Best Travel Stroller and Baby Carrier Models 2017

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This article offers reviews and comparisons of the best lightweight airplane travel strollers and lightweight travel baby carriers for 2017. If you are looking for airplane car seats instead, please see this post on the best car seats for airplanes.

Getting through the airport and on to an airplane with an infant or baby can be challenging, but having the right travel gear can make a flight so much easier. While there may not be one perfect solution for flying with a baby, we want to get you as close to perfection as possible for your travels. Here are Pint Size Pilot’s best lightweight stroller and travel baby carrier recommendations for 2017

Best Travel Strollers

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Important Disclaimer: I intend for the information on this website to serve as a general overview on matters of interest derived from my experience traveling with my own children. I am not an expert on the subject and safety of travel strollers and baby carriers. I attempt to ensure that the content is current and accurate but I do not guarantee its currency and accuracy. This post also contains Amazon Affiliate links which means that should you decide to make a purchase via one of the following links, Amazon will pay me a small commission which I use to help run this site. No extra cost will be incurred by you. For more information, please see our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. Thank you very much for your understanding and support of Pint Size Pilot.

 

To help make it easier to navigate this post, please click on the topic that interests you, or just keep reading.

  1. What to Bring? Winning Travel Gear Combinations
  2. Airline Policy for Strollers
  3. Best Lightweight Travel Strollers for Airplanes
  4. Best Lightweight Baby Carriers for Travel 

 

 

The Travel Stroller and Lightweight Baby Carrier Combo

 

I have chosen to combine these two topics because throughout the many flights I did with my own children, I found that it was really nice to have both a lightweight travel stroller as well as a lightweight travel baby carrier. On long trips, with long airport waits, sometimes a baby can get fussy in a stroller and needs a change of scenery. A carrier can be just the thing they need to settle down and take a little nap.

The other reason is in case your airline decides to return your stroller with the regular baggage, rather than back to you at the gate check area. This situation is less common when flying domestically in the U.S. and Canada, but is not unusual when flying abroad. Can you imagine how frustrating it would be to have to carry your child, your diaper bag and everything else, all the way to the luggage carousel after a long flight? While you can clarify the rules with individual airlines and airports, I am a strong believer in always having a Plan B, especially when you are on long hauls or have multiple stops.

 

 

 

Lightweight Travel Stroller Airline Policy

 

While you may be allowed to store a very compact travel stroller in an overhead bin on a plane, technically most travel strollers (outside of the most stripped down umbrella stroller), do not fall within the carry-on luggage required size dimensions. It is much more likely that you will be asked to gate check a travel stroller (picking it up again as you exit the plane). For this reason, I don’t think you should shop for a travel stroller based solely on it fitting in an overhead bin. The maximum allowable weight and dimensions of a gate checked stroller vary by airline, so I encourage you to check with your carrier before flying. I would, however, avoid traveling with a large, expensive stroller that would need to be checked with your regular baggage. If you ever take a walk by the oversized baggage pick up area in an airport, you may recognize a wide variety of broken stroller parts. Gate checking your stroller would be my strong advice.

 

Disclaimer:  Despite the fact that most airlines have strict policies about strollers, I still occasionally see a person rolling their baby around at the gate in the most gigantic stroller that they then gate check without a problem (U.S.A).  This, however, is the exception, not the rule.

 

The Best Features for an Infant or Baby Travel Stroller:

Many parents find that they purchase a travel stroller as a secondary stroller, but due to its light weight and ease of portability, it quickly becomes their favorite. With that in mind, when comparing strollers, you may want to consider spending a little extra to get all the features you need. Here are some of the most desirable features in a stroller for travel.

 

Lightweight: The lighter the better – without giving up too many features (stroller features add weight !) Most are around 12 lbs, but some go as low as 10 lbs.

A Five Point Harness: Keep your baby secure with a 5 point seatbelt harness that ideally converts to a 3 point as they grow.

Option to Recline: It is nice if your stroller has a reclining option for naps. Please note that only strollers that recline to flat (or have an option to add a baby bassinet or infant bucket car seat) are suitable for newborns.

Extra Large Shade Canopy: An extendable or adjustable sun canopy is a nice feature if you are visiting somewhere hot and sunny.

Air Vents: It is also nice if the stroller has an option to zip open an air vent to keep your child cool in hot weather.

Collapsible: You should not have to fight with your stroller at the gate or at security screening. It should be easy to collapse and it is nice if it can stand on its own.

Large Storage Basket: Let’s face it – traveling with an infant or baby involves stuff. A large storage basket under the stroller can be quite useful.

A Stroller Carry Strap or Carry Bag: It is nice if your stroller has one of these so you can just sling it over your shoulder. Likewise, to protect your stroller when gate checking it, you may want to invest in a stroller carry bag.

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2017’s Best Lightweight Strollers for Travel:

 

Although every recommended travel stroller is described in detail below, I have created this table so you can do a quick travel stroller comparison. Click on any highlighted heading to sort the strollers by your preference. For example, if you click on the price heading, it will sort the cheapest strollers to the most expensive strollers. Click again, and it will reverse the order.

Travel Stroller Comparison Chart

$ = < $100    $$ = < $200   $$$ = < $300
Stroller Model
WeightAge RangeFold StyleRecline StyleFits in Overhead BinCar Seat CompatibleStrap / BagPrice RangeCheck Price
GB Pockit11lbs / 5kg6mo / 55lbsFlat FoldNo ReclineYesNoNo$$
Graco Breaze17.7lbs / 8kg1mo / 50lbsFlat FoldMulti-Position (Includes Flat)No - But Good for Gate CheckYesCarry Strap$$
Inglesina Net11.9lbs / 5.4kg6mo / 55lbsUmbrella Fold 2 Position Recline (Not to Flat)No - But Good for Gate CheckNoNo$$
Kolcraft Cloud Plus11.8lbs / 5.3kg6mo / 50lbsFlat Fold Multi Position (Not to Flat)No - But Good for Gate CheckNoNo$
Mountain Buggy Nano13lbs / 5.9kg1mo / 44lbs (with car seat) 6mo - 50lbs (without)Accordion Fold2 Position Recline (Not to Flat)Yes - MostYesCarry Bag$$$
Summer Infant 3D Lite12lbs / 5.4kg6mo / 50lbsUmbrella FoldMulti Position (Not to Flat)No - But Good for Gate CheckNoCarry Strap$
Zoe XL1 Best10lbs / 4.5kg6mo / 50lbsAccordion FoldMulti Position (Not to Flat)Yes - MostNoTravel Bag$$

 

 

1. Kolcraft Cloud Plus Travel Stroller – A Top Seller ! – From $59

 

Best Airplane Stroller 2015

Claim to fame: One of the cheapest travel strollers on the market. Has great features (large basket, snack tray).

Features:

  • Weighs less than 11.2 lbs.
  • Suitable from 6 months up to 50 lbs.
  • 4/ 5 stars by reviewers on Amazon.com
  • Folded dimensions: 18″W x 12″D x 34″H (46cm x 30cm x 86cm).
  • Multi Position Recline (but does not quite go to flat).
  • Snack trays for both child and parent.
  • Extended canopy cover and peek-a-boo window.
  • All terrain wheels.
  • 5 point safety harness.
  • Large storage basket.
  • Convenient flat fold for airport x-ray machines.
  • Reviews and further details about the Kolcraft Cloud Plus Stroller here.

Buy the Kolcraft Cloud Plus from $59.99 USD:  

 

Note: I used this travel stroller for a number of years. It was great in that it easily fit through the airport X-ray machines (flat fold), it fit nicely in the trunk of rental cars and taxis, and was also a pretty darn cheap stroller. My only issue with it was that it didn’t perform very well on certain terrain (gravel roads, sandy beaches etc.). For the price, however, it provided great value. I bought it because I already had a large expensive stroller at home and I didn’t want to invest a lot of money in another. In hindsight, however, I wish I had purchased the Nano (featured below) because the lightweight stroller became my favorite at home and for our travels. I ended up buying two cheap travel strollers to get through my two kids and would have appreciated some of the additional features that the Nano offered.

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2. Summer Infant 3D Lite Convenience Stroller – From $69

Claim to fame: Best Cheap Umbrella Stroller for Travel (<$100).

Summer Infant 3D Lite Features:

  • Weights 12 lbs.
  • Good for child 6 months to 50lbs (22.6 kg).
  • 4.5/5 stars from reviewers on Amazon.
  • Folded dimensions are 10?W x 9″D x 43″H (25.5cm x 23cm x 109cm).
  • 4 position recline (not quite to flat though).
  • 5 point safety harness.
  • Anti-shock front wheels and lockable rear wheels.
  • Adjustable and removable canopy with flip out sun visor.
  • Extra-large storage basket and rear storage pocket.
  • Easy compact fold with carry strap and auto lock.
  • Want to learn more about the Summer Infant 3D Lite? See this demo video.
  • Reviews and further details about the Summer Infant 3D Lite Stroller here.

 

Summer Infant 3D Lite Travel Stroller

 

Buy the Summer Infant 3D Lite Convenience Stroller From $69: 

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3. Zoe XL1 Deluxe Travel Stroller – From $149

Claim to fame: Our lightest stroller as well as one of our top sellers ! Fits in overhead plane bin.

Zoe XL1 Best Travel Stroller

  Features:

  • Weights only 10 lbs !
  • Good for child 6 months to 40lbs (18kg).
  • 4/5 stars from reviewers on Amazon.
  • Folded dimensions: 15.5″W x 7″D x 26.5″H (39cm x 18cm x 67cm).
  • Stroller fits in overhead bin of the airplane when folded.
  • 5 point safety harness.
  • Large sun canopy.
  • 135 degree reclining seat (where 90 Degrees is straight up and 180 degrees is totally flat.)
  • Large storage basket.
  • Lifetime warranty and guarantee on wheels.
  • Child cup holder, child snack cup and parent cup holder included.
  • Want to learn more about the Zoe XL stroller? See this demo video.
  • Reviews and further details about the Zoe XL1 Deluxe Stroller here.

 

Note: The Zoe is also available in a 16 pound double lightweight travel stroller for twins !  Read reviews and learn more about the Zoe XL2 Double Stroller here.

 

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4. Graco Breaze Click Connect Stroller – From $129

Claim to fame: Suitable from birth. Works seamlessly with Graco’s Click Connect car seats. Great for plane travel !

Graco BreazeFeatures of the Graco Breaze Click Connect Lightweight Stroller:

  • Weighs 17.75 lbs ( a little heavier than some others, but has some great features).
  • Suitable for children up to 50 pounds.
  • 4.5/5 stars from reviewers on Amazon.com.
  • Folded dimensions: 11.5″ W x 16″D x 43″H (29cm x 40.5cm x 109cm).
  • Full flat recline option so you can have baby in stroller from birth.
  • Comes in 3 colors.
  • Deluxe padded seat.
  • Extra-large canopy with a visor extension and peek-a-boo window plus UV 50+ protection.
  • Exclusive one-hand fold makes this the easiest folding umbrella stroller.
  • Easily accepts all Graco Click Connect infant car seats with a secure one-step attachment to create your own travel system.
  • Want to learn more about the features of the Graco Breaze Click Connect Stroller? See this product demo video.
  • Reviews and further details about the Graco Click Connect Stroller here.

Buy the Graco Breaze Click Connect Stroller From $129: 





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5. Inglesina Net Travel Stroller From $149

 

Best Strollers for Flying 2016

Claim to fame: An excellent lightweight umbrella stroller for hot weather (mesh inserts!).

Features of the Inglesina Net Travel Stroller:

  • Weighs only 11lbs without hood and 11.9lbs with hood – perfect for airplane travel.
  • Suitable for babies 6 months to 55 lbs.
  • Dimensions when folded: 10”W x 8.5″D x 42″H (25.5cm x 21.5  x 107cm).
  • 4.5/5 stars from reviewers on Amazon.com.
  • Umbrella folding system.
  • Center stand that allows the stroller to stand upright when closed.
  • Practical shoulder strap.
  • Seat made entirely of mesh (great for hot weather)
  • Soft removable jersey seat pad, hand-washable at 30°C.
  • Ergonomic soft-touch handle grips.
  • Front swivel wheels with lock-release mechanism.
  • Front and rear wheels with shock absorbers.
  • 2-position reclining backrest.
  • 5-point adjustable safety harness.
  • Soft protective pads to avoid contact with the crotch strap.
  • Triple height-adjustment position of the harness back straps, to accompany children as they grow.
  • Jersey sun hood, with anti-UV “UPF 50+” (Ultraviolet Protection Factor) treatment: adjustable,removable and hand-washable at 86°F.
  • Hood fitted with removable front sun flap.
  • Storage basket for up to 6.6 lbs load.
  • Want to learn more about the features of the Inglesina Net Stroller? See this  video.
  • Reviews and further details about the Inglesina Net Stroller here.

Buy the Inglesina Lightweight Net Stroller from $149: 

 

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6. GB Pockit Stroller From $199

GB Pockit Stroller for Travel

Claim to fame: The world’s smallest folded stroller. Loved for its compact convenience on buses, in subways and on airplanes.

Features of the GB Pocket Stroller:

  • Weighs only 11 lbs.
  • Suitable from a 6 month old baby, to a child up to 55lbs.
  • Dimensions when folded: 12″ x 7″ x 20″ (30cm x 18cm x 51cm).
  • 4.5/5 stars from reviewers on Amazon.com.
  • Folding champion: With its innovative two-step folding technique, you can switch from pushing to carrying in seconds
  • Self-standing when folded: Cleverly designed to stand alone when folded, it can be conveniently put aside at your favorite cafe or restaurant
  • Small but strong: Built using durable materials and expertly designed, it might be small, but the Pockit is built to last
  • One-hand push: Convenient pushing and steering
  • Adjustable harness system: The secure safety belt with protective comfort pads can be set at different heights and fastened or loosened for a cozy and secure fit
  • Want to learn more about the features of the award winning GB Pocket Stoller? See this  video.
  • Reviews and further details about the GB Pocket stroller here.

Buy the GB Pockit Stroller from $199:  

 

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7. The Mountain Buggy Nano From $249

Screen Shot 2016-02-18 at 4.28.00 PMMountain Buggy Nano Travel Stroller 2016

Claim to fame: The luxury choice. All the top features and excellent quality.

Features:

  • Weighs 13 lbs.
  • Suitable from birth with infant cot or infant car seat (see compatibility below)  to 44 lbs (approximately 4 years).
  • 4.5/5 stars from reviewers on Amazon.com.
  • Folded dimensions: 22″W x 12″D x 20″H (56cm x 30cm x 51cm).
  • Easy 1 step open, compact 2 step fold (will fit in overhead bin on airplanes).
  • 2 position recline with air vents.
  • Large sun canopy with flick out mesh sun visor.
  • Built in car seat adapters.
  • Easy foot pedal brake.
  • Lockable swivel or straight front wheels.
  • Travel bag included.
  • Handy shoulder carry strap.
  • Multi point safety harness.
  • Free rider scooter compatible for 2nd child (attach with a connector 2 )
  • Includes a universal car seat adapter (see Nano car seat compatibility list ).
  • Reviews and further details about the Mountain Buggy Nano stroller here.

Buy the Mountain Buggy Nano Stroller From $249: 

 



 

 

 

Best Travel Baby Carriers for 2017

In my opinion, the perfect baby carrier for travel is lightweight, has a soft shell (so it can be easily be tucked away) and has decent padding and back support. While an infant sling is also very easy to travel with, it can be a little warm for a baby if you are traveling to a hot destination. Also keep in mind that dark colors absorb more of the sun’s energy than lighter colors, and thus can be hotter (although a newborn’s sensitive skin should be sheltered from direct sunlight).

Important note: If you would like to use a baby carrier for plane travel with a lap baby, be aware that the carrier is not permitted for use during takeoff and landing (but mid-flight is fine).

 

1. Boba Air Lightweight Baby Carrier for Travel – From $64.99

best baby carrier for travel

Claim to fame: Loved by travelers, this is our #1 top selling lightweight baby carrier.

Features of the Boba Air baby carrier for travel:

  • 100% easy to clean nylon.
  • 4.5 / 5 stars by reviewers on Amazon.com.
  • Front and back carry options.
  • Sleeping hood and pocket.
  • Compact and self storing.
  • Comfortably fits heights 5’0″-6’3″.
  • Waistband range: 27″-55″.
  • Body of carrier rises 16″ to accommodate growing child.
  • Ultra lightweight – 0.7 pounds/330g.
  • Suitable for children 15-45 lbs (7-21kg).
  • Reviews and further details about the Boba Air baby carrier here.

Buy the Boba Air Baby Carrier from $64.99:

 

2. Bitybean Travel Baby Carrier – From $59.99

 

Best Baby Carrier for Travel

 

Claim to fame: Ultra lightweight. Great for getting wet (dries quickly).

Features of the Bitybean Lightweight Travel Baby Carrier

  • 4/5 stars by reviewers on Amazon.com.
  • 100% nylon, machine washable.
  • 8 oz and easily packable for the utmost in convenience.
  • Fleece infant liner and hood/shade accessories available seperately.
  • Versatile front and rear carry for infants over 3 months and 8-40 lb. (3.6-10 kg.).
  • Comfortable anatomic shoulder and waist straps, state-of-the art materials and design.
  • Reviews and further details about the Bitybean Baby carrier here.

Buy the Bitybean Baby Carrier from $59.99

 

3. Ergobaby Performance Cool Air Mesh 360° Carrier – From $179

Ergobaby Performance Mesh Travel Baby Carrier

 

Claim to fame: Mesh panels keep you and baby cool.

Ergobaby Lightweight Mesh Performance Carrier Features:

  • Supportive wide waistband and padded shoulder straps provide comfort and evenly distribute baby’s weight.
  • 100% machine washable polyester.
  • 4 /5 stars by reviewers on Amazon.com.
  • Mesh inserts keeps baby cool, making it an excellent choice for hot weather.
  • Ergonomic for baby: baby is cradled in a natural sitting position.
  • 4 carry positions: Front-Inward, Front-Outward, Hip and Back
  • Baby weight range: 7*-33 lbs. / 3.2* – 15 kg; *Infants 7-12 lbs. (3.2-5.5 kg) with the use of insert (sold separately.
  • Extra wide waistband and padded shoulder straps for parent comfort.
  • Sleeping hood
  • Reviews and further details about the Ergobaby Performance baby carrier here.

Buy the Ergobaby Cool Air Mesh Carrier from $179: 

 

 

4. BabyBjorn Mesh Carrier One – From $175

 


Claim to fame: Can be use from infancy (no insert needed)

Features of the BabyBjorn Carrier One in Mesh for Travel

  • 4. 5 / 5 stars by reviewers on Amazon.com.
  • Multifunctional front and back baby carrier provides you with 4 different carry positions.
  • Perfect for infants – no insert needed.
  • Inward-facing comfort – ergonomically designed for both you and your growing baby.
  • Outward-facing option –  (Minimum 5-months-old).
  • Easy back carrying – (Minimum 12-months-old).
  • Ergonomic design, adjustable, with generously padded shoulder straps and waist belt.
  • Machine washable.
  • Suitable for newborn 8-26 lbs (3.5-11.5kg) forward facing; 33lbs (15kg) inward facing/back carry.
  • 100% polyester mesh outer, cover for leg position zip: 100 % cotton.
  • Reviews and further details about the Babybjorn Carrier One in mesh here 

Buy the BabyBjorn Mesh One Carrier from $175: 

 

 

 

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