Certain occasions call for smaller strollers. Travel strollers, compact strollers, and umbrella strollers (all functionally similar) are great for travel, for city living, and/or as a hot spare to keep in your trunk. While many parents choose to buy both a full-sized or standard stroller and a travel stroller, our favorite travel stroller, the Bugaboo Ant, is actually full-featured enough to be your only stroller.
These are the best travel strollers, optimizing for a variety of needs and price points.
- Bugaboo Ant ($499+) – The Best Luxury Compact Travel Stroller
- Babyzen YOYO+ ($495+) – Another Great Luxury Compact Travel Stroller
- Zoe Traveler (XLC) ($175+) – The Inexpensive Compact Travel Stroller
- Summer Infant 3D Lite ($89) – The Inexpensive (But Bulkier) Travel Stroller
More about these strollers (and strollers that didn't make the cut) below.
The Bugaboo Ant is hands down my favorite travel stroller on the market right now. In fact, if you’re only looking to push one kid around and don’t mind that this stroller can’t handle rougher off-pavement terrain, the Bugaboo Ant can easily be your one-and-only stroller. It’s that good!
The Bugaboo Ant accommodates babies from birth right up through the preschool years thanks to its high weight limit and extendable seat, which is nearly five inches taller than its closest rival, the Babyzen YOYO+. It also features a height adjustable handlebar for parents tall and small (37” – 41”), a fully reclining lay-flat seat to accommodate babies from birth, (ideally with the Bugaboo Infant Cocoon accessory for extra coziness), a super compact fold (2″ smaller than the already very compact YOYO+), a modular seat (can be forward-facing or parent-facing), and a larger than average storage basket.
The only downsides about this stroller are the complex fold (there are six steps), its heavier look, the fact that it's heavier than other travel strollers (15.8lbs vs. 13.6lbs for the YOYO+), and its price tag. Despite these “flaws,” I still strongly believe this is the best stroller on the market right now.
- Read the full Bugaboo Ant Review here.
- Read about the pros and cons of the Bugaboo Ant vs. the Babyzen YOYO+ here.
- Bugaboo Ant Travel Stroller ($499 – $549)
- Bugaboo Ant / Bee Newborn Cocoon ($99)
- Bugaboo Ant / Maxi Cosi/Nuna/Cybex Car Seat Adapters ($49)
- Bugaboo Ant Footmuff ($129+)
- Bugaboo Ant Rain Cover ($45)
The Babyzen YOYO+ is the lightest luxury travel stroller out there. While the Bugaboo Ant outperforms the YOYO+ on many key metrics (its tall seat is better for older children, it accommodates newborns as is, it has a smaller fold and better travel features, and it is modular), the YOYO+ outperforms the Ant primarily by being lighter and easier to fold.
Weighing in at 13.6lbs, the YOYO+ is 2.2lbs lighter than the Bugaboo Ant. It also features a super simple fold (though the folded size is slightly larger than that of the Ant) and an overall sleeker look than the Ant.
In pretty much all other ways (luxury details, smooth strolling, luxury car seat compatibility, and price point), the Bugaboo Ant and the Babyzen YOYO+ are very similar strollers.
- Read the full Babyzen YOYO+ here.
- Read about the pros and cons of the Bugaboo Ant vs. the Babyzen YOYO+ here.
- Babyzen YOYO 6+ (no bassinet) – $495
- Babyzen YOYO 0+ (includes bassinet) – $720
- Babyzen YOYO Stroller Board – $125
- Babyzen YOYO Cybex/Maxi Cosi/Nuna Car Seat Adapters – $50
- Babyzen YOYO Travel Bag – ~$75
- Babyzen YOYO Footmuff – $100 and up
The ZOE Traveler (XLC) is an affordable and highly functional compact travel stroller. It has some awesome features, like being one of the lightest strollers on the market (11lbs!). It also features a ridiculously easy, ridiculously compact fold, an oversize canopy, and a pretty comfortable ride.
The Traveler does have some limitations though. In addition to lacking luxury details (the fabric, ride, and feel is decidedly less lovely than that on the much more expensive Bugaboo Ant or Babyzen YOYO+), the Traveler's biggest limitation is that it does not accept infant car seats and is not compatible with a bassinet, so it is not suitable for babies younger than about six months. On the bright side, it's easier to babywear at that age anyway.
The Summer Infant 3D Lite is an inexpensive, lightweight second stroller (or even a totally fine solo stroller for those who prefer to babywear the first six months). It has very few bells or whistles– no bassinet, no car seat compatibility, no super compact fold– but weighs only 12 pounds and costs less than $100.
- Summer Infant 3D Lite – $89
Travel Strollers I Don't Love As Much
These are few popular travel strollers I don't love as much as the ones detailed above (and why)…
- Baby Jogger City Tour ($170) – This is a great looking stroller, but it has a major design flaw– the seat is angled downward. There have been too many complaints about children nearly sliding out of this seat for it to make the list, though there are some who absolutely love this stroller.
- Baby Jogger City Tour Lux ($260) – Similar to the City Tour but even better looking, the City Tour Lux has a lot of great things going for it. It is modular, which is totally unheard of for compact strollers. It accommodates a bassinet for newborns and a ride-on board for older children. The big downside is the handlebar height, which is only 38 inches, making it too short for parents taller than 5'8 or so. It also has a rather narrow seat and a larger fold than preferred. We prefer similarly priced strollers like the GB Pockit Plus.
- Besrey Airplane Capsule Lightweight Stroller ($170) – Inexpensive and folds to carry-on size, this stroller would be awesome if only it reclined. But it doesn’t, so we don’t recommend it.
- Britax B-Mobile ($160) – A nice-looking stroller at a mid-tier price point, the B-Mobile is fine for those committed to the Britax brand, but it is unfortunately pretty bulky for a travel stroller. We love the modern look, the large canopy, and the belly bar, but its fold is on the larger side, taking up about as much volume as a bulky umbrella stroller, despite a different folding mechanism.
- GB Pockit ($180) – Although this is the absolute smallest-folding stroller on the market, it does not recline and is not suitable for naps. It also has a ridiculous canopy.
- GB Pockit Plus ($299.95) -An upgrade on the super-compact GB Pockit, the Pockit Plus has a larger canopy, a deep recline suitable for naps, is compatible with the best infant car seats, and has the tiny, simple fold and excellent maneuverability for which the Pockit is already known and loved. [full review]
- GB Qbit Plus ($299.95) -You might choose the Qbit Plus over the Pockit Plus if you wanted a slightly sturdier travel stroller with a deeper seat. Other than that, we'd choose the GB Pockit Plus (or Babyzen YOYO+ if it's in your price range) instead, since the Pockit Plus is similar in most ways, but has a more compact fold. [full review]
- Joovy Groove Ultralight ($199.99, often available for ~$110) – The Joovy Groove Ultralight is a nice-enough-looking, lightweight second stroller (or even a totally fine solo stroller for those who prefer to babywear the first six months). It has very few bells or whistles– no bassinet, no car seat compatibility, no super compact fold– but it does have a deep recline and an adjustable footrest. It is also technically suitable from birth since it reclines nearly flat, but because it doesn’t have great suspension, it bumps and jostles a bit too much for a newborn without a bassinet or car seat. [full review]
- Maclaren Volo ($130) – This stroller does not recline and is more expensive than the Summer Infant 3D Lite. We like the mesh edges, which would be great for hotter weather, but without a recline, this stroller is not suitable for naps.
- Maclaren Globetrotter (~$160) – Very similar in look, feel, and function to the Summer Infant 3D Lite, but $100 more expensive. The quality is better (despite looking similar) and the sunshade is bomb, but is that worth $80 to you?
- Maclaren Triumph (~$180) – Like the Globetrotter but ~$100 more expensive than the Summer Infant 3D Lite. It has nice cushioning, but not much else going for it.
- Maclaren Quest (~$225) – This is a very good-looking stroller in black, but for the price, it is pretty limited in capability. It is lightweight (12ish pounds), but because it is an umbrella stroller, it does not fold nearly as compactly as the Babyzen and GB strollers we recommend. It lays nearly flat for newborns, but so does the Joovy Groove for less than half the price. The sun canopy is awesome, but not ~$225 awesome.
- Mountain Buggy Nano ($249.95) – We almost added this stroller to our main list, because so many people love this stroller. It also has a couple of nasty design flaws. The main strike against the Nano is the placement of the foot brake, which tends to get kicked accidentally all too often (bringing the stroller to an abrupt halt) and the low handlebar height, which makes this stroller suboptimal for parents taller than 5'8 or so. On the plus side, the Nano is the only stroller that is compatible with a convertible car seat, the Cosco Scenera, which is an amazing feature for air travel with toddlers or for carless city dwellers who rely on Uber to get from A to B. In our opinion, this feature is the only reason you would buy this stroller over similarly priced alternatives. [full review]
- Nuna Pepp ($250) – The same price as the Zoe Traveler with similar features and a bulkier fold. We would choose the Zoe ten times out of ten.
- UPPAbaby G-Lite ($200) – Super breathable mesh at a similar price point to the Maclaren Volo, with a similar flaw: it can’t be reclined.
- UPPAbaby G-Luxe ($280) – Very similar in look and function to the Joovy Groove Ultralight, but nearly twice the price. Not worth it in our opinion.
- UPPAbaby Minu ($400) – Although this stroller features leather accents and a polished look, the fold is on the bulky side (bulkier than the GB Qbit Plus) and it is expensive for what it is. For only $100 more, you can get our all-time favorite travel stroller, the Bugaboo Ant or the Babyzen YOYO+, or you can save yourself $100 and opt for the admittedly less luxury but certainly more compact Zoe Traveler.
Note: There is no one universal “best,” especially when it comes to parenting. These are “The Best Travel Strollers” based on Also Mom's strict criteria, detailed here.