Best SlumberPod Alternative – How To Choose Cheap Darkening Tent For Pack N Play & Travel Crib

Are you looking for a blackout tent for your child, but the popular choice – SlumberPod – is not in your price range? Don’t worry, there are a few amazing SlumberPod alternatives at lower price. You don’t have to spend a fortune to ensure your little one is having a good night sleep!

best cheap Slumberpod Alternatives

If you have ever slept in a room with blackout curtains, you know that a dark room provides a better night’s sleep.

While you can create the ideal sleep environment in your nursery at home, you cannot easily bring your blackout curtains on a weekend trip.

Here’s where a baby sleep tent or privacy pods come in handy: they allow you to create a cozy, darker area for your baby. It’s great for those times you are staying in a hotel room or have to practice room sharing at Grandma’s house.

Baby’s naps and night sleeps are sure to be more restful in a dark environment.

This article is not a substitute for medical advice. It may contain affiliate links.

Best Cheap SlumberPod Alternative
SnoozeShade Pack n Play & Travel Crib Blackout Cover | Blackout Crib Cover & Pack and Play Black Out Cover | Mom-Invented Safety Tested with Optimal Airflow
Minnebaby Darkening Cover for Pack N Play, Breathable Travel Crib Shade Canopy Tent for Baby Better Sleeping and Napping
Best Features
❤️ Offers 94% blackout
❤️ Fits majority of popular pack n plays & travel cribs
❤️ Comes with a handy travel case & doesn’t take up a lot of space in a luggage
❤️ Way cheaper than SlumberPod (about half its price!)
❤️ Made of a breathable material + has lots of vents
❤️ Weighs less than 2 lbs - perfect for travel
❤️ Compatible with most of the pack n plays and playards
❤️ Cheapest SlumberPod alternative - still good quality
Recommended by 1100+ verified buyers!
Recommended by 90% of verified buyers!
Availability & Price
Best Cheap SlumberPod Alternative
SnoozeShade Pack n Play & Travel Crib Blackout Cover | Blackout Crib Cover & Pack and Play Black Out Cover | Mom-Invented Safety Tested with Optimal Airflow
Best Features
❤️ Offers 94% blackout
❤️ Fits majority of popular pack n plays & travel cribs
❤️ Comes with a handy travel case & doesn’t take up a lot of space in a luggage
❤️ Way cheaper than SlumberPod (about half its price!)
Recommended by 1100+ verified buyers!
Availability & Price
Minnebaby Darkening Cover for Pack N Play, Breathable Travel Crib Shade Canopy Tent for Baby Better Sleeping and Napping
Best Features
❤️ Made of a breathable material + has lots of vents
❤️ Weighs less than 2 lbs - perfect for travel
❤️ Compatible with most of the pack n plays and playards
❤️ Cheapest SlumberPod alternative - still good quality
Recommended by 90% of verified buyers!
Availability & Price

Last update on 2024-04-24 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

About The Original SlumberPod

The SlumberPod is a blackout sleep tent that fits over your child’s sleep space.

The design uses aluminum poles to create the frame and breathable polyester and spandex material to block out light. The design allows for a high ceiling so that your babe can stand up inside of the pod.

Putting Slumber Pod over Graco pack n play
Putting SlumberPod onto Graco Pack N Play

The SlumberPod is 100% blackout, so your child can sleep in complete darkness. However, some of the negative reviews mentioned that inside the temperature felt very warm because there was not enough airflow.

While the blackout material does allow air to permeate, there are also ventilation windows and a fan pouch (fan sold separately) for increased circulation.

According to the official SlumberPod website, it should only be used in a well-ventilated, indoor environment. The tent is not for outdoor use.

While the SlumberPod is a great idea, it is expensive and you might only use when traveling and staying in hotel rooms. Thankfully, there are plenty of quality SlumberPod alternatives to help your baby get a good sleep on-the-go, without having to spend a lot.

PRO TIP: If you prefer to go for the original SlumberPod tent, make sure to check from time to time if it’s on sale. Last time I checked it was 10% off. Check for current discounts >>

Best SlumberPod Alternatives At Cheaper Price

Let’s check out some of the best alternatives to the SlumberPod, to help you get your baby or toddler a good night’s rest, in hotel rooms or when camping outdoors.

1. SnoozeShade Pack N Play Blackout Tent

SnoozeShade Pack N Play
SnoozeShade Pack N Play

First up is the SnoozeShade, a product that emphasizes safety above all and the best more pocket-friendly alternative to SlumberPod.

The mesh is air-permeable, which allows for better airflow to keep your little sleeper cool and it fits securely over many baby sleep options.

This was designed by a concerned British mom, and has since won over 70 awards over the years, so you know it is safe.


The SnoozeShade weighs just 2 lbs and comes with a carry bag for easy packing.

The material is incredibly breathable but also blocks 94% of light. The fabric is also made without the use of chemicals or PVCs, to be safer for your baby.

Offers a top opening and two side panels that lift or lower to adjust, and act as viewing windows for Mom to easily check on the little one.


The Snooze shade fits cribs or yards up to 41 inches in length and 31 inches in width, which covers most travel cribs and standard pack-n-plays (like BabyBjorn, Maxi Cosi or Nuna).

The design provides a secure fit with velcro straps that wrap around the legs of the play yard – impossible for your baby to remove or pull down over herself.

SnoozeShade For travel Cots fits most of the popular pack n plays
Here you can see how SnoozeShade fits BabyBjorn Travel Cot Light

Why You Will Love SnoozeShade

It is best for travel during summer months, because it blocks light for those long daylight hours, and the breathable fabric provides optimal air circulation to keep your little one from overheating and sweating.

You could also place a mini fan (outside of the crib) beside one of the side panels to create a breeze when it is especially warm outside.

What’s more, it is designed to fit majority of travel cots and pack ‘n plays.

Overall, I think this is the best SlumberPod alternative available. If you’re unsure whether to go for this cheaper alternative or maybe splurge on original pricey SlumberPod, make sure to read my in-depth comparison: SlumberPod vs. SnoozeShade Blackout Cover.

PRO TIP: SnoozeShade brand also offers other darkening covers: for strollers, infant car seats and baby crib. You can check them here >> The best thing is that these covers are also budget-friendly.

2. Joovy Gloo Children’s Indoor And Outdoor Travel Tent

Joovy Gloo outdoor tent and shading cover
Joovy Gloo

Now, I love the Joovy Gloo and it is an awesome outdoor travel tent, but I should make it clear to readers: this is not a cover for a travel crib – it is the bed and tent all in one.

It is suitable for babies 6 months old and up (to the age of 5 yrs) to take naps while traveling or camping outdoors. I think it’s a great option for toddlers.


A portable, lightweight travel tent that folds up into a carrying case to make it easy to take anywhere. Includes a self-inflating sleeping pad that fits inside the tent.

No assembly required! You do not have to fiddle with any tent poles here: just pop it up and allow the mattress to self-inflate.

It is smaller than a pack-n-play and easier to bring with you on your outdoor family adventures.

Joovy Glo outdoor tent for infants and toddlers

This tent resists light amounts of moisture (mainly dew, not really rain) and keeps out mosquitos and other critters.

Besides, it provides UPF 50 sun protection, which is great for the beach.

Joovy Gloo comes in two sizes, regular and large. The regular size is ideal for toddlers (up to 3 years), while the large size is suitable for older kids (up to 5 years). Here you can check the larger Joovy tent – it’s still less pricey than original SlumberPod!

Size & Weight

Both the Slumberpod and the Joovy Gloo weigh a little over 5 lbs, making them the heaviest items on this list.

But remember, the Joovy is tent that your child can sleep directly in, you won’t need to bring another travel crib for your vacation.

When you consider that this is an all-in-one sleeping tent for your little one, 5.5 lbs doesn’t sound big at all!

Why You Will Love Joovy Gloo

This is the best solution for toddlers’ naps while camping or a beach vacation. This is a great option that keeps bugs out and provides a cozy space. It’s truly portable and easy to bring just about anywhere.

Some parents complained that folding the tent back up was difficult (classic pop-up tent problems!), but you don’t need to stress about it because the company offers a 2-year warranty and a 30-day money-back guarantee.

3. Minnebaby Darkening Cover For Pack N Play

Minnebaby Darkening Cover for pack n play
Minnebaby Darkening Cover For Pack N Play

The Minnebaby is a cheaper alternative to the SnoozeShade design. I like how adjustable it is because you can maneuver the side panels to your preference.

Another reason I love it is because it comes with a pocket for a sound machine (winner!) and folds up into an easy-to-carry pouch.

Keep in mind, the Minnebaby is not blackout, it only makes the area 50% darker. The reason is that because the material is so breathable, it also is more light-permeable. Most parents found that this cover made it ‘dark enough’ and they liked that it was not stuffy inside.


Minnebaby is a budget option – you won’t spend a fortune to help baby nap more comfortably.

It has adjustable side panels to control the amount of darkness. This tent is incredibly breathable – your little ones will stay nice and cool in it.

There’s a built-in pocket to hold a sound machine to help your little one fall asleep on their own, which is very convenient.

This blockout tent is machine washable – which is always a nice feature on baby products!

It weighs less than 2 lbs therefore it’s great to put in your suitcase, even if you travel only with a carry on luggage.

Minnebaby Darkening Cover for pack n play comes with a travel case and easily fits in a carry on luggage


It fits over a mini crib, but some reviews shared that the toggles were annoying and difficult to secure around the bottom legs. Another reviewer wished the design used velcro instead of toggles.

Also, the snug fit means there isn’t much space for babies to stand up, expect for the top hatch (and they do look cute, peeking out of the hole), but I had no issue with this, as my baby sleeps with a sleep sack and can’t easily stand up anyway.

The Minnebaby fits standard travel cribs that take a mattress sized 37.5 x 25.5 inches. However, the company specifically states that this does not fit the 4Moms brand.

Why You Will This SlumberPod Alternative

This is the best choice for when you are traveling with the whole family and are sharing the same room as your baby.

It can help make your baby’s own space darker and sleep more peacefully through the night, but, remember, it will not be fully black unless the room is, too.

4. Brolex Travel Crib Canopy & Cover For Pack and Play

Brolex Cover For Pack And Play And Travel Crib
Brolex Cover For Pack And Play & Travel Crib

The Brolex canopy is one of the cheaper options on the list. It is a mesh cover that won’t make your baby feel stuffy. However, it doesn’t block as much light, either.


This cover makes the environment 50% darker without making it stuffy inside, so it can help the baby to fall asleep in a pack n play.

There is a quick access windows: the top and side panels have adjustable zippers so you can see inside or adjust the darkness level, as you like. I also like the material which is really breathable.

Brolex is only 1.37 lbs, so it’s one of the lightest blackout tents out there. It keeps mosquitoes and pests out, as well as prevents pets (like cats) from accessing your baby and disturbing their sleep.

Brolex Mini Crib Canopy & Cover for Pack and Play


The polyester fabric is incredibly stretchy, meaning that it fits just about any pack-n-play or travel crib. It is not designed for use with traditional cribs, such as in your home nursery.

Why You Will Love This SlumberPod Alternative

This is a good option for families who want something simple to use in the backyard, as it keeps bugs off. It is a cheap, budget option if you need only a little extra dimming when sharing a hotel room or visiting a family member’s house.

5. Milliard Darkening Sleep Tent For Pack N Play

Milliard Darkening Tent for Pack N Play
Milliard Darkening Tent For Pack N Play

The Millard Tent is one of my favorite SlumberPod alternatives, because it is cost-friendly without being cheap in terms of quality. It creates a dark space and encourages a deeper sleep, especially for those instances when you are room sharing.


The top of the shade is made of a thicker fabric that blocks out overhead lights, while the side panels are made of a more breathable fabric with mesh windows for better air movement.

Parents shared many positive reviews because it does what it says – acts as a privacy pod and helps to darken your baby’s sleeping area.

The tent weighs only 1.23 lbs, so it is the lightest on the list!

The zip-top opening is the only opening, you can leave open and tuck away in a safe pocket or zip completely closed (the side panels have sufficient airflow, so don’t worry if you close the top).

The tent makes the space 50% darker than the room around it. You should still have a reasonably dark environment for best results.

Milliard Darkening Sleep Tent for Pack N Play


It fits standard play yards. Its dimensions stretch to fit 44 inches in length, and 33 inches in width.

The attachment system goes to each corner of a pack-n-play, making it incredibly safe (baby cannot remove the cover), but it is not at stretchy as some other covers, so make sure that your dimensions are suitable for this tent.

Why You Will Love This Blackout Tent

The Milliard Tent is best for traveling because it is so small and lightweight. The mesh sides with airflow channels make this a perfect Slumberpod alternative for families looking for a low-cost, lightweight option to throw in their carry-on bag (or even the diaper bag!).

Tips For Using Darkening Tent In Baby’s Sleep Space

  • Practice having your little one sleep in their new tent or under the shade before you travel on vacation, so they will be familiar with it.
  • For first-time use, try putting them down to sleep in it at night, when they are generally the most tired.
  • Use a white noise machine to create soothing sounds during nap time.

Slumberpods & Cheaper Alternatives – FAQ

Here is some general information about SlumberPod and other blackout tents and how to use them in a safe way.

How Do I Keep My Pack-N-Play Dark?

The safest way to keep your pack-n-play darkened is with a fitted cover or a SlumberPod (or one of these SlumberPod alternatives) that secures or attaches to your pack-n-play. A draped blanket poses a safety hazard for infants.

Are Slumberpods Safe?

Yes, the Slumber Pod has been tested and determined to be a safe sleep tent.

If you review the SlumberPod website, you will see they have made changes to the original product: newer models have additional vents and a pocket for a fan to help circulate air.

As it is a blackout pod, parents cannot see into the SlumberPod unless they unzip the opening. Newer models have a hanging pocket where a video monitor or camera can be set up in order to view your infant.

What is the best SlumberPod alternative

How Long Can You Use SlumberPod?

You can use the original Slumberpod from 4 months old, up to approximately 5 years of age.

The Joovy Gloo large size tent can also be used up to age 5.

Covers or shades can be used as long as your child sleeps in a crib, but once they move to a toddler bed, you should stop using it.

Can You Put A Baby Monitor In The Slumberpod?

You can put an audio monitor or a video baby monitor in the SlumberPod, as there is a hanging pocket that keeps it out of baby’s reach. The video monitor will only work if it uses infrared technology, otherwise, you will not be able to see anything.

you can put a baby monitor inside slumberpod

Mesh covers don’t offer clear views with video monitors, as the fabric makes it difficult to see on the camera. However, if you’re only using it to darken baby’s sleep space at a hotel, this might not be a deal breaker.

If you do use a baby monitor, make sure that your infant cannot get ahold of it.

If you’re on tight budget, check out my list of the best baby monitors under $100.

Is SlumberPod Soundproof?

No. While sound is slightly minimized by the fabric and external stimuli is reduced, it is fabric and cannot completely block out sound. You could use a white noise machine to help block out sounds that might wake your child.

Is SlumberPod Hot?

Most of the negative reviews of the Slumberpod cite that they found it hot and stuffy inside. This is why new models have improved ventilation and a space for a fan to circulate air.

However, if temperature and keeping your baby cool are your top concerns, check out the SnoozeShade, which is 94% blackout, and much more breathable.

is slumberpod hot

How Blackout Is SlumberPod?

The SlumberPod is 100% blackout.

Alternatives are usually 50% blackout, which we find is generally enough for babies as long at the room is also reasonably dimmed already.

The SnoozeShade is 94% blackout, which is the highest of all Slumberpod alternatives on this list.

Pictures of SnoozeShade tent belong to SnoozeShade brand

Pictures of Joovy Gloo belong to Joovy Brand

Pictures of Minnebaby cover belong to Minnebaby Brand.

Pictures of Brolex cover belong to Brolex Brand.

Pictures of Milliard cover belong to Milliard Brand.

The purpose of this article is informative. It’s not a substitute for professional medical advice or medical care. Remember: safety first! Consult your doctor/pediatrician in case of any doubts. The author of this article does not accept any responsibility for any liability, loss or risk, personal or otherwise, incurred as a consequence, directly or indirectly, from any information or advice contained here.

Your trust is really important to me: This article includes affiliate links to products that I think are useful for our readers. If you make a purchase through these links, I may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. Your support helps me run this blog – thank you!

About Me - Zooey BarnettHello Moms! I am Zooey. I am a wife and a mother of three amazing kids: almost 5-year-old Haley and 2-year-old twins Jesse and Matthew. I am a jogger, cooker and blogger.

If you have a question or a comment, do not hesitate to write to me! 🙂

One thought on “Best SlumberPod Alternative – How To Choose Cheap Darkening Tent For Pack N Play & Travel Crib

  1. Hi Zooey,

    Thanks for all the info!
    we have a baby bjorn travel crib. You showed the “Snoozeshade” fitting over the baby bjorn crib, but do all the others? Namely:
    Millard tent?


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