Pushchairs on planes: what you need to knowThe bottom line on bringing buggies as baggage
01 July 2016
If you’re heading on a family holiday this summer, you might be wondering about hopping on a plane with a pushchair in tow. We answer common questions about travelling with a buggy so that all that’s left to worry about is wrangling the kids.
An overarching golden rule is to call the airline and check in advance – there’s enough travel stress at the airport with young children without being hit with extra fees you weren’t aware of.
You can browse all of our pushchair reviews to see which ones we recommend, and which are more of a hassle than they're worth.
Are pushchairs included in baggage allowance?
Airlines generally allow you to carry at least a pushchair and child car seat for free in the hold as an addition to your baggage allowance, but check with your airline before you fly. You can usually keep the pushchair with you until boarding, airline crew will fold it and put it in the hold for the flight.
Can I bring a pushchair as cabin baggage?
If you want to take your pushchair on board with you, it will need to fit within the assigned size limit for cabin baggage, so this would only really be feasible with a smaller buggy. Some airlines will let you take a collapsible stroller on top of your other hand baggage at no extra charge, while other airlines may charge a small fee.
See what we think of the Mothercare Pockit, a compact stroller that's small enough to fit into your hand luggage.
Are pushchairs covered by travel insurance?
Most pushchairs don’t come cheap, so you understandably might be worried about the potential for damage when yours is being hauled onto a plane – especially in the hold. Airlines should be liable for damage to baggage up to a certain amount, which is separate from travel insurance. But it still helps to make sure you have a comprehensive policy that will cover personal belongings with enough to include that pushchair price tag. Also, make sure you have a proper buggy bag for it to travel in.
Make sure you know your consumer rights with regards to lost or stolen baggage.
Should you buy a travel stroller?
It might be a good idea to buy a cheaper, lighter, second stroller for holidays. It will leave you with more space to get luggage into your hire car boot and it can also be useful for days out back at home. But consider where you're going on your holidays when weighing up the pros and cons, as lightweight buggies will generally give a more bone-shaking ride for your baby over cobbled streets or off-road.
Have a look at our top five popular lightweight buggies to get some ideas.
Another option is to go for a baby carrier or sling, which leaves your hands free for dealing with passports and boarding cards. You can see which ones we recommend in our Best Buy baby carriers and slings.