Reviews

LAST UPDATED: October 7, 2019

Best Travel Toys for Toddlers: Promote Creative Play

Educate and entertain your child during long trips with these top travel toys for toddlers

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The Review Team

  • Product Network

    25 Products

  • Clock

    12 Hours

  • Reviews

    15 Reviews

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PUBLISHED ON October 7, 2019

Toddlers are always bursting with energy, and they can be challenging during long road trips or when traveling in planes. Fortunately, you can channel all that energy into a toy that can keep them entertained during a trip. If you don’t want to use electronic games on a mobile device to distract them, you can use one or more of the following travel toy options in our buying guide below.

  • Best Overall
    ALEX Discover Button Art Activity Set 
    Summary
    Summary
    A colorful toy with chunky buttons that snap in place to complete pictures.
    Pros
    Pros
    Improves hand-eye coordination and motor skills. Promotes creative thinking. Includes a convenient storage tray. It offers hours of artistic fun. Fits in a handbag or backpack.
    Cons
    Cons
    It may not come with spare buttons. Potential choking hazard. There’s no cover for the tray.
  • Best Overall
    ALEX Discover Button Art Activity Set 
  • Best Value
    Melissa & Doug Reusable Sticker Pad
    Summary
    Summary
    An extra-large sticker activity pad with removable and colorful backgrounds. 
    Pros
    Pros
    Affordable. Features five colorful backgrounds. Educational. Keeps your child entertained for long periods of time. Promotes creative play.
    Cons
    Cons
    Small stickers. The backgrounds are easy to rip off. The stickers may fall off the pages.
  • Best Value
    Melissa & Doug Reusable Sticker Pad
  • Honorable Mention
    Playskool Classic Dressy Kids Boy Plush Toy
    Summary
    Summary
    A soft toy for kids aged two and up, featuring five getting-dressed activities.
    Pros
    Pros
    Adorable and snuggly toy. Toddler-friendly size. Teaches kids how to dress up. Machine washable. Easy to carry around. Difficult to lose. Mess-free.
    Cons
    Cons
    May frustrate the child if they can’t unbutton the doll. Can't be propped up. May have a funny scent when unboxed.
  • Honorable Mention
    Playskool Classic Dressy Kids Boy Plush Toy

    Toddlers are always bursting with energy, and they can be challenging during long road trips or when traveling in planes. Fortunately, you can channel all that energy into a toy that can keep them entertained during a trip. If you don’t want to use electronic games on a mobile device to distract them, you can use one or more of the following travel toy options in our buying guide below.

    Best Value

    When you want a toy that lets children engage with their imagination, the Melissa & Doug Reusable Sticker Pad is a great way to go. The pad is large, enabling children to use the space to develop fine motor skills. By featuring different backgrounds, it serves as a way to learn about the world through a scope of familiarity. With hundreds of stickers that can be reused (provided they are on the included sheets), the toy keeps boredom at bay. It comes at a low price; plus, since you can use it for a long time, it offers immense value. The stickers are made using safe glue, making it suitable for children. While some individual stickers might slip out of position, there are easily enough pieces in this toy to keep kids happy on lengthy trips. 

    Honorable Mention

    If your main focus is something that will soothe your toddler, the Playskool Classic Dressy Kids Boy Plush Toy is a terrific selection. It earns an honorable mention on this list thanks to the comfort it provides. This plush is best for kids over the age of two. Your child can use this toy to play dress up, using one of the five different outfits. It includes features like practice buckles on shoes, serving to assist kids in getting enthusiastic about self-care. The plush is fairly durable and, since the toy is machine washable, you don’t have to worry too much about spills. It’s small enough to fit in the car if you plan on travelling light. With multiple functions like zippers and ties, kids develop motor skills while staying engaged throughout the car ride. 

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    WARNING: EDITS TO THIS CARD WILL UPDATE AMAZON OSPSwitch ColorBest OverallALEX Discover Button Art Activity SetInnovative Toy for Development
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    For those seeking a toy to keep toddlers interested, the ALEX Discover Button Art Activity Set is a fantastic choice. It’s best suited for kids who are at least 18-months old. By incorporating multiple bright colors and sensory-engaging parts, it retains children’s attention. With over 45 buttons and 10 pictures, it lets kids explore crafts in a tactile way. The visual cues assist with the development of both imagination and coordination. The buttons go into place easily, preventing issues with impatience or physical difficulty. Since it comes with dual storage options, you don’t have to worry about lost pieces. Instead, it serves to keep young children active during long drives. Working to maintain enthusiasm while on car rides, this button art set is a solid option overall. 

    Best Value

    When you want a toy that lets children engage with their imagination, the Melissa & Doug Reusable Sticker Pad is a great way to go. The pad is large, enabling children to use the space to develop fine motor skills. By featuring different backgrounds, it serves as a way to learn about the world through a scope of familiarity. With hundreds of stickers that can be reused (provided they are on the included sheets), the toy keeps boredom at bay. It comes at a low price; plus, since you can use it for a long time, it offers immense value. The stickers are made using safe glue, making it suitable for children. While some individual stickers might slip out of position, there are easily enough pieces in this toy to keep kids happy on lengthy trips. 

    Honorable Mention

    If your main focus is something that will soothe your toddler, the Playskool Classic Dressy Kids Boy Plush Toy is a terrific selection. It earns an honorable mention on this list thanks to the comfort it provides. This plush is best for kids over the age of two. Your child can use this toy to play dress up, using one of the five different outfits. It includes features like practice buckles on shoes, serving to assist kids in getting enthusiastic about self-care. The plush is fairly durable and, since the toy is machine washable, you don’t have to worry too much about spills. It’s small enough to fit in the car if you plan on travelling light. With multiple functions like zippers and ties, kids develop motor skills while staying engaged throughout the car ride. 

    Tips

    • Consider buying your toddler colorful snacks when you are on a trip. They will keep the child grounded for some time as he or she shifts from playing with the toys to admiring the snack packs. 
    • With toddlers, one toy is never enough. Your child may have a favorite, but small children get bored easily. Give them a few toy options, and be aware of which one they spend the most time playing with. That’s the toy you should always pack for trips. 
    • Ensure that all the toys you buy are larger than your fist to prevent choking. Also, avoid buying toys with small detachable parts if you have an infant who loves putting everything in their mouths. 

    FAQs

    Q: Are educational toys boring for children when traveling?

    A: Educational toys are the best for keeping the little one engaged for a long time. Just make sure that the toy is suitable for your child’s age. You can test out the toy before handing it over to them, and if it’s a bit complicated for you, then chances are that it will also frustrate your child and bore them. 

    Q: Do airlines provide travel toys for children?

    A: Carry your own toys if you are flying with your child. Some airlines may provide soft toys, but it’s never a guarantee. Also, bring an entertaining children’s book to keep kids engaged in case they get bored with the toy.

    Q: Are travel toys safe for pets?

    A: Some toddler toys are safe for pets. Just make sure that the toy isn’t small enough to be swallowed or inhaled. Avoid buying toys that can be chewed up into small parts or small balls that can lodge in the child’s or pet’s trachea. 

    Final Thoughts

    Our top pick is the ALEX Discover Button Art Activity Set. It will keep your child entertained and comes with a mess-free tray that’s convenient for traveling. It also helps develop your child’s creative and hand-eye-coordination skills. 

    A more pocket-friendly option is the Melissa & Doug Reusable Sticker Pad