Have your most important travel gear arrive safely in one piece
We’re taking an in-depth look at protecting one of your most important pieces of gear while you’re flying – the stroller. Especially when travelling with a stroller that comes in multiple parts, we always prefer to gate check our stroller to ensure it is probably packed and not mishandled during the flight process.
In this guide we’ll look at;
- Key features to look for when choosing a stroller gate check bag
- The current best stroller gate check bag brands on Amazon
- Branded Gate Check Bags
- Generic Gate Check Bags
- Double Stroller Gate Check Bags
- Alternatively, using a cabin-baggage sized collapsible stroller.
We looked in much more detail at what strollers and travel systems work best for travel HERE
How to choose the best travel stroller cover
Gate check vs leaving your stroller at the plane door
If your stroller is not small enough to fit in an overhead locker (more on that below) you will be left with the option of checking it in at the time you drop your suitcases or getting it tagged at check-in, but wheeling it all the way to the aircraft door.
Some airports (it’s not the airline’s choice) may insist you do it one way or another but most will give you the option to decide which suits your needs. So which method is better?
Taking your stroller to the plane door
- The obvious pro of taking to the plane door is it can be used within the airport.
- In most cases though, it is NOT immediately available when you disembark, you will still need to collect it from oversized luggage, so you will need to carry your tots & gear until this point on arrival.
- The con, you risk damage to the stroller by baggage handlers if it is not correctly packed and protected.
- You can still use a “gate check” bag at the plane door, but do think about how much this inconveniences others, it can be a bit of a procedure to get a stroller safely trucked into its bag, especially if wheels need removing. Make sure you’ve been issued with a baggage tag and the tag remains visible.
Gate checking a stroller
- Allows you to correctly pack your stroller with the most protective packaging.
- Gate checking a two-piece stroller in a bag will keep the parts together, and only one luggage tag will be needed reducing the risk of separation!
- If your airline allows your stroller as an extra checked item for free, ssssssh don’t tell anyone you’ve just bought yourself some extra storage space for your baby gear that won’t impact on your other baggage allowances!
- Do check if the stroller is weight limited instead of counted as one item.
Whatever way you transport your stroller, remove as many extra implements such as Mommy Hooks, stroller organisers etc to minimise the risk of damage or separation of these items.
Stroller bag features
The key features we look for in a stroller gate check bag are:
- Durable material that is waterproof.
- Double stitching.
- An easy way of carrying and handling the item such as shoulder or back straps.
- An easy way to store the bag when it’s not in use.
- Wide opening making it easy to insert the stroller.
Best stroller gate check bags
Branded Stroller Cover
It goes without saying, if your stroller comes with a branded carry bag, this will be the snuggest fit for your stroller and the safest way of transporting it without damage.
The large travel systems normally charge extra for any type of travel bag but it can be worth the investment given how much the stroller originally costs. They will fit your stroller snugly and comes with padding and storage pockets for everything you need.
Unbranded generic stroller covers for gate checking
The main reason to choose a generic brand is simply put, they are MUCH cheaper. They will last you through the almost inevitable changes in stroller brands over the years. Being generic though, do check it will fit with your brand. Also, look out for:
- Wheels may need to be removed and stored separately on some models to make them work
- You don’t want it too oversized or the stroller will move around too much, still leaving it susceptible to damage.
- Even if the dimensions are large, how easy is it to get the stroller in? In our experience fully opening bags with a zipper are easier to manoeuvre the stroller in then drawstring bags.
- Check that the zip or draws string can full close once item is in.
Zohzo Stroller Bag – Our Top Choice
- 600 Denier material that is tear-resistant and water-resistant
- Fits most single and double strollers 41 x 21 x 13.5 inches
- Detachable padded stroller strap for easy carrying
- Protective feet on the base
- Large opening double zip
- Exterior pocket for easy storage of extra stroller items
- Comes with a matching Zohzo car seat travel bag
JL Childress Gate Check Bag
- Durable water-resistant material with double sewn seams for extra strength
- Webbing handles
- Folds up tiny when not in use to a small spandex pouch
- Max dimension 45 x 15.5 x 12 inches
- Comes with matching padded car seat carry bag
Luvdbaby Foldable Stroller Gate Check Bag
- Tear and rip resistiant denim coloured nylon material
- Industrial strength zip closure
- Bag can also fold out to be used as a picnic mat
- Folds into a small storage bag
- Dimensions 55 x
ReperKid Car Seat Bag
- Luggage straps to carry on your back and a single carry handle
- 9 x 9 inch storage pouch
Best Double Stroller Gate Check Bags
Double strollers or larger two-piece strollers will need an XL sized bag, we recommend you look at the following brands:
Bububee ‘Elua XL Double Stroller Gate Check Travel Bag
- Durable material that is water-resistant and reinforced seams
- Drawstrings that lock and tie plus a velcro closure
- Comes with its own storage pouch
- Backpack carry straps and side carry handles
- Dimensions 48 x 24 x 19 inches
Compono large or double stroller bag
- Extra durable nylon/polyester blend with double stitching
- 100% water resistant
- Padded adjustable shoulder strap
- 2 carry handles
- Drawstring and velcro strap closure
- Dimensions 48 x 25 x 19 inches
- Comes with a matching Compono car seat bag
VolkGo Durable Stroller Bag for Airplane
- Durable water-resistant Nylon
- 2 padded backpack straps
- Folds into a carry pouch
- Dimension 47 x 24 x 18 inches
Gate Check Pro XL packing bag for double strollers
- Drawstring and velcro fastener closing
- Flexible material to assist with packing
- Padded backpack carrying strap
- Dimensions 47 x 26 x 17 inches
Collapsible Travel Stoller
These days, the best advice I can give is to select a stroller that can come on the plane with you. This has gone from only a handful of brands to literally a dozen now that can fit in the planes overhead locker.
Not only does this ensure ultimate protection of your stroller, but it is also ultra-handy for moving around the airport and means you don’t need to wait for oversized luggage to arrive.
These strollers already come with a luggage bag to keep everything together while you are boarding the plane, so no need to purchase an extra bag. Here are some of our favourites in the ultra-compact range that can still stand up to the robust challenge of the toddler years and beyond.
More useful travel product reviews
As we continue our search for the most useful products that travelling parents ACTUALLY USE, you may also like to check out:
- Travel pillows for kids
- Plane sleeping devices
- Travel high chairs
- Best double strollers for travel
- Bassinets and portable cots
- Baby travel essentials
- Insanely useful gadgets for travel-loving families
So over to you, what do you do for stroller protection? Are you gate checkers or collapsible stroller fans – or braving it with just a carrier?
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