Today many parents admit the great usability of so-called pack and play playards that combine a crib, a changing table and a safe place for games all in one. Such devices are so convenient for the babies from newborn to toddler age that you may probably want to take it with you everywhere to ensure your baby’s comfort not only at home but also during travel, visiting your parents or simply while enjoying a sunny day on the beach. A play yard will provide your baby with a safe and familiar surrounding wherever you go and turn their first traveling experiences in a pure pleasure.
Although standard play yards have rather bulky design and not quite portable weight, there are many pack and play models that are created especially for travel purposes. Of course, you’d like to choose the best one for your little bundle of joy – that’s why it’s important to learn the key features you should look for first of all.
One of the main things to consider while choosing the best pack and play for travel is its weight. Choose a model light enough to carry it without a problem.
Look for the play yard made of chemical-free hypoallergenic materials of the highest quality. The inner surface should be gentle and pleasant for the delicate skin of your baby.
A play yard should meet the highest safety standards. Make sure that any improper materials or defects are absent in the model. Mind that the mesh sides of a play yard are essential to provide proper ventilation.
- Easy use.
Check how long it takes to unfold and set a play yard and then pack it again. Mind the shape and the portability of the folded item.
A pack and play should be easy to handle and fit normally in your car without taking too much space. On the other hand, when unfolded it should provide enough room for your baby to feel comfortable.
Travel obviously increases the risk that the item gets dirty so the machine-washable removable cover will be a plus.
Reviews of the Best Portable Pack ‘n Play Playards for Travel
Although numerous different models of play yards for travel are present on today’s market, some of them tend to be more popular than others – due to their quality and a combination of many essential features. According to the buyers’ reviews, there are top 6 best pack and play playards for travel that are worth the keenest attention.
Graco Pack ‘n Play On The Go Playard
This nice play yard is spacious enough to ensure your baby will sleep comfortably and have a lot of room for games during the daytime. A toy bar with three soft toys provides further entertainment. The gentle and cuddling material of the bassinet’s surface will suit the most tender and sensitive skin. In addition to a cute look, the design of this play yard meets all safety standards and will save you from unnecessary worrying. Smart push-button technology allows folding it quickly and easy, which is essential when you are traveling.However, some reviews report this feature to work not as conveniently as they expected it. Although the setting process can become a bit painstaking after it’s performed, the whole thing appears to be very steady and completely safe which rewards your effort. You won’t need to worry that it will overturn or fall apart when assembled properly. Folding feet makes the packed item more compact while the wheels provide easy moving it around when it’s in use.
- Quick set up mechanism
- Folding feet
- Nice toy bar
- Sturdy construction
- Removable bassinet
- Carry bag
- The mattress isn’t machine washable
- Not as easy folding and setting as declared
- Strong chemical odor in the first two-three days
Graco Pack ‘n Play Playard with Automatic Folding Feet
To travel a lot using a pack and play means to assemble and to take it apart many times. That’s why this model is equipped with an extremely durable frame which is perfect for the mentioned purpose. Its simple design makes it light and easy to carry. When folded, it can be placed into a carry bag that can easily fit in a car. All mesh sides allow keeping a watchful eye on your baby constantly and provide maximum ventilation, so this item will be one of the best choices for a warm climate. A simple design ensures it to be convenient in use, without being puzzled by too many extra options that are quite unnecessary during travel.However, keep in mind that it’s smaller than an average play yard, so it will be suitable only if your child is well below a toddler age. Also, pay attention to the quality of a mattress because some reviews don’t praise its level of comfort and safety. It’s always possible to buy a mattress separately if you have any hesitation regarding this.
- Durable frame
- Removable changer
- Airy design
- Side pocket for necessities
- Small size
- Questionable mattress quality
- Arguable sturdiness
Lotus Travel Crib and Portable Baby Playard
Another item that can be considered as the best pack and play for travel has a very original design with a side door that turns the lower part of it into a kind of a cozy lair. The whole thing is extra light making it the best choice for travel purposes. It’s designed a bit longer and narrower than a common play yard which makes it fit all doorways easily. The carry bag is equipped with additional straps that allow carrying it both as a case and as a backpack.If you are extremely worried about the safe materials, this model is created especially for you as it meets the highest safety standard which is proved by a Greenguard Gold certification. The materials are completely free from flame retardants, PVC, lead or phthalates. Pay your attention that the cloth of the covering and the mattress is rather thin, so the model better suits warm of even hot climate according to some reviews. Also, like all lightweight models it’s steady enough but less sturdy than more bulky standard designs so mind to set your pack and play in a safe place where it can’t be overturned.
- Very quick set up
- Greenguard Gold certification
- Original and stylish design
- Can be carried on the back
- Not suitable for cold climate
- Less sturdy than an average play yard
Flisko 2 in 1 Crib & Bassinet
This portable crib is easy to collapse and set up. But most importantly, it’s lightweight, which makes it a good choice for travelers. It stands out among other pack and play travel playards due to its stylish design. This model is rather sturdy, so it’s a good choice for parents who spend a lot of time on the go. The walls of the playpen are mesh to provide easy ventilation. The fabrics are easy to clean. Flisko guarantees that all materials are safe and of high quality. The mattress included with this travel playard is rather comfy, which is a rarity for these products. There is a side-zipper to turn the travel crib into a fun playpen for your baby or toddler. The model also includes a removable infant bassinet so you can travel comfortably even when your little one is young. The only thing that can be a challenge about this model is that the initial setup takes some getting used to. But you can easily resolve this issue by practicing a few times.
- Sturdy and durable
- Easy to set up and collapse
- Collapses so small its easy to travel with anywhere
- Side-zipper for more fun
- Stylish design
- Requires practice to assemble at first
Graco Travel Lite Crib with Stages
This unique design boasts a height-adjustable bassinet which fits several stages of your baby’s development. If you want to obtain the best pack and play for travel that will be also suitable for home use and a long-lasting one, in addition, this portable crib will be the right choice. It has a very compact size that allows placing it conveniently in a hotel room and the light weight which makes moving and carrying the whole thing an easy job. The construction is very firm and safe, providing your little one with a secure place for sleep and games. Nice toy bar with two cute soft bears will entertain your baby while they are awake.However, some reviews mention not only advantages but also possible shortcomings. First of all, it’s about the survivability of the item. Although it’s designed to last for several age stages, the cloth durability doesn’t always allow it. Thoroughly examine the cloth condition before buying the pack and play to make sure all is perfect and has no defects. Moreover, if the safety of materials means much for you, keep in mind that this model’s materials are not completely free from flame retardants.
- Unique height-adjustable bassinet
- Compact size
- Removable changer
- Insufficiently durable cloth
- Materials contain flame retardants
Evenflo Portable Babysuite Deluxe Playard
A luxurious play yard with a flowered pattern will be a perfect choice for a baby girl – both at home and on the go. The material is very soft and delicate ensuring the serene sleeping time and a totally secure and cozy place for games and other daytime activities. The changing table easily rotates to the side when not in use, providing enough ventilation for your baby and saving your effort on attaching it to the frame.A floor mat of this model can be transformed into a cute play mat with cute hanging toys that will surely amuse your little princess and keep her busy. A spacious dual side pocket will provide enough room for all necessary things you want to take with you while traveling. As for the possible shortcomings, check if a changing table is wide enough for you and not too shaky. Some reviews report that the whole thing is relatively difficult to assemble but it depends on an opinion.
- Floor mat converted to play mat
- Handy dual pocket
- Rotate-to-store changing table
- Nice toy bar
- Easy portable
- Perfect design for a baby girl
- Shaky changing table
- Possible assembling difficulties
Here is a nice video explaining how to make your trip with kids more comfortable and enjoyable.