Favorite Travel Crib
August 18, 2020
We knew we wanted one of the floor-contact travel cribs for this baby. We have previously owned a Graco Pack 'n Play and a Baby Trend Playard, and while the Graco worked great for what we needed for previous kiddos, it was heavy and not as toddler friendly as we'd like. As for the Baby Trend, it is much more complicated to set up than the Graco and the top rails are hard to lock into place correctly and just as difficult to unlock when trying to take it down. The Micralite, on the other hand, is superior to both in several ways.
The fact that the travel crib sits directly on the ground is (mostly) a huge plus. When used inside, it means there is no uncomfortable flexing of the mattress over bottom bars to create high and low spots. The lack of support bars under the bottom also allow for a decrease in weight, but more on that later. The floor design also allows for more convenient use for breastfeeding moms or parents of babies that wake easily when being set down to sleep. The side unzips so I can lay down to breastfeed my baby and not have to move them when done or to cuddle them until they fall asleep and not have to move them. (Teaching baby to self-sooth by putting them to bed awake is all well and good in theory, but sometimes you just need them to sleep so you can sleep or get something done.) The only downside to the floor contact is if you are using this outside. The bottom can get dirty and uneven ground makes the mattress flex under bigger babies or toddlers.
Set up and take down are simple and easy to do (with a little practice). The hardest part is remembering how to line up the two pieces to put in the travel bag. The legs easily swing out and lock into place with an audible click and the bassinet (which is included and not extra!!) easily zips into place. The mattress unfolds in two ways to fit the bassinet attachment or the main crib, so there is very little extra parts to haul around, unlike the conventional play yards. This allows the Micralite to be significantly lighter than many competitors.
The style is very clean and not gimmicky looking like so many baby products tend to be. I love the plain black fabric and sleek lines. There aren't a bunch of unnecessary bells and whistles, just thoughtful features and functionality in a neutral aesthetic.
We looked at pretty much every floor-contact travel crib before deciding on this one. While there are several that compare functionally to the Micralite, the Micralite had a more budget-friendly price point without losing ease of use or having to pay extra for desired features (like a bassinet).
- Budget-friendly compared to other floor-contact models
- Neutral design
- Easy to set up and take down
- Infant-to-toddler friendly design
- Frequent travel
- Newborn bedside bassinet
- Breastfed babies
- Still expensive compared to many conventional travel cribs
- Storage/carry case is still quite large
- Not great for outdoor use