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12 Best Travel Beds for Toddlers for 2021

We’ve been using the KidCo Peapod Plus tent as our portable toddler travel bed since our son was 14 months old. We’ve loved how lightweight and easy to pack the KidCo PeaPod is and consider it one of the best travel beds for toddlers.

Even at 3.5 years old, he still doesn’t object to sleeping in his travel tent (which is good until 5 years old), but we felt it was time to move him to a bed. He wasn’t in a crib at home and we knew a toddler travel bed would feel more familiar to him. A familiar sleep environment is key to getting a toddler to sleep on vacation!

KidCo Peapod plus tent for travel with toddlers

How to deal with toddler jet lag? Read our top 10 tips for dealing with jet lag in babies and toddlers.

We’ve still included toddler travel tents in our list of best toddler travel beds because we believe they are an excellent option. They are one of the few portable travel beds for toddlers that’s recommended for babies 6 months old or for toddlers as young a 12 months old.

For anyone looking for other options, the blow up travel beds for toddlers are also perfect for traveling with toddlers.

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Not at the toddler stage yet? Or if you still want to keep your little one in a toddler travel crib, you can find the best lightweight, portable travel bed options for your baby or toddler in our list of best baby travel beds.

Many of these will last into the early toddler stages and are the most popular and highly rated. Once your toddler is moved into a toddler bed at home, you’ll want to come back here and take a look through this list of best travel beds for toddlers.

What to Look for in a Toddler Travel Bed

  1. Price – while toddler travel beds typically fall under $100, if you only plan to use it once or twice then it’s not worth paying a high price.

  2. Quality – choose one of high quality to get the most use out of it. Reputable companies will back their product and offer a good warranty.

  3. Sleeping Surface Size – the size will determine how long will you be able to use it for your toddler.

  4. Folded size – this is important for packing and carrying.

  5. Extras – most inflatable toddler travel beds work with a standard sized crib sheet. If not, they should come with a sheet that fits. A pump, travel bag and patch repair kit are also important extras.

Best Travel Beds for Toddlers 

When looking for the best toddler travel bed, it’s important to consider how frequent you will use it and where. If you plan to use it frequently, look for the highest quality or one with a lifetime warranty, like some of the inflatable travel beds for toddlers.

Camping with toddler using inflatable travel toddler bed (the shrunks junior toddler travel bed)

If you plan to use your toddler travel bed for camping with a toddler, keep that in mind as you look through the options. Many of the inflatable travel beds for toddlers come with an electric pump, which may not work if camping without electricity.

INFLATABLE TRAVEL BEDS FOR TODDDLERS

The best inflatable toddler travel beds are well thought out. They have an internal mattress that is easy to remove to put sheets on. They have bumpers to help keep wiggly toddlers in their bed. And they have a soft flocking for extra comfort.

The only major issue with an inflatable toddler travel bed is that they specifically state that the pump is not compatible outside the USA, so you might need to use a foot pump for inflating.

The complaints most often made about inflatable toddler travel beds is that they leak or don’t hold air. A reputable company will stand behind their product and offer a replacement.

We’ve been using a the Shrunks toddler travel bed and haven’t had any issues with it. We’ve used it for everything from international travel to camping.

FOLDING TODDLER TRAVEL COTS

The benefits of a folding travel cot for toddlers is that they don’t require a pump and come at a lower price compared to the blow up travel beds for toddlers. They are as lightweight and you don’t have to worry about leaks. A foldable toddler bed would work for camping, sleepovers or leaving at grandma’s house.

The biggest complaints about these two folding toddler beds were the middle section that seemed to be pulled too tight making it higher than the rest (and therefore less comfortable) and the quality, especially when it came to extended use. Many of the critical reviews commented on poles bending and bolts loosening.

Other disadvantages of a foldable toddler bed like these travel cots is that there is nothing to prevent toddlers or their pillow from falling off.

TODDLER TRAVEL TENTS

For some, the best travel toddler bed is a toddler tent. Some toddlers just love them. These toddler travel tents pack down to fit in a medium size suitcase and are lightweight. Other benefits are that there is no pump required and you don’t need to worry about leaks.

They are also good for outdoor use as they have protection against insects and UV protection. Finally, you can begin using a travel tent for babies at 6 months old (Joovy) or at 12 months old (KidCo).

Unfortunately, some toddlers won’t tolerate sleeping in a travel tent. Other disadvantages are that the bottom surface isn’t as comfortable as an inflatable mattress. They can also get quite hot inside, which isn’t great for travel to places without air conditioning.

These folding toddler travel tents can seem confusing to fold up, but after watching a short video it’s pretty easy to master.

Best Travel Bed Rails for Toddlers

If you know you’ll have a bed for your toddler, toddler travel bed rails are a great solution to keeping your toddler from falling out of bed. Even if your toddler doesn’t fall out of bed at home, an unfamiliar sleep environment may have your toddler rolling around a lot more.

There have been instances where our toddler was in a larger bed than at home and we thought he’d be just fine, but he still managed to fall out.

Traveling with Toddlers

We have rolled up towels or folded pillows, then inserted under the fitted sheet to use as bed rails. For us this has been an easy toddler travel hack, since this keeps our toddler in.

If your toddler does move around quite a bit or if there’s the chance you won’t have these extra available (this can be risky if staying in an Airbnb) then these inflatable toddler travel bed rails are a lightweight and easily portable option.

Accessories for Toddler Travel Beds

KidCo Peapod tent for traveling with toddlers

We love that the Slumberpod also fits over standard sized toddler travel beds, like the hiccapop or Regalo cot. If you are sharing a room with your toddler, the Slumberpod is an excellent option to ensure everyone gets a good sleep.

Use code BABYCANTRAVEL10 to get $20USD off the SlumberPod when you buy direct from Slumberpod!

Still not sure? Read our full review of the SlumberPod here

Other travel accessories for portable toddler beds:

  1. Foot Pump – most of the electric pumps won’t be compatible outside of the USA (this depends where you’ll be traveling, obviously). A good foot pump will make pumping up the blow up mattress for toddlers so much easier. Also a great option for camping.

  2. Patch Repair Kit – if the blow up toddler bed doesn’t come with a patch repair kit, it’s an easy add-on item.

  3. Toddler Pillow – if your toddler sleeps with a pillow at home, consider getting a small one for travel.

  4. Mattress Protector – The high quality blow up toddler beds typically have a velvet flocking for comfort. Protect it with a mattress protector.

  5. Crib Sheets – you may have thought you were done with crib sheets… having an extra one is worth it for hotel stays where you don’t have laundry.

Why Do You Need a Toddler Travel Bed?

Toddler on inflatable toddler travel bed in hotel room

You might be wondering why you would need a portable travel bed for toddlers, especially since your toddler is sleeping in a bed at home perhaps with or without toddler bed rails.

Here are our top 10 reasons to purchase a portable toddler bed for travel.

  1. Your toddler travel crib or toddler travel tent is getting too small. Or your toddler no longer sleeps well in it.

  2. Your hotel stays aren’t that much fun sharing a bed with a kicking, moving toddler.

  3. You want to have a familiar sleep environment for your toddler when you travel to ensure you all get the best sleep possible.

  4. You have two kids and they don’t share a bed well. Or your Airbnb apartment options don’t have enough beds for everyone (within your budget). Buying a portable toddler travel bed is cheaper than renting a larger apartment.

  5. Your travel style has changed and you are looking for something more portable.

  6. You plan to use it frequently both for travel and for camping with your toddler.

  7. Your toddler often falls out of the bed, even if you put pillows or a rolled up blanket. Keep him safer and closer to the floor in a portable travel bed for toddlers.

  8. You can keep your toddler closer at night but still in his own bed, this works well for sleeping in unfamiliar environments.

  9. Portable beds for kids are great for sleepovers or stays at grandma’s house.

  10. Your toddler is excited about the new bed and will excitedly go to sleep in it.

Don’t forget to read our posts on Flying with a ToddlerTravel with a Potty Training Toddler and Toddler Travel Essentials!

Tips for Using a Toddler Travel Bed

travel essentials baby - kidco peapod tent

Your toddler will most likely be excited about your new toddler travel bed, but here are some tips to have the most success traveling with a new toddler travel bed:

  • Let your toddler choose the color, if there is that option.

  • Introduce the bed at home before your trip. Start with a nap in the bed, in your toddlers bedroom. Stick with naps until they are going well, then test a full night sleep.

  • If your toddler sleeps in the dark at home, consider getting a SlumberPod and test that it will fit over your toddler’s new travel bed.

  • Get a travel pillow if your toddler sleeps with a pillow. Alternately, you can bring  a pillow case and fill it with towels.

  • Plan for blankets. While you can still use a standard crib sheet, you’ll need a plan for blankets. If you toddler still sleeps in a sleep sack, just pack that. Hotels will often have extra blankets.

  • Never put an infant or baby on a toddler travel bed. Follow all age recommendations for the toddler travel bed.

Shop our entire list of Toddler Travel Beds & Accessories on Amazon!

Pin It For Later!

Best portable travel beds for toddlers. We look at the pros and cons of inflatable toddler travel beds, inflatable bed rails, foldable travel cots and toddler travel tents. Find the best toddler travel bed for traveling with a toddler here! #toddlertravel #toddlertravelessentials #travelwithkids
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