Choosing a portable play yard

There are many kinds of play yards on the market. For home use, invest in a basic play yard. For frequent travelers, today's portable yards have many convenient features.

Are you an avid traveler and want to take your baby out to see the world? Or are you a work at home mom who wants to keep your curious baby occupied while you are on the computer? A play yard is an excellent investment for today's busy mom. The plain old playpens we remember (or maybe we don't remember) don't seem to do the job as well as portable, fun adventure places for the modern baby. The play yard you choose depends on your and your baby's tastes and needs.

Moms who need a special place for their baby while they work around the house might need to invest in a basic play yard without all of the extra features, such as revolving toys, music and a diaper station, since all of these amenities are available at home. A simple, low-cost play yard runs at about $50-$75 and has all the features designed to keep your baby safe and comfortable. The Fun Sport Play Yard is 27.5" x 40" and has high sides. Set up takes only one minute and there are two back wheels for room to room versatility. This Play Yard has four mesh sides for optimal ventilation, folds easily and fits into a carrier bag. The Fun Sport Play Yard is a good choice for babies up to 30 lbs and less than 35" tall.

The best medium-priced Play Yards have all of the basic features described above and include other special amenities designed to entertain your baby and make travel with a little one easier for you. These Play Yards cost from $115-$150. Eddie Bauer's play yards are ranked among the most popular, especially for travel. One model has a removable bassinet with a light, a vibration massage function, a removable changing table, wheels and brakes. It measures in at 28"x 40", takes less than a minute to set up, folds easily and fits into its own travel pack. The slightly more expensive Eddie Bauer Ashford model has the same features described above, including rounded corners, a removable bassinet attached to the top rails, diaper storage, a toy bag, and a soothing mobile complete with a night light. This model costs $141.96

The Cadillac of play yards is the Graco Pack and Play. This play yard is for serious travelers who rely on the convenience of Pack and Play's unique features. The frame is curved for comfort and includes a posture friendly, adjustable changing table. The oval shaped bassinet has Graco's uniquely attractive and comfortable quilting inside. For toys and other baby supplies, there is an organizer, complete with a diaper stacker and a refillable diaper wipe container. The mattress has a 2 speed massager, and to keep your baby amused, there is an electronic mobile with soft, bright toys and your choice of classical songs, favorite lullabies or soothing nature sounds. Little lights shine as the music plays and there is also a check light to allow you to look in on your child while he or she is sleeping under the domed canopy. This play yard is appropriate for babies less than 35" tall and it must be cleaned frequently to remove sand and dirt which can damage the rail lock. The Pack and Play can easily be cleaned with soap and water and the cloth parts are machine washable. The Graco Pack and Play costs $184.99.

For long and short tours, to exotic locations or to the supermarket, it is easy to choose the play yard that is convenient for you and fun and comfortable for baby.

© High Speed Ventures 2011