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Sunday, September 25, 2011

Pimp my...pram?

I have always wanted to call a stroller a pram, like the Brits do.  It sounds so much cooler, right?  So yesterday we ventured out into the world of baby stores so that we could do some browsing before we register (I'm 100% sure this is not how Dan wanted to spend a Saturday afternoon when there was plenty of college football to watch, but whatevs).  We mainly wanted to look at strollers and test some of them out (i.e. fold them, take the car seats in and out, etc.).  I just have one thing to say: there are SO. MANY. STROLLERS. to choose from.  It was a little overwhelming, honestly.

We went to Buy Buy baby, because we'd done some research and knew that they carried the ones we wanted to look at.  It was a little far from our house (in Durham), but we learned from several of the very friendly (and super helpful) employees that a new one is opening in Morrisville in 2 weeks, and we're REALLY excited about that because I think that's where we'll register.

So, now down to business.  We have narrowed strollers down to 2, and we now need help deciding.  Ever since we went to church this morning, I've spent the afternoon doing research on both.  The two that we are looking at are the UPPAbaby VISTA and the Britax B-READY strollers.  In case you don't feel like clicking on the links, behold:

Britax B-READY

I think we would get the stroller in either black or gray, so that we could use for all babies.  Before discussing each of these and the pros and cons, what we liked and didn't like, etc. I will tell you what was important to us in a stroller:
  • Weight - I don't want a 100lb stroller that would be really hard for me to maneuver in and out of the car, etc. by myself.
  • Ease of use - I also don't want a stroller that is impossible to figure out how to fold it, unfold it, attach and detach car seats, etc.
  • Safety ratings - need I say more?
  • Quality - We want something we can use for as many children as we have.  We don't want to have to buy a new stroller for each child.
  • Dual child capability - The reality is, we want our children to be fairly close together in age, so it may not be a long time before we think about baby #2.  It's important to us to find a stroller that both children could easily and comfortably fit into, so that we don't have to tote around two strollers eventually.
Disclaimer: if you are a Mommy or Mommy-to-be who is reading this and either has or has registered for or owns either one of the strollers or any of the products I am discussing in this post, please note that everything discussed is a direct result of my personal research, shopping experience, and opinions.  I am obviously not an expert - both are great choices and I honestly don't think there is a wrong choice.

With all of that said, both of these strollers have all of the qualities we want and then some.  In reality, the salespeople were actually selling the Britax pretty hard over the UPPABaby.  According to them, the UPPABaby is more of a "designer stroller" (no wonder it melted my heart at first sight), which is why they can get away charging more for it.  They told us that Britax came out with an alternative to the UPPABaby that had many of the same features but without quite as expensive a price tag.  Also according to the salespeople, the strollers are almost the exact same except the Britax is a little bigger because they made more room for the toddler seat.  Additionally, the UPPABaby is made in Sweden (or somewhere foreign), and the Britax is made in Charlotte (y'all know how I like to support the locals). 

Now, to price.  The UPPABaby costs $679 and includes the stroller itself, a toddler seat, a toddler rain shield, a toddler bug shield, a bassinet, and a bassinet bug shield (all of the rain and bug sheilds made me LOL).  So, for that amount of money, you still have to purchase a car seat and base as well as a converter so that the car seat can attach to the stroller.  Luckily, we were both able to agree on a Britax car seat, which has the best child safety ratings (again, according to the salespeople that we talked to and the research I've done), so with a little rounding for the whole system we are looking at around $900.  This doesn't include the toddler seat, but we (a) do not need that right now and (b) it is only like $40.

The Britax comes with the stroller itself and the toddler seat, an adult cup holder (Dan was excited about this of course) a rain cover, and a built in car seat adapter for roughly $400.  I like the bassinet, which you still have to buy because it's not included (around $150), and then you also have to buy the car seat (comes with base).  All in all, for this system, we're talking around $750.  I will also add that Buy Buy Baby is running a promotion right now where if you buy the stroller/bassinet combo, you get the car seat for free (through October 31) - so you could really get the whole system for around $500.  The toddler seat, which would come later, is also around $40.

I think that I still am leaning towards the UPPABaby, but I am not exactly sure why (Is it because it's more designer?  Am I that shallow?  I don't know!).  Additionally, I am not sure if I can justify the price tag on it.  Although, if we're being honest, the Britax is not THAT much less expensive in the scheme of things (unless someone buys while they're running the special).  Dan likes the Britax better - after testing them out and playing with both for about an hour, he thinks that it has better ease of use and folds easier - and I kind of tend to agree with the folding easier part, although I will say it is not as easy to unfold.  The Britax is a little heavier than the UPPABaby, but it's because the frame is a little bigger, which allows a lot more room for the toddler seat.  It's not so heavy, though, that it would cause problems for me maneuvering it alone.  Also, with the Britax, the toddler seat can stay in when the stroller is folded, but that's not the case with the UPPABaby.

I have tried to do a ton of research on both of these and make a really informed decision, but in the end it seems like it is a matter of opinion - although both sides that I've read have brought up really good points. 

Does anyone have any advice or suggestions?  Does anyone have either one of these strollers that can give me any additional input?  Is the UPPABaby worth the extra $150-$200 for what the salespeople said was essentially the same stroller?  HELP!

We have had a busy weekend, and I still feel pretty terrible, so the rest of the aftenroon will be spent resting on the couch and doing a lot of googling on nursery ideas, baby shower ideas, product reviews, etc.  Fun, fun!

Hope everyone had a great weekend!


*UPDATE:  I regret to inform you all that I lied in my post above!  Per my husband's diligent research today, UPPABaby is an American company and Britax is British.  Which means the salesperson was a total liar.  WHAT ELSE DID HE LIE ABOUT?!  NOW WHAT DO WE DO?!  Oh, the stress. ;-)

1 comment:

  1. I'm too old to understand strollers today - they are so high-tech. But what I did like was "so that we could use for all babies." Bring on ALL the babies!! :)


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