Whether you’re a first-time parent, expecting your second or third, a baby stroller is one of those must-haves that will just make your life so much easier. The reality of having a baby is that life goes on — while it’s a very special time, there are still a bunch of things to get done to keep life on track!
This means you’ll need to leave the house at some point, whether it’s for a leisurely stroll in the park, to grab a coffee, or pick up some groceries, the features of your baby stroller make all the difference.
Here are the top factors to consider when making your decision.
1. Your Family Size
Depending on how many kids you have, or intend to have, this will determine whether you choose to buy a single or double stroller. It also determines the features your stroller has when your child gets a little older. In other words, you might consider a stroller that can convert from one seat to a double stroller later on.
The age difference between your children is also something to keep in mind. Some double stroller configurations are suitable for babies, but not for a toddler and a baby. This is where a tandem stroller is best — featuring a toddler seat on the bottom, and an infant seat or bassinet at the top.
It sounds like a lot to consider. If you’re starting off with just one child and feel overwhelmed by all the choices and configurations, just opt for a simple, single-seat stroller that can convert from a bassinet to a toddler seat. You could always sell it off later on and buy a double stroller to suit two children as and when you need.
2. Your Family Lifestyle
What type of lifestyle does your family lead? Do you live in the city, countryside, or suburbs? Are you more inclined to go for a walk outdoors, in nature, through the cityscape, or at the mall? Do you travel often and need to bring your little one along with you?
Before you purchase your stroller, think about how you’d answer these simple questions:
- What type of terrain do you mostly walk on?
- Would an all-terrain type of stroller suit you best if you like to mix it up?
- Will you need to fold the stroller down in order to transport it?
- Does your stroller need to fit through narrow doorways or alleys?
- Do you need a travel-specific stroller if you travel often?
The strollers of today come with amazing features such as simple foldability, sleek storage, wheel suspension, and more — as seen with the Veer Switchback. Think about how often, where, and when you’d need to use your stroller and this could help narrow down your choices.
3. Age-Adaptable Features
As your child grows, the needs and features of your stroller will change. It’s super important to invest in a stroller that offers age-appropriate adaptable features. I.e. a stroller that grows with your baby.
Essentially, these strollers have the same stroller base, but you can swap out a bassinet, to a baby seat, to an upright toddler seat as needed. Reversible seats are also a great feature, allowing you to turn your child around as they get older in order to see the world around them.
These strollers tend to cost more, but they’re worth the money savings down the line.
4. Long-Term Durability
It goes without saying that the stroller you buy should offer good durability so that it will stand you in good stead for a few years to come. This means buying a stroller with durable materials that are sturdy, as well as water and mold-resistant.
It’s also worth looking for a stroller with replaceable parts, fabrics that you can remove and wash, and hard-wearing wheels that resist punctures.
5. Ease of Use
When it comes down to it, baby strollers that are easily maneuverable are the best investment. The last thing you want as a new, tired parent is to struggle to get around with your baby in tow. Look for a stroller that offers a smooth ride, with wheels that turn 360 degrees, good suspension, and an easy-to-use braking system.
Take into consideration the width of the front versus the rear wheels. Some strollers offer one single wheel in the front, with two wheels at the back, making the stroller narrower in the front.
This can make it awkward to get through small spaces and doorways if you misjudge the wheel width at the rear. Plus, it also means bumping your stroller and waking your sleeping baby!
6. Consider the Measurements
This is a similar consideration to the above point, but you want to keep in mind how big your stroller actually is, especially when it’s folded down.
Think about the size of your car and the trunk space you have. If you plan on transporting your stroller around in your car, it’s imperative that it fits comfortably. Take the measurements of each stroller into consideration and even do a test run to see how it fits in your car before you make your purchase.
7. Storage Space
A baby stroller is not just for transporting a baby. As a new parent, this might come as a surprise to you. But you’ll soon learn how much stuff you need to pack when you head out with your baby!
To put it plainly, additional stroller storage is a lifesaver. Make sure the stroller you choose offers under-carriage storage, such as a luggage basket of some kind. It’s also great if it has a strong and sturdy push handle that you can hang your handbag or baby bag over.
A coffee cup holder is the added bonus all tired parents need, too!
8. Is It Easy to Clean?
Finally, make sure you choose a stroller with parts that are easy to remove, clean, and reassemble. As mentioned, choose a stroller that has machine-washable fabrics, or fabric that’s easy to wipe down and air dry.
Buying a Baby Stroller Doesn’t Have to be Complicated
While it can seem intimidating when buying a baby stroller due to the huge range on the market these days, it doesn’t have to be a complicated or stressful decision. If you can keep these key factors in mind, you’ll be able to make the perfect choice for your family.
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