The Ultimate Guide to Picking the Best Lightweight Travel Stroller

Planes, trains, and unhappy babies. Traveling with your little one is not always the easiest task, and neither is finding the perfect, compact, lightweight travel stroller. But when you need to fly across the country, or across the world, to visit Grandma and Grandpa, you’ll want to make the journey as painless as possible. There are hundreds and hundreds of potential strollers. Some are claimed to be the “best” and some may fly under the radar. You may find the right one, but what if it’s out of your price range? You can try to tackle the behemoth of stroller possibilities, but who knows how long that will take. We know finding the best travel stroller is difficult. Do you want a traditional umbrella stroller? Or something with more features? We are here to help you narrow down the choices.

If you are looking for an ideal travel stroller you should consider:
Lightweight, Recline, One-hand Fold, Car Seat Compatibility, and Storage.

Click here to jump to Our Lightweight Travel Stroller Recommendations


Why You Should Buy a Travel Stroller

Travel strollers are popular as secondary strollers. Parents often have a primary baby stroller for their everyday needs, and then a travel stroller to supplement it. The primary stroller is usually larger, has more features, may not fold easily, but works well for everyday use. A travel stroller is typically smaller, folds easily, has a compact build, is lightweight, and is easy to transport.best Travel stroller

Simply, travel strollers are designed for travel. They don’t take up a lot of space, which important for trips. Especially on airplanes, you want something small and convenient. Some travel strollers are so compact that you can fit them in overhead compartments. If you are taking a road trip, you don’t need to worry about fitting your stroller in with all of your stuff in the trunk. The travel stroller is made to be brought around with ease. One type of travel stroller is the umbrella stroller. These are typically the lightest and fold in half. An umbrella stroller may also be a cheaper option, if you are price conscious.

Traveling can take a toll on your stroller. Some parents don’t want to worry about damaging their main stroller, which is why they purchase a cheaper travel stroller. If the travel stroller gets banged up and is damaged in transit, the main stroller is still safe and okay for use. For this purpose, you may want to consider a cheap umbrella stroller. But if you want something sturdier and with more features, you can spend a little more money on a travel stroller.

Keep in mind that travel strollers are not all-terrain strollers. They are not as good on uneven surfaces.  They may not be the most comfortable or luxurious stroller. They are lightweight baby strollers that you can bring from place to place with ease.

Why Your Travel Stroller Should Be Lightweight

Umbrella strollerTraveling usually involves some form of transportation. You will probably need to pick the stroller up and manually move it at some point. You don’t want a heavy stroller to weigh you down.  You’ll need something light to just pack up and go. Umbrella strollers are known for being particularly lightweight. Parents tend to chose them because they won’t be cumbersome to take around. Going on a trip or vacation already requires bringing luggage for you and your baby. Having a heavy stroller will just add to the weight you’ll have to carry around with you. Lightweight strollers are easier to transport, which is why this piece of criteria is essential to consider when picking a travel stroller.

Why Your Travel Stroller Should Recline

Traveling involves long days out and a lot of walking. Even if you child is slightly older, they will get tired from all the activities and stimuli around them. Chances are, they will want to take a nap while you are out exploring. For this reason, having a reclining stroller is important for long trips. Having a deep recline will allow your child to take a nap without interrupting the day’s activities. Otherwise, you will need to break for a nap, or you will have a fussy baby on your hands. A deep reclining stroller can also double as a changing table. Sometimes trying to find a changing table in a foreign place can be difficult. Using the stroller as a changing table will make your lives just a little bit easier. Keep in mind, some umbrella strollers do not recline, and while they may be less expensive, it reduces the stroller’s convenience.

Why Your Travel Stroller Should Have One-Hand Fold


One-hand fold allows you to hold your baby and simultaneously close the stroller. If you are in the airport, getting onto a bus, or hopping into a taxi, having a one-hand fold option can come in handy. There may not always be a situation where someone can hold your baby as you fold the stroller, so one-hand fold makes your life simpler while on the go. If you are dragging a suitcase or luggage around with you, you may not have a second spare hand to collapse or open a stroller. A travel stroller is all about convenience, and having a one-hand fold capability definitely makes it traveling easier.

Why Your Travel Stroller Should Have Car Seat Compatibility

This piece of criteria caters towards those who like to take road trips. Car seat compatibility means that if your baby falls asleep in the car, then you can transport them into the stroller without waking them up. Or vice versa. It’s also handy to have a stroller with car seat compatibility because you can use it outside of just long distance travel. If you want a more versatile stroller, then car seat compatibility is key. You can use this stroller for everyday errands; getting in and out of the car frequently is a pain with a stroller that does not have car seat compatibility. With this feature, however, it’s just click and go. Car seat compatible strollers are good to have with newborns, since they cannot use a regular stroller until they are 6 months old.

There are two types of car seats: Infant and Convertible. An infant car seat is rear facing and typically is only used until the child is 35 pounds. A Convertible car seat is either rear or forward facing and can accommodate children from when they are newborns until they are 70 to 80 lbs. Most strollers are only infant car seat compatible. However, the Mountain Buggy Nano is both infant car seat compatible and convertible car seat compatible.

Why Your Travel Stroller Should Have Storage

Whether you are taking a trip to Europe, visiting Mickey at Disney, or strolling along the boardwalk, you will probably have some essentials to take along with you. Having storage on the stroller makes it easier for you to bring things with you. It can be annoying to push your baby while juggling your purse and other bags. Being able to store your stuff onboard will make your life so much easier. It also come in handy if you decide to go shopping. Instead of carrying all your purchases, you can put them in the stroller’s storage compartment. Some umbrella strollers don’t have onboard storage, which means you’ll probably need to carry a backpack all day.

 


Our Recommendation

Best Lightweight Stroller

Mountain Buggy Nano

✓  Lightweight

✘ One-hand Fold

 ✓ Storage

✓  Recline

✓  Infant Car Seat

✓  Convertible Car Seat

Amazon Rating: 4/5  

$249.99 at Amazon

$249.99 at Amazon

PROS

Accessories

Brakes 

Durability 

Child Comfort 

Compact 

Easy to Assemble 

Easy to Clean 

Ease of Use 

Folding 

Grip 

Maneuverability 

Storage 

Sun Canopy 

Suspension

Weight 

CONS

Rough Terrain 

If one hand folding is not a priority for you, then the Mountain Buggy Nano is the right choice for you.  It’s lightweight (13 lbs) and extremely small and compact when folded.  You can even place it in the overhead compartment of a plane.  It maneuvers through crowds with ease, which is great for touristy destinations. This is the only stroller that is infant and convertible car seat compatible. So, even after your child outgrows their infant car seat, the Mountain Buggy Nano can still be used with the Cosco Scenera Next convertible car seat. This feature is unique to this stroller and why we feel as though this stroller is the best lightweight travel stroller. Not only can it accommodate a car seat, but it is also compatible with a bassinet.  Your baby can enjoy this stroller from the start.  The stroller is comfortable for your little one too.  It has a padded seat that reclines to flat, and an adjustable footrest.  The canopy is large enough to provide protection, and has a mesh panel in the back. On the downside, this baby stroller doesn’t have the smoothest ride since the wheels are made from hard plastic.  And when the sun canopy is pushed back, it covers the handlebar and can be annoying.  Overall, it’s a fantastic choice for a travel stroller if you don’t need one-hand fold. Read our full Mountain Buggy Nano stroller review here »

Bottom Line:
The Mountain Buggy Nano is a reliable travel stroller whose size is ideal for whatever form of transportation. It is the only stroller that works with an infant and a convertible car seat. The only thing this stroller doesn’t have is one-hand folding.  If that’s not a deal breaker, then this may be the choice for you.

gb qubit plus
gb qubit plus

gb Qbit+

✓  Lightweight

✓ One-hand Fold

 ✓ Storage

✓  Recline

✓  Infant Car Seat

✘   Convertible Car Seat

Amazon Rating: 5/5  

$289.40 at Amazon

$289.40 at Amazon

PROS

Accessories

Brakes

Durability 

Child Comfort 

Compact

Easy to Assemble 

Easy to Clean 

Ease of Use

Folding

Grip

Maneuverability

Rough Terrain 

Storage 

Sun Canopy

Suspension

Weight

CONS

If you want all the features of a travel stroller without compromising, then the Gb Qbit+ is the stroller for you. The Qbit Plus excels in each category and fits all the travel stroller criteria. It has a one-hand fold, which is useful when carrying luggage or your baby. The full recline gives your little on a bed for napping. It is infant car seat compatible as well. Unlike the Mountain Buggy Nano, it is not compatible with convertible car seats, so you may want to keep that in mind. The lightweight design lets you easily carry this stroller up and down stairs or on public transportation. One of the main appeals of the Qbit Plus is the super compact fold. It’s so small that it can fit in the overhead compartment! No need to check this stroller in at the gate. The huge sun canopy will protect your little one on the sunniest of days out. The undercarriage storage is plenty. You won’t need to carry a backpack since you can throw all your stuff into the storage basket. This is one of the shining stars in this category, and you can’t go wrong choosing this stroller. Read our full gb Qbit+ stroller review here »

Bottom Line:
This stroller has everything, except compatibility with convertible car seats. (However, It is compatible with infant car seats). If that’s not something you are looking for, then this is the ultimate travel stroller! For its price, you can’t beat it!

best lightweight travel stroller

Babyzen Yoyo+

✓  Lightweight

✘ One-hand Fold

✓ Storage

✓  Recline

✓  Infant Car Seat

✘   Convertible Car Seat

Amazon Rating: 4/5  

$495.00 at Amazon

$495.00 at Amazon

PROS

Accessories 

Brakes 

Durability

Child Comfort

Compact

Easy to Assemble

Easy to Clean

Ease of Use

Folding

Grip

Maneuverability

Rough Terrain

Storage

Sun Canopy

Suspension

Weight

CONS

This baby stroller has the highest overall ranking. It’s lightweight at a mere 13 lbs and it is small and compact when folded.  It can even fit an airplane overhead compartment. There’s a convenient carrying strap, which is perfect when traveling and moving from place to place. The Babyzen Yoyo+ is a great investment since you can use it with newborns and toddlers alike. It is bassinet and car seat compatible, so you can use it with your little one from the start. If you plan on having more children in the future, this stroller will last the test of time. Unlike many other travel strollers, this has an integrated suspension system, making the stroller easy to push and a smooth ride. You child will be comfortable in this stroller wherever you take it. The seat reclines 60 degrees, the sun canopy is large, and the child harness is height adjustable. Parents will find this stroller easy to use as well. There’s tons of storage space and this stroller comes with a travel bag. Perhaps the only downside to this stroller is that two hands are required to fold it. But if that’s not a big deal, this is the best travel stroller that money can buy. Read our full Babyzen Yoyo+ stroller review here »

Bottom Line:
This is the overall highest rated stroller because of it’s small size, smooth ride, and easy usability.

maclaren triumph lightweight stroller

Maclaren Triumph

✓  Lightweight

✓  One-hand Fold

 ✓ Storage

✓  Recline

✘  Infant Car Seat

✘  Convertible Car Seat

Amazon Rating: 4/5  

$225.00 at Amazon

$225.00 at Amazon

PROS

Brakes 

Durability 

Child Comfort 

Compact 

Easy to Assemble 

Easy to Clean 

Ease of Use 

Folding 

Grip 

Maneuverability 

Storage 

Weight 

CONS

Accessories 

Rough Terrain 

Suspension 

If you are not concerned about car seat compatibility but want a stroller with the rest of the requirements, we suggest the Maclaren Triumph. Coming in at 12 lbs, this umbrella stroller is great for families who like to get out and about. It’ll be a durable companion for your travels. It’s easy to maneuver, even with one hand, and has a smooth ride. Its folding system is intuitive and only requires a single free hand. It’s comfortable for children too! The sun canopy protects your baby from the sun (although it’s not the largest sunshade out there), and if they get tired, the seat reclines to 123 degrees. It has adequate padding so your baby can endure long stints out. This umbrella stroller comes with a carrying bag, which is essential if you will be traveling with it. Traveling can get messy, and this stroller is super easy to clean! This stroller won’t be a let down. Read our full Maclaren Triumph stroller review here »

Bottom Line:
The Maclaren Triumph is an ideal choice for parents who are looking for an umbrella stroller for traveling. Being so lightweight and compact, this stroller can be transported from location to location with ease.

best lightweight stroller

UPPAbaby G-Luxe

✓  Lightweight

✘ One-hand Fold

✓ Storage

✓  Recline

✘  Infant Car Seat

✘  Convertible Car Seat

Amazon Rating: 4/5  

$295.99 at Amazon

$295.99 at Amazon

PROS

Accessories 

Brakes 

Durability

Child Comfort

Compact

Easy to Assemble

Easy to Clean

Ease of Use

Folding

Grip

Maneuverability

Storage

Sun Canopy

Weight

CONS

Rough Terrain

Suspension

This umbrella stroller is easy to carry, lightweight, stands on its own, and is a great pick for frequent travelers. Weighing in at 15 lbs, the sturdy UppaBaby G-Luxe stroller will provide a consistent and comfortable ride for your young one. Though folding requires two hands, parents can push the stroller with only one. The G-Luxe stroller has a built in carrying strap to make it easy to transport from place to place.  It also features a large storage basket so parents can store essentials. And, the built-in cup holder makes it easy to carry liquids around. The ride will be great for the little one – no need to worry! The seat is padded and has a 3-step recline to 130 degrees to make sure your child is comfortable during long days out. The sun canopy is giant and provides tons of coverage. Unfortunately, the brakes on this stroller can be hard to engage and disengage, and the wheels may squeak a bit. But, some WD40 can quickly solve that problem. Read our full UPPAbaby G-Luxe stroller review here »

Bottom Line:
This lightweight travel stroller has all the features you could want. The only thing it lacks is one-hand fold feature and car seat compatibility.

Quinny Yezz

Quinny Yezz

✓  Lightweight

✓ One-hand Fold

✘ Storage

✘  Recline

✘  Infant Car Seat

✘  Convertible Car Seat

Amazon Rating: 4/5  

$228.88 at Amazon

$288.88 at Amazon

PROS

Brakes 

Durability

Child Comfort

Compact

Easy to Assemble

Easy to Clean

Ease of Use

Folding

Grip

Maneuverability

Rough Terrain

Sun Canopy

Suspension

Weight

CONS

Accessories

Storage

The Quinny Yezz is highly regarded travel stroller.  It is only 13 lbs.  Compared to other lightweight strollers, this performs excellent on paved and unpaved surfaces. Thanks to the polyurethane wheels (think Razor Scooter Wheels), the ride is extremely smooth.  It’s very lightweight and compact with a unique fold. It is easy to fold, and the best part is that you only need one hand to do so! You can fit this stroller in an airplane overhead compartment, eliminating the need to check in your stroller. It has a built in shoulder strap – a great feature for traveling. The design of this stroller lets you remove the fabric covering and throw it in the wash if it gets dirty.  But, while this minimal stroller keeps things simple, but it compromises on storage space and a large canopy.  It does not recline and it is not car seat compatible either.  It’s a straightforward stroller that gets the job done. Read our full Quinny Yezz Stroller review here »

Bottom Line:
This one-of-a-kind stroller is for the practical parent. The simple design doesn’t have all the bells and whistles of some other baby strollers, but if it’s practicality that appeals to you, consider the Quinny Yezz.

Summer Infant 3D Lite

✓  Lightweight

✓ One-hand Fold

✓ Storage

✓ Recline

✘  Infant Car Seat

✘ Convertible Car Seat

Amazon Rating: 4.5/5  

$55.43 at Amazon

$55.43 at Amazon

PROS

Accessories

Brakes

Durability

Child Comfort

Compact

Easy to Assemble

Easy to Clean

Ease of Use

Folding

Grip

Maneuverability

Rough Terrain

Storage

Sun Canopy

Suspension

Weight

CONS

This popular choice is popular for good reason.  It’s our budget travel stroller pick.  If you are not looking to spend a ton of money but need something for your upcoming trip, we suggest taking a look at the Summer Infant 3DLite stroller.  It’s lightweight – only 12 lbs!  It’s compact, has one-hand fold, and has a 3-step 60 degree recline.  The sun canopy is not the best on the market, but does offer some protection.  The storage basket is large, which means parents won’t have to carry an extra backpack.  It also comes with a cup holder, a great added bonus. It has front wheel suspension, but it is not meant for bumpy surfaces.  The padding on the stroller is not the most generous, but it’s enough to keep your child happy and comfortable. Read our full Summer Infant 3DLite Stroller review here »

Bottom Line:
The Summer Infant 3DLite is a choice for budget-conscious parents.  You won’t be compromising on any features with this stroller. It’s performance is stroll all-around.

How We Chose These Strollers

travel umbrella stroller

Picking a travel stroller can be challenging, but we recommend these ones to fit the criteria that we believe most parents look for in a travel stroller. Since travel strollers and umbrella strollers are usually secondary strollers, it’s less important to have a rigorous stroller with luxury features. Travel strollers should be lightweight and easy to move around. These baby strollers are meant for being thrown in the car, bringing on the plane, and walking around the city or amusement park. If you live in an urban environment, you may consider these strollers for more frequent use as they are easier to move through crowds and on public transportation. Generally, we chose strollers that also have sunshades and are comfortable for the child. After all, if the child isn’t comfortable on vacation, you won’t be either.

Other Considerations

Besides the universal travel criteria that we’ve selected, you should also consider other features that suit your needs. Many umbrella strollers and lightweight strollers don’t have adjustable handlebars, so if you’re tall you should consider the handlebar height. (Tall people don’t worry – the strollers we’ve chosen have all been tall person approved). Or, let’s consider another scenario. If you have a very young child, you may want a lot of storage space to hold diapers, bottles, etc. There’s a lot that goes into picking a baby stroller, and we think that most parents agree that are light weight, recline, one-hand fold, and car seat compatibility are important features for your travel stroller.

Why You Should Trust Us

We get it – there’s so many stroller review posts out there, why is ours any different? We don’t just read the expert reviews. We don’t just buy a stroller and push it around for 10 minutes. We consider what actual users have said about it. We’ve read through thousands of reviews and figured out what parents are actually looking for in a baby stroller. We then took these 20 most important criteria and evaluated each stroller for them. Once each stroller has been rated based on user feedback, we look towards the experts to confirm what the users are saying. That’s phase one.

Phase two is figuring out what which of these criteria matter to parents who travel, which we established to be lightweight, recline, one-hand fold, and car seat compatible. From there, we’ve filtered through all the strollers to get the ones that best match this description. We hope that you agree with us and we can help you find the stroller that best suits your travel needs!

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