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Resources Centre / Twins Tips Introduction / Twins Tips / Travel Cots for Twins and Multiples
Travel Cots for Twins and Multiples
Designed to provide a safe and comfortable sleeping environment for your twins. triplets or more whilst away from home. travel cots are available in all sorts of innovative shapes and sizes for the discerning family-on-the-go.

Modern designs include rip-proof tent fabrics. pop up or inflatable constructions and lightweight poles that your suitcase will happily accommodate. If you're a regular channel-hopper and spend many an hour in the air to get to your destination of choice. a portable. lightweight and hard-wearing cot is likely to be at the top of your list.

On the other hand. if your idea of travel is a weekend at grannies. you can probably afford to go with one of the more traditional travel cots which are bulkier in weight but tend to offer bassinettes and a few additional accessories for your baby. Which style you choose really depends on your lifestyle. cash flow and personal preference for your child.

As with all purchases for multiples. it's essential to get it right so you don't end up wasting money on something that will spend most of its time in the back of your storage cupboard. If you're a 'one holiday per year' family. steer clear of the expensive options and go for something versatile that will double up as a playpen. toy box or beach pod - you can easily get up to two years use out of even a single travel cot. You also need to think about weight. portability and ease of use - even the most seasoned traveller knows the pitfalls of travelling with children so look for a cot that you can carry. construct and pack away easily.

Longevity is key for regular holiday-makers so look for a style that will provide plenty of room for your growing baby. Some of the more compact models are fantastically portable but are generally only suitable for the first 12 months so a larger design may be more suitable for twins or more.

What To Look For
Baby travel cots come in all shapes and sizes and are used for a host of different events depending on your lifestyle and the purpose for which you require them. A compact. portable. light baby travel cot(s) can be perfect for short outdoor trips as it gives your babies a little cocoon in which to sleep. A high sided travel cot with see-through mesh sides has the advantage of making a very useful playpen either at home or elsewhere when your babies need to be contained.

For twins. there is the added complexity of buying one or two and this is really dependent on your personal choice. age of the children. what is the purpose (short trips vs regular travel). type of travel (air/car) and cost. On the website under Twins Tips. we have an article on buying cots for the nursery but I have tried to cover some of the main considerations for travel cots below :

How much use you are likely to make of your baby travel cot(s) ?
For short trips with young babies you want to consider very compact baby cots such as the Samsonite Pop up Travel Cots. You can use these for the first 6 months and they are good for the beach. park or garden as well as at home/Grandmas and for travel (the mattresses are quite thin so may need a bit of extra padding). These types of travel cots are not suitable for carrying your babies around in (unlike moses baskets that can be moved from room to room).

For occasional travel. you may find a traditional high sided standard type travel cot will be more useful but these are bulkier and will be of limited use for travel but do have the advantage of being able to be used longer at home as a playpen and can be useful as a spare cot at family homes for afternoon naps or at Grandmas for overnight stays/naps/playpen. Regular travellers should try and opt for a solution that provides some longevity. most compact models will probably be of use for 12 months (for twins sharing possibly less than this as compact models are generally designed for one baby only). If you are planning a holiday. it is advisable to see if the place you are staying will provide cots as this may save you time. effort and money.

The size when erected / Sleeping together
Some baby travel cots are quite large and may be suited to young twins but it is unlikely that you will be able to use a standard cot divider in them (as these lock around the bars on normal cots and most travel cots are soft sided). High sided travel cots are great for containment of young twins at home &; on holiday. Putting twins together to sleep. particularly if space is limited. is a matter of choice. As with singleton babies. it is important to have them both sleeping on their backs with their feet at the end of the cot. to avoid them wriggling under the blankets and getting too hot. Also bear in mind that they could become much hotter by being in such close proximity to one another and if in a hot climate. Baby sleeping bags are a good alternative to blankets but ensure you select an appropriate tog rating (2.5 good all year round except high summer).

The size when folded / weight
This is very important to consider especially when you have to pack the boot of your car with all the other stuff and also if you are flying and need to check the travel cot in with your luggage. Travel cots used to weigh a ton but there are many new lightweight designs like the LittleLife Twin-Arc Travel Cot a full size travel cot but weighs only 2.6kg. This travel cot is quite large and could sleep young twins - it is floor based and needs anchoring and reviews suggest a little fiddly to assemble but scores high for compact design. High sided traditional travel cots are suitable for young babies and toddlers but will weigh more than pop up style travel cots there is a wide choice of sizes and designs available but remember if you are planning on using two cots then there will also be two mattresses. accessories and all the bedding to pack !

How easy it is to erect the travel cot ?
Keep it simple and choose a travel cot which is EASY to erect. There may be occasions when someone other than you will need to put it/them together you dont want to arrive home at midnight to find them still figuring out points A and B. With any travel cot. it is best to erect them a few times at home before travelling.

What is the travel cot mattress like ?
There has been a lot written about baby mattresses in the last few years and it has become a bit of a minefield of information. Some simple rules apply a breathable mattress is preferable. a solid plastic cover will make your baby(ies) sweaty in the heat and you need to be able to find a sheet to fit. Do not use a thick mattress in a portable cot. as a baby(ies) can get caught between the mattress and the stretchable cot side (relates to high sided mesh style travel cots).

The age suitability of the travel cot
Sometimes all-singing. all dancing. and multi functional products are trying to cover so many areas that they dont do any single job properly. Try and think about what you will use your baby travel cot for and buy accordingly. Young toddlers who can stand up will need a high sided cot which does not tip over but with twins you may need more than one cot whereas newborn/young babies can happily sleep in one larger or two single pop up cots.

Is the Travel Cot(s) washable ?
Babies and toddlers makes mess wherever they are !

For advice on purchasing Cots for your Nursery see our Buying Guide - Cots for Multiples.

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