It’s a dilemma we’ve all faced: you’ve arrived at the restaurant and they don’t have any high chairs available for your little one to sit in.
If you don’t have a travel high chair handy (like this $20 one that fits into diaper bags), then you’re out of luck, right?
Not necessarily, according to Keryn Means, the travel expert behind the site Walking On Travels. I recently learned an on-the-go high chair trick from Keryn that is today’s hint.
The tip: Use your stroller as a travel high chair. Here’s how Keryn described how she turns a stroller into a high chair of sorts, a very simple transformation: “We just pull our little umbrella stroller up to the table.”
In a great recent Walking On Travels post on “baby gear that pulls double duty” during travel, Keryn wrote about how she came up with this idea. She was in Maui with her then five-month-old son and their vacation rental didn’t have a high chair. So, Keryn writes that she “popped him in his stroller and started to give him a few bites. It worked perfectly.”
Ever since, Keryn writes that “we have wheeled our boys up to tables at restaurants when high chairs were not available.”
To be sure, depending on your stroller, your little ones may not reach the table very well, and they may not like being stuck in the stroller if they’re used to eating at the same table level as you.
In addition, some strollers will likely work better than others as high-chair stand-ins, especially those that hold little ones at table level, such as the Stokke Xplory stroller. While the Stokke model is definitely not cheap, Celebrity Baby Scoop noted a while back that the model “can even serve as a high chair when dining at a cafe,” and the Bump Club and Beyond also pointed out this feature.
Of course, a stroller meal may be messier than one in a high chair or at table level, especially if your little one is feeding him or herself. “Strollers can definitely get messy, but if you have a little one that you can’t trust in a chair yet, they work in a pinch,” Keryn says.
Still, it’s great to know that a stroller can serve as a stand-in seating option when you’re desperate. And if you’re okay with the caveats involved, it also can help you pack lighter.
Finally, Keryn isn’t the only fan of the trick. For instance, Jennifer Durbin, aka the Clueless Chick, recommends using your stroller as a high chair “when you’re in a pinch” in this video, and a parent commenting over at The Baby Bargains site also recommends the trick, as does one of the co-founders of trekaroo. Elsewhere, some parents also suggest using a stroller as a high chair if you live in a very small apartment and don’t have room for extra baby gear.
What are your tips for dealing with the “there’s no high chair available” scenario?