Traveling with a baby can be very difficult and cumbersome. Little ones come with so much gear! But even more difficult than packing all the gear is getting your baby to sleep when they are out of their comfort zone. Babies have a delicate sleep schedule and love familiarity.
Just one little thing can be off in their schedule, and they will no longer want to sleep. They may even want to sleep with you, which may not be ideal while you are on vacation.
One way to make sure your little one gets the best sleep possible on your vacation is by packing a travel bed. Travel beds and travel cribs give your child their own space to sleep or play that feels more familiar to them.
We have searched through the numerous travel beds on the market. We have put together a list of the seven best baby travel beds that will ensure your kiddo gets a good night’s rest. When little ones sleep well, everyone can enjoy traveling!
Best Baby Travel Bed Reviews
Travel beds are an essential for parents, especially if you are big travelers or have family who lives far away. Here’s a look at the best baby travel beds based on features and reviews.
Graco Pack and Play On the Go Playard
|Dimensions||40″L x 28.5″W x 29″H|
|Colors||9 color options|
Graco is a staple in the parenting world, with their pack n’ play making it onto many a new moms’ baby registry. This model can be purchased in a couple of different ways, depending on your needs. You can buy just the play yard or buy it with either the bassinet insert or the set on top diaper changer. The very affordable travel bed is available in nine different colors.
One side has wheels for easy movement, while the other has peg legs. The breathable mesh sides give plenty of ventilation for your little one while they sleep and allows them to breathe clearly if they find their face squished up against the side of the playpen.
The playard is relatively lightweight weighing just under 17 pounds. The travel bed measures 40 inches by 28 ½ inches by 29 inches. It is recommended for a maximum weight of 30 pounds and a maximum weight of 35 inches. This portable bassinet is rated for babies under 15 pounds who cannot push themselves up just yet.
A toy bar is included with a few toys to keep your little one amused while they lay in the bassinet or playard. The playard collapses at the push of a button and folds down into an easy-to-store carry bag, perfect for tossing into the trunk for day trips to the beach or an overnight trip to Grandma and Grandpas. When it is not in use, the playard fits nicely into a closet or cupboard.
- Comes with a mattress
- Sturdy construction
- Lightweight, but not easily tipped
- Easy to assemble/disassemble
- Includes carrying bag
- Not chemical-free
- Only for use up to 30 pounds
Joovy Gloo Infant Travel Bed
|Dimensions||Regular: 44″L x 25″W x 18″H | Large: 51.5″L x 28″W x 24.5″H|
|Colors||6 color options|
The Joovy Gloo comes in multiple sizes depending on your baby’s age and how long you are planning on using it. The regular size fits babies 6 months up to 3 years, while the large size can fit babies 6 months to 5 years for the perfect transition from baby to toddler bed.
It also comes in six different colors. The travel bed is dew resistant, bugproof, and has UPF 50 material for optimum sun protection.
The sleeping mattress pad is self-inflating for easy storage. It has a removable cotton cover that can be machine washed in the case of any spills, leaks, or barfs! For other areas, a damp cloth and some soap work perfectly. The sunshade keeps your baby comfortable outdoors and gives them a sun-safe place to play.
- Easy to set up
- Small storage footprint
- Simple to clean
- UPF 50 sun coverage
- Inflatable mattress
- Can tip if too much weight is on one side
- Poles can bend with prolonged use
Dream on Me Travel Light Playard
|Dimensions||40.5″L x 27″W x 26″H|
|Colors||4 color options|
The Dream On Me Travel Playard has a light frame that comes in four different colors. The mesh sides offer breathability for your baby and allow you to keep an eye on your little one while they rest. The frame is durable aluminum with sturdy stitching.
The locking system keeps your little one safe and secure. All fabrics and mesh are made without any known allergens.
If baby spills or leaks, you can clean up the mess easily with a cloth and a little soap. The playard folds up completely flat for easy carrying and only weighs 13 pounds. When set up, the playard is almost 4’ long.
- No-tool assembly
- Can be used indoors and out
- Easy to store
- Can fit into luggage
- Only one mattress level
- May not be suitable for climbers
Lotus Travel Crib Backpack Portable Playard
|Dimensions||45.5″L x 31.5″W x 25.5″H|
This travel crib is just as safety conscious as it is portable. The play-yard is BPA, Phthalate, and lead-free, achieving GreenGuard Gold certification. The certification is achieved by undergoing rigorous third-party testing to ensure there are low VOCs and no PVC, heavy metals, or other toxins.
A zippable access door allows you to snuggle with your baby or simply rub their backs to help them fall asleep. Once your little one dozes off, it zips up quietly so they won’t wake back up! The mattress is thick and cushy for a good night’s sleep and is approved for newborns and infants up to three years old.
The portable crib folds up in as little as 15 seconds and slides into an easy-to-carry backpack that only weighs 13 pounds. The play yard comes with a two-year warranty.
- Light but sturdy
- Airplane-friendly size
- Mesh on all sides
- Mattress not standard, so crib sheets need to be purchased through Guava
- Only one mattress level
Baby Joy 4-in-1 Portable Baby Playard with Bassinet
|Dimensions||40.5″L x 28.5″W x 43.5″H|
|Colors||3 color options|
The Baby Joy has four different ways you can use it, allowing it to grow with your child, keeping it useful for your travels for many years. The cradle can be used on its own for smaller babies. The diaper table attaches across the top of the playard, next to the cradle if you are using them both in conjunction with the playard.
The baby bassinet drops down inside the playard keeping your baby at a safe level while making it easy for you to reach down in and grab them up without straining your back. As your baby grows into a toddler, they can sleep or play in the activity center. It includes a music box for sweet music to keep your little one happy and two hanging toys to keep them entertained.
The playard can easily be moved from room to room with the two wheels that lock into position when needed. You have a diaper rack with shelves for storing much-needed items like diapers, diaper rash cream, and wipes for a longer trip. When it is time to pack it up to go home, everything comes off and folds down, making it easy to carry and store.
- Grows with your baby
- Bassinet can double as a co-sleeper
- Baby can be rocked in the cradle
- Easy to assemble
- Playard mattress is thin
- A little heavy at 33 pounds
Changing Station Travel Foldable Baby Bed
|Dimensions||Backpack: 17″L x 12.6″W x 8.2″H | Bed: 17″L x 30″W x 8.2″H|
|Colors||Grey or Pink|
If you are frequently on the go, a travel bed that doubles as a changing station may do the trick. This multi-purpose bed folds up easily into a backpack, which is easy to carry and keeps everything contained and clean.
The mattress portion can be used indoors or outdoors. The mattress is comfortable for your little one to lie down on and had a shade cloth to provide sun protection and some coverage.
The backpack also doubles as a diaper bag with pouches for your baby’s bottle, change of clothes, and accessories, perfect for the frequent flyer. It’s also nice if you do not have a lot of space for storage. With this pack, everything is condensed into a central location.
The bag is also waterproof, with a USB charging port on the interior. The lining removes entirely so you can clean out any messes or spills.
- Easy to travel with
- Lightweight, under 3 pounds
- Best for smaller babies
- Mattress could be more compact
Fisher-Price On-the-Go Baby Dome
|Dimensions||7″L x 31″W x 21″H|
|Colors||7 color options|
This adorable portable baby bed comes in 7 different patterns and is multi-functional. It can be a play space for your little one, or it can be a napping spot. The Baby Dome can be used either indoors or outdoors, so it is perfect if your baby needs to take a nap while you are at the beach, park, or lake. The Dome also has a built-in canopy, giving your little one some shade and some bug protection.
The toy bar comes with two removable toys to keep your little one amused while they lay there and play. The removable feature is excellent for when playtime is over. You can remove it to encourage your baby to go to sleep. The baby dome lays flat for easy storage at home or in the car.
- UPF20 material
- Spot clean
- Padding can be machine washing
- Recommended up to 5 months
- Top does not close all the way
What is a Baby Travel Bed?
A baby travel bed is a baby bed that is used for traveling. They are generally lightweight, making them easy to carry around in a car or take on a plane. Travel beds can break down and be set up quickly. Baby travel beds usually have a carrying case or bag for easy storage.
Many travel beds have mesh sides for ventilation and observation. They also come with a thin mattress on the interior and can have attachments like a changing station or a bassinet insert for smaller babies. Travel beds can be used for sleep, or they can be used as space for your child to play in safely, or both!
Types of Baby Travel Beds
There are many different types of baby travel beds. The wide variety of styles gives you plenty of options to choose from so you can get the perfect ones for your needs. Here is a look at some of the more popular styles of travel beds.
A travel bassinet is a smaller, lighter version of a baby’s bassinet. It is also softer than a standard bassinet. Some models have legs that enable you to rock your baby back and forth, while others sit flat on the ground. A travel bassinet can come with a cover to give your baby shade while you are outside and can even have a toy bar with a selection of baby toys for your little one to play with while they lay in the bassinet.
Higher-end models can even include features such as a vibrating mattress or lights and music that help soothe your little one and make the transition to the travel bassinet easier. These features also help your little one fall asleep faster.
Travel Cot with Bassinet
A travel cot with a bassinet is a two in one combination that allows you to move through multiple stages with your child and keep the same bed. The bassinet is usually an insert that attaches to the interior of the travel bed. This gives smaller babies an elevated place to sleep that is more comfortable for them and for your back.
It is fully removable as your baby grows. Once your little one can support themselves on their hands and knees, the bassinet can be removed. The travel cot underneath becomes their new place to sleep or play in. These travel beds are usually lightweight and can fold down into a storage bag for travel.
Foldable Crib or Pack n’ Play
Pack n’ plays are smaller and lighter than regular cribs, but they are not as lightweight as other travel beds. They have a solid metal frame that makes them heavier, but it also makes them sturdier. These beds are a multi-purpose use. They can be used for playtime, sleep or can be a safe space for your baby to hang out in. Most can also be used either indoors or outdoors.
Foldable cribs can come with many accessories, from a bassinet that attaches to the top to a changing station complete with storage for diapers and wipes. Bassinets can only hold up to 15 pounds, so once your baby hits that threshold, they can move to sleeping in the portable playard section below.
Pack n’ plays are made to be used around your home as well as for travel. Since they are heavier than other travel beds, many parents opt to keep them at home for use as a safe place for baby to play while you cook dinner or do laundry.
They can also be a little more complicated to set up than other travel beds. However, they still are an excellent option for travel if you do not mind a little extra weight and set up time. Pack n’ plays come with a thin mattress on the bottom for your baby to sleep on.
While it may be tempting to switch it out to something thicker, most manufacturers recommend against it. They are designed to use the included mattress, not a thicker one. Swapping it out may introduce potential hazards for your baby.
Pop-up Travel Bed
Pop-up travel beds are a compact version of a travel bed and are perfect if you do not have a lot of room either in the car or in your luggage. The travel bed folds down into a compact size and into its carrying case. When you take it out, it almost pops out as a tent would. It is easy to set up and is incredibly portable.
Everything about the pop-up travel bed is flexible. Some even close up completely to give your baby shade cover and privacy. However, most pop-up cots are only suitable for newborns up until they can start to pull themselves up onto their hands and knees. Once your baby can do that, the pop-up travel bed is no longer a safe option for them to sleep in.
Toddler Travel Bed
Toddler travel beds are made for little ones who have already outgrown their baby travel bed options. Many toddler travel beds are incredibly lightweight and easy to travel with. Some are even inflatable. Most have built-in bumpers to keep your child from rolling out onto the floor.
Toddler travel beds also come in a mat and a cot style depending on your needs. With a toddler travel bed, you know your little one will have a safe and comfortable space to sleep in, no matter where you are.
How to Choose a Travel Bed for Your Baby
When you are picking out a travel bed for your baby, here are some things to consider.
As with any baby item, you want to consider how safe the travel bed is for your little one. Look for one that has excellent reviews and either meets or exceeds safety standards.
Always choose a bed that comes from a well-known manufacturer to ensure that it is safe. Many will list all of their safety features in their product descriptions. They want you to know that they have spent a lot of time ensuring that the product is safe for your little one.
You will also want to pay close attention to the size and weight standards. Putting your baby in a travel bed that they are too big or too small to use can be hazardous.
The mattress that is included with the travel bed should fit securely. You do not want to have any gaps or places your baby can get stuck in. Also, be sure to only use the included mattress. Most are not designed to use an upgraded or outside mattress.
Size and Weight
When picking out a travel crib, make sure you pay close attention to the crib’s materials. You want it to be light enough to carry but still sturdy. You want something that will fold down to a compact size but has enough room for your baby to sleep comfortably and not feel squished.
Pay close attention to the listed age range on the travel beds. Some are rated for newborns and young infants, while others are made for larger babies and toddlers. If your toddler can escape from their crib or travel bed, then it is time that they no longer use one.
It is important that the travel crib is easy to clean. While you cannot take all the pieces apart and wash them, you will want to at least be able to remove the crib mattress cover and wash that, especially in the event of any spills or leaks. The other parts of the travel bed can usually be wiped down with a cloth and some gentle soap.
Many have mesh sides that are very durable and breathable. When attempting to clean this part of your travel bed, take care to be gentle and use a cloth to wipe it down.
Portable travel beds have a lot of extra accessories. Some come included with your travel bed, while others can be purchased separately. Many will come with a designated travel bag for the bed to fold into.
Some have a drawstring top while others zip up the side. Those that include bassinets can be used without the base, making them a great piece to take on a plane with you so your little one can get some rest.
Some models even have enclosures over the top to provide shielding from light and noise, providing a cozy little environment for your baby. Depending on the environment you may want to consider a mosquito net cover to protect your baby.
Frequently Asked Questions
Final Thoughts About the Best Baby Travel Bed
A portable travel crib is a valuable addition to your baby product arsenal, even if you do not plan on taking a ton of trips. If you take one to two trips a year, having a designated place for your child to play and sleep will give you peace of mind for the duration of your vacation.
Choosing the right travel bed for your child’s age and size will ensure they are safe and will give them the opportunity for a peaceful night’s sleep, which in turn allows you to sleep too!
Looking for more gear for your little one? Head over to our Gear Guides Section to see more comparisons.
Krissy lives in California with her family of three that make up “The Hadicks.” With a passion for research and helping others, The Hadicks was developed as a resource for other parents and parents-to-be!