We survived 6 flights with our 3 year old last year so have a good idea of what keeps toddlers entertained when travelling. If you’re looking for ideas on how to keep a toddler entertained on a plane, these are the best travel toys and games we recommend.
Best travel toys & activities for toddlers
I hate getting sucked into buying overpriced children’s magazines with cheap plastic tat attached to them at the airport. So for our last few trips, I’ve selected 1 or 2 new toys or activities that I give to our son at the airport to keep him entertained throughout the flight and rest of the holiday.
Some things on this list we bought last year when our son was 2 and have packed them again for this year’s flights now he is 3. (The Water Magic Books and mini Peppa Pig Puzzles have been great value for money!)
I’ve found now that our son is 3 he is really into role/ imaginary play and building things, so I’ve trawled Amazon and read multiple reviews to come up with travel sized sets that tick these boxes.
I’ve focused on activities that are tray table sized for taking on the airplane, but they’ll also fit neatly on high chairs or dinner tables so are great for dining out too.
Of course, we don’t travel anywhere without an iPad these days. So I’ve also included the durable iPad travel case we pop Miles’ in, as well as the affordable kids headphones with noise limiter that we swear by.
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- Galt Toys Travel Activity Case – Includes stickers, pencil & sharpener.
- Play Doh Wheels – Great compact set with 2 toy diggers, 2 small pots of Play Doh & play sand. Would be great for a long haul flight. We already have the fire engine.
- Paw Patrol Scratch Art – Gets rave reviews but could be messy on the plane. Maybe save for by the pool!
- Galt Toys Water Magic Books – Kept Miles occupied for hours when he was 2. They dry clear so can be done over and over again. Don’t worry if you lose the ‘pen’, a paintbrush or finger dipped in water works too.
- Magformers 14 pieces – A multiple award-winning educational toy.
- Snap Bracelet – Remember these? Don’t know why our toddler loves these but he’s obsessed.
- Magformers Town Ice Cream Shop – Construction & role play in a neat compact magnetic set.
- Magformers Cube House
- Orchard Toys Landmark Lotto – Miles loved playing this with other kids at the pool last year.
- Kids iPad Case – We have this exact durable case with built in handle & stand and it’s been everywhere with us.
- Kids Headphones – After breaking a more expensive pair we bought these for Miles at the start of the year and they’ve been great. Come in a variety of colours and have volume limiting.
- Peppa Pig Puzzles – 4 tray table sized puzzles. We’ve had them a year and they are still a favourite.
More top tips for toddler travel
- Store puzzles or games with multiple pieces in zipped plastic wallets or sandwich bags so you don’t have to bring the bulky box.
- Check your local charity shop for mini games and puzzles. We have found so many great puzzles in ours over the years and they are never more than £2 each.
- For the thrill of the surprise (and to make life much easier for you!) you can also buy ready made travel activity packs from Keep Em Quiet. They are great if you are short of time in the run up to your flight and often contain random things I wouldn’t have thought of.
- For kids over 3, we recently bought this fidget cube and it’s a great thing to have on hand if your little one is nervous about flying. I quite enjoyed holding it during turbulence myself.
- Don’t forget a bedtime story! Pack your little ones favourite story books or buy a new book to give yourself a break from reading the same story every night! Find some of our favourite bedtime stories here.
Best Ipad Apps for 3 years+
In terms of apps for the Ipad, the games our 3-year-old plays the most are:
- Sago Mini World
- Lego Duplo World
- Dinosaur Digger
- CBeebies Go Explore (Miles is obsessed with Number Blocks)
- CBeebies Playtime Island (for Hey Duggee)
I’d love to know if there is anything else you think should be on our toddler travel entertainment list.
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