Best Pack and Play Reviews 2016 : Ultimate Guide

    Many parents have already discovered the usefulness of their best pack and play and are enjoying its many benefits. But for many parents, using the versatile product for their baby or toddler is a new idea. For other parents, they have used one in the past and are looking for a discount pack ‘n play to use with their child. This is a review of the best models available for parents to purchase if they have not yet been using this convenience with their child, or if they have a child on the way they are getting ready for. The most prominent features will be discussed and the many ways the playard makes the lives of parents easier. You will learn about why they are important if you are traveling abroad; and see why they are useful and convenient if you’re just going across town to grandma’s house for the day. Soon you’ll discover the many benefits of using a pack ‘n play and how to choose the best pack and play for your particular circumstance.

    best pack and play

    Points for Parents to Think About

    While you are thinking about buying the best product for your family, there are several points to consider and you will want to get a top rated pack ‘n play for your little one. Determining the ways you plan to use it most is beneficial to finding the right model to meet your family’s needs; and helps you focus your search on what is most important to you. For instance, if you will be using the pack and pay for travel, you will want to choose the model which folds up into the most compact, mobile unit possible. And, if you want to use the bassinet attachment instead of a traditional crib when the baby is small, you will want to make sure to buy a deluxe pack ‘n play that has the bassinet feature. Look through the features and decide which are most important to you and then choose the one model which best matches your needs or desires.

    Top 5 Products Available On the Market

    Once you start looking for a product to use with your little one, you will see that there are lots of different models to choose from and prices range from very expensive models to cheap pack and plays. We took the time to narrow it down to the top 5 popular models so it’s easier for you to see which one is going to work best for you and your child. Here are the best 5 products you’re going to find today

    Graco Pack ‘n Play Playard with a Reversible Napper and Changer, Go Green

    Graco Pack 'n Play Playard with Reversible Napper and Changer, Go Green

    This model has everything you need for a child from the time they are a newborn infant into their toddler years. It has an attachment which serves dual purposes and works as a napper for when the baby is small and needs short naps. It is also reversible and becomes a changer so that diaper changing is much simpler. This model also comes with an extra entertainment feature for the baby as it begins to grow. The removable toy bar is equipped with soft, eye appealing toys to catch and hold baby’s attention as they float just above them. Once the baby is too big for the napper, the product becomes a safe place for toddlers to nap and to play. It is also very portable, and folds up into a compact unit that is easy to carry from one location to another. Once you arrive, it is easily transformed into the bassinet or play area you need. One important feature with this particular product is the simple way it folds up with just the push of a button. You can then place it in the carrying bag so it’s easy to carry along on family outings.

    Lotus Travel Crib and Portable Baby Playard

    Lotus Travel Crib and Portable Baby Playard

    This model has several key features that help it land in the top 5 of all models. First of all, it is very easy to set up – only takes about 15 seconds. It also folds up easily and fits inside a specially fitted backpack that makes it very easy to carry around. The backpack is designed specifically to wear on the back so that your hands remain free to do other things like carry your baby or gather up diapering supplies. It’s lightweight as only a total of 13 pounds so it’s easy to carry about. Another great feature for this portable version is a zippered side door that makes it lots of fun for kids. It has a nice sized mattress so it’s comfortable for babies and toddlers to sleep on. Unlike some of the other models available, there are no weight restrictions on the Lotus Travel Crib so you can use it for as long as it is needed and useful for your family. If you are looking for a modern, portable model that is lightweight and easy to travel with, this one is for you. It sits up easily, folds up easily, and is the lightest pack and play for travel making it one of the top choices in playards.

    Graco Pack ‘n Play Playard with Cuddle Cove Rocking Seat, Winslet

    Graco Pack 'n Play Playard with Cuddle Cove Rocking Seat, Winslet

    If you are looking for one of the best pack ‘n play deals, this one by Graco is one of the best choices you’ll find. There are not a lot of extras with this one which makes it perfect for using in small spaces. The bassinet conveniently folds right up with the whole thing for easy portability, but if you don’t need to use the full size bassinet, it is easily removed. Push one button and the whole thing folds up into a compact unit and the wheels and feet fold up to make it fit more tightly and take up less space. Along with the bassinet, this one comes equipped with a toy bar to entertain babies on the go. It also comes with a nice perfectly fitted carrying bag to make traveling simpler. This choice is a great one if you plan on traveling a lot since it folds up to be about 20% more compact than some of the other models and comes with the travel bag. Make sure your baby has a safe, comfortable place to nap and play even when you are on the go.

    Graco Pack 'n Play On The Go Playard Stratus

    Graco Pack 'n Play On The Go Playard Stratus

    If you are looking for one of the best pack ‘n play deals, this one by Graco is one of the best choices you’ll find. There are not a lot of extras with this one which makes it perfect for using in small spaces. The bassinet conveniently folds right up with the whole thing for easy portability, but if you don’t need to use the full size bassinet, it is easily removed. Push one button and the whole thing folds up into a compact unit and the wheels and feet fold up to make it fit more tightly and take up less space. Along with the bassinet, this one comes equipped with a toy bar to entertain babies on the go. It also comes with a nice perfectly fitted carrying bag to make traveling simpler. This choice is a great one if you plan on traveling a lot since it folds up to be about 20% more compact than some of the other models and comes with the travel bag. Make sure your baby has a safe, comfortable place to nap and play even when you are on the go.

    Graco Pack N Play Playard with Automatic Folding Feet, Pasadena

    Graco Pack N Play Playard with Automatic Folding Feet, Pasadena

    This model put out by Graco has several key features. The first one consumers might notice is the feet that fold up automatically. This makes it easy to fold up and pack up to take with you. Graco’s outstanding design includes a changing pad which is detachable and it has a built-in storage unit situated on the end of the bed. This offers key space for storing the essentials necessary for changing baby on the changing pad.

    ​This is another one that is worth the purchase if you are planning on travelling with your little one. Its compatibility makes it easy to carry along. It’s one of the easiest to fold up and set up without having a lot of hassle. The frame is durable and will hold up under many miles of travel. It also comes with a soft toy bar to entertain babies and hold their attention for those in between times when they are not sleeping. Babies will enjoy the visually stimulating toy bar and you can enjoy watching your baby play with it. Your family can benefit from having this product for years to come as it is suitable for young children from infancy to the toddler years.

    How a Pack and Play will Benefit You and Your Baby

    There are a lot of ways this piece of equipment is going to benefit your family. Both you and your baby are going to enjoy the advantages of having one to use in your home. Your baby will be safe when he is playing or sleeping. It’s perfect for containing your baby or toddler when you have other children playing in the room and if you have to step in the kitchen or another room to check on something, the baby is safe and contained. Other than these obvious benefits, there are several ways this modernized playpen is going to be a great tool to have including:

    • Keeping your baby close : Having a playard helps you be able to keep your baby close and within sight or earshot if you are doing household chores like laundry, dishes or paying bills. Your baby can sit and play quietly and safely but you are close enough to meet any need that might arise. You can also reach him quickly if the baby needs anything at all.
    • Portability : These types of products are designed to be lightweight and easily folded up. This makes it easy to take care of your baby no matter where you go. For those who like to travel, the playard is invaluable. It folds up and stows away when you are going on a road trip, or it can be taken on longer trips and flights. Then when you get where you are going, you can take it out and set it
    • Double Use : This model serves dual purposes. It can be used as a crib when baby needs to sleep or take a nap; and it can be used as a small play area for kids. Many also come with changing tables or bassinets just for extra use.
    • Entertainment and learning features : Many of today’s products come with a variety of toys which are designed to complement the growth and development of the baby. They can play with toys and explore their own senses. A soft toy bar can provide plenty of entertainment value for a small child while stimulating their senses of sight and touch. The baby can develop motor skills as well as association skills.
    • Safe play areas : The bed or mattress area provides the perfect area for baby to play and it’s just the right size to allow them to move around a bit and enjoy themselves.
    • Keeping baby safe : Your baby is always close to you and you are close to them while they are in the bed or bassinet. Because of see through mesh sides, you can always see your baby and you can always hear them if they cry. This reduces the risk of them getting hurt or frightened since they can see you as well. This provides an extra sense of security for the baby since they can see you while being able to play independently.
    • Fostering independent play : Your baby is going to have to learn how to play alone and entertain themselves at some point in their lives. It provides the perfect environment for them to play independently with you still close enough to intervene if the need arises.

    How to Choose the Best Model for Your Family

    Choosing a model for your family can be broken down into a few steps to make the process easier. Which one you ultimately choose will come down to getting the features and accessories you feel like you need. Here are some things to think about when choosing the right playard for your little one.

    Step 1 – What is the primary use you have planned for the pack and play? This might be the most important question you ask yourself. Your plans for the baby product will determine which features you will want to be certain to include. Do you want it to double for a crib, or even replace a crib? Then you’ll need one with a bassinet. If you solely plan on using the bottom mat for a play area for a soon-to-be-toddler, then you may not need some of the other features.

    Step 2 – How important is portability? All the different models are designed to be folded up so they can be moved between locations. But some of them have folding legs or feet and they fold up more compactly than other models. If you plan on taking it on flights, you’ll want to consider the ones that fold up the most compact so they are the most compatible with air travel. If you just want to move it from room to room in your house, it will still fold up, but it doesn’t need to be quite as compact.

    Step 3 - Do I need wheels or casters? Different brands and models have various types of wheels, feet or casters that all affect the way they are moved throughout the house. Wheels make the playard easy to roll from room to room and they usually lock in place when you get it where you want it. Some are not easy to roll around, and have casters or feet that offer plenty of support. These can still be moved easily through the house, but just don’t have wheels to move it about.

    Step 4 – What types of “extras” do you want or need? Once you’ve decided the basic model that is going to work best for your situation, then you will want to decide on what extra features might be the most useful for you. Do you want a diaper changing station? Would that be useful to you? A storage bin comes with a few of the most popular models available today –do you want one that has this useful tool or would you rather do without it? Some also feature soft toy bars for babies. Another popular extra is a noise machine. This makes soft background noises, or plays music to help babies fall asleep easier and stay asleep longer.

    Once you go through these easy steps you’ll have a much better idea of what you are looking for. These steps should help you narrow your choices down to just a couple that are sure to work for you.

    The Most Frequently Asked Questions

    There are usually not a lot of questions about a pack and play and its use, but sometimes we run across a few areas that are in need of clarification. Here are some questions that get asked often.

    Do I need to buy sheets to go on the mattress?

    Some models come with sheets that are fitted to the included mattress, and some do not. You can purchase sheets extra if you want them, or use a blanket on the mattress if you want to keep your baby off its surface.

    Is the pack ‘n play easy to keep clean?

    Yes. Most models can be washed off using a soapy, damp cloth. This or disinfectant wipes can be used to keep the surfaces clean. Some features have cloth covers such as some of the changers, nappers or bassinets. These can be machine washed and air dried to ensure they are clean for each use.

    Are all models easy to set up and take down?

    Yes. Every product will have its own features and procedure for folding up and setting up, but they are designed to be easily taken down and set back up.

    Can a playard be used for sleeping?

    Yes, they can be used for napping, sleeping or playing. The bassinet and napper features are designed to provide a safe surface for babies to sleep on and the mattress is designed to be used by toddlers for sleeping or playing.

    Does it come with a carrying bag?

    Most models come with some sort of carrying option. Some have a back pack style carrying case others have a zippered bag that is used to carry the whole thing in. And many models are designed so that the mattress comes out and wraps around the folded up unit so it’s easy to carry. No matter what kind of carrying bag the product comes with they are designed to be portable.

    Do all models come with a bassinet?

    No. Some do not have any kind of bassinet feature while others have special bassinet attachments. A few are designed with a special bassinet feature which is more like a raised mattress which can be used at various heights depending on the size of the child.

    The Final Word

    This review should help you be able to narrow down what options you want included when you make your final purchase. It’s designed to help you be knowledgeable about what features are available so you’ll know what you want included with your purchase. And we offered you reviews of 5 of the best pack and plays available on the market today.