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    41 Products Reviewers Swear By For Going On Vacation With Children

    Say ~bon voyage~ to stressful family vacations. ✈️ 🏝.

    We hope you love the products we recommend! All of them were independently selected by our editors. Some may have been sent as samples, but all opinions and reviews are our own. Just so you know, BuzzFeed may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page if you decide to shop from them. Oh, and FYI — prices are accurate and items in stock as of time of publication.

    1. An inflatable foot rest that's a must-have for long haul flights with kiddos. It'll conveniently fill the gap in the in the legroom space and extend the seat length to create a makeshift bed, footrest, or an extra surface for play on the plane. 

    reviewer's photo of their children sleeping on the inflatable foot rests
    The inflatable foot rest

    Promising review: "Best $16 ever spent for traveling parents. It was easy to blow up and both of my kids napped for multiple hours on our 7.5 hour flight. The flight attendant even said 'you should win an award for this set up.' Happy parents, happy flight attendants, happy flyers." —DS

    Get it from Amazon for $20.99+ (available in two colors and in two-packs).

    2. An easy-to-inflate bath tub to prevent your little one from sliding around the hotel tub (especially useful if your hotel bathroom only has a shower). It has 13,000 5-star (!!!) reviews for a reason!

    reviewer's photo of the inflatable tub
    reviewer's photo of a child sitting in the tub

    Promising review: "Nifty tub for travel. My child loves this tub. I purchased this for short getaway trips with our little one. It’s fairly sturdy and my baby seems to love splashing around in it. It’s recommended for babies that can sit up unassisted/ with minimal support. If you have an electric pump, it’ll take you about 3 minutes to inflate it." —Shaina Rivera

    Get it from Amazon for $12.32+ (available in two prints).

    3. A pack of toilet seat covers you'll be SO glad you decided to carry with you when you're traveling with your potty-trained toddler, who insists on getting their hands ALL OVER gross public restroom seats.

    Promising review: "LOOOOOOVE THESE. I bought these for my recent Disney trip. They are huge, they cover the entire seat with a little extra, so there’s zero worrying over touching the seat. And best of all, they’re a good paper material. It’s thick, unlike the paper-thin one’s you’d find in the stalls at Disney. An absolute must for moms since kids don’t fit on the seat all that great; or like mine who puts her hands on the seat. Even with no kids, and you hate public restrooms like I do, just put like two or three in your bag for the day and you’re golden." —Stephanie Toledo

    Get a pack of 24 covers from Amazon for $9.99.

    4. A set of games for the road that'll cut down on screentime while traveling and prevent nonstop cries of "Are we there yet?"

    the car game
    Amazon

    Promising review: "For a quick and convenient game that can literally be taken anywhere, this game is perfect! The cost was great and the games are fun, quick, and can be played by kids and adults of all ages. I would love to see families pulling these cards out while waiting for dinner at a restaurant or while sitting in the subway together rather than everyone pulling out their iPhones! These fun interactive games will get the whole family talking and playing together. Love it! I did notice that on a couple of the cards my daughter, who’s 8 years old, had to read the card a couple of times or hand it to me to explain to her, but once I read the directions she was good to go. Overall a great purchase!" —Julie

    Get it from Amazon for $11.99.

    5. Or a Road Trip Box with 60 activity ideas and fun discussion questions to grab at a moment's notice when you run out of ideas for entertaining the kiddos.

    Wooden coins in a box
    The Idea Box Kids / Etsy

    The Idea Box Kids is a small biz based in Wilsonville, Oregon, that specializes in kid-powered, secretly educational activities.

    Recommended for ages 3+.

    Promising review: "The kids and I had a blast with this on our road trip. Lots of laughs were had by all." —seholland87

    Get it from The Idea Box Kids on Etsy for $24.99.

    6. A car seat protector bag designed to help protect your valuable car seat while you travel. Plus, it comes with padded back straps to make navigating crowded airports a little less painful.

    A car seat inside a cover and a carry pouch
    reviewer carrying their car seat in the cover like a backpack

    It's universally sized to fit standard infant, convertible, and booster car seats.

    Promising review: "This thing was a lifesaver. Only one flight so far but still looks brand new. Would definitely recommend this bag. *Update* After five more flights, the bag still looks good as new, no rips or tears and the car seat is still spotless. I couldn’t have navigated the airports I did without this bag. Highly recommend it!" —Alaskan Mommy

    Get it from Amazon for $19.99 (available in four colors).

    7. An LCD writing tablet for keeping future Einsteins busy practicing their numbers and letters whether they're in a car or plane. They might even consider trading their iPad for this cool gadget.

    Reviewer's child using the stylus on the blue writing tablet
    Reviewer's video showing them scribbling on the pink writing tablet with a stylus

    Promising review: "We bought this pad to take on a long car trip with our 4-year- old granddaughter. She is usually traveling with her nose stuck to an iPad, I was looking for something to get her out of watching iPad all trip. This did the trick! She drew all kinds of things, practiced her numbers and letters, and played games with me. It was great to have something that didn’t need to be charged." —Trudie Paschetag

    Get it from Amazon for $15.99.

    8. A pack of ingenious collapsible pails because these will take up literally ZERO space in your luggage. You'll thank me later when you don't need to shell out $$ on an overpriced set at the hotel gift shop.

    Reviewer's photo of a child playing with the collapsible pails on the beach
    Reviewer's video showing how to collapse the pail

    Promising review: "BEST BUCKETS EVER! I’ll be buying more! I love that they collapse! I bought them for the beach, and I loved that they didn’t take up room during travel. And now they don’t take up room in our outdoor toy bin!" —KB

    Get a pack of three from Amazon for $15.99.

    9. A coconut and shea butter moisturizing detangler with 12,000 5-star reviews (!!!) raving that it's the BEST STUFF ON THE PLANET. Just a few spritzes will combat vacation hair woes — from making knots vanish after a swim to taming frizz when humidity is *through the roof*.

    Reviewer's before photo showing tangled hair
    Reviewer's after photo showing smooth hair after using the detangler spray

    BTW, it's not just for kids; adults love it too and say it detangles and softens straight and curly (including 4a–4c) hair!

    Promising review: "All I can say is WOW!!!!! This is by far the best conditioning spray I have purchased. I have spent a lot of money on the expensive 'miracle detanglers' and 'miracle brushes,' coconut oils, and hours combing out big knots in my daughters hair when this is all that’s needed! Her hair is a disaster full of knots after the beach. I sprayed this on before going to the beach and it made all the difference in the world. Goes to show that the expensive stuff is NOT always the best. PLEASE DON’T EVER STOP MAKING THIS!!!!!" —G

    Get a pack of three from Amazon for $13.47.

    10. Montessori busy board that'll keep busy toddlers occupied figuring out the mechanics of zippers, buttons, laces and buckles. It also folds up conveniently with handles — making it easy to carry on the go.

    reviewer's child playing with the busy board on the plane
    reviewer's child playing with the busy board

    Promising review: "Absolutely love this busy board! We bought this to keep our 1-year-old distracted on a 3.5-hour airplane ride. She absolutely loved it and couldn’t stop playing with it. We tied it to the seat tray so it didn’t slide all over. It is easy to carry, fits into a backpack no issue, and I love that it is all one piece —no tiny pieces to misplace!"—LEG 585

    Get it from Amazon for $19.99.

    11. A travel tray complete with a tablet-viewing stand, a cup holder, a dry-erase board that doubles as an eating tray, and storage pockets for markers and toys to provide kiddos with their own little pod for drawing, eating, and playing in the car or the plane.

    Reviewer's photo of a child watching the tablet on the tray in the plane
    reviewer's photo of their child coloring on the travel tray

    Promising review: "Literal must-have for traveling with kids. We use this on long car trips or vacations. It’s a great place to color and keep markers and pencils close, and it's also great for eating in the car. Many vacations we grab fast food to eat while we are driving, and it’s so much easier for the kids to eat with this tray that keeps all their snacks and food close to them. I honestly don’t know how we traveled without this!" —Amazon Customer

    Get it from Amazon for $29.95.

    12. A backseat car organizer boasting eight large pockets that'll keep tablets at eye level but out of your little one's lap *and* declutter all their snacks, toys drinks, and random stuff piled up in your backseat.

    reviewer's photo showing the car seat organizer holding kid's stuff
    reviewer's photo of the organizer holding a tablet, snacks, drinks, and toys

    Promising review: "Great back-of-chair organizer. Easy to install. Fits 10.5” iPad with case. Easily can store many snacks and essentials. My 7-year-old loves the touchscreen ability too!" —Amazon1

    Promising review: "This was so useful for vacation! The straps will for a variety of seats, material is very sturdy (the kids really put it to the test!), and it holds so much! My only complaint is that the pockets were too narrow for a water bottle, but they were perfect for holding markers, crayons, small snacks, and coloring books. We were able to remove it from the seat with all materials still in it and hang it on a chair in the hotel room for kids to have their supplies there, too." —LeaM

    Get it from Amazon for $11.99.

    13. A pack of silicone pouch lids that'll prevent kiddos from squeezing pouches all over themselves and making a mess during a flight or a road trip. This clever lid boasts a flow-control valve that prevents spills, but still lets them suck on it.

    gif of someone squeezing the food pouch and nothing coming out
    reviewer's photo of a cap on a food pouch

    Choo Mee is a small biz based in northern California, owned by a mom, that specializes in innovative products that solve everyday feeding challenges.

    Promising review: "A friend recommended this to me when I said my baby couldn’t hold his own pouch because he would just squeeze it everywhere. When I put this on, he is able to eat on his own and it truly doesn’t come out when you squeeze it unless he is biting on it or sucking it out. I love bringing this with me when we go out (or when we travel— it was a lifesaver on the plane). That’s why it’s so great that it has a cap to keep it clean when not in use. To wash it, we just use a straw cleaner." —Amanda

    Get a pack of two from Amazon for $9.99 (available in five color combos). 

    14. A roomy pop-up tent to pack for your baby's first beach trip. It'll ensure your little munchkin has a shaded spot to people watch and enjoy their afternoon siesta.

    Reviewers swear by this portable beach tent for traveling with your little because it won't take up a lot of room in your luggage but is roomy enough to fit two kiddos. 

    Promising review: "We loved having this tent on our beach trip with our baby. It was so easy and light weight to carry with us and gave plenty of sun protection for our baby. We will be using this with each beach trip in the future!" —Amazon Customer

    Get it from Amazon for $34.99.

    15. A sleek touchless forehead thermometer compact and lightweight enough to toss into a purse or backpack. It has a built-in sensor that measures in seconds — letting you take your little one's temperature without disturbing them while they're sleeping.

    The forehead thermometer in white
    Reviewer taking temperature of their child

    Promising review: "I purchased this to take on our recent vacation during the COVID-19 outbreak. I didn't want any surprises since we were flying both directions so I decided to take a thermometer with me. I wanted one that would be easy to use on four people and this was ideal. Just put in batteries and put the thermometer near a person's forehead and voilà! One of our kids did get a temperature while we were gone. This was due to too much sun. Fortunately, by having the thermometer we were able to assess and address the issue quickly and were able to get the temperature back in the normal range quickly. What a great tool." —Soup1958

    Get it from Amazon for $19.99.

    16. A waterproof trash can ideal for road trips with messy little ones to contain all the trash that somehow always accumulates on the car floor. *sigh*

    lunch box-sized black car trash can with liner bags
    Amazon

    Promising review: "By far, this is the best trash can for a car I’ve had in my life! And yes, I have tried others! I have a small SUV, and this is large enough to collect the trash from receipts, napkins, and apple sauce pouches from my kid, and straps to the back of my console so it’s in easy reach! The snaps on the side keep a trash bag in place, but if there is a spill it’s very easy to clean! And the lid keeps everything inside if it happens to get kicked! I definitely recommend!" —Kristi

    Get it from Amazon for $9.99+ (available in three sizes).

    17. And a pack of vomit bags with a twist-and-seal structure that'll come to the rescue when a tummy bug hits on the road.

    Person vomiting into bag while on a plane
    Amazon

    Promising review: "I purchased this item originally for my 4-year-old because he gets car sick a lot. This product has saved my and my husband’s car seats many times. I work in hospitals and I think the quality of these bags are more durable than the ones at the hospital. We have used them first hand in our family and there have never been any leaks or problems with them. I like about they are stackable and you can store them in small places. We keep some in our night stands, in our car arm rests and in our couch arm rests. You never know when you might need them. This is a great product and I will continue to purchase these for our family." —BoyMom💙

    Get a pack of 22 from Amazon for $9.99+ (also available in a 45-pack).

    18. An easy-to-apply SPF 50+ suncreen stick because getting kids to sit still while you slather on that goopy lotion is an *impossible feat.* This one glides on like a dream to keep your fam protected from the scorching sun.

    reviewer holding the sunblock stick on the beach

    PSA: This stick really works when you apply it properly — just make sure you don't miss any spots — a lesson the reviewer in this pic learned the hard way. One word: OUCH.

    Promising review: "This is the only sunscreen I will use on my daughter from now on. Every time I use sprays or lotion she rubs her face and gets it into her eyes and her eyes get all inflamed for 24 hrs+. This product solved that issue and provided great coverage to boot. It was all I used on a recent beach vacation and my daughter didn't burn once. Plus it's easy to pack and lug around."—Lulu B

    Get it from Amazon for $8.99.

    19. And a Burt's Bees sunburn soother if — despite your best efforts — the whole fam gets burned after a day in the sun. It's made with aloe vera and coconut oil to gently alleviate pain, redness, and swelling.

    A model holding a tube of the lotion
    Reviewer's before and after photos showing a sunburn on the back and a back without the sunburn after using the lotion

    Promising review: "Throw away your plain aloe and buy this immediately! I will never not have this on hand in the summer/on vacation. It works miraculously well, and by the next day you’re totally good. Approved by my kids too!" —KMR

    Get it from Amazon for $7.69.

    20. A travel-sized antiseptic and pain relief spray that'll work fast to treat all the minor boo-boos that may occur when you're out and about.

    Reviewer holding the product inside its packaging
    Reviewer holding the spray on applicator in their hand

    Promising review: "This is the perfect travel item to throw in my diaper bag. With a rambunctious toddler, I can always use some Neosporin on the go!" —Kelsey Marciano

    Get it from Amazon for $9.99.

    21. Tushbaby hip carrier because it'll prevent back strain and do all the heavy lifting if have to hold a baby or toddler for long periods of time during a trip. The best part? It has a ton of storage pockets for your snacks, phone, wallet, and more!

    reviewer showing how the carrier wraps around their waist and make it easy to hold a baby
    reviewer showing close up of the carrier and how it has a front pocket

    It's recommended for children between 8 and 45 pounds.

    Tushbaby is a small biz run by three California mamas and specializes in products that bringing a little more ease to everyday parenting life.

    Promising review: "Love love love this!! I bought this right before a beach vacation and it honestly was a life saver. My baby would get hot or just want out of his stroller and this was perfect to help support the weight of carrying him a long distance. The packaging was great and the product is just as pictured made of very nice material and it had loads of pockets for anything you may need. I absolutely recommend this for moms grandmas really just anyone that's carrying around a kid!" —Kelsi Earwood

    Get it from Amazon for $84.99+ (available in three colors).

    22. A pack of ingenious Melissa & Doug Reusable Water Wow! coloring books, aka a *godsend* in a car, plane, or restaurant. Just fill the pen with water and watch the kiddos "paint" over the pictures to have them magically appear. Once the page dries, they can start all over again. (No need to worry about messy markers or lost crayons!)

    Three water-reveal activity pads
    Reviewer's photo showing their child coloring with a water pen on the pad in a car

    Promising review: "My family and I went on a 27-hour road trip for the Christmas holiday. Needless to say I was a bit anxious over the idea of traveling with a 4-, 2-, and 1-year-old. These things were a lifesaver! I had bought quite a few other activities for them to do, but they kept returning to these. I love that there is no cleanup and they are reusable. I also thought the pen storage was a really nifty idea. The pages are a thick chipboard-like material so that there is no water leakage between pages. We still use these. Sometimes I pull them out while I'm getting dinner ready, and it keeps them occupied. All in all, a great buy, and Amazon had the best deal on them." —Dina

    Get a pack of three from Amazon for $13.77+ (available in five styles).

    23. Grab and Go Connect 4 because who wouldn't love battling their kiddos in this miniature version of the classic game? Besides, it's as portable as a passport.

    reviewer's photo showing the blue game with red and yellow discs
    reviewer's photo showing their passport on top of the blue game

    Promising review: "Perfect travel game! My son loves playing Connect 4, so this was the perfect travel toy for us to play on the plane. I took it out of the box and put it into a ziplock bag. A zip-top bag is a must because the little discs fall out of the holder when tossed into a carry-on bag. It worked perfectly and we played this game numerous times. The little slide on the bottom releases the discs. Sometimes the discs would get backed up and not fall out of the rows. If this happens, you just wiggle it a bit or pull it down and they will fall down. Highly recommend for anyone who loves to travel and loves Connect 4." —soccer mom

    Get it from Amazon for $5.99.