The beginner's guide to buying a pushchair
Choosing the right pushchair is not as simple as it sounds. There's an array of different options out there from 3-in-1s to off-roaders and it's worth taking a bit of time considering the right one for you.
Things to consider when choosing a pushchair
if you regularly use public transport or live up or down stairs, weight, portability and folding mechanisms will probably be key for you. If you think you'll need to hop on and off a bus, think hard before investing in anything that doesn't fold and/or can't be lifted with one hand and fit into a small space. Pushchairs that rate high in this catagory are models like the Phil and Ted's Smart buggy, the Quinny Zapp/Zapp Extra, the Babystyle Oyster and the Icandy Cherry to name but a few.
If you walk a lot you'll be doing a lot of shopping with your pushchair, so look out for a model which scores highly on the shopping basket category. The pushchair with the biggest shopping basket is the Uppababy Vista the Icandy range also have good shopping baskets.
If you drive at all, you need a pushchair that fits easily in the boot of your car. Again top models with fit into the smallest of cars are the Quinny Zapp/Zapp Extra , the Babystyle Oyster , Icandy Peach and the Jane Rider.
A large but unwieldy pram may be perfect for you if you never use public transport and have no steps to your house or garden - your baby will be in the height of comfort while you shop and you can leave her to sleep in peace on your return. If you're an outdoor type, forever visiting countryside and beach, with a large car boot and lots of storage space, then a 3-wheeler or all-terrain pushchair is probably right up your street. Our top All Terrain pushchairs include the Uppababy Vista, the complete Phil and Teds range , the Jane Slalom R , the icandy Apple and Peach.
New babies need to be able to lie flat for about the first 3 months and until they can support their heads fully (around 6 months) they won't be fantastically comfortable being bolt upright. Either you need a pushchair that adapts with the child (i.e. think seat positions) or a different pushchair for each stage. Every from birth pushchair we feature has a lie back facility.
These include hoods, rain covers, cosytoes (sleeping bag-type things that attach to the pushchair straps and stay on better than blankets), additional shopping baskets, matching changing bags. Extras that aren't included can push up the price considerably and according to mumsnet reviewers some are more worthwhile than others. A cosytoes for a winter baby seems to be a must, as is a raincover that's easy to attach/detach (summer or winter babies I'm afraid). We have our doubts about the necessity of a changing bag that matches the pram cover - but you might feel differently.