The 9 Best Travel Cribs of 2023, Tested and Reviewed

The Maxi-cosi Swift Play Yard is our top pick.

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Best Travel Cribs

Travel + Leisure / Jhett Thompson

Whether you have a family trip coming up, need something for the occasional overnight visit, or are shopping for a baby registry, a good travel crib is essential. Sometimes called playards, these foldable contraptions offer a secure place for your child to sleep or play when you're on the go.

According to neonatologist Michael H. Goodstein, MD, FAAP, they're "a safe alternative to a crib, as long as the product is consistent with the mandatory guidelines established by the CPSC (Consumer Product Safety Commission)." But, beyond safety considerations, not all portable cribs are created equal.

Travel cribs vary by size, weight, features, and functionality. We tested 19 models to narrow it down to the most user-friendly, portable, durable, and easy-to-clean options. (See more about our in-depth testing process below.) Our number one pick is the Maxi-Cosi Swift Play Yard, a sturdy, stain-resistant travel crib that takes less than two minutes to pack up.

Best Overall

Maxi-Cosi Swift Lightweight Portable Play Yard

4.9
Maxi-Cosi Swift Lightweight Portable Playard

Amazon

Our Ratings
  • Ease of Setup
    4.8/5
  • Portability
    4.5/5
  • Quality
    5/5
  • Durability
    5/5
  • Ease of Cleaning
    5/5

Why We Love It: With an adjustable mattress and easy folding mechanism, this sturdy crib grows with your child and can be taken on any excursion.

What to Consider: It's not the lightest-weight option we tested.

Clocking nearly perfect scores in all our tests, our top choice is the Maxi-Cosi Swift Play Yard. This portable crib was super easy to set up and take down. Though the leg-folding mechanism is a little different than most models, we assembled it in less than three minutes and packed it back up in under two.

It has all the comfort and safety features we'd want in this type of product. "I love how the mattress lays flat on its own, and you don't need to hook Velcro straps to keep it down," one tester noted. The supportive yet bouncy design barely budged when we dropped a 25-pound sandbag on top, and the frame held strong too.

We're also big fans of the bassinet feature. For newborns and infants, you can detach the mattress from the bottom and raise it up for easier access to your baby. Then, when your child grows, lower it back down to prevent them from climbing out.

At 18 pounds, this travel crib is on the heavier side. However, it seems durable and long-lasting. Our testers also said the high-quality materials appear stain-resistant. All things considered, we think the price is right on point.

Price at time of publish: $275

Overall Dimensions: 41.5 x 33.5 x 31 inches | Packed Dimensions: 33 x 11 x 12 inches | Weight: 18 pounds

Maxi-Cosi Swift Lightweight Portable Playard

Travel + Leisure / Jhett Thompson

Best Budget

Munchkin Brica Fold N' Go Travel Bassinet

4.8
Munchkin Brica Fold N' Go Travel Bassinet

Munchkin

Our Ratings
  • Ease of Setup
    5/5
  • Portability
    4.5/5
  • Quality
    4.5/5
  • Durability
    4.5/5
  • Ease of Cleaning
    5/5

Why We Love It: This lightweight, compact sleeper is incredibly easy to set up and pack up, a perfect option for traveling with newborns.

What to Consider: It doesn't come with a carry bag, and the weight capacity is 15 pounds.

On a budget? Check out the Munchkin Brica Travel Pod. This on-the-go sleeper can be set up in one minute and packs back up in less than 30 seconds. "I wasn't sure it could be so easy and fast, so I double-checked, and sure enough, it is that easy," one tester remarked.

At just 3 pounds, we were also impressed with the lightweight design. "When it folds down, it's super small and takes up no room," our tester said, adding that, unfortunately, it doesn't come with a carry bag. The lightweight, compact design is undoubtedly convenient, but bear in mind the capacity is 15 pounds. In other words, you'll need something bigger once your child is about 6 months old.

Price at time of publish: $48

Overall Dimensions: 30 x 21 x 12 inches | Packed Dimensions: Not listed | Weight: 3 pounds

Best Splurge

UPPAbaby Remi Portable Playard with Bassinet Attachment

4.9
UPPAbaby Remi Portable Playard with Bassinet Attachment

Buy Buy Baby

Our Ratings
  • Ease of Setup
    5/5
  • Portability
    5/5
  • Quality
    5/5
  • Durability
    5/5
  • Ease of Cleaning
    4.5/5

Why We Love It: This durable, splurge-worthy crib is super easy to assemble and packs into a conveniently compact bundle.

What to Consider: It's somewhat heavy (but super sturdy), and the carry bag is sold separately.

If you're open to splurging on a high-quality travel crib, UppaBaby won't disappoint. "This was by far the easiest one I've ever assembled and broken down," our tester said. "You pull it out of the box and snap it into place." When folding it back up, the frame wraps into the mattress to create a conveniently compact bundle.

We also appreciate the safety features, including padded edges, hidden zippers, and an elevated bassinet attachment. And thanks to the large design, you can continue using it into the toddler years. While it's not particularly lightweight, there's no doubting the durability. The price is steep (and you'll have to buy the carry bag separately) but, in the end, we think it's worth the investment.

Price at time of publish: $350

Overall Dimensions: 40.5 x 28.5 x 26 inches | Packed Dimensions: 28.5 x 11 x 10 inches | Weight: 22.5 pounds

UPPAbaby Remi Portable Playard with Bassinet Attachment

Travel + Leisure / Jhett Thompson

Best Compact

KidCo P4012 Peapod Plus Infant Travel Bed

4.8
KidCo P4012 Peapod Plus Infant Travel Bed

KidCo

Our Ratings
  • Ease of Setup
    5/5
  • Portability
    5/5
  • Quality
    5/5
  • Durability
    4/5
  • Ease of Cleaning
    5/5

Why We Love It: The ultra-lightweight, compact design is easy to take on the go and folds up into its carry bag in seconds.

What to Consider: It's not recommended for children under 6 months.

For something more compact, consider the KidCo PeaPod Plus. We were able to set up this sleeper and fold it back down in almost no time. "It popped right open! Nothing to do," our tester said. "If you do need to snap the bottom on, it takes seconds." The ultra-lightweight design folds effortlessly into its included bag, and the carry straps make it easy to take on the go.

The tent-like design can be used indoors or for outdoor naps in your backyard, on the beach, or on family camping trips. While it's not the most structured, our tester said it holds its shape enough to provide a safe sleeping spot for a small child. Despite the compact size, bear in mind it's designed for kiddos between 6 months and 5 years.

Price at time of publish: $110

Overall Dimensions: 46 x 34 x 22 inches | Packed Dimensions: 19 x 19 x 3.5 inches | Weight: 3.5 pounds

Best Lightweight

Zoe The Cloud

4.8
Zoe The Cloud

Zoe

Our Ratings
  • Ease of Setup
    4/5
  • Portability
    5/5
  • Quality
    5/5
  • Durability
    5/5
  • Ease of Cleaning
    5/5

Why We Love It: This portable crib is compact and lightweight yet surprisingly durable and comes with an extra-thick, water-resistant mattress.

What to Consider: The velcro straps can be finicky during the setup process.

This travel crib took about five minutes to set up. The velcro straps were a little finicky, and when folding it back up, it was hard to find the side buttons. Still, we think the process will go faster once you get the hang of it. Our testers were big fans of the compact, lightweight design, which held up surprisingly well when we dropped a 25-pound sandbag inside.

The mattress is on the thicker side — more in line with a standard crib mattress than the portable variety. It seems to be water-resistant, too, which is a major plus for the occasional nighttime diaper leak. This isn't the most budget-friendly option we tried, but we think the price is more than reasonable for such a high-quality design.

Price at time of publish: $185

Overall Dimensions: 44 x 28 x 26.5 inches | Packed Dimensions: 27.5 x 7.5 x 7.5 inches | Weight: 15 pounds

Zoe The Cloud

Travel + Leisure / Jhett Thompson

Best for Newborn

MiClassic Mesh 2-in-1 Stationary & Rock Bassinet

4.5
MiClassic Foldable 2-in-1 Stationary & Rock Bassinet

Amazon

Our Ratings
  • Ease of Setup
    4/5
  • Portability
    5/5
  • Quality
    4/5
  • Durability
    4.5/5
  • Ease of Cleaning
    5/5

Why We Love It: This user-friendly bassinet is easy to set up, conveniently foldable, and exceptionally lightweight.

What to Consider: The rocking function isn't the smoothest.

For newborns, we recommend the MiClassic 2-in-1 Bassinet. Thanks to the snap-together design, it took us less than four minutes to assemble and less than one minute to fold back up. Though our testers found the rocking function "slightly jerky," this sleeper held up well during our sandbag assessment. "When I dropped it in, no part of it broke," our tester noted.

This foldable bassinet is very lightweight and comes with a carrying bag with a long strap for slinging it over your shoulder. This is a great choice for travel, living room naps, or babies who often sleep over at another parent or grandparent's home. Though you'll need something bigger when your child graduates from the newborn to infant stage, we still think the price is reasonable.

Price at time of publish: $120

Overall Dimensions: 37.5 x 24 x 11 inches | Packed Dimensions: 23 x 20.5 x 6.5 inches | Weight: 15.5 pounds

MiClassic Mesh 2-in-1 Stationary & Rock Bassinet

Travel + Leisure / Jhett Thompson

Best Bassinet

Chicco LullaGo Anywhere Portable Bassinet

4.8
Chicco LullaGo Anywhere Portable Bassinet

Amazon

Our Ratings
  • Ease of Setup
    4.8/5
  • Portability
    4.5/5
  • Quality
    5/5
  • Durability
    5/5
  • Ease of Cleaning
    5/5

Why We Love It: This remarkably lightweight-yet-sturdy bassinet is easy to set up, move from room to room, and bring on the go.

What to Consider: The maximum weight is 20 pounds, and it doesn't come with a carrying case.

We were able to assemble and fold up the Chicco LullaGo in under a minute. "The canopy gave me a little bit of difficulty, but once I read the instructions, it was very easy," one tester noted. This travel bassinet is remarkably lightweight yet still sturdy. Though we wish it came with a carrying case, it's easy to move from room to room or bring on the go. We also like that all the covers are conveniently machine-washable.

Dr. Goodstein warns against using this product past the newborn stage, as the elevated platform isn't designed for larger infants. "When the babies are too old, they can fall out of it," he says. "It's just not safe."

Price at time of publish: $100

Overall Dimensions: 30 x 28 x 18 inches | Packed Dimensions: 28 x 18.5 x 5.5 inches | Weight: 12 pounds

Chicco LullaGo Anywhere Portable Bassinet

Travel + Leisure / Jhett Thompson

Best Playard

Chicco Alfa Lite Lightweight Travel Playard

4.7
Chicco Alfa Lite Lightweight Travel Playard

Amazon

Our Ratings
  • Ease of Setup
    5/5
  • Portability
    5/5
  • Quality
    4.5/5
  • Durability
    4.5/5
  • Ease of Cleaning
    4.5/5

Why We Love It: This playard boasts easy setup, a sturdy design, and various safety features to keep your kiddo secure during naps or playtime.

What to Consider: The mattress feels slightly flimsy.

The Chicco Alfa Lite can be assembled in three minutes and folded back up in less than 60 seconds. "Setup was super easy," said one tester. "I could have looked at the instructions, but I really didn't need them, thanks to the helpful 'push' buttons and intuitive design." Though the legs fold out with ease, the frame also feels sturdy, like it'll hold up well over time.

Designed for on-the-go sleeping or safe, secure playing, this playard has lockable side zippers and a mattress that buckles to the base. You can also unzip the side to let your child climb in and out during playtime. The mattress is a little flimsy, but other than that, we have no complaints.

Price at time of publish: $170

Overall Dimensions: 43 x 29 x 25 inches | Packed Dimensions: 21 x 9.5 x 9.5 inches | Weight: 13 pounds

Chicco Alfa Lite Lightweight Travel Playard

Travel + Leisure / Jhett Thompson

Best for Car Travel

Baby Joy Travel Crib 2-in-1 Playpen

4.7
Baby Joy Travel Crib 2-in-1 Playpen

Amazon

Our Ratings
  • Ease of Setup
    4.8/5
  • Portability
    4/5
  • Quality
    5/5
  • Durability
    5/5
  • Ease of Cleaning
    4.5/5

Why We Love It: This lightweight, ultra-portable crib is a breeze to set up and pack into its carrying case.

What to Consider: The handles are somewhat short, making it hard to avoid dragging it.

The Baby Joy Travel Crib takes a mere three minutes to set up and folds up in a flash. "I love how easily it folds and unfolds, kind of like a camp chair," our tester said. "Once you know where the lock button is, the frame is incredibly easy to put together."

The entire thing seems high-quality, which is impressive, considering the very reasonable price tag. Weighing only 11 pounds, it's one of the lightest options we tried. While we appreciate the included case, the short handles make it hard to avoid dragging it on the ground when carrying it — for shorter folks, at least. This portable crib folds up pretty compactly but is still probably too tall for an overhead bin, which is why we recommend it for family road trips.

Price at time of publish: $100

Overall Dimensions: 45.5 x 31 x 27 inches | Packed Dimensions: 23.5 x 20.5 x 7 inches | Weight: 11 pounds

Baby Joy Travel Crib 2-in-1 Playpen

Travel + Leisure / Jhett Thompson

Our Testing Process

Travel + Leisure editors selected 19 travel cribs to try firsthand. Our testers started by timing how long it took to assemble them based on the brand's instructions, noting any hiccups they ran into along the way. After assessing the features and materials, we lifted them up and moved them around the room to see how light and portable they were once assembled.

To evaluate the sturdiness, our testers shook the frames and dropped a sandbag into the center to see how well they could support a small child standing up or jumping around. Finally, we timed how long it took to fold down the cribs and put them in their carrying cases, noting how heavy they were when packed up. Each model was scored for ease of setup, portability, durability, ease of cleaning, quality, and value, and those with the highest average ratings were selected for this roundup.

MiClassic Mesh 2-in-1 Stationary & Rock Bassinet

Travel + Leisure / Jhett Thompson

Other Travel Cribs We Tested

KidCo Peapod Portable Travel Bed: This tent-style sleeper quickly pops open, and the padded base is a cinch to snap on. While the fabric is somewhat thin, it's super lightweight and easy to carry, too. However, in the end, we just liked the other KidCo model better.

Baby Delight Snuggle Nest Harmony Portable Infant Lounger: We liked the small, lightweight design of this product. But since it's technically a lounger rather than a crib, it's really designed to be a safe place to set your infant down — not necessarily a place to sleep. When in doubt, check with your pediatrician before using it.

Tips for Buying a Travel Crib

Put safety first

Whether for travel or nightly sleep, safety should be a top priority when buying a crib. Per the CPSC's current guidelines, the mattress should be relatively firm to prevent rolling. And you shouldn't add extra padding or bedding until your child is at least 12 months old, as the materials can pose a suffocation risk.

"Get a travel crib that is current from a major brand," says Dr. Goodstein, "and use the mattress that's included." He adds that, aside from a sleep sack, you really don't need anything other than a mattress and a tight-fitting crib sheet.

Know the important features 

Travel cribs come with various features — some for safety and others for comfort or convenience. This may include user-friendly foldability, a carrying case, a firm mattress, padded edges, concealed zippers, or breathable mesh sides.

"Some have a bassinet feature, which is convenient for new mothers (not bending over) and small/younger newborns," says Dr. Goodstein. "With or without, they should be used properly, following the weight, age, and developmental limitations set within the product instructions and warnings."

Consider the type of trip you're taking

When browsing options, consider the type of trip you're taking and where you plan on using the crib. If you're traveling by plane, some (but not all) airlines allow you to check portable cribs for free (along with strollers and car seats). But if you're not checking baggage, make sure it's small enough to pass as a carry-on.

Some small travel cribs can be folded up super compactly and even tucked inside a suitcase. But larger options that come with their own carry bags will usually need to be toted around separately. If you just need something for the occasional overnight, you have more flexibility in terms of size.

Maxi-Cosi Swift Lightweight Portable Playard

Travel + Leisure / Jhett Thompson

Frequently Asked Questions
  • What are the differences between a travel crib and a regular crib?

    The main difference between a travel crib and a regular crib is that the former is typically foldable and relatively lightweight. But as long as it has a proper mattress and sides that prevent rolling off, you can use a travel crib as a regular crib.


    "The newer ones, for the most part, should be fine," says Dr. Goodstein. "If you're going to use a sheet in there, make sure it's a fitted sheet for that specific type of crib."

  • What sheets fit a travel crib?

    Travel crib mattresses are roughly 38 x 24 inches, which is the size of a mini crib mattress. Getting a fitted sheet in the proper size is crucial, as loose fabric can be dangerous for sleeping babies. "These little ones don't have good head [or hand] control — they can't brush something off of their face," explains Dr. Goodstein. "Something as light as a sheet can cause suffocation."

  • Will a travel crib fit in an overhead compartment?

    Some travel cribs fit into overhead compartments, but it varies by model. While it's different for each airline, the maximum dimensions for carry-ons is usually 22 x 14 x 9 inches, so be sure to measure the packed-up size before your trip.

Why Trust Travel + Leisure

Theresa Holland is a toddler mom and seasoned commerce writer specializing in travel, baby gear, and furniture. For this story, she compiled our in-house testing insights and combed through product specs to create a comprehensive roundup of today's best travel cribs. She is personally familiar with the offerings from UppaBaby, Munchkin, and Chicco.

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