boy with an orange example of the best kids travel pillows

The best kids travel pillows 2022: from toddler to teenager [reviews & guide]

Few things tend to be as uncomfortable as having to sleep upright on a plane or a bus. Children are more flexible than adults, but giving them a neck or foot pillow can make a huge difference! Kids travel pillows make a trip a lot more enjoyable and they can be a cute accessory too.

We’ve separated the products into three ages groups: toddlers, children age 3-10 and tweens & teens (and adults if you like). There is a comparison table at the beginning of this article which lists the best kids travel pillows and the age for which they are suitable. There are smaller tables and reviews for each product in the respective age groups.

If you are looking for a kids car pillow, you came to the right website as well! Take a look at our car pillows for toddlers and older children section.

There’s a good chance this post contains affiliate links. This means that if you purchase anything through our link, we’ll receive a small commission (it won’t cost you anything! Thank you so much!). As an Amazon Affiliate we earn from qualifying purchases. If you would like to learn more about our affiliate partners, click here for our disclaimer.

THE BEST KIDS TRAVEL PILLOWS: TOP PICKS

Best toddler travel pillow: Little Sleepyhead
Best travel pillow for preschoolers: Bcozzy Child
Best travel pillow for kids (age 5-10): Bcozzy Child
Best travel pillow for (young) adults: Bcozzy Adult
Best memory foam travel pillow: Dot & Dot

TIP: if you are wondering what other things to pack for a flight with your child, take a look here!

REVIEWS & COMPARISON

1. The best car pillow for kids

IMAGE PRODUCT AGE
Apomelo Car Seat Pillow
  • An adorable, huggable car pillow with various animal designs. For convenience, use only with a regular seatbelt or booster seat.
3y + CHECK PRICE
YR Seat Belt Cover
  • A soft cotton rack pillow for your regular seatbelt and booster seat. Made with breathable materials and ergonomic designs, suitable for kids and adults.
3y + CHECK PRICE
CoolBebe Car Seat Straps
  • A seatbelt strap cover made with super-soft velvet pads, suitable for various car seats and booster seats.
infants and babies CHECK PRICE
AMZ Rack Seatbelt Pillow
  • Made from super-soft cotton cushion with velcro straps for convenient application. The design is ideal for regular seatbelts and booster seats.
3y + CHECK PRICE

Before we head onto the best kids travel pillow products, let’s talk about car seat neck support for toddlers, infants and bigger kids.

We’ve all seen it, right? When your kiddo falls asleep in the car, their head falls to the side or to the front and it looks so very uncomfortable, especially for a toddler. Without buying the best neck pillow for toddler car seat, the car ride will not be a comfortable experience for them. Also, as parents ourselves, we want our kids to be safe.

When they are still in a 5-point harness, we’re only talking about their neck, but when they get bigger and move onto a booster, things become even more straining and dangerous (when in an accident)!

However, if you’re looking for a toddler car seat head support pillow, we recommend you read this article and also this one. In short: it is dangerous to put anything between a child and their car seat! Therefore we will advise against a neck pillow for car use.

A car seat for a newborn is developed in such a way that it won’t require an infant head support for car seat. A baby will turn their head to the side naturally as this allows them enough space to breathe.

This means you don’t need to buy any kids travel pillow to keep their heads looking forward. So scratch that cushion for baby car seat or baby neck pillow. (#AffiliateLinks)

For toddlers, the same rules apply. Don’t use any toddler pillows for the car seat as putting something between the child and the seat may cause it to become unsafe.

Once your baby is almost a year, they will transfer to a bigger chair that sits much more upright. This will cause their head to drop forward. If it’s possible, pick a car seat and kids neck pillow which you can tilt from a sitting to a sleeping position. This will prevent the head from dropping as well. Do not use a toddler neck pillow for car seat, or a headband strap. (#AffiliateLinks)

SUMMARY: as long as your child is in a car seat, do NOT use a car seat neck pillow or any toddler travel pillow to keep their head or neck in place. They are not compatible with a car seat and may even be deadly in case of an accident.

Once a child is big enough to use a booster seat, a regular seat belt might hurt their neck. Therefore, a kids seat belt pillow is a great acquisition! They usually come as a large stuffed animal as well, so that’s a win-win.

Out of the car seat, you don’t have to worry about safety compatibility (or lack thereof) anymore. Quite a lot of car pillows for kids, teenagers and adults are available. Read more about them below!

#1 APOMELO CAR SEAT STRAP BELT CUSHION COVER

How cute is this fluffy dinosaur? It functions both as a giant teddy bear and as a car pillow for toddlers and bigger kids.

The dinosaur kids car seat travel pillow covers the seatbelt, which prevents your child from becoming uncomfortable. The velcro closure makes it very easy to pop it into the right position.

Travelwise it might not be the best companion as it is HUGE (9″x19.7″ (23x50cm)), but children love this seat belt pillow for kids and they get to choose from a whole variety of cute animals.

#2 AMZ RACK PILLOW FOR CAR SEATBELT

When your child isn’t into cuddly teddy bears (anymore), these sober seatbelt pillows with clips will provide the same comfort.

The seat belt pillows are made of a soft plush on the outside, while the inside is filled with non-deforming PP cotton. The child travel pillow cover is also washable.

Each package includes 2 pillows that measure 11.8″x4.7″ (30×10 cm) each. They suit every seatbelt and clip onto them to prevent the cushion of sliding down.

The AMZ Rack covers are a great kid travel pillow for roadtrips! But you can use them as a seat belt pillow for adults as well.

2. The best travel pillow for toddler

IMAGE PRODUCT AGE
Trunki Neck Pillow Small
  • Specially made travel pillow with magnetic paws chin supports, microbead filling, and plush fabric. Perfect for cars, plane, and bike seats, and even strollers.
small: 18m-4y / medium: 3-5y CHECK PRICE
Little Sleepyhead
  • A toddler pillow offers comfort with its 100% cotton material and hypoallergenic feature.
toddlers + CHECK PRICE
Squishmallow
  • A stuffed animal plush toy with super soft spandex EF and polyester stuffing, similar to memory foam.
toddlers + CHECK PRICE
Inflatable foot rest
  • A light and foldable footrest for adults, but foldable into a flat bed for toddlers and kids.
toddlers + CHECK PRICE

When it comes to a neck pillow for toddlers think really hard about what your little one might benefit from. It’s no use tagging something along that you won’t use.

Our daughter, for example, wouldn’t dream of keeping a neck pillow on. She’d rather use her mommies as her personal pillow.

A lot of toddlers might prefer a small square pillow over a U-shaped one. Opt for the same type of neck support as at home: a soft travel pillow if they use a soft one in their bed, or a firmer toddler airplane pillow if they are used to that.

If you aren’t too keen on a toddler napping on your lap, a travel leg rest is a great travel accessory! We believe that in most cases this will bring better use than a travel pillow toddler.

#1 TRUNKI YONDI

The Trunki Yondi childs travel pillow small or medium is one of the only U-shaped kid neck pillows that is suitable for toddlers.

It’s perfect for snoozes on the go. The neck pillow toddler connects under the chin with hidden magnets which makes for a very comfortable pillow.

The filling of microbeads and the plush fabric add to the comfort level. A double fabric liner makes sure that even in case of rupture, the microbeads stay safely inside.

These neck pillows for toddlers come with the Trunki Grip to which you can attach your child’s favorite blanket. Oh, and with 0.18 lbs (80gr) it’s super lightweight!

The Trunki Yondi travel pillows for toddlers are suitable for children from 18 months and up (small: 18m-4y / medium: 3-5y) and come in 6 funky colors and designs.

#2 LITTLE SLEEPYHEAD TODDLER PILLOW

The Little Sleepyhead toddler travel pillows are a perfect travel companion when your toddler doesn’t like to put on a U-shaped neck pillow.

It’s a small rectangular pillow with the perfect size and softness for a toddler and can be used at your destination as well as on your way there.

This toddler travel neck pillow is 100% hypoallergenic and is machine washable. It measures 13 x 18 inches (33×45 cm)

TIP: you have to buy the pillowcase separately, but they come in a couple of nice designs!

#3 SQUISHMALLOW

These cute little stuffed animals are perfect small pillows for toddlers.

Although they are not necessarily a travel pillow, they can function as one for sure.

The Squishmallow animal neck pillow comes in a lot of different shapes (make sure to check them all!) and in two sizes: 8″ (20cm) and 16″ (40cm). We believe the smaller size is big enough for a toddler to sleep on and easier to drag along on a trip than the larger one.

Bringing animal pillows for kids is like killing two birds with one stone, as your little one gets to play with a soft toy and sleep on it when tired.

#4 INFLATABLE TRAVEL FOOTREST

The Wandering Tot travel foot rest pillow was created by a traveling family and therefore alone deserves a place in this list.

The Wandering Tot travel foot rest pillow was created by a traveling family and therefore alone deserves a place in this list.

Sleeping upright in a plane will be very hard for toddlers and you’ll most likely end up with a sticky body onto yours. To ensure that you can get some sleep as well, this travel hack lets your kids sleep with their legs up.

Such an inflatable leg rest for flights is completely safe and you tuck it into the usually rather cramped space between the chairs. Your child now has a bed!

But you can use it as a footrest for car seat while driving as well. Furthermore, it’s a great toy or table at your destination as well!

It is very lightweight (under 1 lbs/450g when inflated) and it comes with a small storage bag to carry it around when you’re not using it.

The portable footrest can be adjusted into 3 heights and you can inflate it in 1 to 2 minutes with your mouth. Thanks to the 2 larges valves it inflates quick and easy, so you won’t look like a tomato after doing so. Deflation happens in about 30 seconds.

3. The best neck pillow for kids age 4-10

IMAGE PRODUCT
Bcozzy Kids
  • A lightweight neck pillow for kids and adults made from siliconized polyester fiber. Features a double chin support.
CHECK PRICE
Squishmallow
  • A stuffed animal plush toy with super soft spandex EF and polyester stuffing, similar to memory foam.
CHECK PRICE
Inflatable foot rest
  • A light and foldable footrest for adults, but foldable into a flat bed for toddlers and kids.
CHECK PRICE

#1 BCOZZY KIDS

The Bcozzy pillow is the most popular (kids) travel neck pillow that you can find.

You can twist it into several positions and control how tight you want it around your neck.

The airplane pillow for kids prevents the head from falling forward and offers support for your head, neck, and chin simultaneously.

The travel pillow child version only weighs 7.4 ounces (200gr) and comes with a snap strap for easy storage to your luggage. Furthermore, it is fully machine washable and can be compressed.

The Bcozzy kids airplane pillow is available in a lot of funky colors and comes in adult size as well.

The Bcozzy children’s neck cushion is one of the very best travel pillows for kids!

#2 SQUISHMALLOW

These cute little stuffed animals are perfect small pillows for kids.

Although they are not necessarily a travel pillow, they can function as one for sure.

The Squishmallow animal neck pillow comes in a lot of different shapes (make sure to check them all!) and in two sizes: 8″ (20cm) and 16″ (40cm). Pick the small one for younger kids and the bigger one for older kids!

Bringing animal pillows for kids is like killing two birds with one stone, as your little one gets to play with a soft toy and sleep on it when tired.

#3 INFLATABLE TRAVEL FOOTREST

The Wandering Tot foot rest airplane pillow kids was created by a traveling family end therefore alone deserves a place in this list.

Sleeping upright in a plane will be very hard for smaller children and you might end up with a sticky body onto yours. To ensure that you can get some sleep as well, this travel hack lets your kids sleep with their legs up.

Such an inflatable leg rest for flights is completely safe and you tuck it into the usually rather cramped space between the chairs. Your child now has a bed!

But you can use it as a travel pillow for car seat as well. Furthermore, it’s a great toy or table at your destination!

It is very lightweight (under 1 lbs/450g when inflated) and it comes with a small storage bag to carry it around when you’re not using it.

The portable footrest can be adjusted into 3 heights and you can inflate it in 1 to 2 minutes with your mouth. Thanks to the 2 larges valves it inflates quickly and easily, so you won’t look like a tomato after doing so. Deflation happens in about 30 seconds.

The Wandering Tot travel pillows kids (and adults) are available in one color and come with an additional eye mask and ear buds for the parents.

4. The best travel pillow kids for tweens & teens

IMAGE PRODUCT
Bcozzy Adults
  • A lightweight neck pillow for adults made from siliconized polyester fiber. Features a double chin support.
CHECK PRICE
Dot & Dot
  • A twistable memory foam pillow use for back, head, sholder, and cervical spine support.
CHECK PRICE
Cabeau
  • A memory foam pillow with head and neck support. Offers comfortable sleep ideal for long travels or road trips.
CHECK PRICE
Kmall
  • An inflatable neck and head pillow with breathable and sweat-absorbent materials. It comes with a built-in pocket for small items.
CHECK PRICE

Whether your tween or teen will be traveling by themselves or accompanying you on your family holiday, the getting there and away is usually not all too comfortable. By car, plane or public transport, chances are that they will be sitting upright for a rather long time, making travel pillows for kids necessary to experience a comfortable ride.

Most childrens travel pillows focus on the age group of 3 to 10, which means tweens and teenagers are big enough to pick a regular size travel cushion. So, if you’re looking for an adult travel pillow for yourself as well, feel free to pick your favorite one!

#1 BCOZZY ADULT

The Bcozzy pillow is a travel pillow that you can wrap around your neck.

You can twist it into several positions and control how tight you want the kids travel neck pillow around your neck.

It prevents the head from falling forward and offers support for your head, neck, and chin simultaneously.

The travel pillow only weighs 7.4 ounces (200gr) and comes with a snap strap for easy storage to your luggage. Furthermore, the children’s travel pillow is fully machine washable and can be compressed.

The Bcozzy is available in a lot of funky colors and comes in both adult and child sizes.

#2 DOT & DOT TRAVEL PILLOW

The Dot&Dot is a small travel pillow that – unlike most neck pillows that are U-shaped – is twistable into almost any shape.

The memory foam provides personalized support in any position you’d like to rest or sleep in.

This neck rest pillow is machine washable and comes with a snap closure so you can secure it to your suitcase. This way you can also close it around your neck or around the car headrest.

It is one of the most unique travel pillows for children, teenagers, and adults.

#3 CABEAU EVOLUTION MEMORY PILLOW

The Cabeau travel pillow is made of memory foam which offers 360 – degree support.

Because of its comfort, the adult or older kid neck pillow makes for a great travel companion.

The soft velour cover is removable and washable and thus easy to keep clean.

Traveling is convenient with only 11.7 ounces (330gr) and the possibility to store it in the small storage bag at only 1/4th of the size.

The Cabeau Evolution memory foam neck pillow is available in a bunch of different colors.

#4 Kmall inflatable pillow

The Kmall travel pillow for teenagers is an inflatable pillow with push-button inflation.

This way it can be easily and quickly inflated and deflated and it prevents bacteria from spreading because you don’t have to mouth blow it.

A lot of adult & children’s neck pillows for travel tend to get hot, but the Kmall has a cooling and ultra soft cover which can be cleaned in a washing machine.

It comes with a built-in pocket for your eye-mask or smartphone or other valuables that doubles as the (tiny, square-shaped) carry case when you’re not using your pillow.

As it only weighs 7.2 ounces (200gr), there really is no reason not to bring it on your trip.

The Kmall childrens neck pillow is available in yellow, red, blue, green, and grey and it might very well be the best inflatable pillow for travel!

INFORMATION GUIDE

How to find the best travel pillow for your child?

The size

Don’t forget that children have smaller heads and necks. Make sure that you choose a pillow that fits your little one correctly to prevent the head from falling forward and thus your child being uncomfortable.

This is especially important when you use the pillow as a car seat pillow for toddlers or bigger kids.

The material

While some kids love a snuggly animal pillow with hair, others might get irritated by it. The same works for harder plastic cushions that your baby might not find comfortable.

More of the same with a fleece cover that will feel wonderful when traveling on a plane or in colder circumstances, however, it will feel sticky and scratchy when it’s hot.

Choose your pillow with the type of journey and the weather conditions in mind.

Also, when it comes to children, you’ll want a travel headrest that is machine washable!

The shape

In general, when talking about travel pillows, people mean a U-shaped cushion that you can put around your neck for support when you have to sit upright for a long time (on planes, buses, or in the car)

However, there are other options. Your child might prefer a rectangular pillow, there is this travel neck cushion that you can fold into any shape to suit your needs best or you may as well let your kid sleep with an inflatable footrest in the plane. (#AffiliateLinks)

The filling

The 3 main types of filling are:

  • microbead: a microbead travel pillow is filled with small polystyrene beads, which makes it lightweight. You can change the shape of the cushion easily but it is usually not that portable and doesn’t provide a lot of comfort.
  • inflatable: an inflatable travel pillow is meant to be blown up by mouth into the firmness of your liking. They are lightweight and very tiny to pack into your luggage. On the downside, one small leak and your pillow will deflate.
  • memory foam: a memory foam travel pillow shapes itself into your neck. It offers the most support but is, in general, the least lightweight. They can be decompressed for transport, which is convenient when you have limited storage space.

FAQ

How do I choose the perfect travel pillow for kids?

Which travel pillow is the most suitable for your child depends on a number of factors. Your kid’s age is an important one but also a preference for the type (inflatable, memory foam, microbeads) as well as the outer material.
Click here to read our detailed information guide.

Can you use a travel pillow in the car?

The short answer is: no! At least, not when your child is still in a car seat because you can’t have anything between the seat and their neck. There are, however, some alternatives.
Click here to go to our car seat neck support section.

What is the best travel pillow for toddlers?

Many toddlers don’t like the feeling of a neck pillow and will begin to squirm to try to get comfortable. We believe the best toddler neck pillow for plane, car, and travel is either a small rectangular pillow or an inflatable footrest so they can lie down completely.
Click here to see the different options for toddlers.

What is the best travel neck pillow for kids?

The Bcozzy (child or adult version) is the most popular travel pillow and for good reason. It is simple, not overly expensive, available in different colors and you can buy it in 2-packs.
Click here to read the full review.


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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Babs Rodrigus is the co-founder and main writer of Mums on FlipFlops . She is absolutely crazy about travelling – especially together with her wife and kids. Babs loves animals, chocolate (what did you expect from a Belgian?), reading and writing.

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