Most of us love to travel, but one of the biggest problems is the fluctuation in temperature we experience in a range of different travel environments. Whether on board an aircraft, in the terminal building, or on the bus, how we manage to regulate our bodies temperature in all climates can indeed be a challenging one.
So, I've taken the hard work out of doing the research yourself to enable the reader to quickly find the best travel blanket around. As a frequent traveler, I’ve personally been caught short on an icy flight 35,000 in the air. There’s nothing worse than feeling the chill creep up from the soles of your feet to the top of your head.
I can’t seem to move around enough to warm my body, and the airline can't or won't supply me with blanket or worse still, they want to provide me with a dirty germ encrusted blanket. I recently decided to replace my travel blanket before heading off to Thailand so I did my homework and before investing my hard-earned money in a new travel blanket that should last me for the next few years. I realized there are a number of things to consider during my research, including:
Weight: Equally as important as size, the blanket should be as light weight as possible without sacrificing its warmth. Carry on allowances are strict these days, so be mindful of striking a happy balance when it comes to size versus weight.
Size: There’s nothing worse than being caught short when it comes to the size of a travel blanket. Pulling down to warm your feet at the cost of now cold shoulders. The right blanket should cover the body comfortably with a little extra to wrap around the feet. The width of the blanket is also essential so there’s plenty of fabric to wrap or tuck around the body.
Comfort: When traveling by air a bulky blanket will very quickly become an inconvenience to the traveler. Constantly moving it from one arm to another or packing and repacking it into carry-on luggage. While this may not be a consideration when purchasing a blanket, users appreciate the ability to multipurpose the product for use on the road at a sports game, or in the air.
Fabric Composition: Consider the density of the fabric, is it thick and fluffy, or thin, soft and silky? What is the sensation needed to assist you to relax on board? A blanket should provide comfort, warmth and relaxation, to assist you to rest and refresh. Fabric density should also be considered, a fabric that is breathable so you won’t sweat like you are in a sauna.
Features: Many blankets come with features including pockets, bags, hoodies or matching accessories including socks and pillows. Some blankets have water repelling qualities which allow the blanket to be used outside, or on camping trips away.
Style: Love it or loathe it, even the blanket you travel with says much about who you are in today’s world. Much like the clothes you wear, consider the look and color of your travel blanket. What will your blanket say about you? A light-colored blanket may look trendy, but not when it’s covered with sauce from the airline meal you ate on board you may not appear to others, to the trend setter you think you are.
Cleaning: A blanket must be easy to wash and quick drying, some can take days to dry out even in the sun. When traveling, washing options may be limited, so the blanket may not dry in time for your departure. No one wants to be walking around with a wet blanket.
Price: Travel blankets are a great travel accessory, however at the end of the day, you are purchasing a sheet of fabric, so don’t be blindsided by market influences that a more expensive blanket is superior to that of a cheaper one. Consider your needs and budget and meet halfway to end up with a product that delivers the comfort you seek, at a reasonable price.
People may or may not prefer to travel with a blanket, if you are a warm body, you may never feel the chill in the air at high altitude, or may decide it’s just one item to do without. So the preference is to travel light. Whatever your needs I think my short-listed selections have something for everyone.
Counting down to the best, this section details seven types of travel blankets especially designed for the traveler which are available now. These travel blankets meet the required criteria discussed above and all products included can be purchased online, so sit back, grab a nice hot (or cold) beverage and enjoy. I hope you find the perfect travel blanket for your next trip. Happy Landings!
7. Lug Nap Sac Pillow
Take a snooze with this a cosy 2 in 1 travel sized pillow and blanket set. The coral fleece blanket is housed in the storage pouch, which unzips to remove the blanket featuring a pocket, which is sized perfectly to fit a pair of reading glasses.
By simply removing the blanket, blow up the inflatable pillow provided, then slip it in the supplied cover. The soft zip pouch becomes a pillow case while you stay warm with your blanket. The blanket and cover are machine washable and dryer friendly. Available in a range of colors, its soft to the touch.
- Pillow Case Size: 10.7” w x 7.7” h x 3” d
- Blanket Size: 35” w x 46” h
- Weight: 13 ounces
Pros: Great for kids at day care and when visiting.
Cons: Material sheds when new, wash item before use.
6. Cocoon CoolMax Blanket
This small lightweight travel blanket is light enough to go just about anywhere. Made using a special mid-weight DuPont CoolMax knit with the feel of rich jersey, the blanket wicks moisture away from the skin and the fabric breathes well. Many love the draped snuggly feeling experienced when using the blanket, due to its generous size.
The blanket compresses for easy storage in the cylinder designed carry bag. One benefit of this comfortable blanket is down to its generous size, however it doesn’t compromise in its compactness, as it compresses down to the size of a soda can, when repacked into the carry bag. Available in Ocean, Navy and Red.
- Carry Bag Size: 5.9” l x 3.5 ”w
- Blanket Size: 55” w x 70” h
- Weight: 11 ounces
Pros: Compact, lightweight and generous size. Easy pack pattern makes it easy to refold into the pouch.
Cons: Doesn’t provide warmth, designed primarily for outdoor use.
5. Matador Pocket Blanket 2.0
A water repelling puncture resistant light weight blanket. It’s extremely compact when folded away, yet it opens large enough to accommodate 2 persons seated. The blanket comes with corner weights that pull out to act as corner stabilizers which are secured to the ground in windy conditions.
Additionally, there are four sand pockets in each corner providing improved performance in windy conditions when at the beach. Whilst it won’t provide comfort like a traditional style of blanket, its compact nature makes it ideal for the outdoors, and when an unexpected rain shower hit you while navigating your way through the streets sightseeing. Easily stored in a jeans pocket or handbag, the Matador Pocket Blanket 2.0 is available in two colors.
- Carry Bag Size: 3” l x 1.25” w x 4” h
- Blanket Size: 63” l x 44” w
- Weight: 5.4 ounces
Pros: Great for picnics, camping and at the beach.
Cons: Doesn’t provide warmth.
4. F1 Flight 001 Travel Blanket
Ultra-soft and lightweight the blanket comes in a zip pouch which doubles as a pillow, when the blanket is not in use. Available in a range of colors the blanket is made using 100% soft polyester and provides good coverage over the body due to its size.
The blanket has a jersey type feel to the fabric, making it breathable. The square shape is a unique feature some people prefer to the standard rectangle shape. Whilst the blanket feels thin, it provides a great deal of comfort and warmth in a cold airline cabin.
- Zippered Pouch Size: 9” w x 8”h
- Blanket Size: 55” w x 55” h
- Weight: 8.8 ounces
Pros: Lightweight, easy to store and transport when flying.
Cons: May not provide enough weight to feel snuggly when using. The square shape may disappoint.
3. Yala Airline Blanket In A Bag
Turn your economy class seat into a first-class experience. The Yala airline blanket in a bag comes with a pocket for your feet! Made from silky smooth soft silk noil, the blanket rolls easily into the supplied bag for easy carry on.
The blanket is more of a sheet like consistency providing light coverage during the flight. It’s high end look could double as a shawl or scarf on a cool night when walking around town. Light and breathable, when folded into the supplied bag its easily transported in a handbag or day pack.
- Zippered Bag Size: 12”
- Blanket Size: 42” w x 72” h
- Weight: 6.5 ounces
Pros: Handy pocket to keep feet warm.
Cons: The light weight fabric may not provide enough warmth.
2. Cabeau Fold 'N Go Blanket And Case
Manufactured using French microfibre, this blanket is long providing great body coverage. The blanket is soft to the touch and provides warmth without the body overheating. When folded away into the supplied soft case with handles, it resembles a furry suitcase, providing a comfortably soft pillow in which to rest your head.
Additionally, the case design makes it easy to use as a cushion for hard seating at the gate lounge or alternatively as a lumbar support. The blanket is generously proportioned unlike that of its many competitors and is machine washable for easy care.
- Travel Case Size: 12” l x 7” h x 4” w
- Blanket Size: 60” w x 36” h
- Weight: 13 ounces
Pros: Well priced, silky soft fabric and can be multipurposed.
Cons: May be considered too bulky for some.
1. Travelrest 4 In 1 Premier Class Travel Blanket With Pocket (Poncho Style)
The Travelrest 4-in-1 Travel Blanket is the perfect traveling companion on planes, in the car, at sporting events or when simply lounging at home. Lightweight and easily packable, the 4-in-1 travel blanket is available in two sizes and made of premium microfleece. Slipped over the head, the blanket covers the shoulders and upper arms and won’t slip down. The blanket zips up compact in its own pocket allowing it to be stowed away for easy travel. Its generous in size, yet folds up to a compact size when zipped in its own pouch. Available in Grey and Blue.
This is the travel blanket I ultimately purchased, I really benefited from the poncho style as I often experience when flying, the blanket slipping to the side where I then had to fumble my fingers between the seats in the hope of not disturbing my neighboring passenger in the next seat. Awkward! When I received the blanket I noticed it was well made with the stitching detail of a high quality.
This blanket provided me with all the warmth and comfort I needed on the flight plus it was compact enough to attach to my duffel bag when it was time to head to the gate. I purchased the smaller sized blanket as I’m short in stature, but I like the fact it comes in two sizes for those who are taller. I’m very pleased with my selection and now use it at home on a chilly night watching TV on the lounge. An additional benefit of the poncho design allows me to get up and make a snack without removing the blanket.
- Zippered Pouch Size: 10” w x 13”h
- Blanket Size: 38” w x 60” h
- Blanket Size: 40” w x 72” h
- Weight: 13.6 ounces
- Weight: 14 ounces
Pros: Versatile poncho design wont slip down.
Cons: Some have difficulty repacking the blanket – watch the instructional video provided by the manufacturer.