Not sure how moms and dads do it without the Guava Family Lotus Travel Crib

Travel cribs come in all shapes and sizes, but the Guava Family Lotus Travel Crib is the best one I’ve ever used. Over the last few weeks, we had family and friends visit us and stay the night. The Travel Crib was a big hit, especially with the moms and dads.

For starters, the 3D Z-Fold system makes it super easy to unfold and use the crib. That might not seem like that big of a perk at first, but ask a parent. We have used other travel cribs, and you stand there for a few seconds trying to remember how to unfold the thing and spend a few more minutes adjusting the crib and making it suitable for the little one.

Now so much with this Travel Crib. It unfolds quickly and you don’t have to be an engineer to use it. Setup literally takes seconds, not minutes. Meanwhile, when the baby is getting owly and ready to take a nap, every second counts.

At just 15 pounds, the crib has another benefit you might not realize until it is time to head to the airport or grab and go for a day trip. The crib folds up so tightly and so small that it is about the size of a small carry-on bag. It’s light enough that you won’t feel like you are lugging an actual crib with you all the way to a family member’s house across the country.

Those two perks — easy unfolding and lightweight — are nice, but we found the best feature is actually the easy access once the baby is in the crib. A lot of parents do contact naps these days, and you want the flexibility to have your child inside the crib or to move him or her out to your lap for a longer nap or during the night. The crib has an easy access side panel that unzips easily and allows you to put the crib right next to a chair or bed, and then move your child in and out of the crib without the usual awkwardness of lowering the baby all the way down to the crib. It’s like a secret access portal to keep the child from waking up.

In tests, it worked wonders. When the child falls asleep in your arms, you can then kneel down and slide the child into the crib without the eventual and unpleasant soft little “plop” down into the crib, or moving the child into a sleep position before you lower him or her into place. There’s less maneuvering overall since you can kneel right next to the mattress.

Thai proved to be the biggest selling point, because it’s often when you place a baby or toddler into the crib that causes the most disturbance, not necessarily the actual sleeping time.

Of course, the crib is also ideal for a toddler to use for play time during the day. It’s sturdy and stays put on the floor, without sliding around like other products I’ve seen.

An important point to make about price, for anyone on the fence. It looks like Guava Family is offering $50 off the crib currently, which puts it in the same range as most of the models I’ve seen at stores and online. The fact that there’s a zippered side access door for the crib makes it a good deal overall, compared to travel cribs without that extra door.

The light weight, small size, and extra features — not to mention the easy unfolding — make this travel crib a great find and a great fit for babies and toddlers alike.