The 17 BEST Travel Toys You Need For Your Next Flight – Separated By Ages! (2024)

Looking for the best travel toys for your next flight? I compiled a list of my sons’ favorites that have saved my sanity on years of flights. Keep reading for 17 toys you need to grab for your next flight. 

Out of all the aspects of traveling with kids, the plane ride is always the biggest hurdle for me. I don’t know about your kids, but mine cannot sit still. Like, they are always moving. And to add to that, they are always begging to go outside.

They would just live outside in the yard if they had the choice. So, putting them in a small space for hours without any chance to run around is always an adventure.

While my almost three-year-old can cuddle up with his iPad and blankie for most of the flight, even that gets old for him after a while. And don’t even get me started on my 1-year-old. Nothing keeps his attention for long enough.

So, I’ve experimented with many different toys to get through the many flights that we’ve been on.

I’ve put together a list of the most successful toys that have worked for my energizer bunnies. Check it out and try some on your next flight! 

Key Takeaways

  • When flying with kids, bringing appropriate toys to keep their attention will work wonders. There are different toys for each age range. 
  • For babies under 17 months, toys like fidget poppers, innybins, or lift-a-flap books work great. 
  • For toddlers 18 months and up, busy boards, coloring books, or a tablet will keep them entertained. 

⚠️ First time flying with kids?
Read over my best tips for flying with a newborn by clicking here! 

Table of Contents

Best Travel Toys For Babies: 4 - 17 months

This group is by far the hardest age to travel with. They understand the world a bit and they want to explore it. All they want to do is move and look around. They refuse to sit still. 

This stage requires the most creativity. The good thing about this age is they most likely still take good naps which gives you a break from entertaining.

PUSH POP BUBBLE FIDGET TOY

Bubble wrap, the toddler version. These come in different colors and shapes and are rows of tiny bubbles to pop. My kid told me he loves this toy 20 times while he played with it the first time! 

WHIRLY SQUIGZ

Spinners with suctions to attach to the back of the tray table. This keeps a kid’s attention for a while.

INNYBIN

Bright and great for motor development, it comes with shapes of different textures that kids can pull in and out of the bin. Using it as a rattle is also a hit!

STACKING CUPS​

These double as a plane toy and as a bath toy!

LIFT-A-FLAP BOOKS​

Extra thick and the perfect size for little hands, these books have cute rhymes and bright colors. My 1-year-old gets so excited to lift the flaps himself. 

STACKING RINGS

Large rings in different sizes and weights, easy for little hands to grasp. Different textures also help with teething! 

BUSY CUBE

A 6-in-1 Montessori tool perfect for hand-eye coordination. A fidget spinner, analog plug, key, and switches are included. 

AIRPLANE PLUSHY BUCKLE TOY

A cute plushy with 6 different buckles, a zipper pouch, and colorful numbers on the side.  

WISHI TAPE

I don’t know why this is such a hit, but it is. You can rip it into small pieces or use long pieces to make things like car race tracks.  

STASHER SNACK BAGS

Not a toy, but once they’re eating, snacks are a MUST to bring on the plane. These reusable bags are made of silicon so they’re sturdy and easy to clean. They also come in many fun colors! 

Best Travel Toys for Toddlers: 18 months - 3 years

At this age, it gets a little more manageable. They’re interested in tablets, and they can do more heads down activities like coloring or sticker books. 

WINDOW STICKERS

Large gel stickers that come in all kinds of different shapes. Stick them on the window or on the tray table. You can use them a few times before they lose their stickiness.

FIDGET POPPER​

Like popping bubble wrap in a baby version. You push on a bubble and it pops back. Every kid that sees this wants to play with it. Major crowd pleaser.

BUSY BOARD​

A Montessori inspired sensory board, it has a wide range of levels from Velcro to buttons and buckles.

POP TUBE GIRAFFE

Mini pop tubes stretch and suction, plus they can be connected and disconnected in many ways. 

WATER WOW BOOKS

Perfect for kids that are still learning how to color. These are reusable coloring pads that show color when they are wet. Kids just use the water pen to make the colors appear.

MAGMEN

Stretchy little men with magnets on their arms and legs! They attach to each other and many types of surfaces. 

STICKER BOOK

A book full of stickers to use to fill out a scene. The stickers can be pulled up and moved around too!

MATCHING GAME

A matching game with 12 different theme cards you can easily switch out. 

WIKKI STIX

Pipe cleaners for kids. They bend into all kinds of shapes on their own, plus the pack comes with a activity book to use as stencils, and a connect-the-dots play packs.

TRIANGLE CRAYONS​

Not only do they not roll off the tray, but they are easier for kids to hold.

HOT WHEEL CAR TRAVEL SET

A set of 20 mini cars in an easy-to-carry travel case. 

TABLET

No explanation needed! The Amazon Fire comes with all kinds of apps, books, and videos that you can download plus you can add other apps like Netflix. 

Wrapping Up: Best Travel Toys for Babies and Toddlers

Just like everything else in life, the more you practice, the better you get. Flying with kids is the same! 

As long as you are prepared, you will get through it. Bring a few of your kid’s favorite toys, along with a few on my list above it’ll make the flight much more manageable. 

And the good news is that eventually the flight WILL land and it’ll all be over! 

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MEET BESA

Your Go-To Girl for Beach Travel

Hi! I’m Besa. I’ve always been a travel-loving beach bum… and then I had kids. Two boys, born 19 months apart. But I didn’t let that stop me. I still travel, even with a couple little boys in tow – and I want to help other parents like you do the same!

I’ll be sharing all my travel tips, beach hacks, and guides for some of my favorite family vacation beach spots.

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Why Trust Beaches and Babies?

Besa has been a frequent traveler for almost 20 years, and the last five years of her travels have included her two toddler boys, 19 months apart.
Years of flying and beach bumming with her kids has given her plenty of hard-earned experience in the travel world.

Need Help Booking Your Trip?
Use My Favorite Resources!

FLIGHTS
Kayak searches hundreds of travel sites for the lowest prices plus the flexible calendar tells you which days are the cheapest to fly.

LODGING
booking.com is easy to use and gives options for all types of lodging. When I know I want a big rental house, I use VRBO.

RENTAL CARS
rentalcars.com scans multiple agencies at your destination to give you the best price.

ACTIVITIES
Viator lets you search for a specific activity at your destination or scroll all available.

Read over my full list of the best sites to book with on my Resources page.