5 Best Large Pack ‘N Plays of 2023
- Standard pack ‘n plays are limiting; larger sizes are the way to go!
- Pack ‘n plays can be used for more than just sleeping.
- There’s come accessories that help maximize your pack ‘n play experience.
- Consider budget, weight, comfort, ease of use, and extra features in your purchase.
- Weight is more of a concern than age for pack ‘n play use.
Pack ‘n plays have to be one of the most useful pieces of baby gear on the market. Fold them up, mattress and all, zip them into their carrying case and off you go! No more worrying about where your baby can nap at a friend’s house or having to request one of the clunky rolling cribs at a hotel. They’re a simple solution to a common problem.
As handy as they are though, the standard size pack ‘n play can be limiting. After a short time, many kids outgrow them; Without the space to sleep comfortably, much less play, they’re quickly rendered useless. That’s where the large pack ‘n play saves the day! Discover the 5 best large pack ‘n plays here and how they’ll be a game changer for your family.
Our Choice: Joovy Room 2 Portable Playpen
- PERFECT SAFE SPACE for your child to sleep or play when you need to get things done around the house
- NEARLY 10 SQUARE FEET OF SPACE so the baby has all the room they’ll need to sleep, daydream and play. And this toddler playpen is durable enough for twins, too!
- LARGE MESH WINDOWS on this baby playpen provides a 360° view, in and out
- WATERPROOF SHEET INCLUDED in this playard for baby is so soft and luxurious that you will want to climb in yourself and take a nap
The Joovy Room 2 Portable Playpen is everything you need in a large pack ‘n play. Its heavy-duty mattress offers your little one a cozy space that’s easy to clean with the included waterproof sheet. The wheels make it easy to move throughout your space, and the low center of gravity ensures your baby’s safety.
While the cons for this pack ‘n play are small in comparison to others, they’re still worth considering. Sometimes it’s tough to set up, which may be a deterrent if you plan to break it down a lot. The crease in the middle of the mattress though is an issue that could disturb some babies more than others so you’ll need to be the judge of that.
Material: Mesh | Maximum Weight Recommendation: 29.6 pounds | Dimensions: 39.75 x 39.75 x 31 inches
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Best Padding: Delta Children Play Yard
- Recommended for children unable to climb out (less than 30 pounds and up to 35 Inches tall) Full size 36 Inches x 36 Inches Playard
- Includes mattress and carrying bag Compact fold for easy storage and travel
- The item dimensions are 36 x 29 x 36 inches
- Product weight: 28.6 pounds
Fun mesh panels meet a sturdy design in the Delta Children Play Yard. Your little one can enjoy one of the best pack ‘n play mattresses both inside the playard and out as it doubles as a floor mat for tummy time. Meeting and exceeding safety standards, you can rest assured they’ll nap and play in a secure environment.
Unfortunately, this pack ‘n play is heavier than others which could be a disincentive if you’re lugging it around often or alone. The buttons that hold the structure in place also tend to get stuck after its been assembled, which makes the task of breaking it down extremely daunting.
Material: Metal | Maximum Weight Recommendation: 30 pounds | Dimensions: 36 x 36 x 29 inches
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Best Versatility: Century Play On 2-in-1 Playard
- ROOM TO GROW: Spacious square design gives your little a space of their own
- HAPPY PLANET COLLECTION: Fabrics made with recycled materials as part of our Do More promise to Recycle, Reimagine, and Give Back
- FREE-PLAY MODE: Unique zippered door allows for easy in and out to turn playpen into play house
- KEEP ‘EM OCCUPIED: GoPlay Playscape wall includes 2 cute, removable toys to spark creativity and play
You won’t find a more versatile pack ‘n play than the Century Play On 2-in-1 Playard. Its zippered doorway allows parents to keep it open during playtime and securely shut during naps. A fun outdoor design coupled with 2 removable toys will keep your child stimulated. Best of all, it’s all made with fabrics that have been recycled!
Still, for all its pros it does have a few cons, the first of which is its size. It’s still bigger than your standard pack ‘n play but it’s not the biggest when compared to the others. Depending on the surface it’s placed on too, it might wobble which is a serious concern if you have a particularly rambunctious baby on your hands.
Material: Mesh | Maximum Weight Recommendation: 30 pounds | Dimensions: 36.8 x 11.1 x 10.9 inches
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Best Size: Skip Hop Portable Playard
- Expands from a travel crib to a play yard in seconds
- Includes mattress pad and sheet for sleep mode and a wipe-clean mat for play mode
- Airy mesh fabric sides for visibility and ventilation
- Foldable for travel and storage on the go. Sheet: machine washable polyester; tumble dry
This pack ‘n play gives you the best of both worlds when it comes to size! The Skip Hop Portable Playard has an expandable design that can be kept at a smaller size around 24 inches or converted into a larger space up to 38 inches! Breathable mesh siding and an easy breakdown system make the design that much better.
While it’s easy to break down, the same can’t be said for the setup process. The mattress in particular is very hard to get into place as the material is so taut it doesn’t just slip into place. The mattress is also too thin for some kids and could use added padding depending on how your child reacts to the firmness.
Material: Polyester, Mesh | Maximum Weight Recommendation: 50 pounds | Dimensions: 37.99 x 23.62 x 49.21 inches
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Best Weight: Chicco Tot Quad
- Features a spacious 37” x 37” padded area for comfortable play and parent peace of mind
- Large, breathable mesh sides provide ventilation and visibility
- Removable and machine washable mattress cover with colorful design
- Lightweight at less than 18 lbs. and easy set up – no assembly required
The best attribute of the Chicco Tot Quad is its lightweight design. It makes it super effortless to carry and even easier to set up. It requires no assembly and its push-button fold creates a seamless breakdown. If you’re on the hunt for a travel crib, Tot Quad offers an ease of use that’s perfect for every adventure you take.
Even though the cons aren’t deal breakers, they’re still something to think about. The mattress cover for this one doesn’t wash well, which might be frustrating as the mattress isn’t a standard size; purchasing more might be more costly than standard sizes. This pack ‘n play also has a 30 lb weight limit which isn’t ideal for long-term use.
Material: Mesh | Maximum Weight Recommendation: 30 pounds | Dimensions: 37 x 37 x 30 inches
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Each of these large pack ‘n plays come with enough features to get the job done, but it doesn’t have to stop there. You can enhance the use of your pack ‘n play through these recommended accessories.
- Extra Sheets and Pads: Having a handful of extra sheets and mattress pads on deck makes cleaning up dirty sheets a painless task.
- Hanging Organizer: Keep all the necessities close by on a hanging organizer; store diapers, wipes, pacifiers, and the like all in arm’s reach.
- Attachable Toys: Consider buying some attachable toys to keep your little one entertained. A mobile toy or attachable ring toys that hang down are perfect.
Ways to Use a Large Pack ‘n Play
Pack ‘n plays are known for their versatility and larger ones undoubtedly take their possibilities to the next level. Take a look at the other ways you can utilize your large pack ‘n play.
- Crib or Bedside Sleeper: Big enough for naps and nighttime alike, you can skip the crib and use your large pack ‘n play instead. They also make for a great bedside sleeper or infant bassinet so you can have your baby close by in the early days.
- Changing Station: No need to run off to the nursery or find a soft surface for changing. Your large pack ‘n play can act as a changing table all its own.
- Playtime Area: A large pack ‘n play gives your kiddo enough space to spread out and play while also containing their toys in one spot. Easy access for them and a clean play space for parents.
- Travel: One of the best features of pack ‘n plays is their ability to be compact and portable. Take them with you outdoors, to grandma’s, hotels, whatever you need! A travel pack ‘n play is a must-have for the jet-setting family!
- Corralling: Let’s be honest, sometimes you just need a safe space to put your little one while you get things done. Large pack ‘n plays fill that need while giving your child enough room to play in a contained, safe environment.
Guide to Choosing a Large Pack ‘n Play for Your Child
If you’re wondering what you should look for in a larger pack ‘n play, we’ve got some ideas right here. Consider the five elements below to be sure you choose the best pack ‘n play for your child’s needs.
- Budget: As with any purchase, your budget is going to be the driving force behind your final decision. Luckily, there’s more than enough options to choose from at a price that fits any budget.
- Bells & Whistles: It’s always nice to have some of the bells and whistles, such as a bassinet attachment, mobile, toys and the like. For some families those are must-haves, in which case keep an eye out for those. If they’re not though, look for a simpler setup, as it’ll likely cost you less than one with all the extras.
- Weight: Seeing as you’re considering a larger pack ‘n play, you’ll also need to consider the weight that comes with it. Naturally, it’ll weigh more than the standard size. If you intend to only move it every once and a while, it may not matter much to you. If it’ll be broken down often, weight is something to examine.
- Ease of Use: Many travel cribs are easy to set up and break down, while others are lacking in their ease of use. It’s critical you read reviews and directions on the setup and breakdown before making your purchase.
- Comfort: If your baby is uncomfortable in their pack ‘n play, you won’t get much use out of it. You’ll want to make sure whatever padding or mattress comes with it is a comfortable fit for them.
What’s the difference between a pack ‘n play, playpen, and playard?
Playpens are just as they sound: a safe, contained place for your child to play in. The playard takes things to the next level, usually including a pad or mattress as well as other features. Consider it the pack ‘n play’s cousin. Though the term playard, as with playpen, are just general terms used to describe these small play and nap spaces.
The term pack ‘n play, on the other hand, is actually a brand of playard, though used interchangeably these days. In other words, it’s Graco’s version of a playard. The Graco pack ‘n play is arguably the most commonly used among families today, though it wasn’t in our top 5 for this article as their playards stick to standard sizing.
What is the maximum age for a large pack ‘n play?
Age isn’t the main concern for using your pack ‘n play but rather your child’s weight. Each pack ‘n play comes with its own weight limits, which for your child’s safety should be abided by. The good news is most of the larger pack ‘n plays come with a higher weight limit than standard sizes as they’re bigger, so you can use them longer.
Can a large pack ‘n play be used for twins or multiple children?
While part of this is personal preference, the general consensus is yes, you can use a pack ‘n play for twins. Born smaller than your average baby, there’s certainly plenty of space for both of them. It would be best to still abide by the weight limit of your pack ‘n play and also separate the babies once they’re able to move around on their own.
Can a different mattress be used besides the one that came with the pack ‘n play?
It’s understandable that you want to make your baby as comfortable as possible in their pack ‘n play. Even so, the mattress isn’t something you should mess with. The mattress that comes with your pack ‘n play has been safety tested for the exact specifications of that structure. An ill-fitting mattress can cause serious injuries and even suffocation.
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