Can I Travel with a Stroller?

We’re about to take the train from Szczecin back to Berlin (via Angermünde).

You’re never too young for new experiences. We’ve been on plenty of trips with our children. When our son was around one year old we went to Tromsø in northern Norway, and we saw northern lights. However, before each trip, we always wondered how to deal with the stroller. In this article, we will share some of our experiences.

You can travel with a stroller pretty much regardless of how you travel. While different companies have different rules, in general, companies do not want to discriminate against you in any way just because you are a parent. You should always check with the company you are traveling with to get accurate information. But we have yet not encountered a case where having a stroller was a problem or even caused extra costs.

Let’s now jump to our experiences and learnings from actual trips.

Going by Ferry

Plenty of space and no problem to bring baby food when going by ferry. This picture is from Stenaline from Gothenburg to Frederikshavn.

Perhaps not a big surprise, but going by ferry is generally no problem at all. Naturally, if the ferry is very small, perhaps you could encounter some troubles. But if you’re taking a large ferry, it’s likely the nicest and easiest way possible to travel with your little one, barring that anyone gets seasick.

We have taken a few small ferries (no cars) out in the archipelago of Gothenburg (Sweden’s second-biggest city) with our baby in a stroller. There were no problems at all.

We also took a large ferry (operated by Stena Line) from Gothenburg to Frederikshavn (a small city in Denmark). It took 3h 30min. It was by far the best travel experience we had if just looking at the time in the “transportation vehicle”. When our baby was awake, we let him play in the playground or just crawl around. Once tired, I just went for walks with him in the stroller. I believe the “white noise” from the ferry helped him fall asleep extra easily. Or perhaps it was just all the new experiences and fresh air. If our son would rate it, he’d definitely give it a five out of five.

Note that we didn’t go with a car. If you do that, it might be wise to also have a carrier, or be prepared to carry your little one. Just in case the stroller must be folded and carried, as from experience we know it can be quite narrow on the parking deck, and sometimes only small elevators or staircases are available.

Going by Bus

On the bus from Szczecin to Rewal we were allowed to bring our stroller, but we had to move it around when it was in the way. Would have been problematic if multiple people brought a stroller.

Can’t be completed by going on a big ferry. But also going by bus has always worked fine for us. We once went from Szczecin to Rewal (Poland) in a fairly old bus, and the trip took around 2 hours. It was not ideal as we had to bring the stroller up on the bus rather than putting it in storage (which didn’t exist). But it did work and the bus driver was helpful.

The trip itself went fine too. Even if we think it was just at the limit of how long you can travel with a toddler and infant. We had to fold the stroller, and at one point move it, when many passengers came on. The bus had a very very narrow aisle.

While it works, going by bus can be risky. During our trip, we realized that if multiple parents had gone with strollers, things could have gotten very challenging. It was also slightly unclear what the policy was, e.g. if we had to inform the company that we were bringing a stroller (we didn’t). In general, bus companies seem to be flexible and let you bring a stroller for free, e.g.:

Greyhound“We don’t charge for bringing a stroller or car seat on board a Greyhound bus. You can bring a stroller in addition to your maximum under-the-bus baggage allowance, and a car seat in addition to your carry-on baggage.” See Greyhound travel info.
Flixbus“As strollers are considered special luggage, you can bring 1 stroller per passenger.” “Strollers are transported for free.” See Flixbus luggage info.

Going by Plane

We quickly got the stroller when getting off the flight in Tromsø (Norway).

Traveling by flight is not the nicest due to the limited space. But many airlines do a good job of making it as pleasant as possible. We always got to bring our stroller for free, which I believe is the standard in at least the US and Europe. You can easily find info by just googling the airline’s name and “travel with children” or “children stroller”. E.g.


“For your convenience, we don’t charge any fees for traveling with strollers or child-restraint seats, like an FAA-approved car or booster seat. These don’t count towards your (or your ticketed child’s) baggage allowance. You can easily check these items before you go through security; or if you prefer, you can check them at the gate.”

Delta luggage information.
American Airlines
  • Each ticketed customer is allowed 1 stroller and 1 car seat to be checked free of charge
  • Strollers over 20 lbs / 9 kgs must be checked at the ticket counter
  • All other strollers should be checked at the gate before boarding
  • If you have a stroller and a car seat only 1 can be checked at the gate
American Airlines luggage information.
United Airlines

We’ll accept one stroller or folding wagon free of charge for each child in addition to a car seat. This includes children under the age of two traveling on an adult’s lap and infants traveling internationally on 10 percent of an adult fare, charged at the time of infant ticketing.

You’ll have to check most strollers or folding wagons at the gate before you depart. You can still use them around the airport, though.

Large, non-collapsible strollers or non-folding wagons can’t be checked at the gate, so please see a United representative at the airport check-in counter to check these items.

United Airlines luggage information.

“Children’s pushchairs can be used up to the aircraft steps and after landing the pushchair will be available at the aircraft steps (provided local conditions permit this). Please remember to ensure that your pushchair is tagged at the baggage drop desk or at the boarding gate.”

Ryanair traveling with infants.

“At most airports, it’s possible to use a foldable pushchair or buggy and to hand it over just before boarding. It will be returned to you immediately after landing.

Please enquire at baggage drop-off whether you can take your buggy or pushchair with you and hand it over directly at the aircraft. Please also remember to tell staff if you will need your buggy or pushchair for a connecting flight.

At the departure gate, our staff will make sure that your buggy or pushchair is taken on board.”

“Taking a buggy or pushchair with you is free of charge.”

Lufthansa flying with a baby.

For every infant or child you can bring up to two of the following items free of charge to go into the hold, in addition to your cabin bag allowance:

  • travel cot
  • pushchair
  • double pushchair
  • buggy
  • car seat
  • collapsible or non-collapsible pram
  • booster seat
  • baby back carrier.

You can check these in at our Bag Drop before you go through security, or if you need to use any of them to get to the boarding gate, we’ll collect them from you before you board the plane and put them in the aircraft hold. They will be available to collect at the baggage reclaim when you arrive at your destination.

Easyjet flying with children.

“You can bring a stroller/pram as checked baggage in addition to the baggage included in the ticket, free of charge. This also applies to SAS Go Light tickets. A stroller/pram must not weigh more than 23 kg.”

“When checking in a stroller (max 23 kg) and/or a child safety seat you have to use a plastic bag or a suitable protective hard case to protect it. We recommend that you use a hard case to avoid any potential damage. Nothing else is allowed to be packed in the same plastic bag/case.”

SAS - baggage for infants and children.

You often get additional benefits, such as priority boarding. Note that you need to check with the staff at the gate though. We noticed that they often don’t say that families can board early, but once you ask they always let you.

We went on a trip to Barcelona from Berlin with our infant. We brought out Bugaboo Donkey. While we were a bit worried as it is expensive, all worked fine. We put it in a stroller protection bag and checked it in. Once we landed we picked it up where you always pick up checked-in luggage. Our trip continued to Nice (in France) and then to Gothenburg in Sweden. No issues at all.

Another trip went to Tromsø in northern Norway (yay, we saw northern lights). To here we took a smaller and cheaper stroller (Hauck Sport Buggy). We put it in our stroller protection bag and checked it in. All went good also this time (and later we flew to Berlin from Tromsø, which also went fine).

While we read that you can also leave and retrieve the stroller at the gate sometimes, we always were directed to check it in.

Do I need a stroller protection bag?

We used a cheap noname bag we found on Amazon. We realized it couldn’t do much more than perhaps protect our stroller from smaller stains or scratches. In Barcelona airport, we also met a woman who traveled with her Bugaboo Fox without any protection. She claimed she did so frequently, and never had any problems.

However, we also heard horror stories of completely broken strollers. So if you have an expensive stroller, it might be wise to invest in a protection bag. E.g. Stokke’s excellent PramPack stroller protection bag or if you have a Bugaboo: Bugaboo comfort transport bag.

Going by Train

Going by train is the next best after the ferry in our experience. There’s more space and generally easy to just lift the stroller onto the train and put it away somewhere. We didn’t even have to fold it, but I suppose that might vary. Perhaps in some cases it even has to be checked in.

We traveled from Berlin to Szczecin by train and then used regional trains in Poland. It did get quite busy at times, but it all worked just fine. No hassle with the stroller.

While you should check with your train operator, for instance when you buy the ticket, it seems like you can pretty much always bring a stroller free of charge without any hassle. We looked at a few:

Deutsche Bahn (Germany)

Can I take a pram with me? Yes. Please note that the space available on the train is limited. We recommend slings or prams that can be easily folded and stowed away.

Deutsche Bahn traveling with children.
SNCF (France)

Pushchairs travel free (limited to two pushchairs per journey when you travel with Ouigo). If you have a folding pushchair, simply place it in the dedicated luggage area. If not, you can store it between coaches, but please be sure that it doesn’t block the doors or the movement of your fellow passengers.

SNCF traveling with a baby.
Amtrak (USA)

Baby Items (Booster seats, car seats, folding strollers)

  • Carry-On: Allowed - up to 50 lbs.
  • Checked: Allowed - up to 50 lbs. And 100 linear inches.
  • Baby items will be allowed onboard or in checked baggage service in lieu of a piece of baggage; no service fees apply.
  • Carriages, active strollers, all-terrain strollers, and multi-child strollers may be required to be checked.
Amtrack special items.
SJ (Sweden)

Strollers are to be folded well in advance of embarking and should be put away so it does not disturb the accessibility on board. An unfolded stroller may only be brought on board if space permits it. Unfolded strollers may never be placed by the train doors or escape routes.

SJ luggage information.

Note that some trains can even offer childcare/entertainment, such as ICE trains in Germany.

Our son loves going by train. It’s a good alternative to consider as it is likely the best for the environment as well.

What if I don’t want to bring my stroller?

In Nice (France) it was very warm and using a carrier wouldn’t have been an option due to the heat. Our son also very much enjoyed having his comfortable Bugaboo Donkey with him.

We often considered leaving our stroller just to simplify the trip even more. Especially if flying, but also with any other means of transportation. In the end, we always brought it, as it is quite nice to have a stroller.

Our main alternative was to just bring a baby carrier. I do not mind carrying my little daughter in a carrier for as long as needed. And our son is old enough to be without a stroller (he might not always agree though!).

The main issue with a carrier is that it can get quite warm if the temperature is high. And another inconvenience is that your child shouldn’t be in one for more than around 2 hours at a time according to many, including our midwife. It’s not ideal, but definitely doable. So if you worry about bringing a stroller, or it is just a big hassle in your case, a carrier might be an alternative.

Consider a Cheap Compact Stroller

Another alternative is to get a cheap compact stroller. Of course, doesn’t have to be cheap if your economy allows for it. There are excellent compact strollers, but they charge for their comfort and quality. But you can also get decent compact strollers cheaply, cheaper than a stroller protection bag. So it can be a good alternative to not bringing a stroller. As long as it is certified for safety according to your local standard, it won’t be a big deal to use a budget stroller for a week or two, even if you and your child are used to a premium stroller.

Final Thoughts

We hope our experience is helpful. Do not see having children or having to bring a stroller or pram as a hindrance to travel. It isn’t a big deal and there are workarounds if you worry about damage to your fancy stroller. E.g. buying a cheaper one or just having a carrier. There are also stroller protection bags if you don’t want to compromise on quality, perhaps because your infant is very young.

Traveling with children can be fun for the whole family and we’re convinced the experiences can help children grow, just as they do for us adults.

We believe experiences help both adults and children grow. Traveling is a nice way of experiencing new things. In Tromsø we saw northern lights, an impressive sight.