In-depth baby product reviews led by a Pediatrician

Dream On Me Travel Light Playard Review

This is not a travel crib and shouldn't be used for sleeping
Dream On Me Travel Light Playard
Credit: Abriah Wofford
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Price:   $90 List | $63.99 at Amazon
Pros:  Fits well in the carry bag, inexpensive
Cons:  Not for sleeping, longer setup, not machine washable
Manufacturer:   Dream On Me
By Wendy Schmitz ⋅ Senior Review Editor  ⋅  Mar 3, 2021
  • Share this article:
Our Editors independently research, test, and rate the best products. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Learn more
59
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#5 of 10
  • Ease of Use - 35% 5
  • Portability - 30% 8
  • Comfort - 15% 4
  • Quality - 15% 7
  • EcoHealth - 5% 1

The Skinny

The Dream On Me Travel Light Playard is not a travel crib, and this could be misleading for consumers, as it was for us, because it looks like other travel cribs! After researching a variety of competitors, we picked the Dream on Me as a contender for travel crib as it frequently comes up in several reviews and purchase sites in the travel crib category. As it looks similar to other cribs on the market, we falsely assumed it was a travel crib. After testing and further research, we discovered the product we bought and tested is not suitable for sleeping babies and the company says it is only appropriate for "brief naps with adult supervision," and little ones should be moved to an appropriate sleep space as soon as possible. We think many parents will be as confused as we were, which is why we left this product in the review. This product should only be used as a play yard, and it should not be used as a sleeping space for any child of any age.

Compare to Similar Products

 
Awards  Editors' Choice Award Best Value Award  Best Value Award 
Price $90.00 List
$63.99 at Amazon - 29% off
$300.00 List
$299.99 at Amazon
$109.00 List
$119.99 at Amazon
$110.00 List$80.00 List
Check Price at Amazon
Overall Score Sort Icon
59
83
69
62
52
Star Rating
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Pros Fits well in the carry bag, inexpensiveEase to use, eco-healthy, portable, comfyPrice, easy to use, ultra-portableEasy to use, fairly portable, bassinet attachmentPrice, average comfort and quality
Cons Not for sleeping, longer setup, not machine washablePriceLess impressive pad, potential eco-health concernsLower quality, less comfortable pad, potential eco-health concernsLarge, heavier, not eco-healthy
Bottom Line This is not a travel crib and shouldn't be used for sleepingNice, cozy crib that is easy to transport and very eco-healthyImpressive and cost-effective travel crib solution with easy to use side-zip and carry bagEasy enough to use portable option with a bassinet accessory, but it isn't as impressive as better quality optionsBudget friendly with average functionality but it isn't as portable
Rating Categories Travel Light Playard BabyBjorn Travel Cr... 2-1 Playpen Flisko 2 in 1 Trave... Graco Pack 'n Play...
Ease Of Use (35%)
5.0
9.0
8.0
8.0
6.0
Portability (30%)
8.0
8.0
8.0
7.0
4.0
Comfort (15%)
4.0
7.0
5.0
3.0
6.0
Quality (15%)
7.0
8.0
6.0
5.0
6.0
EcoHealth (5%)
1.0
10.0
1.0
1.0
1.0
Specs Travel Light Playard BabyBjorn Travel Cr... 2-1 Playpen Flisko 2 in 1 Trave... Graco Pack 'n Play...
Weight 10.6 lbs 12.8 lbs 10.25 lbs 12.1 lbs (includes bassinet) 20.3 lbs (includes bassinet)
Crib Dimensions - assembled 26"H x 24"L x 31"W 25.5"H x 43.8"L x 32.5"W 27.5"H x 46"L x 30.5"W 28.5"H x 42"L x 28.5"W 28.8"H x 41.1"L x 28.6"W
Crib Dimensions - closed 20"H x 24"L x 6"W 19.5"H x 23.6"L x 6.6"W 22"H x 24"L x 7"W 21"H x 24"L x 7.5"W 10.6"H x 27.7"L x 10.3"W
Age/Height/Weight Limit 35" or 30 lbs 3 Years or
35"
39" or 33 lbs ~3 Years 35" 35" or
30 lbs
Special Features None Removeable Fabric Removable Fabric, Side Zipper Opening Side Zipper Opening, Bassinet Bassinet, Toy Bar, Storage Bag
Cleaning Method Mattress Fabric: Spot Clean
Travel Crib Fabric: Spot Clean
Mattress Fabric: Machine Wash
Travel Crib Fabric: Machine Wash
Mattress Fabric: Spot Clean
Travel Crib Fabric: Spot Clean
Mattress Fabric: Machine Wash
Travel Crib Fabric: Machine Wash
Mattress Fabric: Spot Clean
Travel Crib Fabric: Spot Clean
Flame Retardant Free Not Specified Yes (Oeko-Tex Standard 100 Certified) Not Specified Not Specified No
Set Up Time 2:36 min:sec 1:37 min:sec 1:01 min:sec 1:27 min:sec 1:47 min:sec
Warranty None 2 Years None 1 Year included with purchase, 2 year available 1 Year

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Dream On Me company started as a small store in New Jersey in 1988. Over the years, the company has worked to provide products for families that make parenthood easier. They strive to create good quality products at fair prices to help parents through the stages of babyhood.

Performance Comparison



Credit: Abriah Wofford

Ease of Use


This play yard is more challenging to use than the competition, and it didn't perform well compared to similar designs. This unit takes almost twice as long as the easier competition to set up with a time of 2:36. We like that the mattress attachment is a buckle instead of Velcro and feel it sits firmer in the base than some competitors. In short, it takes more time to set up and take down than most of the other options in the review. The cover is also not machine washable.

NOT a Travel Crib
We cannot state enough that this product is not a travel crib and is not rated as safe for sleeping. Even the manufacturer in answering questions states it is not for long-duration or unsupervised sleeping (i.e., overnight). They say children should be moved to an appropriate sleep surface shortly after falling asleep inside the product. We worry that this product's similarity to popular travel cribs will cause confusion that could lead to potential problems.

Credit: Abriah Wofford

Portability


This is a very lightweight portable play yard (not a travel crib) that folds fairly small. It is easy to take on travel, and it fits well in the carry bag it comes with. It weighs a little over 10 lbs and measures 20"H x 24"L x 6"W when in the travel bag.

Credit: Abriah Wofford

Comfort


This play yard is not the most comfortable as the bottom surface is hard corrugated plastic and a polyethylene foam pad on top.

Credit: Abriah Wofford

The foam is easy to compress, which results in little ones essentially sitting directly on the hard plastic. A denser foam would provide a more comfortable surface.

Credit: Abriah Wofford

Quality


The Dream on Me quality is better than what you'd expect for the lower price. It is on the budget-friendly side for a play yard, and if you need a smaller play yard, it could be something to consider given the better overall quality.

Credit: Abriah Wofford

In general, all the parts and moving components are stiffer than the competition, but they feel sturdy and don't wobble. The legs are thick and sturdy, and the fabric fits the frame well. The stitching is hidden, and it uses higher quality buckles, where other products use Velcro. It doesn't have any zippers or other connectors, so there is less worry about breaking components. The fabric isn't as friendly as we'd like, and little ones may find it less touch-friendly than the competition.

Credit: Abriah Wofford

Eco-health


As most companies concerned about eco-health like to brag about their efforts, we did not find any such bragging for the Dream on Me. There is nothing on their website, product page, or the product itself to indicate any special consideration for using healthier materials for babies.

Credit: Abriah Wofford

This leads us to assume that they do not use materials with eco-health in mind. The tag on the mattress says 100% polyethylene foam, which is typically slightly better than polyurethane for off-gassing. Still, we have no details or further information about any component used in this product.

Manufacturer Video



Wendy Schmitz