We have two children but have somehow ended up with three buggies. I wish there was just one that fitted all our needs but unfortunately I’ve yet to find it.
There’s a myriad of choice in the world of buggies today and they all boast an array of impressive specs to make a Top Gear review seem light on material. There’s suspension, breaks, recline positions, storage, one piece or two piece fold, handle bar adjustment, leg support adjustment, hood features and don’t get me started on colour choices.
However they never quite have it all in terms of function. You can have a single that’s a dream to push with a big basket, but can’t add another seat for a second baby. You can have a double buggy that folds up easily but doesn’t cope well with anything but flat, perfectly smooth pavements.
So here’s how we ended up with our three buggies and what I like so much about each of them:
Bugaboo Cameleon 3
I found it tough picking out my first choice buggy when pregnant with Bubba One. However we were very lucky that my parents offered to buy this for us as a gift with a very generous budget so we could push the boat out and get one we really wanted.
It came down to being between the iCandy Peach or the Bugaboo Cameleon. Both are similarly pricey, are very easy to push and come in a lovely range of colours. In the end I went for the Bugaboo because it was quite a lot lighter and I just found it that bit nicer to push. I also preferred the option for the black chassis which I think looks really sleek. The iCandy Peach just came with a very high shine metal finish at the time and I found it a bit too blingy.
The Bugaboo is easy to fold once you know how and once it’s folded down fits nicely in the boot of our Astra. It feels so light to push you can do it with one hand and handles all manner of terrain with no problems. It’s always a smooth ride for baby.
Bugaboo have a lovely choice of colours for the hood. I chose white and, although I was worried every mark would show up, nearly three years later it looks almost brand new still. It helps that it is machine washable!
You can add even more style to the Cameleon with the faux leather upgrade set for the handlebars, seat liners in a range of lovely colours and cosy footmuffs.
There is a range of other useful accessories that you can add too. I have the little organiser that straps to the handlebar. This has enough space to fit a couple of nappies, wipes and a change of clothes. It’s great for just popping out. You can also get a cup holder, tray and parasol for those sunny days out.
My only criticism would be the storage basket is nearly impossible to use when you have the carrycot unit on the chassis. You can just about push a few small bits through the gap but that’s it. It’s fine when the seat unit for six months plus is on there though and has lots of space for your bag/groceries/Prosecco.
Now we’re on baby number two and I still use the Bugaboo when just taking her out for a walk when my eldest is at nursery. It’s been fab enjoying using it all over again and it is still a dream to push. It’s really been worth every penny.
Maclaren Mark II
When we went on holiday to France when our first child was one we decided we needed a smaller lighter buggy that didn’t take up much space in the boot. The Maclaren Mark II fitted the bill for this perfectly.
This is Maclaren’s lightest ever pushchair. It’s suitable from six months and has no recline options. The handlebars don’t adjust for taller users and it can be tough over very bumpy cobbles or footpaths. However, the point of this buggy isn’t that it comes with every feature that you could ever think of. The point is the weight, just 3.3kg, and ease of folding and carrying.
In this regard it is an amazing pushchair. It’s a one piece fold and comes with a strap so you can sling it over you’re shoulder if you’re out and about on public transport.
Even though it doesn’t have any recline option, my toddler still finds it very comfy. I bought a seat liner just to make it a bit more padded. The hood provides plenty of shade and the basket is brilliant. Even though it is a smaller buggy I’m amazed by how much I can fit underneath the seat. It comes with a rain cover too.
This is the perfect buggy to keep in your boot in case you’re dropping by the supermarket or to take on holiday. I don’t use it on a day to day basis because it’s missing the recline feature but it’s still been so useful to have as our go-to travel buggy.
Baby Jogger City Select
When I found out I was pregnant with my second baby just over a year after having Bubba One I kind of kicked myself for not getting the Bugaboo Donkey which converts to a double. However after looking at it again I wasn’t too sure about it being a side-by-side design. It is surprisingly not as wide as I thought it would be but I still think I would struggle to get it around certain places.
Looking at tandom double buggies I didn’t like how one child is practically in the storage basket underneath and can’t see out properly. Some also didn’t recline much with both seats on.
Then I spotted the City Select and it is just what I was looking for. There are 16 different combinations for arranging the seats. So you can have the baby in a carrycot with toddler in a seat or both children in seats facing towards each other, away from each other or the same way. The seat at the is raised high up so they look over the top of the seat in front. This way everyone can see properly when out on walks! You can also buy extra adaptors so you can fit one or two car seats on the chassis, perfect for twins!
You can recline both seats though this gets a bit fiddly depending on what arrangement you have with the seating – you need to find the right arrangement to get both seats to recline if your kids nap on the go.
The hoods come with a handy peekaboo window so you can check on the little angels quickly without stopping the buggy, the seats are really comfy according to my toddler and the storage basket is huge. Plus although it comes with two seats it still folds very flat and fits fine in the car boot. Rain covers had to be purchased as extra, but they’re easy to use.
There are also handy little mesh pockets on the back of each seat which are fab for stashing wipes and suncream. The brake is easy to operate and the handlebar is adjustable.
My only criticism is it is very heavy to push (it weighs 12.7kg). You cannot steer one-handed as with a toddler at the front the buggy pulls against you when turning. However this is a tad unfair as of course with the weight of two seats and two children, it is going to be tougher to handle.
I’ve used this buggy nearly every day since my seven month old was born and it has been brilliant. It’s so good to be able to put both of them in a seat. When we’re out sometimes you just need both children strapped in and contained so you can get where you’re going safely. This is why I didn’t go for a buggy board in the end. I don’t trust my toddler to stay on it when crossing roads.
I would really recommend this to anyone with two kids, it’s been amazing for us.
My only problem now is what happens if we have another baby?
What are your buggy recommendations? Have you had any disasters you wish you hadn’t bought?