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What should I look for when buying a travel cot?

A travel cot, also known as a ‘camp cot’ is a great piece of equipment for families that like to travel. This type of cot folds up, usually into a carry bag, that is easily transported from place to place, giving your baby a safe, secure and comfortable sleeping area, no matter where in the world you go. They also make great portable play pens, particularly if you’re visiting a home that’s not baby proof.

When shopping for a travel cot, there are a few factors that you want to look for, whether you choose a budget friendly version, or a more complex and costly option. These include:

Ease of use. A travel cot should be easy to unfold, and fold up. Check this when you’re in the shop. Have someone demonstrate how the mechanism works. Ideally, you want something that you could fold or unfold on your own, without any assistance.  Also, consider weight and bulkiness. If you are flying, the cot will count as a piece of luggage and could be chargeable.

Look for a sturdy bag, that’s roomy but not bulky, and that’s easy to carry. Some even have wheels, so you can move it around easier. A bassinet and changing station are nice additions to a travel cot, although they’re not strictly essential.

You want to look for a travel cot that has a machine washable cover, and that has mesh windows on one or both sides, so you can see what your baby is up to. Sometimes, you can buy good quality second hand travel cots, but there are economical options out there, so if you can afford to buy a new one, it’s worth making the investment.

More questions

A travel cot is the perfect accessory for the family that loves to travel, and will be an essential piece of equipment.
A Moses basket or crib can be a good choice for parents who want to share their room with their baby for the first few months, or who want a portable option in addition to a cot.
There are several types of cot mattress available, and which one you choose will depend on your budget, and your specific requirements.
There are many different types of bedding available and you don't really need much to keep your child comfortable – the choice over which type to use rests on personal preference and convenience for you.
Any push chair you buy in a store, online or second hand, must comply with standard safety regulations.
The terrain you walk on, your transport and storage needs and the comfort of the push chair are all important factors when choosing a push chair.
The three main types of pushchair have different suitability, depending on how where you plan on using them and what kind of transport you use.
There are a few different types of high chair and various accessories you can buy, depending on what your requirements are.
Very often parents worry about their child getting too cold while travelling in a car seat; this can lead to over-compensating for the cold and making the child uncomfortable.
Baby slings are the cheapest, lightest type of baby carrier and are available in a couple of styles.

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