You requested time off, booked your flight, reserved the hotel room, and planned your days (aka delegate diaper duties to dad, and veg out on a lounger with a cocktail in hand). But there’s still one more thing you have to do: pack.

When baby is tagging along, packing is arguably one of the most stressful aspects of traveling. The last thing you want is to schlep a truckload of baby gear through the airport only to realize he doesn’t need most of it. So how do you elevate your commute from everyday to vacay? Pack light. Literally. And guess what: “big” and “light” are no longer mutually exclusive. Case in point: with these 7 lightweight travel baby gear picks, you’ll have all of baby’s essentials for less than 30 pounds.

babyzen yoyo2 stroller



YOYO2 Stroller

Traveling without a stroller? Practically out of the question. From navigating the airport to cruising around once you’ve reached your destination, it’s a must-have. But if you have to check it, you’ve defeated half the purpose. The answer? A compact stroller that fits in the overhead bin. There are a handful on the market, but one that consistently gets high marks is the Babyzen YOYO2. The sleek design is narrow enough to navigate airplane aisles, folds in a flash with just one hand and is small enough to meet airline cabin luggage requirements. Other travel-friendly features we love? It’s less than 14 pounds and can be carried like a shoulder bag when you smugly make your way off the plane. Look at you! You’re a total pro.

gb Pockit Air lightweight travel stroller



Pockit Air Lightweight Travel Stroller

Another great, less expensive option if you’re traveling with a baby that’s older than six months is the impressively compact Pockit Air All-Terrain. Not only does it fold small enough to wear as a backpack, it’s also the lightest travel stroller we’ve found weighing just 10.1 pounds.

inglesina fast table chair



Fast Table Chair

Whether they offer a kids menu or not, restaurant high chairs aren’t guaranteed. And even if they are provided, who knows if they’ve ever been cleaned. Your best bet? Investing in baby’s own mobile throne. With Inglesina’s Fast table chair, your little one can sit with the rest of the family, right at the table–any table. It’s easy to transport, weighs only 4.2 pounds, and collapses into 3.5-inch thick. It also comes in a variety of great colors with a self-contained carry bag that can lay flat in a suitcase. And it’s not just clutch for traveling! If you’re low on space at home, it also serves as a great everyday substitute for a bulky regular high chair.

boba air carrier



Air Ultra Lightweight Baby Carrier

Chances are, your multitasking game is on point. You can whip up dinner, fold the laundry and feed the baby all at the same time. But navigating a bustling airport with a tiny human in tow? Woof. That puts anyone to the test. In times like these, the answer is always a baby carrier. The hand-free mobility will help you manage the security checkpoint, tend to older kiddos, and get settled on the plane. Any carrier can get the job done but the most packable has to be the Boba Air. It’s light as a feather while still offering the strong support you get from bulkier carriers and when you’re done, it folds neatly into its own little pouch. Toss it in your diaper bag or carry on until next time!


phil&teds traveller crib



Traveller Crib

Hotel cribs are great to lighten up your (travel) load, but they may not meet today’s safety standards, and some hotels substitute fitted sheets with folded full-sized bedding–a serious suffocation hazard to a sleeping infant. Play it safe with a portable crib. Weighing in at a mere 7 pounds, the Traveller is lighter than your baby, and its inflatable mattress is cushy and firm all at once. It’s compact enough to slip into a suitcase, an overhead compartment or a backpack. What’s more, (de)constructing the Phil&Teds travel cot takes a jiffy.

puj flyte bathtub




Bathing baby on the go can be a big slippery-slope deed. Hotels don’t always have bathtubs, and even if they do, infants need a lot of support to keep themselves from flailing and sliding. With Puj Flyte, giving that cute baby pudge a quick touch-up has never been easier, even in a hotel room. Like the original, this collapsible tub can fit in most standard countertop and pedestal sinks, and cradles baby in a stable and comfy position during bath time. The Flyte is smaller and lighter than its predecessor, and it folds flat for travel.

crane travel humidifier



Travel Humidifier

Getting sick while traveling is a real bummer, and it’s especially tough on little kids. With Crane’s travel humidifier, you can bring a little relief wherever you go without adding heft to your load. The machine’s ultrasonic cool mist combats dryness and cold and flu symptoms, keeping your wee one as comfortable as possible to help them get a good night’s sleep. The humidifier comes with a carrying bag, a portable tank (remember to empty it out before getting to the TSA checkpoint), and a power adapter that works with both power outlets or USB ports.

patagonia ultralight black hole travel tote



Ultralight Blackhole Tote Pack

Let us warn you now: your travel experience will never be perfect. But a great diaper bag that is lightweight and functional will undoubtedly make your airport commute a tiny bit better. The Patagona Ultralight Blackhole Tote Pack is deceptively big and will store baby’s entire life… Well, maybe not, but it will pack everything he needs for an entire day. It’s got two easy-grab side pockets for water bottles and snacks, two sets of straps that allow it to be carried as a tote or backpack and of course Patagonia’s killer warranty. When you are done using it, crumple it up into an inner zip pouch for easy storage and traveling. Did we mention that this wipeable bag is only 0.8 pounds?

Jet Kids Stokke portable air mattress



Jetkids by Stokke CloudSleeper™ Inflatable Travel Bed

If you have a child in that in-between phase who is too big for a pack and play, but not ready to sleep in a normal bed, the idea of sleeping away from home can cause anxiety—for you and them. Send them off to dreamland in this inflatable kids bed by Stokke. Made specifically for toddlers, its top surface is made of a lightweight nylon which can easily be cleaned with a wet cloth. We love that unlike an adult-sized inflatable mattress, it’s kid-sized (measuring in at 60 inches long) and boasts full-length side bumpers to keep your toddler from rolling off. Best of all? The travel bed folds up to a compact cube that is slightly larger than a lap top, and has an integrated pump so there’s no hauling extra parts to inflate or deflate. All of these unique features have landed it close to 5 stars on Nordstrom, and the Reddot award best of the best 2021 in product concept. 

Baby quip

BabyQuip Baby Gear Rental

Why lug 800 pounds of gear you may or may not use? One of the slickest tricks to save you the struggle is to rent the things you need instead! Strollers, car seats, even cribs and toys can be delivered directly to your destination via the pros at BabyQuip. (They’ll even meet you at the airport!) Not only do they deliver it–they set up everything for you, and pick it up when you’re done—all at your convenience. All rental gear is clean, safe and insured so you can rest easy and just enjoy your vacay!

A version of this story was published June 29, 2016. It has been updated.