Mini Crib Vs Pack And Play

Are you trying to decide between a mini crib vs pack and play?

Then let us help you decide which is best for you and your baby with our mini crib vs pack n play comparison guide!

There are a lot of things to think about when bringing a newborn home, and one of the first things you need to decide is exactly where the baby will sleep.

Although you probably want your baby in your room for the first few months, planning ahead can save money and stress.

The mini crib and Pack n Play are two popular alternatives to the standard crib.

Compact and comfortable, they provide a place to sleep for newborns and older babies.

For parents with limited space, or a tendency to travel, these two options are certainly worth considering. 

In this guide, we’ll take a look at the advantages and disadvantages of both the mini crib and Pack and Play.

Despite similar builds, these two are useful in very different situations.

So, to help you choose which is right for you and your child, take a look at this guide to the pros and cons of pack and play vs mini crib. 

And if you love this mini crib or pack and play guide, make sure to check out our guides on the the bassinet vs pack n playmini crib vs crib, and can a baby sleep in a pack n play. Or even these crib alternatives.

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Our Top Pick
Delta Children Folding Portable Mini Baby Crib
$215.00 $152.99

If you need a small crib for traveling or a small bedroom, this crib is an excellent option!

Not only is affordable, but it folds flat for easy storage and include casters for easy mobility.

This mini crib grows with your child with two mattress positions that let you adjust the height. So, as your child starts to stand up, you can still use this mini crib.

The crib is made from sustainable New Zealand pine and comes in 5 different colors.

And best of all, you can use it until your baby reaches up to 50lbs making it a fantastic mini crib choice!


09/26/2022 01:04 pm GMT

mini crib vs pack and play

Firstly, let’s take a look at what is a mini crib and a pack and play.

What Is A Mini Crib?

The mini crib is essentially the same as a standard crib, only smaller.

Most mini cribs have a similar build and style to the standard crib.

These are ideal for parents who want their baby in the room with them, but lack the space for a full-size crib.

They’re also useful for those with twins, and as a spare crib in a secondary caregivers house (like at the grandparents).

A mini crib tends to be used until the child is around 18 months old, and then you need a size upgrade. 

Pros And Cons Of Mini Cribs

Many parents are drawn to the mini crib out of necessity.

If you don’t have the space for a full-size crib, a mini crib is an excellent solution that can accommodate a growing baby for close to two years.

As you’d expect, there are advantages and disadvantages to the mini crib.

Pros

  • The mini crib has a small footprint, allowing it to slip easily into limited space. If you want your baby to share a room with you, then the mini crib can be a better choice than a bassinet. And it has the same benefit if you have twins, or want the baby to share with a sibling.
  • They’re less expensive than standard cribs, even for a high quality build. With all the costs associated with new babies, a mini crib can be a great place to save money.
  • Mini cribs are often more appealing, design wise, than a Pack ‘n Play. The growing popularity of the mini crib is expanding the market, and there are now some beautiful options available.
  • The mini crib is somewhat portable, although you wouldn’t travel with it. However, if you plan on moving home soon, a mini crib will be less effort to transport than a full-size option.

Cons

  • The longevity of the mini crib is limited. After around 18 months, your child will have outgrown the space. 
  • Although smaller than a standard crib, the mini crib can still be heavy. It couldn’t be used as a travel crib, especially as mini cribs are rarely collapsible.
  • While standard cribs have to conform to strict regulations, mini cribs are allowed some sizing variety. For the most part, this shouldn’t cause issues. However, when you want to buy sheets and mattresses, you might find limited choices.
Our Top Pick
Delta Children Folding Portable Mini Baby Crib
$215.00 $152.99

If you need a small crib for traveling or a small bedroom, this crib is an excellent option!

Not only is affordable, but it folds flat for easy storage and include casters for easy mobility.

This mini crib grows with your child with two mattress positions that let you adjust the height. So, as your child starts to stand up, you can still use this mini crib.

The crib is made from sustainable New Zealand pine and comes in 5 different colors.

And best of all, you can use it until your baby reaches up to 50lbs making it a fantastic mini crib choice!


09/26/2022 01:04 pm GMT

What Is A Pack ‘N Play?

A Pack ‘n Play is a combination of crib, bassinet, and play area. It’s useful for quick naps, overnight stays, and safe play when in the home.

The most popular Pack n Play options on the market tend to be those made by Graco. However, other versions come under the same heading.

Pack n Plays tend to have heavier frames to support their different functions, but are transportable and foldable, to accommodate the different uses.

Pack n Plays are sometimes known as playards!

Pros And Cons Of Pack ‘N Play

The Pack n Play might not be a traditional choice, but more and more parents are turning to this versatile solution.

So, what do we like and dislike about the Pack n Play?

Pros

  • A crucial element to the Pack n Play is versatility. This is more than just a place at home for sleeping. Instead, it can be used as a playpen, travel crib, and home crib. Some versions of the Pack ‘n Play can do even more than this, transforming into items such as care stations.
  • Pack n Plays are lightweight and collapsible. This allows parents to move the Pack n Play around the house, so you can keep the baby close wherever you go.
  • A Pack n Play will be smaller than a standard crib, which makes it another excellent sleeping solution in limited space. Combined with the versatility, this makes the Pack n Play fantastic for the homes of caregivers such as grandparents.
  • Foldable and collapsible, the Pack n Play is easy to keep in storage. After your child has outgrown the sleeping area, the Pack n Play can be kept on hand for playtime. Or if you’re planning a sibling!

Cons

  • The sleeping area of the Pack n Play is sometimes similar to a bassinet, and your child might have outgrown the space when they reach roughly 5 months. At this point, they’ll need to transfer to either the mini crib, or a full-size crib.
  • Pack n Plays are transportable, but they tend to be heavier than the standard travel crib. If you wanted to travel a lot, the Pack n Play might not feel hugely convenient. 
  • As with the mini crib, purchasing a mattress and protector for your Pack n Play can be difficult. The flexible sides are a suffocation risk if used with the wrong mattress.

Similarities and differences between Mini Crib Vs Pack N Play

Let’s look at the similarities and differences between a mini crib and pack and play.

Age Range

A child can generally sleep in a mini crib until they’re roughly 18 months old, and depending on the brand and model you choose many mini cribs will also convert into a toddler bed and even a twin bed so they can be used for a much longer period than a pack and play.

Particularly fast-growing children might need to move out of their mini crib early, but most will find it suitable for more than a year before it needs to be converted or replaced.

The Pack ‘n Play, on the other hand, is a little more complicated.

Some Pack ‘n Plays are only suitable for around 5 months, while others can be used until your child is roughly 2 years old.

If you want to use the Pack ‘n Play as a bed, be sure to check the recommended age range closely when buying.

Portability

Both the mini crib and the Pack n Play are a lightweight alternative to the standard crib.

However, if you want portability, the Pack n Play is the better choice. Portability is key to the Pack n Play — it’s the “pack” in “Pack ‘n Play”.

These can be folded down into compact shapes to be easily moved from place to place.

Although the Pack n Play is typically bulkier than a true travel crib, it’s still a good option for portability.

A mini crib can be moved around easier than a standard crib, particularly as some options come equipped with wheels.

This is useful if you want to move the mini crib around an apartment. But many don’t collapse, so they’re not as useful for travel.

Price

Both a mini crib and pack and play are cheaper overall than a standard crib (and reduce those initial costs).

In terms of price, there’s little to choose between the mini crib and Pack n Play.

They tend to cost from around $100 to $300, with higher priced models typically having a better quality build. 

Final Thoughts on pack and play vs mini crib

The mini crib and Pack n Play are both smaller alternatives to the standard sized crib.

Often chosen as a way of reducing the costs associated with a newborn, or as a smaller bed for sleeping away, there are advantages and disadvantages to both.

If you are looking for a crib alternative for regular use, we would choose a mini crib given it’s extended use, especially if you purchase a convertible mini crib.

However, if you are looking for a portable crib for regular travel, then we would recommend a pack and play.

The mini crib tends to be sturdier, and can generally support a child until they’re at least 18 months and beyond.

The heavier build reduces portability, but the smaller footprint makes the mini crib a stylish choice for apartment living. 

The Pack ‘n Play is versatile and portable, able to change from travel crib to play area.

However, babies can outgrow the sleeping area quickly, and Pack ‘n Plays tend to lack stability. 

If you tend to travel, or spend time away from home, the Pack n Play is definitely superior.

But if you want a sturdy and long-term sleeping solution, check out the mini crib. Or, even better, get both!

The Pack n’ Play can be used as a nap area/play space/travel crib, while most sleeping happens in the mini crib!  

And if you’re looking for more great sleeping guides, then check out these sleeping guides on travel crib vs pack n play, best pack and play mattressesbest mini cribs, and best bassinets for small spaces.

mini crib vs pack n play