Travel cribs are by far one of my favorite must-have items whenever I travel with my kids. Similar to picking out any other baby product out there, picking out the best travel crib was definitely not an easy task as first time parents! In fact, given that there’s a few different types of travel cribs and a whole lot of different brands to choose from, it often makes the process of selecting a travel crib much more confusing. After spending months of researching different travel cribs, we came up with a simple guide to help you through the selection process. Based on our research and testing, we compiled this easy to understand travel crib buying guide. More specifically, we did a side-by-side comparison of the top rated travel cribs and based on factors such as comfort, size, weight and portability, picked out the best of the best travel cribs available today. Below is a comparison table that summarizes our key findings.
|Name||Image||Weight (lbs)||Suitability||My Rating|
|4Moms Breeze Playard||24||30 lbs||5|
|Baby Bjorn Travel Crib Light||11||0 – 3 years||5|
|Lotus Travel Crib||13||0 – 3 years||5|
|Graco Pack 'n Play Playard||18.5||30 lbs||4.5|
Read on to learn more about travel cribs and how we picked out the best of the best!
What is a Travel Crib?
- 1 What is a Travel Crib?
- 2 A Guide to Selecting the Best Travel Crib for Your Family
- 2.1 How Old is Your Child and What is the Suitable Age Range of the Travel Crib?
- 2.2 How heavy and portable is the travel crib?
- 2.3 How comfortable is the travel crib?
- 2.4 How convenient and easy to use is the crib for the parent?
- 2.5 How long are you planning to use the travel crib?
- 2.6 What are some safety considerations to take into account?
- 3 Best Travel Crib Reviews
If you’re looking for a crib that you can bring along wherever you go, or just need an extra crib to store at the grandparents place, a travel crib is just what you need. Travel cribs provide a safe environment for your little one to sleep and play in regardless of where the family is – at home, at grandparent’s or in a hotel. These lightweight and compact travel beds are in our opinion, one of the must-have item when it comes to having kids.
While traditional, full-featured cribs are great for home use, they are not suitable to be carried or transported around with. In fact, while travel cribs suggest that they should only be used when you’re traveling, many parents often find it much easier to just have a travel crib at the grandparents or babysitter’s house. This is because most travel cribs are small and portable enough such that they can be taken on planes.
A Guide to Selecting the Best Travel Crib for Your Family
Like most baby products out there, there is a myriad variety of travel cribs out there in the market today. While more choices can be a good thing, it can also be a bad thing for parents, especially first time parents. More choices mean the needs of different parents can be met by the different products out there, however, it could also mean paralysis by analysis for many parents. As a result of this, most parents are unable to pick out a suitable travel crib for their family.
Throughout our research, testing and experience, the following questions are certainly things that you should ask yourself to enable you to make an informed purchasing decision.
How Old is Your Child and What is the Suitable Age Range of the Travel Crib?
This one’s pretty straightforward and obvious – you need to make sure that the travel crib is suitable for your kid’s age. Some travel cribs also have height limits, so if your child is quite tall, this is also something to keep in mind.
How heavy and portable is the travel crib?
When it comes to travel cribs, most parents prefer a lighter, smaller and generally a more portable option. One thing to keep in mind though is the trade-off when opting for a more lightweight travel crib. When compared to full-featured cribs, travel cribs are unsurprisingly less sturdy.
Things that we particularly look at when it comes to the portability of the travel crib is its weight, size when folded and unfolded, and lastly, if there’s anything included in the purchase that will make transporting the travel crib a tad easier. Some travel cribs include a carry-bag with the purchase of the travel crib.
How comfortable is the travel crib?
When it comes to comfort, not all travel cribs are created equal. Things such as the amount of mattress padding do vary between the different portable cribs out there. Aside from the comfort of the travel crib for your child, another thing that’s also worth considering is how comfortable it is for the parent. Since most parents wake up multiple times throughout the night to attend to their child, we found that cribs that have the lowest heights were the easiest to use…which brings us to the next point.
How convenient and easy to use is the crib for the parent?
In terms of ease of use for the parent, another thing to look at is how easy it is to assemble and disassemble the travel crib. After all, since we’re talking about “travel” cribs, it is likely that parents will have to get used to the process of assembling and disassembling the travel crib. Can you imagine how frustrating it is for parents if the process took too many steps?
How long are you planning to use the travel crib?
If you’re planning to have multiple kids, this is going to be more relevant to you. With a high quality, well-built model, you can often use the travel crib for multiple years/kids. Two things that we look for are the material of the fabric and if it is machine-washable. More specifically, it is ideal to find a travel crib that is made of material that is free of chemicals and flame-retardants because exposure to such chemicals can be harmful for your kid.
What are some safety considerations to take into account?
And last but not least, it is worth mentioning that safety is the top priority of any parent when selecting a baby product. While all travel cribs that are sold to consumers go through a stringent safety inspection, it is important to take measures to keep the sleeping environment of your infant safe and free from any potentially harmful items.
Best Travel Crib Reviews
BabyBjorn Travel Crib Light
Given all the features it offers, the BabyBjorn Travel Crib Light is in our books, the best travel crib you can buy today. Not only is it extremely well-built and designed, it is also extremely lightweight – weighing just 13 lbs. This travel crib is suitable for infants and kids up to 3 years old. This travel crib is also extremely easy to assemble and disassemble. Perhaps its most attractive features are that it is has a super comfortable mattress, breathable mesh sides and it is removable and washable. We liked the fact that the sides are made of breathable mesh material which not only ensures breathability (a safety feature), but also allows you to easily keep an eye on your little one. The BabyBjorn Travel Crib Light comes with a travel bag that makes it super easy to store and carry around. Another thing worth mentioning is that the fabrics used in this travel crib is rated as class 1 for baby products, as per the OEKO-Tex Standard 100 – super safe!
You can read my review of this travel crib here, or find out more about this the BabyBjorn Travel Crib Light here.
4Moms Breeze Playard
Another excellent travel crib is the 4Moms Playard which has a maximum child weight capacity of 30 lbs. This crib is imported and made of 78% polyurethane foam and 22% polyester. What’s unique about this travel crib is that it features an “One Push” open and an “One Pull” close mechanism, making it extremely convenient to open and close this travel crib despite its sturdy and durable frame. There isn’t a sequence of steps you have to follow to open and close this travel crib; so if you’re someone who dislikes dealing with such sequences, the 4Moms playard is for you. It has a large and spacious play area measuring 32.5” wide and 46” long. This travel crib also comes with a nice travel bag for easy transport. The 4Moms Breeze is however not the lightest travel crib around, weighing 24 lbs.
You can read my review of this travel crib here, or find out more about the 4Moms Breeze Playard here.
Lotus Travel Crib
The Lotus travel crib is a superb travel crib given its 15 second set-up, backpack portability and its lightweight design of just 13 lbs. All of these features makes it one of the best lightweight travel cribs. Besides that, its sides are made of mesh material for air circulation and an unobstructed view of the child, even with the side zipped up. It’s worth noting that the Lotus travel crib cover is removable and machine-washable, making it super easy to maintain and keep clean.
You can read my review of this travel crib here, or find out more about the Lotus Travel Crib here.
Graco Pack ‘n Play Playard
If you’re looking for a cheap and affordable travel crib, you won’t go wrong with the Graco Pack ‘n Play Playard. This Graco Playard has a very easy to use given that it automatically folds its feet and wheels. Like the BabyBjorn Travel Crib Light, this crib has airy mesh on all sides. The standout feature for this travel crib has got to be its signature push-button fold which makes closing the playard extremely quick and hassle-free. I also liked the fact that it has a pretty durable frame and comes equipped with a convenient carrying bag. However, given its fairly sturdy structure, the travel crib is a little on the heavier side.
You can read my review of this travel crib here, or find out more about this the Graco Playard here.