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We can all agree that leaving the house with a baby or a toddler can be tricky, right? Well, a good stroller can make any day trip or errand infinitely easier and more enjoyable. The key word there is good, as an inferior stroller will only make your day harder and, let’s be honest, more swear-filled.
Since no one needs that extra stress, and your baby certainly doesn’t need an early crash course on bad language, you have to find a stroller that will meet your needs.
Here, we will give you the lay of the land of baby strollers, as well as to put forth some products that you might find appealing. Firstly is our list of the strollers we feel are worthy of some serious consideration.
Best All-Purpose Strollers
When you have a single child who will be riding in a stroller, and you aren’t jogging or looking for something to quickly fold up, you will probably want an all-purpose stroller. Also known as medium or full-sized strollers, these products are suitable for various terrain types and provide more storage than umbrella strollers.
The Graco modes travel system isn’t only car seat compatible; it comes with the car seat.
You can use this stroller from the newborn stage to those toddler days, and choose whether you want the seat facing you or the world. In fact, this stroller offers a multitude of settings and has a 4-position recline.
This stroller is on the heavy side but, despite its weight, it’s easy to maneuver and can function on various terrain types.
Weight Capacity: 35 lbs (rear facing car seat) / 50 lbs (toddler seat)
Disclaimer: this is not a jogging stroller. Yeah, we were confused for a minute, too. However this stroller is a quality product that can handle city sidewalks easily, cracks and crowds included. It’s easy to maneuver, folds up quickly, and fully reclines.
Provided you buy an adapter, it is compatible with some car seats making hopping into the shops to quickly pick up some supplies a breeze.
Although we wish it had a bit more storage and an adjustable handlebar, this stroller has a lot going for it, including its excellent canopy with two windows, its smooth maneurvrability, plus, it’s really lightweight.
Weight Capacity: 50 lbs
With the car seat included, this travel set offers an adjustable handlebar, plenty of storage space, and is easy to push.
While it can be a bit tricky to fold up and doesn’t recline completely flat, it does offer great head support and is easy to put together.
The harness adjusts to three heights, and there is a peek-a-boo window in the canopy. Set up is easy and the three-wheel design makes steering a breeze.
Weight Capacity: 35 lbs (rear facing car seat) / 50 lbs (toddler seat)
Although it doesn’t come with a car seat, it is compatible with a few models. It’s lightweight with a seat that can face forwards and backwards.
The storage is more than adequate for parents on the go, and the handlebar adjusts. Unfortunately, it’s quite pricey. But, with a super smooth ride and lots of perks, many parents find it worth the investment. The product includes a rain shield and a bug shield plus it comes with a two-year warranty.
Weight Capacity: 50 lbs (toddler seat)
Best Double Stroller
If you need seating for two, we can offer plenty of advice in our complete guide to double strollers. In the meantime, here’s one standout product.
Easy to fold and super portable for a double stroller, this product provides a large canopy and plenty of storage.
Although the seats are a bit narrow, this also means that it can fit through doors easier than other double strollers.
It maneuvers well and offers a comfortable ride for your children.
Weight Capacity: 45 lbs per seat
Best Jogging Stroller
With a design well-suited for pushing and wheels appropriate for tough terrain, these products are great for keeping you in shape. If you want a more in-depth guide, check out our complete jogging stroller guide and reviews. Here’s one jogging stroller that we felt earned top praise.
Great on all different types of terrain, this jogger is easy to maneuver, has an adjustable suspension system, and a wheel that locks or swivels depending on what you’re doing.
It doesn’t automatically secure upon fold up, but it does have an adjustable handlebar and lots of storage.
Weight Capacity: 75 lbs
Best Umbrella Stroller
Sometimes you just need a lightweight product that is easy to transport, right? Well, we’ve written a complete guide to umbrella strollers and would like to share one of our top picks with you now.
With a four-wheel suspension, this stroller offers a smooth ride for an umbrella stroller. Although the seat won’t recline, this is one of the lightest models out there that is easy to fold and can be slung over your shoulder if need be. It also self-locks upon being folded and has a peek-a-boo window on its canopy.
Weight Limit: 55 lbs
Best Affordable Stroller
Are you are looking for a something that is affordable, but you need a product that is a little more versatile than an umbrella stroller? Good news; we’ve got you, and your wallet, covered.
This stroller is geared towards parents who don’t need a car seat compatible product. If your baby has moved into the toddler phase of life, this stroller offers lots of storage space, a smooth ride, and a great canopy.
Unfortunately, the handlebar doesn’t adjust but the stroller folds up nicely and is a happy marriage between an umbrella stroller and a full-size stroller.
Weight Capacity: 50 lbs
How to Choose the Best Stroller
Does a wheel’s material really matter? Is one particular type of stroller better for travel than another? The answer to both these questions is yes. To find out why, and gain even more knowledge about strollers, check out these tips.
Does my Child’s Age Matter?
When it comes to picking out a stroller, yes, you do have to give consideration to how old your baby is. Since infants can’t sit up by themselves and lack core muscle support and neck strength, you will need to look for a stroller compatible with a bassinet or car seat.
Car Seat Compatibility
Some products will sell adapters that allow specific brands of car seats to click safely into the stroller. Other products may have built-in compatibility with the company’s own car seats. Either way, double check that your car seat and stroller will be symbiotic.
Keeping in mind what kind of terrain you will be walking or jogging over will help you pick the best wheel type. Here are some popular wheel materials that you will encounter.
Plastic: These are great on smooth, flat surfaces but won’t offer a very stable ride on anything else. On the bright side, plastic can’t go flat and is very lightweight.
Rubber: Again, you won’t be worrying about a flat, but these are heavier than other wheels. And they provide a smoother ride on bumpier surfaces than their plastic cousins.
Air: Much like a bicycle tire, you will be doing maintenance on these wheels every once and again. However, they provide an exceptionally smooth ride over many surfaces and are reasonably lightweight.
EVA: These tires are foam based, so they are nice and lightweight. They don’t grip surfaces quite as well as rubber or air, but they’re low maintenance, and you don’t have to worry about flats.
We can all agree that babies need to be safe in their strollers. These features will help accomplish that.
Brake: Look for an easy to use parking brake that won’t pinch your toes. Your stroller should only move when you want it to.
Harness: Look for a comfortable, easy to adjust harness. 5-point harnesses are a must for your infants, but 3-point harnesses will work for toddlers.
Canopy: If you’re going to be outdoors at all, you want a stroller that has a good canopy to protect your baby. Some even come with peek-a-boo windows, so you can look in on your baby as you walk.
Your Comfort Matters
Consider how heavy the stroller is, even before it’s weighed down with a baby, and how often you will be pushing it. A stroller that comes with everything but the kitchen sink is great until you remember how many blocks it is to your favorite store. Be realistic about what your daily life looks like and how well a particular model will work for you.
Also, pay attention to whether or not the handlebars are adjustable. If different people are going to be using the stroller, everyone should be able to find a comfortable pushing position.
Don’t miss the rest of our On-The-Go series
We understand that getting around with a baby or small kids is no easy task. Bet it used to take five minutes to get out the door but now it takes 50, right? Let’s face it, getting anywhere on time requires military-style logistics.
Don’t despair! With a bit of know-how and the right gear it gets a lot easier.
The other articles in our On-The-Go series:
- Umbrella Strollers: Choosing a Lightweight Umbrella Stroller
- Double Strollers: Choosing a Double Stroller for Two Kids
- Jogging Strollers: Choosing a Jogging Stroller That Will Keep up With You
- Sit and Stand Strollers: Choosing the Right Sit and Stand Stroller for Your Family
Although there will be days it might seem easier to stay in your home with your child until they are potty trained, walking, and can fend for themselves at least a little bit, you will inevitably have to venture out into public with them. Hopefully one of these strollers will make that seem like less of a Herculean feat.
Whether you are going down the street to the park, heading out for a day at Grandma and Grandpa’s house, or embarking on a plane journey to another part of the country, our series proves that there’s a stroller out there that will be perfect for every occasion.