The best travel high chair: how to pick the best traveling high chair for kids

portable high chair for travel

Buying guide to the best travel high chair for kids. How to pick the best traveling high chair and best high chair for travel models for 2021 and beyond. Updated December 2020.

A traveling high chair may not immediately come to mind as a toddler travel essential however, it is one of those family travel items that make traveling with a young child that much easier, whether travel is to faraway places or to the restaurant down the road.

Eating out as a family can be a great pleasure, but if one of your meal companions happens to be a toddler, this easy pleasure can turn into a headache-inducing endeavour pretty quickly. 

Before having kids, we would pick a restaurant based on offering and budget, but since the kids came along, it felt like any meal decision had to be accompanied by an endless list of questions.

Is the restaurant toddler friendly? Is there space for the stroller? Will they serve anything he/she will eat?  Will they gave a high chair? 

Some of these questions are inevitable and have answers outside of our control but some aren’t and I quickly discovered there is a lot I could do to make things easier for everyone involved.

One of them was equipping myself with a travel highchair.  They can be invaluable for meals out, on travel or at granny’s house!

In this post, I go through the several table booster seats we considered and the portable high chair style that worked for us.

No time to read the post? Check out the one table booster seat that works best for us here or scroll a couple of paragraphs to our high chairs for traveling comparison table.

Please note: this post contains affiliate links and, should you make a purchase through them, we might make a small commission at no extra cost to you.

Do you need a travel high chair?

 I am a very light packer and one of those people who believe you do not need a full set of new gear for every possible situation simply because you have a  baby.

However, I find a traveling high chair to be a good investment (you can find our other baby travel must have here).

The main reasons to get a high chair for travel for us where:

Babies and toddlers love them

My two children are different in many things but they share a love for independence …and high chairs!

They always preferred having their own seat rather than sitting in their stroller or perched on our knees and giving them their own space usually made for smoother eating experiences.

Baby girl having breakfast at table on highchair
Happiness is messy mealtime on your own high chair!

A baby or toddler with space to make a mess with food is a happy one, so this was a big one for us.

Traveling high chairs are safer than makeshift boosters

During our first overseas trip with not one but two toddlers, we decided we had too much stuff to worry about a high chair and this meant we made do with pillows over normal chairs, baby carriers tied in the fashion of harnesses around restaurant chairs and other makeshift systems.

Nothing happened and these tricks can work well but I remember each of those meals being a huge headache for me as I worried my children would slip down, push the chair back and hit their head or get away from the harness.

Once we moved to a proper travel high chair, I knew I could trust the harness system and this kept them safe and me relaxed. 

We could eat in peace

You don’t realize how nice it is is to eat with two free hands until you have a toddler on your knee preventing you from using them both.

Having a high chair was an easy way to regain our personal space and also a great way to save our plates from little curious hands!

A traveling high char gives you more options

Another big plus of having your own traveling high chair is that you have ore options when it comes not just to restaurants but also rental accommodation and hotels.

When travelling with a toddler, you may want to have the occasional meal to snack in the room and, in this case, having your own baby table booster seat or harness means you can adapt almost any table into a toddler friendly meal set up.

Best travel high chair comparison table

Name of travel high chair / brandTypeAge/ max weightFolds flat
Yssvic baby chair harness
Fabric Harness5 to 36 monthsFabric, folds very small
My Little Seat Travel High ChairFabric Harness 6 months to 35 pounds/15 KgFabric, folds very small
Munchkin Brica go boost
Chair booster seat12 – 36 monthNo (comes with carry strap)
Inglesina Clip on
Clip on travel high chair6 – 36 monthsYes + comes with carry bag
Lobster clip on
Clip on travel high chairUp to 37 punds /17 KgYes + comes with carry bag
Chicco Caddy Hook on chairHook on traveling high chair6 months and up to 36 Pounds/16KgYes
Summer infant pop and sit
Booster seat / camping chair6 months to36 Pounds/ 16.5 KgNo 
Hiccapop Omniboost Traveling high chair for kidsBooster seat / camping chair12-36 monthsNo
Summer deluxe kids portable booster seat for table Foldable booster seat6 months to 33 pounds/ 14KgYes

Travel high chairs styles: which ones are best

Several types of travel high chair exist on the market and the best one depends on your type of travel, child and budget.

At a glance, the main types of travel high chair are:

Unstructured, fabric travel high chair (harness chair)

Unstructured travel high chairs made of fabric are the most portable of all solutions.

They operate as a harness that keeps your child secured on a normal chair and have the huge advantage of folding very small, so small in fact that you can fit them in tour handbag and forget they are there.

They are an excellent solution if you have a child that is small and not too wriggly.

The biggest disadvantage I found was that my children grew out of these quite quickly and therefore it wasn’t a particularly durable solution.

The other disadvantage is that they do not lift your baby any higher than a normal chair meaning you may still have to stuff coats or pillows under them to have them at the right height. Harnesses work to secure the child to the chair but are not designed to be a table booster seat.

So, in summary:

Fabric chair harness pros:

  • Very light and portable for size / weight
  • Usually machine washable
  • Suited to most chairs

Fabric chair harness cons:

  • Usually not wipe clean (which can be a problem if traveling and with no access to a washing machine)
  • Only suitable for small age range
  • No boost in height

Good examples of portable fabric high chair for travel are below (click for Amazon prices and exact specs)

Clip-on travel high chairs /Clamp-on seat portable high chair for toddlers

Clamp on portable high chairs are exceptionally popular with traveling families and much loved by children too.

Unlike fabric high chair these do not use the restaurant chair but clip directly onto the table edge, meaning your child has pretty much zero wriggle room and therefore zero changes of slipping down outside of the chair.

However, these chairs also come with some disadvantages, the first one is that they are bigger to carry than their fabric counterpart. The other is that they do not work with all types of tables. 

These chairs are perfect for booth tables with a smooth edge but do not work on smaller, looser table (think Parisian cafe as a typical example of where this would not work).

This is something to consider carefully as you may find yourself inquiring about table built rather than high chair availability, defeating the whole purpose of having your own gear!

Overall, I find these are a good choice for a table booster seat and a good compromise between versatility and portability.

Clip-on travel high chair pros:

  • Keep baby close to the table and in place
  • Keep baby at good height on most tables
  • Reasonably small to carry

Clip-on travel high chars cons:

  • Not as small when folded as fabric ones
  • Do not work with all tables
  • Might make bigger kids feel too constrained because of the small space between the seat and the table 

Good examples of hook on traveling high chairs for babies and toddlers are:

Foldable travel booster seats for tables

A foldable travel booster seat for a table is just what its name suggests: a booster seat for kids that can be folded small and therefore is easy to carry. 

These are a very common and very popular choice when it comes to travel high chairs as they are more versatile than clip on ones and reasonably small when it comes to portability. 

Foldable travel booster seat for table pros:

  • Suitable for most chairs
  • Easy to clean on the go

Foldable travel booster seat for table cons

  • Usually bulkier than other styles

Good examples of table booster seats that work as highchairs for travel:

What to look for when choosing a kids high chair for travel

I usually loo at the following characterize when choosing the best travel high chair.

Age suitability

Traveling high chairs and booster seats are for babies and toddlers who can sit unattended but they do have different age specs depending on style and material.

Check manufacturer’s specs and maximum child weight allowed for each brand / style.

Size when closed

The whole point of a travel high chair is to be portable and non intrusive while on the go.

Check sizes when closed so you can be sure it fits into your backpack / stroller basket / handbag

Versatility

I like items that I can use over and over again so I always look for things I can use on my travels as well as at home.

Check the shape of your chairs and tables first if you intend to use the travel high chair also while home (I did and found it make a huge difference to the tidiness of my house not to have a bulky full on chair out all the time!)

Please note: the product specifications in this post and table come from the official information on the product website. Always double check suitability of each product for your own child. Recommendations in this post reflect out opinions on the products only. 

The best travel high chairs for 2021 by type

Best fabric travel high chair

Yissvic baby chair belt (fabric)

If you are going for a fabric harness type of high chair, the Yssvic baby chair belt is a good option.

It is designed for babies aged  5  to 36 months old and has a higher weight limit of about 35 pounds, which makes it an item you can probably use over a decent length of time.

It is easy to fold and come with its own carry bag which makes it easy to just stuff into your handbag without fear of it coming undone or getting tangled. 

In terms of suitability with different types of chairs, it can be used with many but the way it attaches to the back of the chair means that some very wide one or special model may not be able to accommodate it safely.

Official specs:

  • 100% Polyester Fiber
  • Shoulder Straps for Extra Safety
  • Fits most types of chairs
  • Washable and durable 
  • Item weight: 6.4 ounces; product dimensions: 6.4 x 5.8 x 2.6 inches

My Little Seat travel high chair

My little seat travel high chair is another fabric high chair for travel handy if you need a seat harness for your child more than a boost in height at the table.

My little seat folds tiny and it is machine washable which makes is super portable and easy to care for.

An extra plus! It comes in different colors and patterns so you can sue sure you find one you and our toddler like!

Official specs:

  • Item Size: 8 x 1.5 x 6 inches
  • Item weight: 8 ounces
  • Five point harness for safety

Best portable booster seats for table

Summer Deluxe foldable portable booster seat for tables

Another portable chair for toddlers we found excellent was the summer deluxe portable booster seat, a lovely and easy to use seat with a pretty animals motive.

This is a seat my daughter in particular adored and she insisted on using it not just as a table booster seat but also as a normal chair on the floor, she liked it so much!

The seat is made in easy clean plastic and it is perfect to give your little one a boost when sitting at a table or even to sit on the ground if having a fun day out or camping.

You can secure the portable seat to any type of chair with the easy to use safety harness and you can adjust the height of the seat to the needs of your growing baby, thanks to the two sliding seat feet.

The seat come with an easy to wash feeding tray too and a removable fabric cover that can easily be aded to your normal wash.

We fond this to be an excellent solution for travel as it is hugely versatile and easy to fold and carry.

Official specs:

  • Brand: Summer infant
  • Color: cream and light brown with pastel color animal cover
  • Material: plastic with fabric cover and harness
  • Size: 13.5 x 17 x 12 inches
  • Weigh: 1.66 Kilograms

Munchkin Brica go boost 

If your child needs an extra little boost to seat at your table, the Munchkin Brica go boost high chair fits the bill perfectly.

This is a traditional style booster seat that you use on the table chair and is as such compatible with almost all dining chairs, regardless of style.

The seat is light and portable and the seat area is built to doubles up as small storage space, which makes it super handy.

You can store bibs and even bottles here and you can access it also when the chair is in use, which is very handy.

The seat can be wiped clean which is handy although this means you do not give it a full wash as you would with a fully fabric one.

It comes with a built in shoulder strap that makes it super easy to carry. 

Official specs:

  • Ultra portable travel booster seat with a strong and stable internal frame
  • Includes storage for bottles, diapers and more
  • Durable and easy to clean materials
  • Xtra-Grip™ traction pads provide a no-slip grip on chairs for increased stability
  • Folds neatly and includes a convenient carrying strap
  • Adjustable 3 point harness system to fit child approximately 12-36 months (50 lb. max)

Best clip on travel high chair: Inglesina 

Inglesina is my favorite brand for clip on high chairs as I find it is compatible with more tables than other offering a similar solution.

The Inglesina hook on high chair for travel folds almost flat and comes with a a large carry on bag that is attached to the chair itself.

The bag is generous in size that may make it look cumbersome to carry but it is attached to the chair (so you won’t misplace it) and can be used to keep additional gear.

The chair also has a pocket for small gear (bibs, extra soothers etc), which is also a nice addition. 

Official specs:

  • Inglesina’s Fast Table Chair fits tables up to 3.5″ thick and is perfect for use with most table designs
  • Complete with an integrated travel-friendly carry bag, the Fast Table Chair is easy to pack 
  • For babies & toddlers between 6 and 36 months, and up to 37 pounds, it has durable & washable design
  • The functional design includes a convenient storage pocket to ensure immediate access to wipes, toys, snacks and more.
  • Made in Italy. Inglesina has been designing quality strollers, highchairs and table chairs since 1963, with a focus on safety, practicality, and utilizing the finest materials.

Lobster clip on travel high chair by Phil & Teds

The clip-on travel high chair Lobster by Phil and Teds is made by the same brand that made our favourite double stroller and indeed, it is as good as other baby and toddler products by the same brand.

The best thing about this high chair is that is easy to fold, easy to carry and that can be easily wiped clean, which is a great advantage over the ones made of fabric.

This chair has a screw-on system and, provided the table is suitable, it is very easy to set up and sturdy.

The Phil & Teds Lobster folds really flat and comes with a little carry bad for easy of movement and extra protection. he chair folds so flat that it can easily fit in a stroller basket, which means it is very easy to carry even if out most day.

The chair comes with a tray but many parents find that it doesn’t hold safely in place and therefore prefer to use it without when out and about.

Official specs:

  • Super light and compact . Aluminum frame with padded back support and a shoulder harness system weighing in under 4 pounds
  • Robust aluminum clamps with non slip grip pads fit tables from 0.8″ up to 3.75″ thick and suitable for indoor and outdoor use
  • Globally safety certified design can accommodate a child 3 months to 3 years up to a max weight of 37 pounds
  • Hygenic: Includes a dishwasher safe tray and travel bag that fits easily into diaper bags, purses, and stroller gear baskets

Chicco Caddy Hook on high chair for travel

Chicco Caddy Hook on high chair is another excellent traveling highchairs if you look for a clip on option that folds small.

The hook on seat is made with soft grip handles designed not to leave marks, a definitely plus when renting an apartment, and has a removable seat cover that is easy to wash and keep clean.

The table top fasten system is easy to use and attached to most table types and the whole chair east to fold and store in the car trunk, making it excellent for meals on the go and for travel.

Specs:

  • Brand: Chicco
  • Cololor: several avaiable
  • Item size: 14.17 x 14.33 x 25.28 inches
  • Item weight: 5.74 pounds

Summer infant pop and sit

Different from pretty much anything else on this list and even just for this worth a mention is the summer infant pop and sit travel high chair.

This product looks more like a camping chair than a booster seat and I didn’t pay too much attention to it until I heard many parents raving about it.

Indeed, this simple-looking chair is very versatile, easy to set up and offers extra height to your toddler to seat at the table.

Unlike other boosters, which have a flat base to rest on the chair, this one has small legs which can be an advantage or not, depending on use.

I find its shape makes it perfect for using it on the floor or ground but somehow tricky on chairs, that may just not be wide enough to accommodate it (although it does come with a strap for securing it onto their backs)

I feel this is a great seat for outdoorsy families in particular and we found it great for camping and days you. This is why we also have it in our suggested family camping packing checklist as a useful item.

Hiccapop Omniboost travel high chair

Another easy to carry and easy to fold traveling high chairs the Hiccapop Ominboost travel seat.

This is portable foldable traveling high chair with an ergonomic seat, a safety harness and a removable tray table perfect for days out especially.

The tray is wipe clean and dishwasher and the seat cover is machine washable which makes for easy maintenance.

The chair has four safety feet with tip over prevention specs that make the seat stand safely in place.

This is a good seat if you are looking for a versatile traveling high chair you can use outdoors with the tray or in the house, when your baby gets bigger, as a table booster seat.

The seat also have a handy storage pocket on the back, perfect for small items such as toddler cutlery, bibs etc.

Official specs:

  • Brand: Hiccapop
  • Color: slate grey, dark blue, light blue
  • Size: 15.59 x 7.01 x 6.89 inches
  • Weight: 4.19 Pounds

Good to know: if you cannot get hold of this product, we found a very similar one by Fisher Price called healthy care booster which you can get from Fisher Price here

I hope you found this quick guide to the best high chairs for travel and it gave you good ideas. Safe family travels!

Best traveling high chairs image for Pinterest

Kid high chair with tray and bottle and text: the best traveling high chairs for babies and toddlers

Loved this post? Share it or pin it for later!