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first time mum - totally confused about buggies

(34 Posts)
queenie1 Tue 16-Jun-09 16:28:52

I'm only 19 weeks but already beginning to think about all the stuff we'll need to get...and feeling pretty overwhelmed by it.

I've been looking through the product reviews on pushchairs but still very confused.

I went to Mothercare the other day and they couldn't stop going on about the benefits of a Bugaboo Chameleon. But it's so expensive! Is it really worth it? What also about McClaren and others etc? Also do I need to have a carrycot or can I go straight into a seat thing?

So many questions...any advice or ideas gratefully received!

differentID Tue 16-Jun-09 16:35:12

hi queenie.

Have you thought about what you want in pushchair?

Did you want the baby to face you when you're pushing it?
Do you drive? If you do, what size boot does your car have?

Carrycot-type pushchairs are fab- it means your baby can be comfortable and cosy while lying flat

FlappyTheBat Tue 16-Jun-09 16:36:26

You can never have too many buggies/pramsgrin

You need one that is suitable for walking with, that also has plenty of space to carry shopping.

You'll need one that is easy to fold down and get into a car.

You'll need one that is easy to get onto public transport.

I have a "proper" pram, a pushchair and a lightweight buggy.

Babies shouldn't really be kept in a car seat for anymore than 2 hours at a time, they need to lie flat for the first few months.

Enjoy looking!!

Northernlurker Tue 16-Jun-09 16:37:22

Yu don't have to have a pushcahir at all -you could just use a sling - however most people find a pram/pushchair to be an important part of their kit.

The first thing to remember is that you will be spending a lot of time with this thing so it needs to be a weight you can push or carry if necessary. It needs to be suitable for the ground you'll be walking over and the handles need to be at the right height.

I would strongly advise you to buy something that either lies flat or has a carrycot - it's important for your baby's spine that they can lie flat at least some of the time.

It is hard to imagine what you need till you have the baby so if you're stuck why not look out for a secondhand pram that has a carrycot. You can then try it ut with your baby and you may find that you love it, you realise at 6 months that you must get a maclaren or that you can't live without a Bugaboo! You can then proceed from a position of knowledge!

differentID Tue 16-Jun-09 16:38:00

Have you set a budget?

Do you intend to use itr all the way through the time you will use a pushchair, or will you want to change it to an umbrella fold stroller later on which tend to be smaller and lighter?

Yes, the chameleon is expensive, but think about all aspects of your lifestyle as well. Do you have dogs to walk? do you enjoy countryside walks/ go to the coast a lot? If you go on sand a lot then you can convert it to just two wheels and pull it along.

lastboxoftampons Tue 16-Jun-09 17:00:27

There really are tons of them - and they TOTALLY depend on what's right for you in terms of where you'll be going with it. We live in London and don't have a car, space is at a premium for storage in our flat, and I need something that's light enough for me to get on and off of public transport by myself - but we also have a good sized park nearby and I expect I'll be doing lots of walking. I also feel that having the baby face me is important. And then of course there's your budget...! So I want something that lies flat from birth so that I don't need to store an extra carrycot bit, something that's light, that can face me or face out and something that's rugged enough to take some muddy park walks (but not necessarily a jogger!)

Mothercare's website has a "help me choose" function, which will ask you some questions about the way in which you intend to use the pram. It's not totally comprehensive, but it's a good place to start.

Good luck!

queenie1 Tue 16-Jun-09 17:01:39

Thanks so much for your replies.

Luckily this is the one item that budget isn't that much of an issue as my mum has said she wants to buy it for me. she was there with me when mothercare were banging on and on about the bugaboo chameleon and said i could have it if i really wanted it, but i don't want to waste her cash unneccessarily.

flappythebat - good advice about the carrycot.

northernlurker - sounds very sensible but I'm quite impatient and don't know if I could hold out that long!

differentid - on lifestyle, I'm a keen walker and go on lots of country walks etc but was kind of thinking of slings in those cases? we have a car but don't use it that much as I tend to walk or cycle more. I guess the cycling will be out for a while so I will be doing a lot of walking in and around town etc. I definitely want my baby to be able to face me and I've now been persuaded of the merits of a carry cot. So...would you recommend a 3 in 1 travel system? And if so, any particular makes other than - or in your opinion more superior to - Bugaboo?

hanaflower Tue 16-Jun-09 17:02:58

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

lastboxoftampons Tue 16-Jun-09 17:04:38

Queenie - you might want to check out the 2009 Britax Vigour - comes in 3 or 4 wheel versions, with good suspension and is fairly light(comparable to Bugaboo). Chassis folds with seat unit on (Bugaboo Chameleon doesn't), seat unit can face either front or back and lies flat for use from birth without a separate carrycot. You can also connect a carseat directly to the chassis.

arolf Tue 16-Jun-09 17:07:57

lastbox - where is the mothercare help you choose thing? I'm 26 weeks and also panicking about pushchair/carseat stuff (it's just all so expensive!)...

queenie1 Tue 16-Jun-09 17:10:20

lastbox - thanks for the advice. i had a look at the help you choose thing and it suggested a bugaboo chameleon but i'll also have a look at the britax vigour

hanaflower - out of interest, what sling did you use?

lastboxoftampons Tue 16-Jun-09 17:13:00

arolf - here's the link But also, if you hover over "Pushchairs" at the top, a drop down menu appears and "Help me choose" is about four from the bottom.


arolf Tue 16-Jun-09 17:14:26

thank you! I'm blaming my inability to find it ENTIRELY on pregnancy brain wink

Stayingsunnygirl Tue 16-Jun-09 17:16:14

There are a few things that I think are vital in a buggy.

Swivel wheels on the front, so it corners without you having to push down on the handle - easy enough when the baby is tiny, less so when he or she's a toddler.

Easy to fold up - I had a McClaren superdreamer, and I could fold it one-handed, with the baby under the other arm.

The McClaren also allowed me to have the baby front or rear facing - I just had to turn the seat round.

A good shopping tray underneath is vital - it's amazing the amount of stuff you can get under there - which is useful, especially at first.

Not too heavy, so you don't give yourself a hernia heaving it up and down stairs, or in and out of the boot of the car.

The one thing my McClaren didn't do, which I think is a really good idea, is have the option to have an infant car seat that attaches to the buggy frame (probably called something poncy special like a travel system) so you can lift the baby out of the car and clip the carseat straight onto the buggy, and vice versa - so if the baby is asleep, you can avoid waking them.

Good luck with your baby, queenie - I remember vividly vaguely how exciting the first baby is - my precious firstborn is now a huge lad of nearly 16 who is 10cm taller than me! It is a lovely time, and I wish you great enjoyment and happiness.

hoochymama Tue 16-Jun-09 17:19:34

I love my ICandy Cherry, FWIW. V light and easy to maneouvre (?sp). I haven't had any problems with it at all and dd loves sleeping in the carrycot. The pushchair bit faces both ways, which was important for me. You can't buy them on the internet, only at stockists, you can find them on the ICandy website.

Good luck with your search,I lay awake at night thinking about which pram to buy, someone once said to me that buying a pram was worse than buying a house grin!

queenie1 Tue 16-Jun-09 17:19:38

thanks stayingsunny - both me and DH are very excited about it all...just, as I said, a bit overwhelmed and panicked about everything we are supposed to get!

differentID Tue 16-Jun-09 17:19:53

What about a Quinny Speedi? you can get a carrycot to fit on the chassis for the first 4-6 months or so.

Northernlurker Tue 16-Jun-09 17:24:45

OP -you need to become a trainspotter - go to your usual haunts and see what people are using in the way of prams. You can see how it seems to be working for them and even ask them for a real life review! Generally people love talking about their pram decisions grin

Northernlurker Tue 16-Jun-09 17:25:12

'Trainspotter'??? I meant pramspotter - sorry!

lynniep Tue 16-Jun-09 17:42:50

havent read the previous posts but I'm guessing they're all helpful and spot on!

When DS was little, I had two prams/buggies, a hauck infinity ( kind of like a cheapo bugaboo) and a micralite.

I used the hauck at home (cos I did a lot of pushing around in the early days) with the carrycot attachment initially. I did find it a bit heavy for getting it in and out of the car, and realised I wanted one whichI could put the carseat on.

So I opted for a micralite, which was great for the carseat and fit in the boot easily.

Both are really easy to push, and the hauck is still used a lot with the pram attachment (forward and back facing) to ferry the 2yr old to and from nursery.

The micralite was garaged once he was too big for the carseat - he just didnt like the sling seat. They have the toro now which is probably an improvement on that. It does depend on the child though.

I now have a lightweight buggy for the car boot ( silver cross pop - although I dont particularly recommend it)

I still recommend the hauck infinity - its not expensive, its easy to push, it has the carry cot and is forward and backward facing, and its sturdy. The basket isnt big enough though.

Stokey Tue 16-Jun-09 18:24:39

my husband's really into the stokke xplory - any one have any views on this?

looks kinda cool, but pricey and seems bit heavy

MyNameIsInigoMontoya Tue 16-Jun-09 19:54:18

"Which?" did a review on pushchairs a while back, can't remember all the results (and they are probably a bit out of date now), but they were very clear that the most expensive pushchairs were often NOT the best. A lot of the ones they recommended were between £100 and £200.

A few things to consider:
- If you will use it from birth, it needs to be suitable for newborns (ie go flat or nearly flat) - check the age recommendations
- Check what's included (raincover, sunshade, cosytoes etc)
- Very wide pushchairs may not fit through doorways and round shops easily
- Will it fit in your car, and is it light and easy enough to lift in and out?
- Is it easy to push and turn?
- Is it important to be able to move baby from the car to pushchair without waking - carseat types are best for that.

For the first year we just had one pushchair, a Ziko Alfie from Mamas & Papas which is great for general use, the only thing it doesn't do well is rough ground/country walks, and the wheels occasionally get stuck if it gets muddy or sandy.
We have now ended up with 2 more though, a chunky but v heavy 3-wheeler (Maxi Cosi Speedi) for country walks cos we do quite a lot, and a very light stroller (Mothercare Backspin) which is brill for throwing in and out of the car but less good for long walks (that one was mostly for Gran).

Loopymumsy Tue 16-Jun-09 21:58:16

Message withdrawn

moaningminnie2020 Tue 16-Jun-09 22:49:52

When I was in the OP's position a wise woman told me - 'buy whatever you like! You'll swap it for a maclaren in 6 months time anyway'

She was right. I also got pregnant with DC2 soon after so I have a Silver Cross Linear freeway - travel system/carrycot/pushchair/carseat jobby , a Maclaren Techno XT, a cheap Hauck 3 wheeler, and my shiny new Phil and Teds. The silver cross can be a parent facing or away facing push chair <<but I only ever used it in carrycot mode, have never put either child in it sitting upblush>>good job DH has no idea how much these things cost.

But except for the baby, picking the pushchair/pram is the most exciting part!! And look/try them out at mothercare by all means, but come online and check prices at either kiddicare or glasgow pram centre, before you buy.

Stayingsunnygirl Thu 18-Jun-09 09:39:14

My top tip for a sling is the Wilkinet. It is a tie-on sling, designed by women, and is suitable from birth. It is very versatile - you can use it to carry the baby on your front, back or hip, and the baby can either face you or face out when on your front.

Putting it on can be a bit of a faff at first, as you tie the baby in then tie it onto you, and is best done with the sling spread out on a flat surface. When you do this, it looks like something with long tentacles, and because of this, our Wilkinet was called The Alien. smile

But all the boys loved it, and I did too - unlike many slings on the market, it doesn't just hang the baby off your shoulders, instead it does what a good rucksack does and places the weight evenly by supporting it firmly round your ribcage. This means it can be used for older babies.

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