Staying warm while traveling can be challenging. Some planes or trains will be too cold, while some cars in the winter months need could benefit from a nice warm electric blanket.
In this article, I explain what a travel blanket is and list many different travel blanket recommendations like travel blanket with pillows, electric, cashmere, fleece, and wearable cocoon travel blankets.
What are travel blankets?
Travel blankets are simply blankets that are easy to pack because of their size and weight. These blankets can be great to bring on a flight, train, or car trip for when you start to get chilly.
For example, a travel blanket can come in useful when the temperature in the cabin of your flight is just too cold. In economy class, blankets aren’t ordinarily provided, so when you bring a blanket onboard, you are reassuring that you have the option to stay warm. Plus, you don’t have to worry about the blanket that is provided by the airline being clean or not.
Travel blankets can also be a fashion accessory when some travel blankets can double as a scarf.
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What are the best travel blankets?
Any blanket can travel with you, but in reality, some might be harder to travel with than others.
So, when purchasing a travel blanket, there are a few things to consider:
- Size and thickness
Size and thickness
Size might not matter all the time, but in this case, the size of your travel blanket matters.
If you’re tall, the length of the blanket matters. For ease of stuffing a travel blanket in your purse or backpack, the smaller, the easier to stuff it in there. Once thickness comes into play, it will also determine how compact a blanket can be. Thinner the blanket, the thinner it can be in your bag. Plus, the thinner the blanket it is, the cooler it will be.
So, you should be conscious of the blanket size for portability, if it can cover all of your body, and if you can share the blanket with others at the same time. You should then be conscious of the thickness for how warm or cool you want to feel and how easy it is to fold and store in your bag.
For me, I would want a light travel blanket that is my height and on the thin side so I can put it in my bag easily.
To me, what makes a good blanket is the material.
Blankets can be made out of cotton, velvet, fleece, cashmere, polyester, sheep wool, alpaca wool, etc. There are many different types of materials for blankets. Each one will have a different texture. Some textures might feel itchy or soft, all depending on your tolerance to the material.
Then the type of material will determine how warm you feel. For example, wools will all be slightly warmer and breathable than cotton or polyester.
On top of the feel, some materials will be easier to wash than other materials. Wool type materials are harder to wash, but cotton and polyester are easy to wash. So, you must keep in mind the washability.
Wrapping yourself in a cocoon is always great, but wearing a blanket is even better.
Snuggie cocoon type travel blankets are great if you want something easy to slip on but still have your arms free. It’s all about freedom of the arms.
Some travel blankets can be used as a scarf too, so you could use it walking around outside keeping your neck and face warm. Then, once you’re settled down, you can wrap your whole self in the warm travel blanket scarf.
The best travel blankets
If you are looking for the best travel blanket for an airplane, the Cozy-Soft Travel Blanket Compact Lightweight Portable with Bag is going to be your best bet.
It’s 30% cotton and 70% bamboo fiber making it warm, breathable, and easy to wash in the washer machine. Many reviews praise the material for being anti-static. People tend to love how soft it is because of the blended material.
The size is as small as an iPad when folded up in it’s easy to handle bag. The size when it’s unfolded is 67 inches, enough to cover up most of my body. (For your information, I am 5’10”.)
Other reviews praise the weight of the blanket that is surprising to them. They love how lightweight and durable it is, but still warm at the same time. Some even use it as a scarf as the material is fine enough to be pulled off as a scarf.
It’s available in navy blue, sky blue, and gray.
A “cashmere travel blanket scarf” is what many buyers have said about the HOYAYO Cashmere Wool Shawl Wraps – Extra Large Thick Soft Pashmina Scarf.
It’s long, coming in at 78 inches (including the fringe), but super light being a scarf. Because of the weight and thinness, it’s perfect as a scarf during the winter and a light blanket for any season. Reviews claim how nice it is to travel with and how it doesn’t wrinkle easily keeping its smooth soft scarf look.
One downside of this travel blanket scarf is the width is on the smaller size. It can cover people that are more petite than others, but it won’t cover everyone.
Out of all the blankets on here, this is one of the most stylish ones. It comes in 13 different colors of fine cashmere.
If you want a four in one travel blanket set, the ZIDELI Travel Blanket will be your best bet.
The travel blanket is velvet, making it heavier and warmer feeling than the two blankets above, but it also comes with other goodies. It includes an eye mask, earplugs, and a travel pillow. All packable in a thin case that is attachable to luggage, being slightly bigger than the size of an iPad. By the way, if you are interested in the best travel pillowcases be sure to click here.
Being velvet, understand it will be a little more staticky than other blankets, but if you love the warm soft velvet feeling, this blanket will be for you.
The pillow is inflatable and the eye mask is said to cool the face.
The largest blanket so far and the first fleece blanket is the Cocoon CoolMax Blanket. The size is perfect for sharing and covering up your feet in planes, trains, and automobiles.
Reviews confirm that the CoolMax material is said to be breathable, keeping you warm while keeping moisture away.
When it’s rolled up in its travel pouch, it’s the height of a 16-ounce water bottle and the diameter is slightly bigger than a 16-ounce water bottle.
Reviewers love the size of it as it caters to taller people. It’s perfect for outdoor use being exposed to the elements when it’s in its attachable water-resistant pouch. The Cocoon CoolMax Blanket is available in 14 different colors.
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Sometimes a car trip is the way to travel. The Hamosky Electric Heating Blanket is the perfect solution for combatting the winter elements or cold nights during your drives.
It’s pluggable into the 12V DC outlet in your car with two different heat settings, low and high.
Being made out of thin fleece material, it’s soft and cozy for both front and back seat passengers. It’s on the smaller size, making it only useable for one person. As it’s heated it makes it perfect to stay warm. In fact, many reviewers write about how it’s perfect for one person or their kids.
In terms of design though, there is only one color, black and white plaid.
For a blanket that is made out of down and Nylon, the Luxurious Water Repellent Multipurpose Blanket | Nylon Shell with Down Filling gots you covered.
It’s the biggest blanket out of all the blankets on this list and is perfect for outdoor use since it’s water-repellent with its nylon shell.
Yep, that’s right, reviews confirm how the nylon shell is not soft, which is the same material that some sleeping bags use, but it’s smooth and helps repels water so you don’t have to worry about the elements reaching your skin.
The filling of the blanket is down feathers. While down is not for everyone, it’s soft and warm for cold nights out camping. Combining it with nylon, it’s a great option for outdoor use.
It’s available in four different colors.
The Forestfish Fleece Throw Blanket Cozy Soft Portable Travel Blanket is a portable medium thickness fleece blanket that comes with a bag.
While the blanket itself is not as small as other blankets on this list, it still is a great fleece blanket with huge value. Reviews compliment how warm it is and all talk about how great it is to have during their travels. Some mention how soft it is. While others compliment it for its size and usability as a picnic blanket.
Probably the one downside of the blanket has to be the fact that it’s a thicker fleece. Thicker fleece material is great to stay warm, but it’s as it’s thicker it’s not as breathable and it makes it harder to clean.
It’s available in four different design patterns.
The HappyLuxe Travel Set includes a travel blanket, pillow, and eye mask.
The travel blanket is on the longer size, but not as wide as other blankets. It’s 68 inches long and 35 inches wide. Perfect for one person using at a time.
The blanket, eyeshades, and pillow are made out of MicroModal and Spandex. It’s a soft material, but also strong holding up to lots of washes and long-term use.
The pillow is an actual pillow, not a neck pillow. I prefer regular pillows over neck pillows as they’re comfier, so I would pick this pillow set over another one. However, this set doesn’t come with a bag.
Reviews state how a bag should be included for true portability. However, if you stuff it in a backpack, you don’t really need a bag, but then again having a bag could help when you don’t have room to put it somewhere. Luckily, this product is different enough by having an actual pillow makes it worthwhile to consider.
It’s available in three different colors.
The BlueHills Premium Soft Travel Blanket Pillow is a micro plush fleece-like material that is a compact travel blanket pillow set.
When you aren’t using the blanket and it’s inside the case, the case is useable as a pillow. As it’s fleece-like micro plush material, it’s nice and soft, but since it’s micro plush it will be slightly more breathable than fleece.
The blanket itself is a good size, not too big, but not too small for most. Perfect for sharing on a plane or going solo. It’s available in 11 different colors and when it’s in the case it’s slightly bigger than an iPad.
Quality might cost a lot and the State Cashmere Reversible Throw Blanket is one of those quality items that cost a lot.
Coming in at around $200, this cashmere blanket might be pricey, but out of all the items on this list, this one is by far the most quality item. State Cashmere is an NYC company that collects the finest cashmere from Inner Mongolian. Then it produces it in with fine details.
While this doesn’t come with many travel accessories like other blankets, this does have one of the smoothest and softest feeling fabric of all the blankets on this list. It’s both wearable as a scarf and useable like a blanket.
If you can spare some cash for quality and luxury, this would be your blanket.
Fleece blanket, memory foam pillow, eyeshades, and earplugs, the Proglobe Travel Blanket Luxury Travel Set has it all. What makes this set unique is not the fact that the blanket is fleece, but the pillow is memory foam and not inflatable.
Memory foam is great for shaping itself to your characteristics. This pillow is shaped for a neck, head, and shoulders. Meaning, the original shape before you use it curves a little more for your shoulders than other neck pillows. It’s something you don’t see very often for neck pillows.
If you’re searching for a fleece travel blanket pillow set, this one is worth checking out.
The PAVILIA Premium Fleece Blanket with Sleeves is a cocoon wearable blanket that is perfect for travel.
Since this wearable travel blanket has sleeves, you can use your hands unrestricted when eating your inflight meal, using the IFE, or browsing the internet on your phone.
This wearable blanket doesn’t come with a traveling bag, but still compact enough to go inside a backpack or a large handbag. Reviews indicate how it’s only useable when you lie or sit down as it won’t cover your back when you stand, but reviewers still love the warmth and big pocket in the front for holding things.
The length is 70 inches and comes in 15 different colors.
The Kingole Flannel Fleece Microfiber Throw Blanket doesn’t feature a carrying bag or cover but is one of the highest-rated microfiber fleece blankets on the market. Reviews rave how soft and warm the blanket is. While it’s not the most breathable material, it’s great when it’s chilly out and you need to stay warm.
It’s small enough for a backpack or large handbag, but don’t expect it to be as thin as other blankets on this list.
The Patty Both 3 in 1 Bear Travel Blanket & Hand Warm & Pillow Set is a cute cuddly bear that acts as a case for the blanket, hand warmer, and pillow.
This is definitely the cutest travel blankets out of all the travel blankets on this list but the bear is a case, pillow, and handwarmer making it great for people like me that get cold hands all the time. This is a great travel blanket option for both adults and kids.
The Flight 001 is purely a travel blanket and a carrying case for the blanket. No thrills, just the blanket. Perfect for inflight or on the ground.
It’s 100% polyester and thin. It’s warm and the reviewers love using it, but it’s only 55 inches long. So, the length might be an issue.
If you only care about a quality simple travel blanket that is small in size made out a polyester, this should be on your radar.
There are many travel blankets. Some are great as a scarf. Some are great for camping, but it all depends on your preferences which one will be best for you. If you need something to carry your travel blanket in, maybe a sling backpack is the way to go.
This article was originally published by Steve Smith.
Daniel Gillaspia is the Founder of UponArriving.com and creator of the credit card app, WalletFlo. He is a former attorney turned full-time credit card rewards/travel expert and has earned and redeemed millions of miles to travel the globe. Since 2014, his content has been featured in major publications such as National Geographic, Smithsonian Magazine, Forbes, CNBC, US News, and Business Insider. Find his full bio here.