Just Use A Playpen Instead Of Crib

13 Replies
JennyC - January 3

Hi ladies. I'm due in March and starting to think about buying a crib. The problem is that we are currently tight on space and money. We are in a one bedroom apartment and paying rent and mortgage on a condo that won't sell. Sooo..I was considering just purchasing a playpen instead of a crib. Seems like they do the same thing, but it takes up less room, is cheaper, and we can take it with us when we travel and baby will always be able to sleep in a bed she's used to. Has anyone ever just used a playpen? What're the main advantages of a crib? Thanks for any input!


hi - January 3

the playpen "pack and Play" systems have a weight limitation so you maybe able to use it for a few months but you will probably reach the weight limitation by 6 months. My baby is over a yr old now we still use the changing table on the pack n play. I only used the ba__sinette feature once. The mattress was a little hard to me but the baby slept just fine. The bottom of the play pen is really hard, also with it being so deep you really have to bend to pick up the baby. We have a crib too, but it's mostly used as a toy storage area. Baby sleeps with us. I guess if you have to pick between the two the crib though more expensive you will be able to use longer. Some even convert into toddler beds. Also I was able to get my pack n play at a yard sale. It had all of its parts was less than a yr old, plus she threw in a couple of sheet sets. If you buy second hand make sure it meets current safety standards. You can check that online too. After that all you need is a little elbow grease for a thurough cleaning and to wash all washable parts.


Drew - January 3

My neice is almost 2 now, and she uses it at our house when she comes to visit. She is a little bit smaller than average for her age, and she's already escaping from it! On our's the weight limitation is pretty high (can't remember right off hand) but it's likely your little one will be able to climb out before your done with it. I suggest trying some of the gently used childrens outlets like Once Upon a Child for a crib. They CAN NOT sell you anything that doesn't meet government standards for safety, and they are usually very reasonably priced. Good luck!! :)


mechelle - January 3

jenny, we are doing the same thing. this is my 4th baby. i had gotten rid of everything after my 3rd cause i thought he was my last!! this one is a bit of a surprise. with my 1st son i used a playpen and he did just fine in it. he slept in it, til he was about 14 mos old. then into a toddler bed.


Tess - January 3

I am also plannin on buying a play pen instead of crib coz i think it would be more convenient for us to move it around the house.


Heather L - January 3

A playpen base (the part they sleep on) in the pack and play types (that you can fold up and move around when you travel are NOT comfortable for them to sleep on for a long time. Just look at one when it's unfolded. There are 2 long creases in the pad they are to lay on. Even with the little matress they come with, you can still feel the creases. You want your baby to sleep, you should get a crib with a GOOD firm matress. You wouldn't want to sleep on creases. This is my opinion, but I would get a ba__sinet (they have no creases since they don't fold up) for the first 3 months if you can't afford the space for a crib, but after that you will NEED to get a crib. Trust me, you'll be happy you did when your baby sleeps at night!


Ashley - January 3

I agree. A crib is part of having a baby, people. It's an expense you have to make - you can check out second hand stores, or see if a friend or relative has one - but honestly, if you can't get your baby a bed - sell yours and sleep on the floor. That baby didn't choose to be here, and certainly isn't responsible for it's finances right now.


Got It, Liked It - January 3

We got a pack n' play for space reasons. It worked out great. We used the ba__sinet for about four or five months, then went to the crib part. I really liked having the ba__sinet, and changing table all in one. My baby's 15 months old now, and she still sleeps in the crib part. She never had a problem sleeping at night. Or being weaned from a bottle throughout the night. I already have another for this future baby.


JennyC - January 3

Ashley, thanks for your opinion. But I just can't believe that being frugal equates to mis-treating my baby. I'm trying really hard not to get caught up in the marketing hype about all the things you "have" to have. I realize that she "has" to have a comfortable, safe place to sleep, but that doesn't necessarily mean I only have one option. The very fact that I've asked the question means I'm interested in finding the best situation for her. Thanks everyone else too, I think I've decided to try out the pack and play, at least until we get a bigger place, or if she has trouble with it once she gets out of the ba__sinet. Seems like something we will probably end up buying in the long run for travelling anyway, even if we do have to get a crib at some point too.


crazy!!! - January 3

Ashley, that is a crazy a__sumption!! Not all babies sleep in cribs! Wow, if you are tight on space and $$, then get what you see fit-a play pen and a crib are not that different. When my family went the Walt disney world resort they said that they had cribs-guess what?? It was a pack & play and they had special sheets made for the bottom of them!! For 5000 a week I suppose that that crib is exceptable!!


Well - January 3

JennyC, when my daughter was born, all she would sleep in was a swing and/or a pack n play. Her crib was totally out of the question and she never in her life slept in the crib and now, seven years later, I'm pregnant again, so hopefully this baby will sleep in the crib. Anwyays, my point is that you are not putting your baby at risk or being a cruddy mother by saving money due to your current financial situation and getting a pack n play for space reasons as well. It's a great investment and when you visit with friends and family, you can take their bed with them.


:o) - January 3

We went out and bought a $250 crib for my first, and she refused it from the first week she was home. The crib wound up at the Salvation Army, barely used. I didn't know anything about pack n' plays, so in order to get sleep, she slept with me. Yes, we tried to keep putting her in the crib, but she cried so much, that I was having major back pain from taking her in & out. I really like the pack n' plays.


kellie - January 3

You can get a great deal on craigslist.com for used furniture. If I were in your situation I would buy a used crib and a NEW mattress. Craigslist is all local listings so there are no shipping costs, you just drive to the sellers house & pick it up. I really wanted a real wicker ba__sinet for my little one, but they are pricey ($300-$400), I found one used on Craigslist for $85. The lady I bought it from said her son slept in it only 2 times. What a deal!


katashinomo - June 15

Late to the party, but for those who are judging saying its bad to use the pack n play, They make matresses specifically for pack n plays (sold separately) so that they can be used the same as a crib.



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