A playard is an ideal travel accessory to help your baby sleep, or take a break, in a safe place when you're away from home - whether it’s on vacation or staying with family or friends.

When used safely, playards (sometimes called pack 'n play playards or playpens), are a safe option for sleeping babies of many ages, weights, and sizes. It can be a perfectly safe alternative to a crib or a bassinet - as long as it meets CPSC standards for infant sleep. It’s always a good idea to check out the manufacturer’s credentials.

Here are a few tips on using your playard safely
  • Always choose a playard cot with a firm and flat mattress
  • Do not replace the mattress of the playard with a softer version
  • Make sure mattress sheets for the playard are very tight fitting
  • Keep the playard clean and clear of anything loose inside
  • Use a sleeping bag to ensure baby’s safety
  • Even though it’s a playard, you should continue to follow the American Academy of Pediatrics recommendations for safe sleeping in cribs. Do not add any stuffed toys, pillows, or blankets, as these pose a suffocation hazard and can increase the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS)
Before you go
Before baby has their first sleepover at the grandparents or at childcare – it’s a really good idea to let baby have a few practise runs in the playard.

We always suggest that you do the same if using SnoozeShade for Playards for the first time too – baby might need a bit of getting used to a new environment.

Encourage your baby to try sleeping in the playard for a few nights before the trip or sleepover. This will help your baby get used to the playard in a familiar environment and with you present to support any wobbles.

This is especially important if it’s a sleepover without you and you won’t be there to settle your baby to sleep. By trialilng the playard at home, baby will feel more comfortable because it already feels familiar to them. Other ideas include giving them something familiar that smells of home and white noise can be helpful to drown out distractions.

On vacation
Whilst many hotels will provide you with a playard, having your own will avoid arriving and being advised the hotel has run out, or that the playard isn’t suitable for your baby. By taking your own playard on vacation, it can create a familiar environment and help you maintain your baby’s sleep routine wherever you are – which means everyone should get some sleep!

Try not to let baby play in the playard
For the first few trips away from home, it’s advisable not to use the playard as a playpen. Baby needs to associate the playard with sleep (not play).
As they become more used to the playard then you can use it how you prefer . Do be aware that if you let your baby use the playard as a play venue then they will probably start to associate it with playtime which will make it harder for them to sleep easily in the playard.