Read these 15 Baby Strollers Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Baby Travel tips and hundreds of other topics.
Just because there's the possibility that your stroller could get damaged doesn't mean you have to shy away completely from bringing it with you on a flight. If you're going to fly with a stroller and check it at the gate, there are steps you can do to help ensure its safety. And if you are going to bring a stroller, your best bet is to bring one that folds flat without much effort. The last thing you want to do is to be stuck struggling to collapse your stroller during the last call for boarding. With that in mind, here are a few words of wisdom we garnered from the Strollerqueen, Janet McLaughlin.
Taking a stroller with you on plane travel can mean risky business for parents. Though we'd like to tell you that the airport baggage handlers treat all of your luggage with kid gloves – including your stroller – we hear it isn't so. We caught up with Strollerqueen Janet McLaughlin, the guru of strollers, to find out the inside story.
According to Strollerqueen, there is an ongoing problem with airlines trashing strollers in the last few years. This is due in part to the fact that in recent years, airlines have experienced a significant drop in profits. In order to cut costs, one of the things they've done is contract out baggage handlers who aren't necessarily as careful when they handle luggage. People who have complained haven't necessarily found the airlines to be helpful in responding to a damaged stroller, either. If you read a typical airline baggage policy, fragile items are not covered. Many airlines consider a stroller a fragile item.
The lesson here? Parents beware if you're planning to check your strollers at the gate. Think twice about packing your most expensive brand new stroller on the trip. Or at least take steps to protect it.
Keeping in mind that there is no one dream stroller out there that is best for every type of situation, we think you can still use some reasonable judgment and a set of good criteria to get the best stroller for your travel needs. Whether you've got one trip in mind or you're planning for outings throughout the year, we think asking yourself this set of questions will help you figure out what's best for you.
Question 1: What kind of trip are of trip are you planning? Are you going by car or traveling by plane?
Hint: This will tell you whether kind of restrictions you need on your stroller selection, such as size and weight.
Question 2. What will you be using your stroller for? Are you just getting from one place to another or will you be jogging?
Hint : You can hone in on different types of strollers, like lightweight strollers, all terrain strollers, or jogging strollers.
Question 3. What type of ground will you encounter? Will there be paved streets or will there be rough roads?
Hint : This will tell you whether you need to look for a solid stroller with suspension or whether you can get away with an umbrella stroller for travel.
Question 4. What will the weather be like? Will it be warm and humid or cold and rainy?
Hint : You can figure out whether you need a canopy and other protective covering for your infant.
Question 5. What's the age and weight of your infant?
Hint : Certain strollers aren't appropriate for younger infants. For instance, joggers are more appropriate for older infants with good neck muscle control. Check the weight restrictions of a particular model of stroller.
Question 6. How much are you willing to spend?
Hint : Your budget will be the ultimate determinant of what you can and can't buy. Remember, not to get carried away with the lure of features you don't need. But it's important not to make a decision solely on cost savings.
Something to think about: A $700 pram stroller with an aluminum chassis, luxury foot muff, mosquito net, and diaper bag with changing bad might not be what you need for a trek through the airport. On the flip side, a $50 umbrella stroller doesn't have the durability of one that costs $300. If you expect to use an inexpensive stroller on a week-long jaunt through bumpy sidewalks in on an urban road, re-think the inexpensive stroller purchase.
Contrary to the notion that you should pack light, Strollerqueen Janet McLaughlin, who runs a service recommending the best stroller for parents of babies and toddlers, recommends you throw out that idea and instead look at what you'll be doing on the trip instead. According to Strollerqueen, it's not always a good idea to pack light when you're picking out the best stroller for travel. For instance, if you're taking a road trip to San Francisco, you want stroller that can handle walks up and down the hills and streets of the city. On the flip side, if you're taking a stroller to a foreign city, where the streets are unpaved or made of cobblestone, petite wheels and an umbrella stroller will not survive your trip. A stroll on the beach requires a stroller that can handle the gritty beach and not all strollers can do that. In a nutshell, there really is no one size fits all stroller for travel.
A little research goes a long way. If you're in the market for a new stroller for your travels, you can do some investigation to find out which one would hold up best under rugged terrain or work fine for city streets. Baby Bargains by Denise & Alan Fields has a fairly extensive review on a number of different strollers, including which ones are better for jogging or which ones are better for navigating the urban sprawl. If you want personalized service, you can check out Strollerqueen's Website at www.strollerqueen.com. She offers a consultation service for a $30 fee giving you the best stroller for your needs, including the best deal you can get for it.
Peg Perego is a popular brand among folks who are willing to pay a bit more for the smart fabrics and European lineage. But other than the well-known name, what's really all the fuss about Peg Perego Strollers? In recent years, they have been one of the most popular brands of strollers, according to Baby Bargains by Denise and Alan Fields. The upside of this brand is that they make quality strollers in hip colors and fabrics and keep most parents satisfied. On the downside, their retail prices are a bit steep and they're losing out to some more unique models like the Bugaboo. However, on whole, they continue to make a solid product that keeps their customers happy.
Headed out for the beach this summer and planning on bringing a stroller? If you are, it's important to remember that most strollers aren't made to withstand getting inundated with sand and salt water. If your wheels are made of steel, they'll rust due to salt water. Even if they're aluminum, the sand will tend to jam the wheels. If you're going to take your stroller out to the beach, the best thing to do is stay on a clean pathway.
However, if you must go out to sandy terrain, there is one jogging stroller that will navigate the ground with ease. The Kool Stride Senior by has sealed bearings to keep the sand out. Get the alloy version and you'll find the 20” rear wheels and 16” front wheel will cover sandy ground without damage to the stroller. If you're taking this one for travel, pop off the wheels and fold up the canvas frame for maximum portability.
If you're trying to decide where to take your toddler out around town, there's no better way to go than a stroller – if you pick the right venues. Whether you're visiting a new locale for a few days or looking for someplace to spend the afternoon, here are some ideas for parents looking for some stroller friendly places to go.
If you're taking your stroller on a trip, likely you'll encounter a lot of terrain with it from airport floor tiles to urban sidewalks. In most instances, you'll find that your stroller won't need any special care or maintenance. However, there are a few things you can do to keep your stroller in top shape, compliments of Strollerqueen, Janet McLaughlin.
When you're hauling a stroller in and out of your trunk or racing through the airport, you don't want the heaviest stroller out there. Instead, lightweight strollers are an option that can solve the need for a stroller that has all the basic accessories and won't be harsh on your back. They beat out full-sized strollers in portability and yet they have many of the features. Lightweight strollers still come with options you'd want like a sun canopy, full-recline, and basket storage. You can find many that hover around the 20-pound mark or much less. Look for models that fold and open easily if you're going to be doing a lot of transport in and out of your vehicle.
Full size strollers have it all. They come jam packed with every trinket, accessory, and feature you could ask for. But they're not known for their easy transportability, either. However, if you want a stroller to carry all the bells and whistles, full size strollers may be for you. Here's a look at the pros and cons:
Eddie Bauer Strollers are made by Cosco and tend to feature snazzy fabrics for parents who want to wheel around a fashion-conscious stroller. Eddie Bauer strollers include a travel system, tandem strollers, and a sport model. The Eddie Bauer Travel System comes as an infant car seat, infant stroller, and toddler carriage combination. The Eddie Bauer All-Terrain Tandem stroller has stadium seating, allowing both of your little ones to see. Euro-style shocks help to make for a smoother ride.
If you've read the latest Consumer Reports, you're aware that the SnugRide car seat comes up on top for crash test ratings. Well, there's an inexpensive and efficient way to turn the Graco SnugRide into a stroller. Get the Graco SnugRider Infant Car Seat Frame. It's lightweight, features two cup holders, and has ample storage in the basket below. All you need to do is secure the SnugRide onto the frame. Parents can also adjust the height of the handle and use the one handed fold feature to conveniently put away the frame.
Whether you have twins, triplets, or siblings who are still in diapers, double and triple strollers will make your life easier. Double and triple strollers let you take multiple young children with you for a walk, out for a jog, or through the mall with ease. When you're shopping for double and triple strollers, you can choose from two main types – side-by-side strollers or front-back strollers. Side-by-side strollers have riders sitting next to each other, while front-back strollers have riders in line, one behind the other. Some parents feel the front-back configuration works best for an older child and younger sibling, while twins and triplets are happier in the side-by-side strollers.
Standard Strollers, also known as full sized strollers or midsize strollers, contain a host of neat features and options that can make your life easier and make the ride more comfortable for baby. Here are some of the options you have when it comes to midsize strollers.
Padded seats – Makes the ride more comfortable and cozy for baby, especially if you're going for a long ride.
Removable/Washable Fabric – Babies and toddlers come with messes, so if you can remove the seat fabric and wash it, it'll help keep your midsize stroller looking its best.
Full size retractable canopy – These come standard on midsize strollers and help to keep the sun, wind and rain off of baby. A see through peek-a-boo feature is always nice because you can look at your baby even when the canopy is fully open.
Child snack trays and cup holders – Toddlers can have some snacks while they get a ride and parents can have somewhere to put a water bottle or other drink.
Storage Pockets – These come in very handy when you want to stash papers, small bags, and other items.
Adjustable handlebars – This is useful if you've got mom and dad using the stroller and there's a big height discrepancy.
Aluminum frame – It's rust resistant and lighter weight than a steel version.
Jogging strollers have hit the stroller market by storm. Companies from Cosco to InStep have put out these strollers. However, they're popular enough with parents that you'll see them at the mall, at a casual walk around the block, or at a park outing. In fact, some jogging type strollers have been named sport strollers instead. Whether you're contemplating the purchase of a jogging stroller for actual jogging or you're just looking for a stylish, maneuverable urban transport around town, there are a few things to consider.