags for storing wet clothes or soiled items
What documents do I need to fly with a toddler?
For domestic flights, children under 18 do not require a photo ID when traveling with an adult. However, if you’re flying internationally, then you will need to present a valid passport for your kids, even toddlers and babies. And sometimes, you may be asked for a birth certificate or proof of age, this will depend on the country you’re flying to or from. It’s important that you check for the necessary documents and have them ready before your flight.
Should toddlers wear backpacks?
Yes, toddlers can wear backpacks. And there are small packs with a lightweight and compact design specially made for toddlers and preschoolers. These packs are usually small but can easily hold the items a kid needs to carry. If you’re packing a toddler’s backpack for travel, make sure it’s as light as possible, only put a toy and a few snacks in their pack, and all the heavy load should go into your own pack.
What size backpack is good for a 2-year-old?
Physicians recommend that kids carry a maximum of 10% to 15% of their body weight in their pack. A good pack size for a 2-year-old should be between 10 and 15 inches tall.
What size backpack does my child need?
A small backpack for a child should be about the same length as the child’s back. To find the perfect backpack size for your child, it’s important to get their exact measurement. To find the right backpack length, measure from their shoulder line to the waistline (the waistline is at the belly button), then add 2 inches to the measurement to get the ideal backpack length. For the backpack width, measure the distance between their shoulder blades and also add 2 inches, this will give you the perfect pack width for your kid.
Are rolling backpacks better?
Rolling backpacks are perfect for older kids (tweens and teens) who have to carry plenty of books to school. They are also great for a family vacation or outdoor gear, since they have both wheels and stowable shoulder straps, they can be worn when the load is lighter and pulled when heavy.
When traveling with kids, finding the perfect carry-on for travel can be quite a challenge, especially because there is so much to pack and carry. The first things to remember when choosing a bag for travel is functionality, carrying comfort and durability.
A functional bag should ideally contain all you need for your trip, be easy to carry with generously padded handles, and durable with high-quality fabric, zips and locks.
Our top recommendations in this regard are the Hikker-link floral bag for moms and the Hafmall tote-styled carry-on for both mom and dad. Lastly, whatever carry-on you go with, always make sure it suits your style and gets the job done.