Best Travel Crib

Kristina

Kristina

Sep 23, 2021

Having a baby changes your life! One thing a new mom will learn is that a rested baby is a happier baby that sleeps better. Making sure you have the right baby gear, including a travel crib, to facilitate sleep no matter where you are is a must

My family doesn't stop planning our next adventures when we have a baby, we just bare our little one in mind. My personal favorite is hiking with a baby.

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links. This means that, at zero cost to you, I will earn an affiliate commission if you click through the link and finalize a purchase. Rest assured all products I suggest are products I have bought or would buy based on personal experience or through my network of other mommas

Summary Of Best Travel Cribs

ProductCategoryWeightTravel Features
Best Overall Travel Crib
13 lbs
Carrying Bag That Fits In Overhead Compartment Set Up In 15 Seconds Quiet Side Zipper Door
Lightest Travel Crib Budget Friendly Travel Crib
10.5 lbs
Carrying Bag With Handle. For Storage Easy To Clean Breathable Mesh Sides Reinforced Locking System
Longest Use Travel Bassinet/Play-yard Best Outdoor Infant Nap Bassinet
6 lbs
Compact Size Carrying Case Included Lifetime Warranty Waterproof Mattress Detachable Sun Canopy
Best Traditional Travel Bassinet
12 lbs
Bug Net And Sun Shade Folds With Carrying Case Ability To Rock Washable Cover

Why do you need a Travel Crib?

This is the first question you have to answer to determine what is the best option for you. The market is saturated with travel cribs ranging from bassinet styles to large pack-n-play styles.  

best portable crib for baby
My Almost 2 Year Old in LegoLand's Portable Crib

My Almost 2 Year Old in LegoLand's Portable Crib

Travel Crib for air travel and tight car space: a lightweight compact option is best. Some even fold into the size of a yoga mat and can fit into overhead luggage compartments on planes. 

Travel Crib for grandparents house: a crib that can easily be stored there, but also have more features, like a changing table insert.

Travel Crib for On The Go Daily Use: a travel bassinet style mostly for napping is ideal. Newborns nap a lot, and if you are out on the go with older kids it can be very useful to have a traveling bassinet. The one flaw is your baby will quickly outgrow a bassinet in their first year.

Benefits of a Travel Crib

  • Safe spot for baby to sleep when not at home
  • Allows for adventures with a baby
  • Easy to transport and set up

Sleep is very important to babies, and they need a lot of sleep! Ensuring you have the right baby gear to facilitate their needs is key to success.

Life is busy, and no one wants to be chained to their house afraid they can’t go anywhere with a new baby. Over time this feeling can lead to loneliness and depression. Finding the right gear to allow you to continue living your life the way you chose is essential.

Why I Needed A Travel Crib

My husband and I love to be outside and active. Before kids we cycled all the time and after kids we turned to hiking. Our lives changed, but we found ways to incorporate our children with what makes us happy, being outside and active. We needed a travel crib to ensure that our adventures didn’t have to stop and that we were taking care of our babies’ needs. 

I wanted to ensure that I could still take trips to our friends and families houses. I knew I would be taking our baby with us and ensured we had the right safe equipment for our little ones to sleep and nap in. 

Considerations Before Purchasing a Travel Baby Crib

  • What Does Your Accommodation Provide
  • Day Time Nap Options

If you are researching travel cribs because of a specific trip you have planned you should first check your accommodations. Traveling with babies is common and some accommodations can provide you with a crib.   

Staying at Airbnbs/Hotels

My personal experience with traveling with young babies is that some Airbnbs and most hotels have cribs available and will advertise this on their website.  With Airbnbs you can filter on crib, so you will only see the options that can provide you with one. Otherwise, you can always pick up the phone and inquire.

However, if your baby is use to your travel crib, bringing your own can be smart. You never know the condition of the crib and I feel better bring my own.

Pro Tip: If using someone else's crib bring your own crib sheet.

Day Naps for Baby: Alternatives to Cribs

When out for the day I often wear my baby using my Lillebaby Complete, a soft structured baby carrier. This works well on trips when I don't want to be chained to our accommodation. I would rather be out exploring!

This works great for trips where you are hiking with a baby.

alternative to travel crib, baby wearing naps

Alternative when I am not hiking, my babies have also fallen asleep in their travel stroller or even in a tent on the beach (under supervision). A crib is not the only place a baby will sleep.

Depending on the trip you might want a travel crib for nighttime sleep and another option for daytime naps, such as a carrier or reclining stroller.

Best Overall Travel Cribs

Lotus Travel Crib and Portable Baby Play-yard

No one can beat the Lotus Travel Crib and Portable Baby Play-yard. This option can be used from birth all the way to a 3 years old. It takes less than 15 seconds to set up and weighs only 13 lbs! The crib stores away in a backpack carrying case that is small enough to be stored in the overhead compartment on a plane.

If you are planning on flying check out Tips For Flying With A Baby.

The crib has high mesh sides that are breathable and can zipper down quietly. Having the option to zipper down a side allows for easy in and out, especially if your little one has fallen asleep as you fed him/her.  Also this can be a great option if you aren’t overly tall!

The product is the only play yard that is greenguard gold non-toxic certified which should ease your mind. In today’s world you never know what material manufacturers are using.

The crib comes with a two year warranty and many reviewers and moms I know have used it for all their children with no quality issues. 

The only downside on this crib is that a fitted sheet is not included in the package. This has to be purchased separately and through the same company, as a standard crib sheet doesn’t fit. This travel crib is more expensive but has all the bells and whistle you will want!

Pros of Lotus Travel Crib

  • Light backpack carrying case that fits in overhead compartment
  • Set up in 15 seconds
  • Weighs 13 lbs
  • Full height breathable mesh sides
  • Quiet side zipper door
  • Updated thick soft foam pad
  • Two year warranty
  • Certified greenguard gold non-toxic 

Cons of Lotus Travel Crib

  • Doesn’t come with fitted sheet and must be purchased through manufacturer as not a standard size
  • More costly

Dream on Me Travel Light Play-yard

This is a great alternative to the Lotus if you want to save some money. This travel crib is priced competitively and comes in a handful of colors. The crib comes high in safety and durability with a reinforced sticking and locking system. The mesh breathable sides and nylon bottom can easily be cleaned with a damp cloth and some soap.

The difference between Dream on Me Travel Play yard and the Lotus Crib is that Dream on Me Travel Play yard takes longer to assemble and take down. It takes closer to a couple minutes compared to seconds and the side zipper is an option for more money. Also the storage size is too large to place in overhead storage on the plane and should be checked instead. 

Dream on Me crib weighs only 10.5 lbs, lighter than the Lotus Crib, and comes in a durable carry bag with handle. This crib would be easy to fit in the trunk of your car and taken on road trips or to your friends and families. 

This is a perfect road trip with baby crib.

Pros of Dream on Me Travel Light Playard

  • Affordable Option
  • Lightweight 10.5 lbs
  • Comes with durable storage bag and handle
  • Breathable mesh sides
  • Sturdy Aluminium flame with locking system
  • Easy to Clean

Cons of Dream on Me Travel Light Playard

  • Side Zipper Premium Add On
  • Doesn’t fit in overhead plane storage
  • Longer set up time

Best Bassinet Travel Crib

Bassinets are used for newborns to when a baby begins to push up on their hands and knees, somewhere between 3 to 6 months old.  Bassinets are a great option if you need to travel with a young baby often or constantly on the go, maybe with older children.

Hiccapop MiniPod Baby Dome

Hiccapop make a cross between a bassinet and a crib. This octagonal bassinet is a great portable crib for a baby 9 months and younger.

This travel bassinet/crib is super lightweight at only 6 lbs and compacts into a convenient travel bag that fits into an airplane's overhead compartment.

The baby dome is great outdoors with its removable UPF50 sun canopy and bug protection. The large dome door makes getting baby in and out a breeze. The set up is quick, less than 10 seconds and comes with a lifetime warrany.

Hiccapop MiniPod Baby Dome is ideal for airplane travel, car travel, beach and park visits and home use. I love the extended use of this bassinet past other travel bassinets.

Pros of Baby Delight Portable Bassinet

  • Waterproof Mattress
  • Lightweight 6 lbs
  • Compact size with carrying case
  • Removable Sun Canopy/Shade
  • Lifetime Warranty
  • Quick Set-Up
  • Extended Use of Bassinet

Cons of Baby Delight Portable Bassinet

  • No bottom pad

Baby Delight Portable Bassinet

The Baby Delight Portable Bassinet is a baby bassinet for a baby younger than 5 months and under 20 lbs. This innovative design allows you to manually rock the bassinet or lock it in place.

This bassinet is great for travel, it folds and fits into a travel bag with handle. The bassinet comes with a removable canopy and netting making it great for outdoor use. The cover and sheet are machine washable so you don't have to fret the baby spit ups.

If you are on the go or lots of road trips wit your baby this travel bassinet is for you. Set it up at the pool, in the park, at a friends house or at home.

Pros of Baby Delight Portable Bassinet

  • Bug Net and Sun Shade
  • Folds with a carrying case and handle
  • Removable and washable cover
  • Ability to manually rock
  • Mesh breathable panels

Cons of Baby Delight Portable Bassinet

  • Recommended till 5 months old
  • Heavier bassinet at 12 lbs

How Long Can I Use a Travel Crib For?

This is dependent on each child. A bassinet has the shortest use, only until a baby starts pulling up on hands and knees. A travel crib can be used for longer, until your toddler can get out of them or will no longer sleep in them due to size or preference. Each crib will have a manufacture weight limit.

For me, my children stop using a travel crib right before they turned 2.

Once a toddler transitions to a toddler bed at home he/she might not want to go back to sleeping in a crib while not at home, mine certainly refused. Once this happens you will need to buy a travel toddler bed.

Hope you found this article helpful in selecting which portable crib is right for you!