It's a bit early, but DH & I have been looking at travel systems for when our little one is due.
We settled on a travel system as we don't do a lot of walking (family live car drives away) so the big traditional pram I wanted would be impratical due to space etc.
But there seems to be zillions of travel systems around, and wondered if anybody could let me know of any good / bad items so I know what to look for / avoid!
What I would do is go to an independent pram shop and have a look and a chat. Personally I would spend as much as I could afford on a travel system becaus the more expensive ones are better. I have a middle of the road mamas and papas that I love. The car seat bits in the attic but the pram is in daily use with dd who is 14 months old.
A friend has the Jane that I think is fantastic and better than the Mamas and papas but again is more expensive. Go with your budget and go to a shop (mothercare only sell a few types and don't do the Mamas and papas, Jane etc)
I love my Jane and used the matrix with it so DS was lying flat when I did walk and even flat in the car on long journeys. And then upright in the 'car seat' when needed. The pushchair part is great and DS 15mths loves it. But it is all about choice and what you want from it. The shopping net is small and it takes up a lot of room in the boot unless you remove all the wheels. But those bad points to me weren't important as the good points outwayed it by a long way
Pixiefish is right - go and have a look, but I would research the internet first.
We had a Britax Practicale 4 in 1, and used the pram part and the car seat part, but didn't use the pushchair bit at all. It was a smashing system, but in all honesty it was a waste of money. It was too bulky to fold up into the boot of the car, we had nowhere in the house to store it, and I felt that by the time dd was 12 months old she had outgrown it anyway. We ended up buying a Maclaren buggy when she was about 14 months old.
Positive points: being able to lie a new baby down flat; being able to have it forward or rear facing; shopping basket is nice and big; handles are comfortable; dd was able to sleep in the cot part for 6 months.
Negative points: you're meant to be able to fold it with one hand, but it's impossible to do; very bulky to store and get into the car boot (makes packing for holidays a nightmare!); heavy to push and lift when the child gets older; seemed too small for dd once she got to about 12 months; lots of pieces to have to find storage for when they're not in use.
Thanks for all the help with this. We'd looked around Mothercare but I found they didn't have a lot of choice where we went.
My mum's buying us the pram, and isn't too concerned about the price (first grandchild!), I just dont want to regret the decision when the baby gets to six months or so.
I went for a M&P travel system, had a pram, chasis, pushchair and car seat. I found it to be the only one that was around at the time. Wanted an old pram style dh wanted a car seat so we decided on this. It's okay, best that we could get that was on the market. Bought 6 months ago.
I went for a micralite buggy, with a carry cot and a car seat to fit on it. It is easy to fold and unfold, light (7 kg as a buggy) and goes everywhere...but most of all, we won't have to buy a Mc Laren in 6 months time !
You can find it on kiddicare for a very good price, and the car seat at Groovystyle.com (only online retailer I think ? ...)
Still waiting for DD to arrive to test it fully, but it was a god compromise for us.
Personally I think you are better off deciding which car seat you'd prefer and which pushchair suits your needs best (ie. you'll want one which folds easily and is neither too heavy or bulky to put in and out of boot). If they are compatible and form a travel system then that is a bonus but think you may end up unhappily compromising somewhere if you set out to buy a package. There is even a Maclaren buggy (Global, I think) that can take a Britax Rock a Tot now and a Maxi Cosi similar one.
Never really been sure of the bonus of having a travel system unless you travel in friends' cars and taxis a lot and need to be able to take both elements with you easily.