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How to choose the perfect stroller and travel companion for my family?

You are so excited to show your newborn baby the big beautiful world outside. But choosing the right stroller can feel like a mammoth or daunting task because where do you start?  Whether you’re go on regular walks or only use a baby carriage when you go to the mall or on vacation, your stroller is going to be one of the most frequently used pieces of gear you will own.   There are so many prams to choose from, with many different features, different age groups and colours.  This can be quite overwhelming – you just want the perfect ride for your family.  Something safe, compact and easy to use or maybe you are looking for the “Rolls Royce” of baby strollers 2020. I have put together a few key features, factors and key points to consider when choosing the right stroller for your family.

What factors and features to consider when choosing a stroller?

What works for one family might not work for your family. There are many different factors to take in account when choosing a baby stroller.

Lifestyle:  Probably one of the most important factors to consider when deciding on a baby stroller.  Do you stay in the city?  Are you an urban family who will be using the stroller every day?  Or are you a suburban family who will mainly need the baby trolley for walks around the block or mall?  What type of space do you have available at home to store the stroller?  Would you need to take your stroller onto public transport or up some stairs?  Do you plan on buying an all-purpose stroller or a complete travel system (baby stroller with car seat)?  Do you plan on upgrading the stroller as you little one grows?  These questions might seem like allot to think about, but your stroller needs to meet the your needs in order to accommodate you and your baby at best.

Family Size:  If you have one child, plan on having only one child or if there is a huge age gap between siblings, a single stroller will work just fine for your family.  But if you plan on having another baby within three years. Consider a stroller that can convert into a double stroller, or one that has the option to add an additional seat.  Maybe you are expecting twins. The double or twin stroller is designed for exactly this purpose but can be used for children in different age groups too.

Cost:  The price tag on strollers may shock some first-time parents.  Pricier strollers will often feature things like better suspension, higher-end fabrics and colour options, modular seats that can be switched between from and rear facing or convert to hold more than one child.  But it’s also possible to get a stroller that fits your family, needs and budget.

Accommodates newborns:  Not all prams and strollers can accommodate newborn babies.  This is because the stroller does not have extra padding or features to support your newborns head and neck. If you plan on using the stroller from day one, a travel system with removable seat would be a better option for you as the seat will have all of the needed features and padding to ensure your little one is snug and safe.

Easy to fold:  Being able to quickly open or pack-up the stroller with one hand can be a lifesaver. Even better would be if the stroller is also self-standing, meaning when it is folded it stands upright, by itself without tipping over.

Weight:  Is it heavy to carry?  When you are on the road, lighter is the better option.  A lightweight baby carriage will be more manageable taking in account that you will probably be carrying a baby, nappy bag and pram before setting it up at your destination.

Washable fabric:  Babies are messy.  Your baby stroller with take a beating from drool, snack accidents, spilled milk and the list goes on and on.  So, it will be great if you can remove the seat cover and throw it in the washing machine. 

Sun canopy:  Big canopies provide more shade and privacy for your baby.  Many canopies have a little window for you to check on your little one and some even have magnet closure, instead of clips and zips so it is nice and quiet.

Stroller basket:  If you plan on doing lots of shopping with your stroller, look for a stroller with an extra-large basket. It will just make your life so much easier when having to carry parcels.  The typical stroller basket will be located under the seat.   Baskets with a wide opening across work best. You won’t get frustrated getting to get your parcels in and out of the basket.

Other cool features would be a rain cover, snack and cup holders and toy attachments.

How safe is the stroller?

Safety first – always.  So, when it comes to hitting the streets with your baby it should not be any different. Almost all baby trolley models meet basic safety standards, but there are a few safety features to consider and ensure the stroller has.

Inspect the frame.  The frame should feel solid and steady, not flimsy.

Look for a five-point safety harness. Five-point harnesses are relatively standard. Test the snaps to make sure they’re secure. They should be easy to buckle (and not too easy to unbuckle, at least for baby!).

Put on the brakes — literally. Be sure to test how easy the brakes are to use — and how easy they are to trip, too. You would want them to stop securely. And that you can easily disengage the brakes when you’re ready to roll on.

Examine the edges. Little fingers and toes can get caught in tight spaces, so beware of any protrusions or sharp edges.

Lie back. How deep does the seat recline? This is important if you’re planning to put a newborn into the pram. Find a pram that can easily attach an infant car seat.

Ready to start shopping?

Head over to The O-Babystore, they have a selection of high quality strollers from Chicco, Bugaboo, Foppapedretti and Mamakids to choose from.

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