View Full Version : Playpens with bassinet - which one is better???

05-03-2001, 10:11 AM
Help! I'm expecting my 1st baby soon and I'm trying to decide which playpen to get. I’ve pretty much decided to get one with the bassinet & changing station since we're limited on space. This way I won't have to store both a bassinet AND a playpen later on. Now I just have to decide which one to get. So, here are my concerns:

1) Century Fold 'n Go Elan - I noticed that the bassinet "mattress" has a seam right down the middle of it. Wouldn't this be uncomfortable for the baby? Is there something that could be put down underneath the baby while it's sleeping to make the surface softer & to protect the mattress?

2) Graco Pack 'n Play - has a larger bassinet (the actual size of the pack ‘n play, just at a higher level), however I wonder if that's too shaky. Or is the “rocking” feature a plus? Can it be used any longer than the Fold ‘n Go bassinet since it's larger? Again – does anything go underneath the baby to protect the mattress?

3) The Pack ‘n Plays have mesh on all 4 sides, but the Fold ‘n Go has 2 solid sides. Which is better?

I know I’ve asked a lot of questions, but this first-time Mom would certainly appreciate any advice anyone can offer.

Thanks a lot!!

05-21-2001, 09:26 PM
I'm not sure what you mean by the 'rocking' feature, but the Graco bassinet can hold a baby up to 18 pounds--I think it's quite stable. They do make sheets to go over the mattress so the baby isn't laying on the plastic.

05-22-2001, 10:45 PM
1:The seam will not affect your child, however you should put a sheet over it. Make sure you buy the actual pack-n-play sheets, not the generic travel yard sheets (by koala baby, carters, and gerber) as they will be too big. As far as putting something on top of the mattress to make it softer, PLEASE do not do that. A firm mattress is what an infant needs.

2. Graco and Century are actually the same brand. One is not better than the other, it's just the features. The larger bassinette cannot be used any longer than the smaller one. The reason that bassinettes are made are for basically two reasons. 1: It's small. In the first few months, parent's like to have their infants close to them in the room and many times, cribs do not fit. 2: It's a convenience factor for the mother. Bassinettes are higher up. The mother doesn't have to bend down as far 600 times a day after she's had a child. They should be moved out of the bassinette as soon as they can push up while laying on their stomach, Even if they are under the weight limit as they can fall out. As far as the rocking motion, when the child is that size, it's not going to move unless you move it.

3. Mesh vs solid sides. It doesn't really matter unless you might possibly be going outside. It will keep the breeze out a little bit. Again, it's just a difference in features.

I hope this information helps! If you have any more questions, I suggest you go to your local Babies R Us store and ask a sales associate. (That's where I work) :)

06-10-2001, 12:40 AM
I have the Graco Pack-N-Play and love it.

My sister-in-law gave us a hand-made bassinet which we used for about a week. My daughter hated it after that. We were in the process of home remodeling and couldn't set up the crib yet, so I used the Pack-N-Play with the bassinet feature. She slept in it, next to our bed, until she was three months old and never complained. Mine is separated to have a changing table too which was a nice plus except that the sides of the changing portion were sloped and she would unintentionally roll into them (we used rolled towels on the sides to prevent this).

Another advantage to using the play yard bassinet is for traveling. Whenever we had to stay at a relative's or a hotel, I just packed up the play yard/bassinet and took it with us. It set up in minutes and my daughter was comfortable sleeping in her own bed...the same one she had at home. This was wonderful for times when a relative would babysit as well. I'd take the play yard/bassinet to their home and set it up in a flash. I felt better knowing she was napping in a safe place rather than on someone's bed surrounded by pillows.

She is now almost 9 months old and we still take the play yard with us when we travel. We leave the bassinet portion at home now and she sleeps in the play yard portion. Mine has mesh sides which I prefer for good air circulation.

This was one of the best "furniture" pieces we bought. It's also compact enough when it's packed up that I keep it under her crib for easy access. I can just grab it and go. I think we'll be using it for a long time.

As a first time mom too, I understand all the questions and need for info. Hope this was helpful.

06-11-2001, 12:18 AM
I haven't used the bassinet feature, so I can only give my opinion about your third question. I prefer a playpen with at least one solid side. That way, you can give the baby some shade if the afternoon sun is low, and it blocks a breeze better. I'm usually using the playpen when I'm gardening. For that reason, I also prefer larger wheels to help move the playpen outside.