Skip to Content

12 Best Portable White Noise Machines for Travel with a Baby

This article about Best Portable Sound Machines for Babies was written by baby travel expert Celine Brewer and may contain affiliate links.

I have stayed in many different places while traveling with my kids, and I can tell you from personal experience that it’s not always easy to get a baby to sleep in a new environment. This is important to address as getting a baby to sleep on holidays, is crucial to everyone being well rested and enjoying the family vacation as much as possible. In my experience, an effective portable white noise machine is a big part of the solution to this challenge.

One of the most important tips I’ve ever received for getting your baby to sleep on vacation is to recreate your baby’s at home sleep environment (as best you can). It’s the one tip that has worked consistently for us when we travel. I’ve found the most effective way to do this is to travel with a portable white noise machine.

I use a white noise machine at home, so it only makes sense that I would travel with one as well. White noise machines are the perfect way to help mimic our baby’s at home sleep environment. Not only that, but they can help to block out unfamiliar noises when we travel that might otherwise keep our baby awake.

Using white noise or other soothing sounds, similar to at home, is one of the easiest ways to do this. In fact, I’ve even brought my white noise machine for flying with a baby or toddler. I’ve discovered that it drown out the ambient noise in a plane, such as other passengers talking, announcements, etc.

One of the toddlers from the Baby Can Travel family uses a white noise machine to sleep on an airplane.
Using a SoundBub white noise machine on the airplane with our toddler.

Hotel rooms can be especially troublesome, as people talking in the hallways or a room next to the elevator can be the cause for unfamiliar noises that keep your baby awake. Apartments rented through Airbnb can have similar issues, especially considering multi-level apartment buildings or street noise. And, if you ever go camping with a baby, the noise from other campers usually extends long after your little one’s bedtime.

It’s worth using up a little luggage space for packing the best baby sound machine to help your baby sleep restfully. Whether you decide to purchase a portable white noise machine or use an app on your phone, using soothing sounds to help your baby sleep is one of my top recommended baby travel essentials.

Top 3 Baby White Noise Machines for Travel

If you don’t have the time to read the whole article, here are my top picks for the best portable sounds machines:

Best Overall:

Baby Shusher – best for those that want one to use at home and on the road. The Baby Shusher plays a human voice shushing to calm your baby.

Best Affordable Travel White Noise Machine

Yogasleep Hushh – best for parents looking for the best value. This highly rated white noise machine is USB-rechargeable, has continuous play or a shut-off timer plus it has a small amber LED nightlight.

Best Affordable Travel White Noise Machine:

MyBaby SoundSpa – best for the budget conscious traveler. This portable white noise machine still offers 4 sounds and 4 shut-off timer options.

baby sleeping in baby carrier.

12 Best Travel White Noise Machines for Baby

Based on my personal experiences traveling with my children, here are my picks for the best travel white noise machines for babies. These baby sound machines are small and portable and can be used at the hotel or on the stroller for naps on-the-go.

Using an app on your phone or a tablet is another great option I’ve used in a pinch. The benefit of having a separate white noise machine is that you’ll still have access to your phone while your baby is sleeping!

a baby from family uses a white noise app to sleep while traveling.
My daughter using an iPhone app for a baby sound machine.

While I love the idea of a multi-use item like the Hatch Baby Rest Sound Machine (which is a sound machine, night light and time-to-rise alert all in one) for home use, I wouldn’t recommend it for travel.

What Makes the Best Travel White Noise Machine for Babies

Based on my experience, here are the five features that are most important to review when researching the top baby sound machines.

  1. Ability to recharge is best, but for short trips a battery operated one with new batteries.

  2. How long is the usage between charges. This is important if you want to use it for the whole night.

  3. Look for one that is small in size and portable.

  4. On-the-go use with a clip for a stroller makes it easy to use when out exploring.

  5. Automatic shut-off timers or continuous play are key, depending on what is best for your baby.
a toddler uses a sound machine while traveling with his family.
Our baby sound machine traveled everywhere with us and could also be used a speaker.

9 Things to Consider When Purchasing the Best Portable Sound Machine for Baby

When you are looking for the best portable white noise machine, there are a few things to consider. I have them listed all below and it’s important to read through these questions so you know exactly what you are looking for!

  1. What types of noise would you like it to play? Would you prefer your white noise machine play lullabies in addition to white noise?

  2. How long will you be playing it for? Do you want it to play all night or just as your baby is falling asleep?

  3. Is it battery operated or can it be charged by USB?

  4. How long does the USB charged battery last? Will it last all night?

  5. Can you use it while it’s charging?

  6. What other functions does the white noise machine have?

  7. Will it last through baby and toddler years (with other functions like night light or setting awake time)

  8. Does it have an automatic timer if you don’t want to use it all night.

  9. Is a cry-activated soother important?

Benefits of White Noise for Babies

In his book, The Happiest Baby on the Block, Dr. Karp goes into detail about using white noise for babies to sleep. It helps to calm your baby. When babies are in the womb, they are constantly hearing noises.

By using a white noise or sound machine your baby’s calming reflexing is activated. This will help keep your baby calm and get to sleep.

a baby from the family uses a portable sound machine for sleeping on a family vacation.
Using the SoundBub white noise machine to help my toddler sleep.

If you use a white noise machine at home, then for the best success on getting your baby to sleep while traveling, you’ll want to have some type of portable sound machine with you.

Is a White Noise Machine Necessary for Toddlers

I’m not a sleep expert, but from my own experience I have found creating a similar sleep environment to home will still help toddlers sleep while traveling.

The added benefit of having a portable white noise machine is blocking out unfamiliar noises to help keep your toddler asleep. Nightlights might help your toddler sleep in a new environment as well.

a toddler from the BabyCanTravel family uses a travel white noise machine while traveling with his family.
My toddler loved the SoundBub white noise machine for travel!

Pin It For Later!

Best Travel Sound Machines for Baby

This post was written & edited by: | Website | + posts

Celine Brewer is the owner of Baby Can Travel. Not only does she have years of experience traveling with babies & toddlers, but she's helped millions of new parents travel with their babies and toddlers for over a decade. In addition to writing on her baby travel blog, she has shared her expertise on traveling with a baby or toddler by contributing to articles about traveling with a baby with the Washington Post, USA Today, the Lonely Planet magazine and Pregnancy & Newborn magazine.

Celine also writes about family travel on the site, which she co-owns with her husband. Being from the Canadian Rockies, she shares her passion about her home and travel to Banff National Park and area on their site

Read more about Celine Brewer.