Choosing a stroller: Some of the best baby buggies reviewed

With open strollers now allowed on buses, which model is ideal? Photo: Pixabay

When we first became parents four years ago, one of our first purchases after Barnacles was born was a stroller. While we expected that babies would need time to get used to anything new, Barnacles somehow harboured a dislike for strollers, refusing to sit in one for any more than 15 minutes until he was past a year old. This led us to believe that the stroller we had initially chosen was not ideal. We thus did a lot of research at baby fairs, spoke to friends and tested out different strollers to see what worked best. We now have more experience than we did before when it comes to choosing the right stroller – amusingly, our four-year-old has loved sitting on his stroller for nearly three years now! Here are several strollers that we like which meet different family needs.

 

Best strollers for public transport:

Four years ago, we did not own a car and would usually commute via bus and MRT, as we do not live near an MRT station. While we were pleased to read in the news recently that open strollers will be allowed on public buses from 2 April this year, it would still be most ideal to commute via public transport with a lightweight, streamlined stroller. For us, such a stroller would have to:

  • Be lightweight yet sturdy enough to hang a diaper bag on
  • Have a sufficiently spacious seat with an adjustable leg rest
  • Be manoeuvrable with one hand
  • Be foldable with one hand
  • Stand on its own when folded
  • Be able to roll while folded
  • Have a decently-sized lower compartment for storage

While we have tested several umbrella-style strollers which are compact and fold easily, they do not suit our preferences as they are difficult to manoeuvre one-handed, even though they can fold fairly small. This can be challenging if you have to push the stroller with one hand while holding hands with an energetic toddler, or worse, if you have to push the weight of one kid in the stroller while holding on to an older child.

We found the following two strollers to meet our requirements, at a reasonable price point:

Joovy Balloon

The Joovy Balloon

The Balloon, one of Joovy’s latest strollers, fits our lightweight, easy-fold, and reasonable-price requirements, with it currently offered at well under S$300. It weighs just 5.8kg but can hold a child up to 21kg, it folds with one hand and stands upright, and it has a seat with a near-flat recline with a large canopy. It also has an adjustable leg rest for baby’s comfort. It is ideal for taking up the bus, and if you drive, it also comes with a car seat adapter. At the advice of a friend, if you decide to purchase this stroller, do check with the Joovy representative if the model you buy has the latest set of wheels, as they roll more smoothly than those from earlier batches.

SeeBaby

If you have a lower budget, the SeeBaby stroller is a good choice for its low price point. Prices start at just S$69.90 for the most basic model, but we would recommend the QQ3 which has more features but still comes at a reasonable S$129. It is fairly lightweight at less than 6kg, with a mesh seat ideal for our humid weather, a near-flat recline and an adjustable leg rest. The stroller does not feel flimsy and can hold a diaper bag from its handles without toppling. One drawback is that its wheels do not have any suspension so it can feel slightly heavy if pushing the stroller up a slope. However, we brought our SeeBaby on a holiday to the UK when Barnacles was two years old, and it held up well on bumpy cobbled streets.

 

Best strollers for airplane travel:

If you travel overseas frequently and are looking for something compact, you could consider the following:

BabyZen Yoyo

The BabyZen Yoyo

Several years ago, the BabyZen Yoyo was marketed as the first stroller to be able to fold small enough to fit into an airplane overhead compartment. It weighs less than 7kg but is well-made and feels very sturdy, and can recline up to about 150 degrees. Since this stroller debuted several years ago, there have been several cheaper imitations made. While they may look similar, one key difference (apart from the price) we could feel was that while the Yoyo can be pushed effortlessly with one hand and rolls easily over bumpy roads, this may not be true of the cheaper versions.

Personally, we did not find the Babyzen Yoyo the most ideal when taking the bus alone with a child and a full diaper bag. We preferred a stroller with a one-hand standing fold, that could be rolled while folded, as carrying the folded Yoyo, a child and a full diaper bag alone was extremely tiring. However, we recently discovered the Tavo stroller, which reportedly has a self-standing fold as well as a smaller fold, similar to the Yoyo.

GB Pockit

If you want a stroller that can fold even smaller, you could consider the GB Pockit stroller, which weighs just 4.8kg and when folded, measures just 30 x 18 x 35cm. One drawback, though, is that it cannot recline. We found a similar one that can, but are not sure of its authenticity so be sure to do your research before purchase.

 

Strollers with the smoothest ride, without weighing a tonne:

BabyHome Emotion

The BabyHome Emotion

After having tried out several different strollers over the past four years, the BabyHome Emotion is our favourite. It has the smoothest wheels of any stroller we’ve tried, likely as the wheels are mounted on ball bearings and are made of the same material as those on skateboards. With a four-year-old and one-year-old to handle, a definite plus is that this stroller can be controlled easily with one hand. The seat is suitable for a baby from three months as it can recline up to 150 degrees, and has a spacious seat with an adjustable leg rest, which is comfortable for our four-year-old to rest his legs or even take a nap. For a relatively lightweight stroller that weighs less than 7kg, it has a big storage basket beneath, is excellently made and feels very sturdy. While it is not the easiest stroller for carrying up a bus, we might just consider using it on public transport once open strollers are allowed on board. BabyHome also recently launched an upgraded Vida stroller which has a few improved features.

 

Strollers ideal for two kids:

Joovy Caboose Too Ultralight

The Joovy Caboose Two Ultralight

After having Kwazii who is now one-year-old, we decided to purchase a tandem stroller, and decided on the Joovy Caboose Too Ultralight after much research. We chose this as it has the same width as a standard stroller, and does not take up much more space than a single stroller when folded. The back seat is removable so you can opt for two seats if you have children closer in age, and remove the back seat to convert the stroller into a sit-and-stand stroller. Our four-year-old loves this, as he can sit to rest or stand and ride, yet get off to walk whenever he likes.

Joovy has since upgraded their tandem stroller to this version, with several improved features such as a shade for the rider behind.

If your two kids are very close in age and you want full comfort for both kids, the City Select is another option as it is convertible in many different ways, from a single to a double stroller. If you prefer not to purchase a tandem stroller, you could also consider a Lascal Buggy Board to attach to a single stroller, which your older child can stand on when he or she gets too tired to walk.

There you have it – several different strollers to suit every budget. If you are hunting for a stroller, do check out one of the baby fairs held throughout the year as strollers are usually offered on discount, or you may get some freebies along with your stroller purchase. Happy shopping!

 

Mummy and Daddy Daycare are the pseudonyms of a Singaporean husband and wife who are raising two young boys aged four and one, nicknamed Barnacles and Kwazii from the children’s Octonauts series. Get into the minds of this couple who describe parenthood as a lifetime adventure – you are always learning something new! Whoever said parenting was a walk in the park?