If you’ve ever had one of those moments when you thought traveling with a baby was just too hard, imagine if you had two (or more) babies at that same time? I am in complete awe of parents, like Anna of @then_i_had_twins, who has not only managed to continue to travel with her babies (now she’s kept extra busy traveling with toddlers), but still has time to share this incredible guest post with us full of all the twin travel tips!
If you are expecting twins or hoping to travel with twins, this post will have you well on your way to being prepared for your first family holiday with twin infants, babies or toddlers!
This post contains compensated links.
Traveling when Pregnant with Twins
The first question that likely comes to mind is…Can you fly while pregnant with twins?
In the end, every twin pregnancy is considered ‘high risk’ so it’s very important to discuss all of your potential travel plans and flying while pregnant with your doctor. The general recommendation is not to travel after the 28th week of a twin pregnancy.
No matter how far along you are make sure to always travel with your medical records and consider informing your GP that you will be abroad in the case that you need to go to the hospital during your trip.
I personally traveled a lot during my twin pregnancy due to the travel requirements of my job at the time – I was even flying while pregnant with twins on long haul flights from Europe to the US and India up until I was 20 weeks along. My final flight was within Europe at around 26 weeks pregnant and that was even pushing it for me – the recommendation of my doctor towards the end of my second trimester was to only travel to destinations where I would feel comfortable giving birth and spending time there while my babies would be in the NICU. I was put on medical leave from work at 28 weeks and was placed on semi-bedrest at 29 weeks until I gave birth almost 10 weeks later…
Traveling while pregnant with twins is absolutely possible and I would even encourage it, especially taking a babymoon with your partner before the babies arrive but make sure to consult with your doctor before booking your trip.
Best Age to Travel with Twins
The best age to travel with twins very much depends on the health of your babies, your comfort level, and your destination. I always think back about how much ‘easier’ it would have been traveling with twin babies in the early months of their lives but to be honest, I could barely make it to the grocery store or a café down the street those first few months.
We took our first road trip when the twins were about four months old and our first long-haul flight with the twins when they were seven months old. If I have to recommend an ideal age for flying with twins, I would say around five months – the babies will still be small enough that they are easy to transport, sleep a lot, and aren’t yet mobile!
As soon as the babies started to walk it was increasingly more difficult to convince them to stay seated but our decision to buy a third seat (and sometimes a fourth) and bring their car seats on board has made our travel days much easier. I don’t think that any age is very ‘easy’ to travel with toddlers but with the right preparation and gear it is possible!
(We personally took a 1 year break from flying long haul while we were in the thick of toddler life but plan to head back to the US when the twin are 3 next summer!)
Picking the Right Seats when Flying with Twins
When you travel with a baby or toddler, you are in fact a priority customer. Most airlines want to help you and your family be as comfortable as possible. If you are unsure about the best seating options for your family, call the airline and ask them for advice – each airline has different policies and each airplane has different seating charts.
How to Fly with Twins:
- All airlines allow children under the age of 2 to sit on an adult’s lap, but only 1 child under 2 can sit on each adults lap. Keep in mind that not all airlines allow one adult to travel alone with two children under the age of 2. **See below for tips on traveling alone with twins and more about flying with twins alone.
- Each airplane/airline has different seating charts and policies, and not all rows are equipped with more than one seat that has an extra oxygen mask for lap babies. Meaning, when you are flying with twins, you and your travel partner will likely be sitting in different rows. Make sure you pack your carry-on bags accordingly when flying with twin babies!
- If your babies fit the size requirements, request those baby bassinets for flying with twin infants on long-haul flights!! Even if you don’t get your babies to sleep on the flight, you’ll appreciate the extra space for all the baby stuff and as a place to let your twins play when they are awake. Don’t forget to request TWO bassinets for flying with your twins. Note: You can look up the size, height or age restrictions for the bassinets on the airline. Some airlines don’t allow the bassinets for babies that can sit up, but even if they do be cautious as your little ones can fall out if they are mobile.
- If you can’t secure the first row or the bassinets, another option to consider when flying with babies is to sit near the back of the plane. This allows more room so you can stand up easily. You can also consider upgrading to premium economy but sitting near frequent flyers (often business travelers) may not be the most baby friendly place on the plane.
- Considering purchasing a third (or even fourth) seat for air travel with twin infants (yes, even if your twins are under the age of 2 years old and you don’t technically have to purchase a seat yet). And invest in airplane approved car seats for traveling.
Flying Alone with Twins
Travel has been such a big part of my life for so many years that I was determined to also figure out a way to travel on my own with the twins. While logistically complicated – it IS possible! I have conquered flying with twin toddlers on four (short) flights on my own when they were 19 months and 21 months. I plan on working up to flying long-haul with toddlers from Amsterdam to the United States when the twins are three years old!
Can one parent fly with twins?
It is possible to fly with twins alone, here are our best tips for flying alone with twins:
- Check if your preferred airline even allows 1 adult to fly with 2 under 2. Not every airline allows this but many do. You can find this information on the airline website under “Flying with infants”. You will need to call and speak with an agent in order to book your tickets.
**Note: sometimes this is even a nation-wide flight regulation, for example in Canada where no person is allowed to fly in or out of Canada with 1 adult and 2 infants.**
- Purchase an airline approved car seat to take on board or use a CARES harness for older children. If your twins are both under the age of two you need to purchase two seats with one baby in his/her own seat and one baby on your lap. Unless the child is tall enough to use the airline approved CARES harness, you will need to secure one child in a car seat when flying alone with twins. Look into car seat trolleys which allow you to wheel your car seat through the airport with your child in it! You can collapse the trolley and stow it in the overhead bin.
- Choose the most convenient way to get to the airport (bonus if it includes someone helping you – including a taxi driver!). Or ask a friend or family member to drive you and help you get through check in and to security. (Don’t be like me pushing a cart full of luggage from the long-term parking to the farthest check in counter while wearing two toddlers!)
- Wear all the babies! I’ve always found baby wearing (especially tandem baby wearing) to be the best support while traveling with twins, especially when traveling alone with twins! This depends a bit on the age of your twins but I even preferred to wear my twin toddlers in a twin baby carrier while boarding the plane until they were 2 years old. Having free hands to hand over tickets, passports, and navigate through the aisle makes the logistics of boarding and deplaning much easier.
- Gate check your stroller but bring a baby carrier too. Even if you choose to take a stroller to the gate, be aware that you may not always receive your stroller back at the gate when you arrive at your destination so bring at least one carrier on board or do a carrier/car seat combo to get to and from the plane and check the stroller. Note: The TwinGo baby carrier for twins separates into two single carriers!
- Limit your hand luggage and consider how the heck you will carry everything! I always use a backpack when traveling as I find it the easiest to carry while wearing one or two babies or to somehow attach to my car seat trolley or luggage.
- Finally, ASK FOR HELP! Go to the airline employees at check-in, security and the gate and proudly announce that you are flying alone with twins and could use assistance. Usually they will be in awe of you being such a Superwoman traveling alone with twins and will help you skip the long line and get you to your seat.
Best Twin Travel Gear
Traveling with Car Seats & Best Car Seats for Twins
I’m a big fan of flying with car seats – after a difficult long haul flight with two wiggly lap babies we booked a third seat and brought a car seat on the plane for the return flight and never looked back!
If you can financially afford the third seat, I always recommend to buy it when traveling with twins and bring one car seat on board. Being able to secure one baby safely in their seat and have one baby on one adult’s lap and have one adult with FREE hands makes flying with twin infants so much easier. It sounds complicated to bring a car seat on board but it really is not!
We also prefer to bring our car seats with us instead of renting two car seats at our destination (which we also have done) – it can be very expensive and the seats are not always great quality. The money you save on the car seat rental (usually 8-13 USD per DAY per SEAT) might even equal the cost of that third seat!
Twin Car Seats for Travel
Choose a baby car seat which can be attached to your stroller frame and easily transferred to and from your car. Bonus if the car seat is approved for air travel! This is also an easy way to get through the airport – if you can gate check your stroller frame, simply wheel up and pop off the car seats and get on board!
We used Maxi Cosi infant seats which were compatible with our stroller and were able to easily use them in flight (rear facing) and secured with the seatbelt. That collapsible sunshade was a bonus as it also blocks out the airplane lights and makes for a perfect place for your baby to sleep on the flight!
Toddler Car Seats for Travel
Once you move to the traveling with twin toddlers phase there are SO many car seat choices and this is a bit of a personal choice considering where you are from and the local regulations (front/rear facing and iso fix or seatbelt installation).
My best recommendation for a car seat which can be used for air travel globally is the Britax Roemer Eclipse. It’s not as light as some airline approved car seats available in the US but most of these seats are not approved in the EU. We’ve flown multiple times with one or even two of the bulky Eclipse car seats and simply strap them onto the Britax Car Seat Trolley to wheel it through the airport (you can also wheel your child in the car seat through the airport using this trolley)!
Travel car seats recommended by Moms who travel within the USA:
For more options for lightweight car seats for travel with a baby or toddler, shop this list on Amazon.
Best Twin Travel Stroller
This depends a lot on your destination and the age of your twins. If we are going on a trip where I think we will walk a lot and the twins will need to nap in the stroller often, I usually chose to bring our large UPPAbaby Vista double stroller that is easy to push, has a huge basket, comfortable and reclining seats with large sunshades and UV protection.
Now that our twins are 2 and like to walk more, we bought a secondhand double umbrella stroller to use on shorter trips and which can be gate checked with every airline (most large double strollers cannot be gate checked on shorter flights or with budget airlines).
Over the past two years, we have used all combinations of strollers and carriers for various types of trips and I’m not sure if there is truly a ‘perfect’ travel stroller for twins yet (like the coveted BabyZen YoYo stroller!). Most Twin Moms I know have more than one stroller since each serves its own purpose and your best asset to getting out and about with your twins is having the right baby travel gear to do so!
Here are the different options for travel strollers for twin travel:
- One large double stroller
- Pros: Easy to push, large basket, comfortable seats for twins, sunshades
- Cons: Often in multiple pieces and needs travel bag, cannot be gate checked on many airlines, takes up a lot of trunk space
- Our Experience: We use the UPPAbaby Vista and have flown with it multiple times using the UPPAbaby travel bag. The biggest downside is that this stroller has many parts (frame, 2 seats, and adapters) and takes a bit of work to take apart and put back together. When traveling with my husband he was responsible for the stroller and I wore the babies. When I flew alone and took this stroller, I checked it, used the carrier in the airport, and built it at baggage claim.
- One lighter, double umbrella stroller – This is the top recommendation from twin Moms! Some great options are:
- Two lightweight single strollers – consider something like the BabyZen YoYo or GB pockit travel stroller which can be folded up small enough to bring on board
- One lightweight single stroller and one baby carrier for twins – same recommendations as above for single strollers. The lightweight strollers that fold up small are the easiest to travel with.
Best Twin Baby Carriers
The best way to carry twins is in a twin baby carrier. Here are two that we recommend:
Weego Twin Baby Carrier
The Weego Twin baby carrier allows parents to tandem carry newborn twins.
I didn’t personally have the Weego carrier, but I wish I would have! This carrier allows one adult to comfortably wear newborn twins safely side by side and also remove or put in each baby without disturbing the other.
During those first months this product is so helpful to help twin parents comfort their babies simultaneously and would be excellent for traveling with infant twins!
Learn More about the Weego Carrier.
TwinGo Baby Carrier for Twins
What I love most about the TwinGo baby carrier is that it functions as both a tandem and two single carriers. We have used the tandem option front/back carrier since the twins were 5 months old and it can handle up to 70 lbs combined. We used the two single carrier option with our newborn twins. The carriers can handle up to 40 lbs and comfortably fit both me (158cm) and my husband (188cm) as either a front or back carrier.
The options on how to wear your twins (or two children) are really endless with the Twingo – tandem, front or back or side carry single, and it includes newborn inserts, panel extenders, weather (sun) shields, and teething guards.
I highly recommend this product to both twin parents or parents with young children close in age – whether you are headed to the grocery store or on holiday, it’s so versatile and easy to use even when on your own, the Twingo is really a game changing product for parents of multiples!
For other single baby carriers for travel, we have a list of all the best baby carriers for travel.
Formula Feeding Travel Tips for Travel with Twin Babies
These are our best tips for mixing bottles and formula feeding on the go.
The top three things I always bring to mix bottles for formula feeding a baby wherever we go are: formula dispenser + travel thermos for hot water + cold (bottled) water. Though it’s more convenient if you can get your babies used to room temperature milk before you travel, my twins refused cold milk. With these three items in your travel diaper bag you can easily feed your baby on the go, just make sure to invest in a high quality thermos that keeps water hot for 24 hours.
Keep your thermos full at all times. There are so many places you can request boiling water, like restaurants, cafés and gas stations. Use the boiling water and mix your bottles to the perfect temperature (it’s surprising how little boiling water you need!). This is so much easier than depending on flight attendants to warm bottles which often ends up being too hot to drink and they are usually busy with all the other passengers. Other essentials when flying with your baby are bibs, burp cloths and extra clothes for your baby (don’t forget an extra t-shirt for yourself and your travel partner!).
One baby travel hack we use for sterilizing bottles on an airplane is to ask the flight attendants to rinse the bottles with boiling water right away. That way we have a clean bottle ready for the next feeding. We don’t bother using soap or a bottle cleaning brush during the flight. However, during a long trip or layovers, having a bottle brush in your carry-on (or in your checked luggage) is handy to properly clean the bottles in between flights or at your hotel. We always packed a few extra bottles in our checked luggage and set up a bottle station as soon as we get to the hotel.
When in doubt about the quality of the tap water, use only boiled or bottled water to make the bottles and for cleaning your bottles in the hotel. Ask at your hotel or apartment rental for a water kettle (even if there isn’t one in your room).
We always packed enough formula for our entire trip, especially when we knew the specific brand we used wasn’t available at our destinations. It is a lot of formula to travel with, especially for a multi-week trip, but it’s what worked best for us. We lined the bottom of our suitcase with baby formula, then used the extra space for the souvenirs we bought. We’ve given up on the idea of packing light when we travel with twins!
If you are unsure about the brand of formula you use, google it or ask if your favourite facebook group to find out if your brand of formula or something similar is available locally. Another option is to either order online and have it delivered if you are staying for multiple weeks or purchase it when you arrive.
Top 10 Tips for Traveling with Twins
- Take practice outings to places you feel comfortable to go alone with your twins near your home. Put rules in place from a young age and be strict about listening and following directions.
- Allow yourself (much) more time than you need. Leave early! VERY early and you might even end up being on time!
- Make and discuss a detailed plan for your travel day so you and your partner know what to expect – consider when the twins will get hungry and tired and where you will be, what you will be doing at that time to try to be prepared before you get to the overtired screaming phase with two babies. Remember that it’s okay for them to get out of sync on travel days and try to be flexible while following your routine as much as you can – I always found this helped us to survive long travel days and adjust to our new location.
Thinking about this in advance helps you to consider things like: Do you need to feed them before you go through security in case the line takes a long time? If you need to make a bottle consider where you will get hot or clean water.
- Pack one carry-on per baby and adult if the seats are not in the same row (which is very likely with two lap babies). Use packing cubes or ziplock bags to separate toys, snacks, extra outfits, diapers – you won’t be able to help each other access your carry-ons so each adult needs to be able to easily grab things while holding a baby.
Tip for long flights with twins – swap toys half way through with your travel partner. Here is a list of Best Travel Toys and Airplane Activities for Babies & Toddlers.
One of these backpack diaper bags for travel will keep hands free, which is necessary when traveling with twin babies or toddlers!
- Divide and conquer when faced with any complex logistical situations. Do you need to return a rental car at an offsite location which requires a shuttle? Consider having your travel partner drop you off at the airport first and return the car without you, your babies and your mountain of luggage.
- Be kind to staff at the airport – ask them for help, ask for priority check-in or security, early boarding etc. – most employees want to help make your travel day easier whether you are traveling with two babies or twin toddlers, especially if you are alone. We always make ourselves known to the gate staff and ask to board first if we are traveling with car seats on board – it’s almost impossible to make it down the aisle without knocking people in the head otherwise!
When I travel alone (also with a car seat on board) I also ask to board first and ask for assistance in getting the car seat down the aisle and to my seat.
**If you have two lap babies I would recommend the exact opposite – board as late as possible to avoid having to sit longer than necessary with squirming babes.**
- Bring food for yourself which you can eat while baby wearing or with one hand. Bring lots of snacks for the baby or extra formula if the baby is bottle fed. Drink a lot of water!
- Bring two baby carriers on board and embrace the fact that you might be standing a lot of the flight. If your babies get fussy, swap who is holding them or stand up and walk around, distraction helps.
- If your twins walk – let them explore the airport or train station, etc. – play games, run around, help them release energy before you board for a higher chance that they will sleep!
** Many airports have designated play spaces for kids – you can usually google this in advance.**
- My final and best tip is, after your twins are mobile, purchase at least a third seat on flights longer than 2 hours and bring a car seat on board. I promise that it is worth it!
This guest post was written by Anna of @then_i_had_twins
Anna is an American living in Amsterdam with her Dutch husband, Tim and 20-month old twins, Marcus & Emily. As an international family, travel is part of our lives – even with toddler twins in tow! We’ve taken the twins on 14 flights so far, 4 of them solo with Anna and learned how to manage with the right gear and preparation. Anna writes about twin motherhood, living abroad and how she manages to continue to travel with twins on her blog and Instagram account @then_i_had_twins.
Shop all the products mentioned in this post on Amazon in one convenient place: Essential Baby Gear for Travel with Twins.