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Best umbrella strollers: lightweight prams for easy travel and storage

Looking for a lightweight, easy-fold stroller for fuss-free travel from A to B? Here are the best umbrella-fold prams you can buy.

By Lucy Cotterill | Last updated Apr 16, 2024

Best umbrella prams

Traditional pushchairs and travel systems are a great way to travel with your baby in tow, but due to their robust, all-terrain nature, they can often be heavy and bulky, making them somewhat challenging when travelling on public transport.

If you’re looking for a fuss-free travel option, an umbrella stroller is a great solution. Taking their name from their unique style of fold, umbrella strollers fold in on themselves like an umbrella to create a narrow (albeit tall) compact shape.

Umbrella strollers are incredibly lightweight and easy to fold (even one-handed), making them quick and efficient to pack away when not required.

Whether it’s an all-terrain umbrella stroller, a reclining umbrella stroller or even an umbrella stroller you can be certain will fit in the boot of your car, we’ve researched the best lightweight umbrella strollers that can make travel and navigating public transport a doddle.

Mumsnetters know their stuff when it comes to prams. We've got handy guides to the best pushchairs, the best travel systems, the best lightweight strollers, the best double buggies and the best running buggies, as well as the best baby car seats and the best 360 swivel car seats, all featuring product recommendations from parents.

Best umbrella strollers at a glance

1. Best overall umbrella stroller: Joie Nitro Stroller

Joie Nitro Stroller umbrella pram

RRP: £69 | Buy now from Boots

Tested by parents: Read the full Joie Nitro Stroller review

Key specs: Age range: Birth to 15kg (approx 4 years) | Weight: 7.52kg | Folded size: 30 x 30 x 109cm | Includes rain cover: Yes

What we like

  • Multiple recline positions

  • Suspension can tackle varied terrain

  • Lightweight with carry handle

What we don't like

  • Basket is small

  • Reviewers found rain cover didn't fully cover their child’s feet

What Mumsnet users say

“My friend had a Joie Nitro though and thought it was great”  -  Teaandcakeordeath83

“I second the Joie Nitro. I was using the Mothercare travel system and needed something more lightweight and compact and it's brilliant. Very reasonably priced and easy to manoeuvre'' - HakunaMatataa)

Our verdict

Suitable from birth, the Joie Nitro is a great all-rounder, offering a lightweight yet surprisingly robust chassis with a comfortable padded seat that can be positioned in a choice of five recline settings. You can even lie the seat entirely flat should you wish - adjusting with one hand if your child nods off when you’re out walking.

With lockable front wheels, dual suspension and a good handlebar height of 108cm, you won’t find yourself crouching to push this stroller, even across varied terrain. It’s simple to fold with an incorporated carry handle making it easy to carry, even while holding your little one’s hand.

The shopping basket is relatively compact but it’s ideal for stashing your essentials. The pushchair also comes with a rain cover, which is easy to fit if the weather suddenly takes a turn for the worse. We do wish the rain cover was a little longer however, as there’s a small risk you may find soggy socks if those tiny toes stick out the end!

Read next: The best pushchairs to buy, as rated by Mumsnetters

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2. Best budget umbrella stroller: Cuggl Laurel Stroller

Cuggl Laurel Stroller

RRP: £40 | Buy now from Argos

Key specs: Age range: 6 months to 15kg | Weight: 4.9kg | Folded size: 20 x 16 x 120cm | Includes rain cover: No

What we like

  • Budget-friendly price tag

  • High handle height comfortable for taller parents

  • Ideal for travel

What we don't like

  • No rain cover included

  • Very basic design

What Mumsnet users say

“We’re in Spain now and I bought a Cuggl one. Umbrella fold so it was perfect for the plane” - Charlottejade89)

Our verdict

If you’re looking for a basic lightweight stroller suitable for travel, they don’t come much more affordable than the Cuggl Laurel stroller.

This small ‘no-frills’ umbrella fold pushchair is suitable for babies from 6 months to approximately 3 years and makes a handy choice for reluctant walkers, who may tire quickly during trips where you cover some distance.

There’s no sun hood or rain cover included, making it less suited to everyday use, however with an upright, high handlebar, it’s comfortable to manoeuvre through busy crowds before folding up flat when not in use.

Read next: The best baby carrier backpacks for toddlers

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3. Best lightweight umbrella stroller: Red Kite Baby Push Me 2 U Stroller

Red Kite Baby Push Me 2 U Stroller

RRP: £60 | Buy now from Amazon

Key specs: Age range: 6 months to 15kg | Weight: 6.3kg | Folded size: 26 x 25 x 110cm | Includes rain cover: Yes

What we like

  • Comfortable padded seat

  • Shopping basket

What we don't like

  • Only two recline settings and unable to lie flat for naps

What Mumsnet users say

“I bought a Red Kite one (called Push Me 2 U) for this exact purpose. It’s great. I even used it a few times in London before coming away cos I could carry it folded in one hand and hold daughter’s hand with the other on Underground staircases” -  Rainatnight

Our verdict

If you’ve got a toddler who struggles to walk long distances, this lightweight Red Kite stroller could be a great solution.

Weighing just 6.3kg with a compact umbrella fold, this feather-light stroller can easily be packed down and carried when your toddler is determined to walk, before popping back up in seconds when they inevitably change their mind.

With a deep, padded seat for children aged six months plus, it offers a safe and secure ride with an adjustable five-point safety harness. While it doesn’t lie completely flat, it has a choice of two recline settings, allowing your child to lean back in a more relaxed position if they start to tire on their travels.

With a detachable hood and rain cover, the Red Kite Push Me 2U stroller is ready for whatever the weather may bring, with a small mesh basket providing space for a coat or blanket beneath the seat.

Read next: The best lightweight strollers, as tested by parents

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4. Best double umbrella stroller: Joie Aire Twin Pushchair

Joie Aire Twin Pushchair

RRP: £175 | Buy now from Boots

Key specs: Age range: Birth to 15kg (in each seat) | Weight: 11.8kg | Folded size: 78 x 26 x 96.5cm | Includes rain cover: Yes

What we like

  • Individually adjustable seats that can recline and lie flat for on-the-go naps

  • Spacious and deep shopping basket

  • Lightweight and easy to push

What we don't like

  • Can be too wide for doorways and busy shops

What Mumsnet users say

“I had a Joie Aire. It was the best buggy I ever had. It was lightweight with a huge basket. I can't say if it will fit in a car boot easily as I didn't have a car at the time. That's why I was so glad it had a huge basket so I could get my weekly shop in it!! It was also fairly cheap. It had a lot of use and was still in good condition when I finished with it” - Therealmrsclaus

“We had the Joie Aire Twin. It was suitable from birth and was just right for our newborn and just two-year-old. Easy to fold up and went in our boot (we have a big car though)" - Treaclespongeandcustard

Our verdict

As parents of twins and multiples know only too well, travelling with two children can be challenging, especially with toddlers who seek their independence but aren’t quite confident yet on foot.

With a lightweight aluminium frame that weighs less than 12kg, the Joie Aire Twin offers great flexibility for parents - this easy umbrella fold double stroller can quickly be opened as and when required. It’s freestanding when folded and while it inevitably takes up some space, it still folds small enough to fit into the boot of most modern cars.

Featuring two comfortable seats with secure five-point safety harnesses, you can reverse the liners to switch between pink and blue as preferred. Each seat can be customised entirely to the child, with the ability to lie flat, recline or sit more upright to see the world around them - ideal if you've got a curious toddler and a younger baby who needs to nap on the go.

The basket is deep and spans both seats, so there’s plenty of space for your shopping and essentials. It’s worth noting however that this may not be the best choice for busy city environments as its wider frame may struggle to fit through narrow doors and passageways.

Read next: The best double buggies, as recommended by parents

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5. Best reclining umbrella stroller: Silver Cross Reflex Stroller

Silver Cross Reflex Stroller

RRP: £275 | Buy now from Amazon

Tested by parents: Read the full Silver Cross Reflex review

Key specs: Age range: Birth to 25kg | Weight: 11kg | Folded size: 31 x 40 x 110 cm | Includes rain cover: Yes

What we like

  • Suitable from birth with a choice of five recline positions

  • Stylish and comfortable

  • Large shopping basket

What we don't like

  • Costly

  • Heavier and bulkier than some other umbrella fold strollers

What Mumsnet users say

“Would recommend the Silver Cross Pop or Reflex. I love the big hood and the fact that the seat goes completely flat and can sit bolt-upright. We have the reflex for our holiday buggy and my daughter sleeps so well in it. She’s a tall 3-year-old now and still fits comfortably. The basket is a good size for an umbrella stroller too”  - voxnihili

“My Silver Cross Reflex was the best pushchair I have ever ever had. Gorgeous design and is so sturdy and light to push. Son was always so comfortable in it too” - nurseymummyx)

Our verdict

It may be pricey but this luxurious Silver Cross umbrella stroller is a high-quality option that’s built to last. While it’s a little heavier and bulkier than some, it offers significant flexibility in terms of recline features - with a choice of five settings that can be adjusted one-handed to suit your child’s needs as they grow.

With leatherette features and premium fabrics, this stroller has a stylish, high-quality design with roomy, ergonomic seats that can comfortably accommodate your baby from birth to 25kg (approx four years of age). We love the inclusion of a head hugger for your newborn and it's even travel system-compatible when used with car seat adaptors (sold separately).

With a large extendable SPF50 sun hood and a rain cover included, it’s as well suited to everyday use as a convenient and compact stroller for travel.

Read next: The best running buggies, as ranked by Mumsnet users

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6. Best umbrella stroller for tall parents: Cosatto Supa 3 Stroller

Cosatto Supa 3 Stroller

RRP: £230 | Buy now from Amazon

Key specs: Age range: Birth to 25kg | Weight: 7kg | Folded size: 27 x 36 x 100cm | Includes rain cover: Yes

What we like

  • Lightweight design

  • Bold, striking appearance

  • 4-year guarantee

What we don't like

  • Reviewers do not rate the rain cover design

What Mumsnet users say

“I'm 5ft 11 and have a Cosatto Supa 3 stroller which I've just switched my five-month-old to. It’s the perfect height for me. Also has a handle to carry it when folded (umbrella fold) which is handy!” - HalfBloodPrince

Our verdict

Cosatto is well known for its bright, colourful and striking designs and this one is no exception with its fun dinosaur pattern.

Built with parents' convenience in mind, we love the high handlebar and large shopping basket, with side zip access so you can access the contents even when the seat is fully reclined. There’s even a handy pocket for stashing your mobile phone, and a cup holder for those morning coffee essentials.

The comfortable, multi-recline seat can be adjusted one-handed, while the bumper bar opens for easy access, even with the wriggliest of children.

The large SPF100 hood is ideal for bright sunny days but the rain cover and footmuff ensure your baby will stay warm and dry when the weather takes a turn. That said, reviewers aren’t keen on the rain cover design, finding it fiddly and difficult to secure during a sudden downpour.

Read next: How to clean a pram, according to Mumsnetters

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7. Best all-terrain umbrella stroller: Ickle Bubba Discovery Max Stroller

Ickle Bubba Discovery Max Stroller

RRP: £180 | Buy now from Amazon

Key specs: Age range: 6 months to 22kg | Weight: 9.22kg | Folded size: 34 x 30 x 107cm | Includes rain cover: Yes

What we like

  • All-terrain design

  • One-handed three position recline

  • Lightweight frame

What we don't like

  • Fold is challenging with the footmuff in place

  • Low handlebar which may be challenging for taller parents

What Mumsnet users say

“I've got an Ickle Bubba Discovery Max and it's very nice to push. Feels miles sturdier than cheaper Chicco and Mamas & Papas ones I had for my older children” - ohidoliketobe)

Our verdict

If you live in a rural location, it can be hard to find the right balance between a lightweight, compact stroller and the ability to tackle varied terrain.

Thankfully, the Ickle Bubba Discovery Max Stroller offers the best of both, with a lightweight chassis weighing less than 10kg and an all-wheel suspension for a smooth and comfortable ride.

Featuring a luxury quilted liner and footmuff, a fully padded harness and variable calf support, you can easily adjust the seat to meet your baby’s needs as they grow.

We love the extendable UPF50+ hood and spacious shopping basket, although it can be a little tricky to access when the seats are fully reclined. It’s also worth noting that the handlebar is relatively low when compared to other umbrella strollers on our list, which may cause some discomfort over time if you’re particularly tall.

Read next: Everything you need to know about travelling with a pram on a plane

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8. Best easy steer umbrella stroller: Mama & Papas Cruise Buggy

Mama and Papas Cruise Buggy

RRP: £109 | Buy now from Boots

Key specs: Age range: Birth to 15kg | Weight: 8.3kg | Folded size: 23 x 30 x 111cm | Includes rain cover: No

What we like

  • Narrow, lightweight frame

  • Lie-flat seat suitable from birth

  • Padded seat and chest pads

What we don't like

  • Basket less robust than some

What Mumsnet users say

“We ended up buying a Mamas & Papas Cruise which is great for what we need”- jomaIone)

Our verdict

With a beautiful colour palette ideal for spring, the Mamas and Papas Cruise buggy is a lightweight easy-fold umbrella stroller suitable from birth to 15kg (approximately three years).

With a narrow frame and comfortable padded seats, it makes a convenient second stroller for travel. It has an easy-steer option that’s easy to manoeuvre around your local shops and features added suspension for a smoother ride.

The mesh basket could be stronger but there’s plenty of space to stash your essentials. We love the extra large SPF50 sun hood with a peekaboo visor, protecting your napping child from the elements but allowing you to easily check on them without the risk of waking them up.

Read next: The best travel cots, as recommended by Mumsnetters

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9. Best umbrella stroller for small cars: John Lewis ANYDAY Stroller

John Lewis ANYDAY Stroller

RRP: £65 | Buy now from John Lewis

Key specs: Age range: Birth to 22kg (approx 4 years) | Weight: 7.1kg | Folded size: 35 x 33 x 100cm | Includes rain cover: Yes

What we like

  • Shorter than other umbrella fold strollers for easy storage

  • Lightweight and easy to manoeuvre

  • One-handed recline adjustment

What we don't like

  • Basket is small

  • Handlebar less suited to taller parents

What Mumsnet users say

“This is the exact stroller we got for my parents when they were looking after my daughter.We love it too and use it on days out cos it folds so well for the car. It’s so lightweight it’s great for our town with rickety paving slabs and easy-to-move around shops. For the price, it’s amazing. One annoying thing is that the basket underneath is veeerrryyy small - but if it’s mainly for grandparents carting around a baby, it should be okay” - moonseas

Our verdict

With an affordable price tag, this John Lewis ANYDAY stroller is well rated by Mumsnet users and online reviewers, especially by those who have small cars. With a compact umbrella fold that measures just a metre lengthwise when folded, it’s small enough to fit easily into your car boot and features a handy carry strap to help transport it as required.

Suitable from birth to around four years of age, this stroller has soft cushioned seats and a large sun canopy to keep your baby safe in the shade during strolls in the sunshine. It’s lightweight and easy to steer, however, taller parents may find themselves wishing the handlebars were adjustable, as it’s a little on the low side if you’re over 5ft 9.

Read next: Best toddler reins to keep your little ones close

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What is an umbrella pram?

A umbrella pram is a lightweight pushchair that, similar to an umbrella, can fold in on itself when not in use. Unlike a traditional pushchair that folds in half downwards or flips forward, umbrella strollers stay long and narrow when folded, often making them easier to store vertically for houses that are limited in space.

What are the benefits of using an umbrella pram?

Umbrella strollers are incredibly lightweight and well-suited to travel thanks to their ability to fold down quickly (usually one-handed). They’re easy to store vertically (great for when travelling by bus or when keeping in your porch) without taking up significant space.

It’s worth noting though that while compact, umbrella-fold strollers are still relatively long when folded. As such, you may need to bear in mind the width of your boot if you’re planning to store it in the car.

What age is best for an umbrella stroller?

Due to their lightweight design, most umbrella strollers and prams are suitable from 6 months to around 15kg, after which, the additional weight could cause the pushchair to topple or make it harder to move around.

You can however pick up more robust umbrella strollers that are suitable for kids weighing up to 25kg (around 4 years) and can be used from birth thanks to their lie-flat seats. These tend to be slightly heavier as a result however but are still significantly more portable than a bulky travel system.

It's worth bearing in mind that in most cases, umbrella strollers are world-facing and parents with newborns may feel more comfortable with a parent-facing pushchair initially with a very young child.

What’s the best umbrella pram to buy?

There are some really great umbrella prams on the market, but if you're looking for a great all-rounder, the Joie Nitro gets our vote as the best umbrella stroller you can buy.

Incredibly lightweight with a padded seat, multiple recline positions and all-wheel suspension, it offers a comfortable ride for both child and parent. The only downside - the rain cover could do with being bigger to keep those cute little shoes shiny and clean.

How we chose our recommendations

Recommendations from real Mumsnet users

First, we sought out the trusted opinions of Mumsnet users, to get their feedback on the umbrella fold strollers they’ve used and rated with their children including those they felt offered a lightweight and compact fold whilst still being comfortable and secure for their children/

We also looked out for any negative reviews, where Mumsnet users highlighted umbrella fold strollers that they felt were poor quality, flimsy or tricky to use.

Expert opinions

Next up, we considered reviews and feedback from trusted industry experts. We want to be confident that the products we recommend are fit for purpose, so we looked out for award-winning products or those that were well regarded in the marketplace, including those recommended by travel or industry experts.

Authentic consumer reviews

Finally, to bring you our definitive list of the best umbrella strollers on the market, we thoroughly investigated genuine, in-depth customer reviews on retailer sites such as Amazon, Boots and John Lewis to get wider consumer experiences regarding the products on our shortlist.

About the author

Lucy Cotterill is a mum of two and Content Writer at Mumsnet, specialising in baby/child product reviews and round-ups. Having written product reviews on her own blog Real Mum Reviews since 2012, Lucy loves to research and explore the pros and cons of baby products, scrutinising reviews and consumer feedback to help parents make confident purchases that benefit their families.

Lucy has personal experience of researching, buying and using car seats with her own children, including the first car seats compatible with her travel system to 360-degree swivel seats and the multi-stage car seats that her children still use today.

Originally from a HR background with a degree in Business Studies, Lucy developed a real passion for blogging and writing when her children were young, going on to write for several online publications including US parenting site Pregistry and the Evening Standard.

When she’s not manically tapping the keys of her laptop, Lucy loves nothing more than to cosy up with her Kindle and enjoy the latest thriller, or compete in Nintendo Switch rallies with her daughters aged six and 10.

Why you should trust us

We work hard to provide honest and independent advice you can trust and we spend hours scouring the Mumsnet forums and online bestseller lists to find products that real parents rate.

Transparency is really important to us and that's why we're always upfront about where we find our recommendations. We write about products that we feel offer the best value to most parents – the ones that our users would recommend to their own friends and family.