We devote thousands of hours of research to help you get Big Travel with Small Money. You support us by signing-up for credit cards through partner links which earn us a commission. Here’s our full Advertising Policy.
Over the last ~1 year, my 11-month-old daughter has gone on 5-6 trips, including Hawaii, San Diego, and even Spain! If I’m staying at a hotel, I never bring a travel crib. I always use the hotel’s crib.
However, if I’m staying at an Airbnb, then I usually bring a travel crib–which is mostly because Airbnbs don’t offer travel cribs for guests. However, I always ask the host before my trip, just in case!
The Hotels’ Cribs Are Always Good Enough
In my experience, the design and quality of cribs vary drastically between hotels. I stayed at a Staybridge Suites and received a metal crib that looked like it was from the 1950s.
Most recently, I stayed at a Hyatt House and got an older “Foundations” brand Pack ‘n Play. My baby doesn’t seem to care where she sleeps when traveling. The days of erratic (or even nonexistent) naps tire her out, and by the end of the night, she is solidly ready to sleep. I do always travel with an extra crib sheet, though, and have used the sheet at almost every hotel!
I’d rather use the hotel’s cribs than pack MORE stuff, and risk having to pay to check in yet another bag.
Pro Tip: Certain credit cards offer free checked bags. For example, you can get a FREE checked bag (a savings of up to $100 per round-trip) when you use your Chase United℠ Explorer Card to purchase your United Airlines ticket.
The Best Travel Crib
If I do have to bring a travel crib, my new go-to is Phil & Ted’s Portable Traveller Crib. It’s one of the lightest and smallest travel cribs I’ve used. I found one on the Facebook Marketplace for just $50–saving me ~$85! Here are some other travel cribs to consider if you’re looking at alternative travel cribs.
I always use the hotel’s crib when traveling. The quality varies widely between hotels, but I always think they are good enough. Plus, my baby always sleeps great in them. This saves me the trouble of packing even more stuff, and the cost of extra luggage! What do you prefer when traveling with your little ones? Share with us in the comments!