Your baby's weaning journey is incredibly important and is also a huge milestone in their life when they start having their first meals. But there are a number of worries we have as parents throughout this journey, which often revolve around how we will feed our baby when we aren't at home. Enter the portable high chair.
You can read every weaning book there is and even invest in the best blenders to whip up delicious food, but the scariest part of the weaning journey is not being in the comfort of your own home to feed your baby with your trusty high chair. But you'll never have to worry about whether your local cafe will have a free high chair again if you get your own portable high chair.
They're incredibly convenient and even save a lot more space in your home if you wanted to use them all the time.
Things to look out for when choosing a portable high chair
Does it fold? - When considering a portable high chair, you need to pick something compact and easy to fold away and store in your vehicle.
Weight - If you struggle to lift heavy things, you'll want to pick a portable chair that is easy for you to carry from your vehicle to the venue, whether that's a cafe or a friend's home. As well as being lightweight, some portable options come with wheels.
Multi-function - You don't necessarily need to pick a full chair that folds up and down. Instead, a booster seat is a fantastic option and makes your life a whole lot easier. Many can convert to cater to your needs, so it's always worth checking for extra features that will fit your lifestyle.
Age suitability - Always check what age the high chair is suitable for. Many high chairs can be used from birth, while others are only suitable from six months old when they start weaning. We've included age suitability in our round-up.
Cleaning - As mums, we know how messy our tots can be, so for many parents, it's important to find a portable high chair that can be wiped down after you've been out and about. We've included the materials in our list so you can see how easy it will be to keep clean.
What are the different types of portable baby high chairs?
Booster seat - this is a popular option for travel purposes when it comes to feeding your child away from home. The booster seat does just that, it raises infants higher than the table you're dining at and doesn't have any legs. Instead, it straps to an existing chair and often features a tray for baby to eat their dinner from.
High chair - this is similar to your traditional high chair, however, the portable versions are often fully foldable or feature shorter legs that can be adjusted as needed for you to feed baby easily and without hassle.
Clamp seat - a hook-on baby seat, or clamp seat, is a flexible option if you are tight on space. It brings the baby right up to the table you're dining at and you won't take up any extra space inside a restaurant or cafe. The clamp seat may initially look precarious, but many have secure lobster style clamps that you screw into place on the table making them a versatile option for wherever you end up.
Seat harness - a fabric harness reduces the need to carry an entire seat or chair. They are usually attached to the chair with rucksack style straps for the baby to sit inside the harness. It turns any chair into a secure seat.
Best portable high chair 2021
VEEYO Hook On High Chair
This portable high chair is a little different to most, but it's super convenient for travel. It has a five-point harness design and simply hooks onto the table. The operating hook is also quick and simple to use.
Specs: Attaches to tables from 2cm-8.5cm thick, five-point safety harness, machine washable removable seat cover, foldable carrying bag, comes in eight different patterns/colours, suitable for six months old or up to 33 lbs.
Product dimensions: 37.9 x 32.21 x 11.81 cm
Parent review: "Very pleased with this chair, it makes my son sit at the table and makes him feel he is at the table as in a high chair he is sitting back from the table. Fits very well and sturdy looks very nice in the grey. My son loves it. Excellent design."
Chicco Pocket Snack Booster Seat
This ultra-lightweight design means it's super easy to carry. It can easily be stored in most strollers, so you can use it wherever you go. It has three different height adjustments and three tray positions, as well as a fully adjustable three-point harness. It folds down simply and is easy to carry.
Specs: Lightweight, shoulder carry strap, fully adjustable, wipe clean, 95 per cent plastic and five per cent textile materials, two year John Lewis guarantee included, removable cover, suitable from six months.
Product dimension: H36 x W49 x L7cm
Parent review: "We bought this to see if we could eat in our garden and it was PERFECT. We now take it everywhere; to the park, on holiday, in the car, to restaurants etc. It makes feeding our nine-month-old so easy anywhere. WORTH. EVERY. PENNY."
Munchkin Portable Travel Booster Seat
Not only is this a portable high chair seat, but it also offers protective storage for on-the-go essentials. It has a strong and durable frame, with a no-slip grip for increased stability on chairs. And when it’s not being used as a chair it functions as a nifty travel bag! The chair has a storage pocket that is perfect for snacks, nappies, wipes, a bib and maybe even a favourite book or small toy. It’s lightweight, with a good carry handle. A sturdy chair, too.
Specs: Fits child approximately 12-36 months olds (15 kg / 33.1 lbs max), durable and easy-to-clean 100 per cent polyester material, adjustable straps, folds neatly and includes a convenient carrying strap.
Product dimension:15.5 x 28.5 x 29.5 cm
Parent review: "So glad we bought this! We got it six months ago, when our little one was 16 months, for a holiday abroad. It worked so well, light and compact so easy to take in the suitcase. It has a good little storage compartment, where I can fit wipes, a bib, a bowl and cup etc. We have used it so much, over these months it fits easily in the buggy basket. Or has an over the shoulder strap so you can take it discreetly into a restaurant or to visit friends u0026 family and have everything you need in one place. It fits easily and securely on most chairs. Our little boy loves it and despite his enthusiastic attempts to "get down" at the end of a meal he has remained safe and secure until released. A great buy!"
Baby Polar Bear Booster
With a fully adjustable five-point harness and two shoulder straps, this seat is lightweight and can be carried as a shoulder bag or stashed under a pushchair. It's perfect for little ones who can sit up unaided, and even comes with a wipe-clean placemat. It boosts any dining chair by 8cm.
Specs: Wipe clean, polyester upper, nylon inner, polyurethane foam seat, five-point harness, shoulder straps, T-bar for security, under chair straps, suitable for 12 - 36 months.
Product dimension: L26 x W31 x H8cm
Parent review: "Love this product! My daughter wasn’t ready to sit in a highchair and so this meant I was able to attach it to almost any type of chair and she could eat with the rest of us. The five-point harness is great because it means she’s perfectly safe and can’t go anywhere!!! I’ve seen ones that only have a strap around the waist and these are quite dangerous-looking. With the adjustable straps, this will last a very long time! When packed it fits easily in the bottom of the pram. My friends have bought the same product after seeing this one, which says a lot in itself."
COSTWAY Baby 3 in 1 Dining Chair
There's nothing better than a practical baby item. This 3-in-1 seat can be used as a regular highchair or a low chair with a removable tray. You can even remove the footrest too and its trapezoidal structure ensures your little one's safety.
Specs: Fully adjustable, removable tray, removable footrest, non-slip chair legs, trapezoidal structure, suitable for 3 months to 4-years-old.
Product dimensions: 57L x 57W x 83cm
Parent review: "Great quality high chair, super easy to put together! I feel it's very safe and easy to clean down. Added bonus that it looks stylish too."
Venture Bubble Table Booster
This bubble booster is a fun and stylish design with multiple uses. Make feeding easier for your little one with this comfortable design that's also easy to wipe clean. The seat can also be used with the sensory toy fitted to the tray for playing, at mealtimes or even as a seat on the floor.
Specs: Three-point baby harness, push-fit lock, two detachable high chair toys, adjustable design, wipe clean, removable tray, two tethering straps, carry handle, available in four colours, recommended for 6+ months and up to 15 kg.
Product dimensions: L36 x W32 x H31cm
Parent review: "Absolutely brilliant! Love this stable seat as it means I can have my son on my desk with me for someone to one time while I feed him, no bending for me and he loves being face to face with me. The seat could do with a comfy pad but nothing a small blanket can’t solve. It’s been perfect for his first weaning foods!"
Fisher Price Healthy Care High Chair
Designed for easy folding for transportation, this high chair is extremely handy. It has a removable food tray for easy washing, and can also be adjusted to different heights for your little one.
Specs: Folds down, carry case, three heights positions, removable tray dishwasher safe, three-point harness, adjustable shoulder strap, seat straps, suitable for ages six months and up (max 50lbs).
Product dimension: 21.6 x W40.5 x H36cm
Parent review: "Good size for my nine-month-old baby who is a big baby - there's plenty of room between him and the tray in front, unlike others which are a tight squeeze. Once you get used to how the tray comes off get them out. That’s tricky at first. You push down where the catches are on one side to pull it out and off. It also has two trays, once they've finished making a mess eating, you lift the top tray off leaving the second tray clean to then clean them up and put toys on."
Mamas & Papas Baby Bud Booster Seat
The removable padded seat insert gives your little one extra comfort, and it also has an extra-safe harness to keep them in place while they learn to eat. It's super stylish too, with an additional handle for making transportation to meals out easier. It also has four adjustable, non-slip feet for secure positioning.
Specs: Three-point harness, carry handle, non-slip feet, removable tray, easy-clean, comes in grey and dusky pink, suitable for six to 36 months.
Product dimensions: 32 x 36.5 x 31cm
Parent reviews: "This was a great find when hunting for a high chair! Means it is out of the way and stored at the table so great for small spaces. Easy to clip on and off. The table section slides on easily and it is easy to wipe clean/pop in the dishwasher. Small enough to pop in a buggy for weaning on the go! A great travel item and being social at the dinner table."
Ingenuity Baby Base 2-in-1 Seat
Make meals out easier with this booster feeding seat. It's wipeable and the removable tray stores neatly under the seat too. Available in cashmere, peacock blue, pink and ultramarine green this is a clear stand out for us. The best bit about it? It can be used as a playtime seat or can attach to a dining chair thanks to its three-point harness and safety strap.
Specs: Removable tray, three-point harness, safety strap, BPA-free tray, and recommended for ages six to 36 months.
Product dimensions: 43.8 x 29.8 x 38.7cm
Review: “Functional baby seat. We use this daily with our 14-month-old, we have been using it from about 5 months old. I like its adaptability; it can be placed on chairs and a seat around the dinner table or on the floor as you choose. The tray slides out from underneath and clips in easily. We have limited space, but this small seat can be stored away easily. This is one of my favourite baby purchases and I wouldn't be without it.”
Tommee Tippee Chair Harness
Create an instant secure seat out of any dining chair with this star-printed harness. Designed to fit a range of different style chairs, it will stop baby wriggling while you feed them. It doesn't provide any height but provides an easy option if you don't want baby on your lap.
Specs: Rucksack clip fastens, lightweight, adjustable straps, foldable pouch, machine washable, 100 per cent Polyester, suitable for babies from 6-30 months (from 18lbs).
Product dimensions: 6 x 12 x 19 cm
Parent review: "Bought this for our first trip to Spain with my nine-month-old. Don’t know what I would have done without it. Was perfect for the holidays. Small and it’s only a little carry pouch to put into the changing bag. Easy to clip to pretty much every different chair we have come across so far. Convenient when a highchair isn’t available. We have used this many times home and away and it now permanently lives in my changing bag. I couldn’t go out without it."
Mountain Buggy Pod Portable Highchair, Flint
This portable baby chair is fixed to any kind of table via a sturdy aluminium clamp that makes it super secure for your child to sit in at the table. It's pretty versatile for dining inside and outdoors.
Specs: Flat folding, robust aluminium clamp extendible from 18-45mm, durable 300 deniers, wipe clean fabric, with padded back support, carry case, suitable from six months.
Product dimensions: 31 x 34 x 4cm
Parent reviews: "I wouldn't be without this, I use it as my day to day high chair and then keep a spare in my car so wherever I am I can just clip her onto the table and I'm away. No more balancing her on my lap and trying to awkwardly feed her. 10/10."
Safety tips when using a high chair
Another factor that should be at the top of your checklist is the safety functions. Some highchairs will have harnesses to ensure your little one is secure, but if they don’t, it’s worth checking the safety features. Like choosing a pushchair, lots of designs will have additional benefits; from adjustable seats to the ability to convert the pushchair into a chair for when your baby outgrows it. There are a few things parents should look out for when purchasing a high chair.
Look out for the British Standard EN 14988:2006 safety standard mark
We all know how much babies and toddlers can wriggle. That's why it's important to choose a high chair with a five-point safety harness, to keep them safe and secure.