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Graco Pack 'n Play Review

Graco Pack ‘N Play: Graco Travel Cribs Review

Graco Pack ‘N Play is one of the baby products that the Graco brand specializes in.

Everyone knows babies need places to sleep because they can’t walk everywhere with you, so these cribs are designed to be portable and they fold up nicely. Now you may be thinking that a stroller, car seat, or carriers can be used instead, but hear me out.

While a stroller or car seat can be a good option, they are larger and can be tiring to take along with you on the go, especially when holding the baby on the other hand.

First and foremost, Pack ‘n Play products are small and lightweight. Thus, they make it easier to transport.

It will fit in the backseat of most cars or the trunk. It’s easy to fold up and put away, so you can easily store it or take it with you on vacation.

In addition, you’ll have a safe and comfortable place for baby to sleep. The fabrics are soft and mesh or breathable mesh sides allow for airflow for maximum comfort. The mattress pad is also removable for easy cleaning.

Many travel cribs are available on the market and come with different features depending on what parents want.

A popular option is the Graco Pack ‘n Play Change ‘n Carry Playard, among other Graco models. It features a changing station, removable vibrating seat and bassinet, built-in shelves, hanging toys, and, of course, a spacious, mesh-covered playard.

For the sake of this review, I focused more on the Graco Pack ‘n Play Change ‘n Carry Playard, although I mentioned other affordable, top-notch models.

I, together with the Momtherly team tested the all-in-one travel cribs with some little babies to see if it was suitable for both sleeping and playing, plus reports from other parents. Keep reading to find out how it came out.

See also: 20 Best Baby Strollers of 2022

Graco Pack ‘n Play Change ‘n Carry Playard

Graco Pack 'n Play Change 'n Carry Playard

Maintaining your baby’s freshness has never been easier, thanks to Graco’s Pack ‘n Play Playard with Change ‘n Carry portable changing pad!

With the convenient diaper changing pad, you can change diapers right in the playard or anywhere else you are.

After that, fold it into a convenient travel pouch and use the storage pockets to keep essentials close at hand.

With its comforting nest bassinet, your newborn can sleep easy while your toddler can play in the full-sized playard.

Playard’s features include a toy mobile, wipe-clean changer fabric, easy push-button fold, and a convenient carry bag.

Specifications

  • Material: Polyester, Plastic, Metal
  • Product Dimensions: ‎40 x 28.5 x 29 inches
  • Product Weight: 23 Pounds
  • Recommended Age: ‎0 to 3 years
  • Maximum Weight Recommendation: 25 Pounds

Graco Pack ‘n Play Change ‘n Carry Playard Accessories

Some of its included accessories are:

  • A portable changing pad
  • Comfy nest bassinet
  • Signature Graco playard and button
  • Mobile with soft toys
  • Changing Station
  • Changing Pad Storage

Pros

  • It has a lot of included accessories
  • There is an option to use your bassinet
  • Grows with your baby
  • Highly portable and easy to clean
  • Comes with three soft toys attached to mobile to stimulate the baby’s imagination
  • It can easily transition to a portable Playard
  • With its signature push-button fold, this playard is simple to fold
  • Carrying bag for hassle-free travel and storage
  • All sides have airy mesh for maximum ventilation

Cons

  • Setup requires some practice and patience
  • It is difficult to store accessories
  • It can be too low for taller parents

Rating: 4.8 out of 5 stars               Price: $109.99             Buy now

See also: Best Changing Tables and Toppers of 2021

A Quick Glance at the Graco Pack ‘n Play Brand

One of the most popular playards is the Graco Pack ‘n Play. Graco Pack ‘n Play is heavy and challenging to fold, but parents can forgive its shortcomings because it is so affordable.

Now, what is it? Designed to provide your baby with an easy, portable place to sleep or play, you can use the Pack ‘n Play from birth through the toddler years.

The Pack ‘n Play is an excellent solution for anyone who goes to grandma’s often or wants a safe place at home for their baby to play.

Since it grows with the baby, some people even use it instead of a crib or bassinet.

Why We Love Graco Pack ‘n Play

  • Price-wise, it is hard to beat (no, impossible).
  • Over the years, it has been the most popular and most loved product for its useful function.
  • The top of most Pack ‘n Plays has a bassinet attachment, so you can use it as a sleeper starting at an early age. Because the bassinet raises the baby higher, reaching them is easier.
  • As your infant grows, you can convert the lower portion of the pack ‘n play into a travel crib.
  • Pack n Plays can also act as a playard, which is handy when you need to do something else and can’t keep an eye on your baby.
  • Last but not least, some Pack ‘n Play models can double as changing tables! Alternatively, you can use it as a second changer outside the nursery, thereby eliminating the need for a stand-alone changing table.

What We Don’t Like About Graco Pack ‘n Play

  • Most of the versions are heavier, difficult to use.
  • Plus, most Graco Pack ‘n Play models can involve a lot of effort trying to unfold and fold.
  • Its lightest version is over 20 pounds, and most are closer to 30 pounds.

How to Setup and Take Down Graco Pack ‘n Play

Parents find that the Pack ‘n Plays with changing stations are very convenient to use as an additional changing table in the living room or another room of the house.

Pack ‘n Play’s biggest challenge is its fold. Before collapsing the base, you have to press a button on each arm.

Occasionally, the buttons can become sticky, and you aren’t sure whether they’ve been pressed or not.

When putting it together, you first have to lock each arm into place before you can flatten the base.

Here’s a detailed quick video on how to set up and take down the Graco Pack ‘n Play mobile crib easily. 

Graco Pack ‘n Play Recommended Age Range

The recommended age of most Graco’s Pack ‘n Play models, including the  Change ‘n Carry Playard, spans‏ newborn stage to 3 years.

However, size and height and weight play a major factor in determining whether your baby still needs to use a bassinet. It will also tell you whether or not it is safe to use the playard.

For the newborn stage, you have to place your little ones in the bassinet until they exceed the recommended weight range and height.

Once your baby reaches the toddler stage, he can safely use the playard. However, he must be within the recommended pack ‘n play weight and height range.

With the Graco’s Pack ‘n Play Change ‘n Carry Playard, the Changer for Babies is under 25 lbs, while the Bassinet suits babies under 15 lbs.

In addition, the playard is ideal for toddlers below 35 inches tall and unable to climb out.

Safety

It is obvious from its design that Graco put a lot of thought into the safety of this play yard.

The mattress fastening straps, the mesh siding, and the carefully padded metal bars ensure that parents have little to worry about- unless their child is too tall, too heavy, or too old.

According to Graco, babies who are 35 inches and taller, weigh more than 30 pounds, or can climb should not use this product.

With a climber on your hands, you have an obvious tripping hazard, which is obviously a safety concern.

In addition to these criteria, if your child is a little rambunctious, you should consult your judgment about whether or not they could toss the unit over if they were to roll around or pull up.

Graco Pack ‘n Play Price

Generally, the Grace pack ‘n play products are usually affordable based on their features and included accessories.

The difference in prices varies with their functions, features, and accessories.

However, full-sized pack ‘n play models costs more than compact and portable sizes.

See also: 10 Best Changing Pads to Make Diaper Changing Easier

Graco Pack ‘n Play Models

Pack ‘n Plays come in dozens (literally dozens) of models. Here are some of our favourites and the major differences between them.

Graco Pack ‘n Play with Reversible Seat & Changer

Graco Pack 'n Play with Reversible Seat & Changer

With the Graco Pack ‘n Play Playard Reversible Seat & Changer, your newborn will have the comfort of a very cozy seat, along with the convenience of a diaper changer.

With its reversible design, this unit can quickly convert from a cozy play area to a changing area, so it’s easy to keep your infant clean and content.

Bassinets, integrated storage pockets, a push-button fold, and an updated frame design are all offered in this product.

Specifications

  • Material: Plastic
  • Age Range: Newborn to infant to toddler
  • Maximum Weight Recommendation: 25 Pounds
  • Product Dimensions: ‎40 x 28.5 x 33.25 inches
  • Product Weight: 28.2 Pounds

Rating: 4.7 out of 5 stars               Price: $129.99             Buy now

Graco Pack and Play Portable Playard

Graco Pack and Play Portable Playard

Although it has fewer bells and whistles, the playard works just fine. It features a flat mattress, mesh sides, and pads covering the interlocking parts for safety and comfort.

Using the wheels, you can easily move this playard from room to room.

This playard is simple to set up and break down, and when not in use, it can easily fold up into the compact carrying bag.

Specifications

  • Material: Metal, Plastic, Fabric, Polyester
  • Product Dimensions:‎ 40 x 28.5 x 29 inches
  • Product Weight: 20.11 Pounds
  • Manufacturer Recommended Age: ‎0 to 3 years

Rating: 4.8 out of 5 stars               Price: $39.99               Buy now

Graco Pack ‘n Play LiteTraveler LX Playard

For easy travel and storage, the Graco Pack ‘n Play Lite Traveler LX Playard folds up compactly for indoor or outdoor use. As the most compact folding playard available (compared to its closest competitor), the LiteTraveler is simple to set up and fold.

With this extra-large playard, you can make a spacious play space for your living room or an extra-large and safe play area for your deck or backyard.

It has a removable UV 50 canopy to provide sun protection and shade for outdoor play. Mesh sides allow you to keep an eye on your child as they play, and a zippered activity door makes entering and exiting easy.

Featuring a padded floor for added comfort, along with a travel bag with a shoulder strap for convenience while traveling.

Specifications

  • Product Dimensions: 50.5 x 50.5 x 27 inches
  • Product Weight: 17.25 Pounds
  • Manufacturer Recommended Age: ‎0 to 2 years

Rating: 4.7 out of 5 stars               Price: $122.90             Buy now

Graco Pack ‘n Play Rock ‘n Grow Playard

With the Graco Pack ‘n Play Rock ‘n Grow Playard, you can grow with your child in 8 different ways!

Playards have all the features you need to keep your child safe and comfortable, whether it’s a newborn seat or a toddler seat.

Rock ‘n Grow’s all-in-one features a wipe-clean diaper changing station, baby essentials storage, wheels for easy mobility, and Graco’s signature push-button fold.

Specifications

  • Product Dimensions: ‎36.5 x 28.5 x 30 inches
  • Product Weight: 39.07 Pounds
  • Manufacturer Recommended Age: ‎1 month to 3 years

Rating: 4.8 out of 5 stars               Price: $232.99             Buy now

Graco Pack ‘n Play Change ‘n Carry Playard Parent/User Reviews

“The installation took less than 10 minutes. I was worried the parts would be cheap or the size would be small but it seems like a normal-sized playpen to me. I can’t attest to the durability as my older son is 4 and not due with the new baby until September. All in all I’m extremely happy with the quality of this product as the price is amazing.” – Andrea W. (Amazon User)

“This is a lifesaver! Our little one is almost 3 weeks old and I don’t know how we would’ve survived this long without our pack ‘n play. It’s so convenient for me to have everything I need close at hand. When she naps during the day, I put her in the bassinet. When she has a dirty diaper, I don’t have to worry about going to her nursery to change her.

The side compartment easily holds a pack of wipes and about 20 newborn diapers. I’m very comforted knowing that it will still be of use to me even as our daughter grows…” – MP (Amazon mom)

“I bought this for my niece’s baby shower. Since then her son is now 3 years old and they can still use the top portion of the Playard. It is perfect to fit beside their bed for nighttime changing. It has room to place your diapers and wipes. She is so please with it.

When she went to see her mother and stayed for the weekend, she took it along. It packs together easily and sets up in a minute. It’s made sturdy and the quality is good. Thank You!” – Sherrie Hanes (Amazon Reviewer)

In a Nutshell

If you’re looking for something that makes changing diapers, sleeping, or child play on the go easier, Graco’s Pack ‘n Play Playard with Change ‘n Carry is your best choice.

It comes with a changing pad and station, grows with your baby, and is easy to carry around.

It’s easier than ever to keep your baby fresh, thanks to the Pack ‘n Play Change ‘n Carry from Graco!

Nevertheless, ensure that your little weight and height is within the manufacturer’s recommended guidelines. Most pack n’ plays are compliant with AAP safety requirements when fitted with a firm mattress and a tight-fitting sheet.

Additionally, a pack n play provides a safe place for babies to play and sleep. With an attached bassinet, it can be used from the moment your baby comes home up until about three years old.

See also: 20 Best Co-Sleeper Bassinet for Safe Sleeping

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Graco Pack ‘n Play

Is Graco Pack ‘N Play safe for sleep?

Basically, yes. You have two options when it comes to where you could put your baby to sleep, either in the bassinet or in the main pack ‘n play area.

Following the safe sleep guidelines provided by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), parents should make sure that their baby’s mattress is firm. Soft or loose bedding can cause a baby to suffocate.

Pack ‘N Play, playards, or playpens, are generally safe options for sleeping infants of various ages, weights, and sizes when used safely.

Can a baby sleep in a pack ‘n play?

Yes! Children can sleep in a pack n play. However, at different ages, you should approach it differently.

In general, newborns shouldn’t sleep at the bottom of their pack n plays, but there are other ways to use them. With most pack n’ plays, you can attach a newborn bassinet explicitly designed for babies under 15 lbs.

During the day, you can place your little one down for naps in the newborn bassinet attached to the pack n play while you can still see him.

As long as the baby is old enough to roll over on their own, a pack & play is very safe for sleep.

How long can the baby sleep in a pack n play Graco?

From the moment your newborn baby comes home until about three years old, you can use the play ‘n pack with an attached bassinet.

After babies reach 30 pounds, 35 inches in height, or roughly between 2 and 3 years of age, they should stop sleeping in their pack ‘n plays.

You should also remember that your child might not weigh 30 pounds, but he might be tall for his age. Therefore, he is likely to climb out of his pack n play or maybe even too large to lie comfortably within it.

When should a baby stop sleeping in the pack n play bassinet?

Many infants grow out of bassinets by 3 or 4 months or when they can rollover.

Additionally, it depends on the baby’s weight. The maximum weight for a pack ‘n play bassinet is 15 pounds.

Nonetheless, as babies approach the weight limit and weigh 12 to 13 pounds, it is recommended that they stop sleeping in the pack n play bassinet.

Around this weight, the baby exceeds the weight limit of a bassinet attached to a pack ‘n play.

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