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Which pushchair from birth for London (and no car!)

(39 Posts)
marushka82 Mon 04-Mar-13 14:55:18

Hi everyone,
I'm currently 19wks pregnant with our DC1 and although it's still quite early I started doing some research on pushchairs. And guess what? I'm totally confused (so much choice!) and I need your advice!

I'd like to buy a pushchair which would be suitable from birth, rear and forward facing and easy to steer.
We don't have a car (and don't plan on getting one just yet) so I think we don't need an integrated travel system (unless there's a great deal and pushchair and car seat can be bought in a bundle), we'll get a cheap car seat separately (I'm sure we'd only use it once or twice, once being when we leave the hospital).

I plan to do a lot of walking (no off roading, just London pavements!) and occasionally jump on the bus (and even more occasionally use the tube, although if that happens I will have DH on hand to help!). We'll probably be living in a terraced house flat, or 1st floor flat (more likely ground floor though!).

The budget is around £350 and we definitely cannot afford a buggaboo bee. I'd also prefer to buy the pushchair new, rather than on e-bay if possible.

I had my eyes set on M&P Sola but I read so many bad reviews about wheels falling off that I just don't want to risk it!
Now I seem to have narrowed it down to three candidates:

1) Maxi Cosi Elea - I read great reviews and it seems to have all we need. I know there are shops that have good offers on it, but the problem seems to be with viewing it irl! Does anyone know which London stores have them on display?
2) Britax B-smart 4 - again, good reviews for this one and the price is right (I also saw a bundle offer which included a car seat and carrycot, but again, where can I actually see it? I wouldn't want to buy it without testing it in the shop first)
3) Graco Evo - saw it in the shop and it looks fine, good reviews etc, the only thing that worries me are the plastic wheels - are they going to be an issue?

Phew, I realise this is a long post so congratulate yourselves if you got this far!
I'd appreciate any suggestions you might have!!!

Another quick question: has anyone had any experience buying from Babyvalue on ebay? They've got a Maxi Cosi Elea for a reasonable price (auction) apparently brand new: what's the catch? It normally costs £400, £320 with offers.

Ihateparties Mon 04-Mar-13 16:59:58

Jane muum? I've got my thinking cap on for other alternatives too. From the ones you have shortlisted i'm assuming you don't need it to fold parent facing. My head still says bee though... is there no way of affording it? Otherwise maybe an njoy bubble? Mutsy Evo? Personally i would want something narrow but that's just my taste and there are plenty of report of wider pushchairs being fine on london buses etc.

Friend of a friend has recently got a graco evo, this is reminding me to try and get a review off her.

marushka82 Mon 04-Mar-13 22:19:58

Thanks! I read about Mutsy Evo and apparently it's quite bulky and heavy...
I definitely don't want to spend more than £350 on a pushchair as we'll have to get a car seat as well, so bugaboo is out of my budget...
Never heard about njoy bubble, googling it now!
I'm tempted to just get the Graco Evo (I saw it in the shop and liked it) or risk Maxi Cosi Elea although I haven't seen it (it looks great and I haven't read any negative reviews so far)...
Luckily I still have a lot of time, but will have a look at any suggestions!
Baby Jogger mini versa looked awesome, but I read it was recalled and it's still not back?

Dillydollydaydream Mon 04-Mar-13 22:28:57

I have actually just 'won' an elea pushchair on eBay from Babyvalue. Ended up bidding 174.99 for it which I thought was good for a new pushchair. I haven't seen one irl either just videos on YouTube so hopefully it'll be ok! It's compatible with the maxi cosi carseat and is forward or parent facing and can be used from birth with the baby nest which comes with the pushchair.

I'll let you know what I think when it actually arrives!

Tiggywunkle Mon 04-Mar-13 22:37:08

Well done! I hope you like it.

greenthumbs Mon 04-Mar-13 23:05:33

We have a Britax B Smart 4, we got it at the baby show on the last afternoon at a massive discount, everyone sells everything off rather than packing up. It's a fab pushchair and I don't understand why it's not more popular.

dinkystinky Mon 04-Mar-13 23:11:30

Baby jogger city versas are back on sale through selected stockists - I got mine last week. It is at the top end of what you want to pay though and you need car seat or pram carrycot till baby is six months. Perhaps get in touch with maxi cosi to find London stockists of the Elea?

Ihateparties Mon 04-Mar-13 23:11:31

Maybe it depends where you are, I see them on a daily basis :-)

FannyBazaar Mon 04-Mar-13 23:15:07

If you ever want to use the car seat for a journey where you might be on public transport first then a travelsystem is a godsend, also if you might be using a car on holidays.

You don't need a car seat to leave the hospital unless you are in your own car.

milk Tue 05-Mar-13 09:18:31
marushka82 Tue 05-Mar-13 09:39:32

Hi everyone, thanks for your suggestions! Dillydollydaydream please do let me know once you receive and test the Elea, I'm really curious about that ebay supplier - the prices seem almost too good to be true, but I keep thinking there must be a catch? Is it cheaper because it's last year's model?

greenthumbs was this the recent baby show in Excel in Feb? I just got a reply from one store saying they have Britax b smart 4 in stock, but they don't confirm whether it's on display (I assume it is, because that was the question in my email to them :D

I think I will contact Maxi Cosi directly - surely there must be at least one store in London who have Elea on display? :D

RE: car seat - I will be going home in a taxi from the hospital (it's definitely not walking distance!), so I assumed I'd need a car seat?

TuesdayNightDateNight Tue 05-Mar-13 10:04:13

The seller on eBay BabyValue is the outlet for Dorel, they are the UK branch of Maxi Cosi, Quinny etc...

It means you are usually bidding on returned stock, refurbished stuff or just things with very minor cosmetic blips which mean they can't be sold at full price. Often when they arrive they are actually completely brand new!

Have bought quite a few things from them over the years and never been disappointed.

If you message them they are usually very helpful with finding you what you need and/or sending out replacements. I was sent the wrong thing once and they replaced it and told me not to bother sending the other one back (a Zapp I think it was!)

rootypig Tue 05-Mar-13 10:06:50

We got a bugaboo bee second hand (like new) for £250 and it's been brilliant. there are a LOT on the London resale market. Then buy a new muff / cocoon. Check gumtree to buy direct from another parent x

ElliesWellies Tue 05-Mar-13 12:10:13

Our situation sounds similar to yours, and we had a Britax B-Smart 4. It is a lovely looking pushchair and great for newborns. It is, however, wide at the back, and really heavy, and does not fold up small. It is not great for going on public transport. Also, the seat doesn't sit up 100% straight and there isn't a proper footrest. I don't think it's good for older babies or toddlers.

I would urge you to resist spending too much on a lovely shiny pushchair that weighs too much! We switched to a Maclaren about six months in and have never looked back. I would say get a Maclaren Techno which is suitable from birth. It doesn't face the parent, although I understand you can clip a car seat in which would then allow you to see your newborn.

The main thing is to look at pushchair size and weight, in my opinion. If you're like me, you'll get sick of driving a lorry, even if it looks great!!

marushka82 Tue 05-Mar-13 12:27:03

I looked at MacLaren techno, but I'd really love the option of forward and rear facing. You mention that MacLaren does that but only with a car seat - I heard that the general guidance is for newborns not to be in the car seat for longer than two hours?
I'm more and more tempted to get the Elea off eBay from baby value (secretly counting on Dillydollydaydream to review her experience with both the pushchair and the seller! smile

TobyKemp Tue 05-Mar-13 14:24:56

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

marushka82 Tue 05-Mar-13 15:30:23

TobyKemp thanks a lot for sharing! I haven't read a single bad review of it so far :D Could you tell me what wheels it has? The one thing that discourages me from getting a Graco Evo are the plastic wheels.

Dillydollydaydream Tue 05-Mar-13 16:00:07

I will definitely let you know what the elea is like and buying from babyvalue too!

Ihateparties Tue 05-Mar-13 16:25:48

I'm not sure what the difference is in the wheels tbh, i didn't think the evo ones were hard plastic, i think the evo and the elea will have eva wheels.

marushka82 Wed 06-Mar-13 16:06:58

I just talked to my friend (mother of two babies) and she got me totally confused about the pushchair choice...confused
She basically said that the rear/forward facing thing is a faff and useful for maybe 6 months because after 6m the baby will be sitting up and more interested to look at the world around it then its mum :D
She also said that the lighter the pushchair the better and she'd get a MacLaren had she had a choice. I'm sort of convinced, but buying one pushchair to serve you from birth to 6 months and then getting another one like MacLaren (which everyone is raving about as it's light). Or I could go with just a good forward facing and comfy pushchair and add a second hand carrycot for the first six months? Grrr, I really really hate the fact that until the baby is here and I actually start using the pushchair I won't know what works and what doesn't and obviously what works for one person doesn't work for another.
As we don't have a car and I don't plan to necessarily lift the pushchair or fold it too much (hoping to get a ground floor flat in a terraced house) I don't think the weight will necessarily be an issue, but I also would hate to find that I spent £300 on a pushchair that I will want to ditch in favour of something lighter in less than a year.
So now I'm looking at Baby Jogger City Mini or a MacLaren as they are lighter. Just need to check whether I can mount a carrycot onto a BJCM?

ENormaSnob Wed 06-Mar-13 16:24:43

I hated my maclarens. Really really loathed them.

Personally I would rather get a second hand bee than any of those listed in the op.

tethersend Wed 06-Mar-13 16:27:22

I'd get a baby style oyster.

marushka82 Wed 06-Mar-13 16:58:45

thanks guys. I realise that Bugaboo bee is really popular but it just looks a bit... flimsy?

Ihateparties Wed 06-Mar-13 17:04:03

Did you discount the njoy bubble for a particular reason being it's very similar to a maclaren in size but perhaps a bit heavier and parent faces too? Purely forward facing with carrycot i would go britax b agile with cot or city mini probably city mini gt with compact or compact plus carrycot.

Infact i had a b agile with cot for the first 6 months but find forward facing a 6 month old a challenge to my brain so switched to something else at that point.

marushka82 Wed 06-Mar-13 22:04:26

I think I just read a few negative reviews about njoy bubble (will have a look again though, as I had my heart set on Elea at the time, so perhaps that affected me! grin). I've decided to go to John Lewis/Mothercare again this weekend and have a look at lighter pushchairs (perhaps not necessarily rear facing) like Britax B Agile or Baby Jogger City Mini (I really like what I read about it so far!). I reckon BJCM GT is a bit out of our price range (unless we stumble upon a good offer!).
I have to say I'm not totally convinced as I'm worried about having a 6 month old facing forward; this sounds stupid, but if they start crying I'll have to stop and go round to talk to them/distract them/check them (or do whatever you do with babies to make them happy! Yes, I'm clueless at this point, please don't laugh grin) - mums who had a forward facing pushchair from 6 months - how did you find it?

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