Sunday, February 26, 2017

Best Travel Stroller Reviews 2017 - Ultimate Buying Guide


Every parent knows you are not supposed to wake a sleeping baby. To be able to move a child in an infant seat from a car into a stroller quickly and with minimal jostling is what parents dream of, and the travel stroller has made this dream come true.

The Value of Travel Strollers

Travel strollers have a number of advantages over other traditional strollers or the smaller umbrella strollers. These qualities, along with how to choose which one to purchase and the best features to look for, are discussed below.

Advantages of a Travel Stroller

One advantage of a travel stroller is that it can be used easily with an infant car seat, so there is no need to remove the child from the seat to transfer them to the stroller, or vice versa. The two pieces usually snap together, or have a strap to secure the seat to the stroller, making the transfer quick and easy. A travel stroller is usually compact when folded down, and can be transported in the trunk of a car to be used anywhere. Many are small enough that they can even be used for air travel. And they are safer for an infant who may not be strong enough to sit up in a stroller by themselves

How to Choose a Travel Stroller

The best way to choose one is to first decide what it will be used for. Jogging strollers can be used for anything, but traditional 3 or 4 wheel strollers are usually not recommended for jogging. Joggers are usually larger and harder to transport, so if exercise is not the main purpose for the stroller, a different type is probably best. 3 wheel strollers usually have better steering and maneuverability on all terrains, whereas 4 wheel strollers are best on sidewalks, pavement, or other smooth surfaces.

Features to Look For

An important feature to look for in a travel stroller is the ease of use with the car seat; simple, 1 hand attachment is best, so transfer will be less likely to disturb the baby. Lots of storage, including parent and child trays, is important. Since they may be used for traveling in cars or other vehicles, an easy, compact fold is also essential. And most importantly, the price must be reasonable.

Top 5 Travel Stroller Reviews

1. Graco Fastaction Fold Jogger Click Connect Travel System

This is Graco’s first jogging stroller, combining the convenience of traditional stroller with the maneuverability of a jogger. The swiveling air-filled tires offer great suspension for a smooth ride, and can be locked when needed. It has an easy 1 hand fold, a deluxe parent's tray with a smartphone cradle and cup holders, a removable pivoting child tray with both cup and snack holders, and an extra-large storage area. It comes with a Snugride Click Connect 35 infant car seat, which attaches with a simple 1 step connection.

This system has an Amazon rating of 4.5 stars. Customers praised its easy assembly, sturdy construction, and simple fold/unfold capability. At 30 pounds, the stroller was a bit heavy for some, and difficult to fit in smaller trunks. Some found the canopy to be too small, but the smooth ride and versatility of this stroller far outweighed the negatives.

Things we like
Things we didn’t like
  • Convertible 3 or 5 point harness on the stroller
  • Locking/swiveling front wheel
  • Deluxe multi-position reclining seat
  • 1 year warranty
  • Air tires need to be filled regularly
  • Smart phone holder is not big enough for larger phones

2. Baby Trend EZ Ride 5 Travel System, Paisley
This lightweight stroller comes with a Flex-Loc infant car seat and base. There is a large, soft head support that can be used in the seat and stroller, and both have 5 point safety harnesses. The 3 wheel stroller features a front swivel and locking wheel for stability and maneuverability. Storage includes a covered parent tray and a swiveling child tray, both with cup holders, and a large storage basket. The padded seat and handlebar are both adjustable. It folds easily with just 1 hand to a compact size, perfect for travel or storage. The large canopy has a peek-a-boo window.
This system was rated 4.7 stars on Amazon, with no reviews below 3 stars. Customers raved about the simple and compact fold and unfold capability. It is sturdy, easy to maneuver, and looks great. The car seat is light, and altogether it is sold for an excellent price considering all the features included. The only complaints were due to difficulty opening the box, not about the seat or stroller.

Things we like
Things we didn’t like
  • 3 wheels for easy steering and turns
  • Adjustable handlebar
  • Child and parent trays have storage and cup areas
  • Excellent price
  • Difficult to open packaging
  • Warranty for only 6 months
  • Some difficulty stated about acquiring replacement parts

3. J.L. Childress Standard & Dual Stroller Travel Bag

This travel bag is made from heavy-duty, water-resistant fabric. It has a 3-sided zippered opening, padded carry handles, and a detachable, adjustable shoulder strap. There is an ID card in a windowed pocket, and a larger pocket for the carry strap, toys, or other necessities. And if it isn’t in use to transport a stroller, it can be used to store camping gear, sports equipment, beach chairs, or a number of other large items.
This bag is rated 3.7 stars on Amazon. This bag was said to fit a number of different brands of strollers, and some customers stated they could fit a car seat, base, diapers and more into it comfortably, though some had to remove the stroller wheels to fit it all in. The bag was cheaper than many others sold. Some customers had issues with the zippers breaking, and though the bag’s material is quite strong, tears were noticed after traveling on a plane, though they could not state if this was due to manufacturing, or recklessness on the part of the airline workers.

Things we like
Things we didn’t like
  • Fits many brands of stroller
  • Water resistant material
  • Lifetime warranty for original purchaser
  • Lots of storage space
  • Issues with zippers
  • Does not fit all sizes of strollers
  • Tears not necessarily due to mishandling

4. Graco Comfy Cruiser Click Connect Travel System
This super light stroller comes with the Snugride Click Connect 30 infant car seat and base. A reversible body support is included for use in both the seat and the stroller. The stroller folds with 1 hand, has a carry handle, and is self-standing. The 2 dual front wheels swivel and lock as needed. It has a reclining, multi-position seat. A large storage basket drops down to make access a breeze. Both parent and child trays have storage trays and cup holders. A convertible 3 or 5 point harness grows with the child.
Amazon rated this system at 4.4 stars. The Click Connect feature makes movement from car to stroller seamless, the stroller is light, sturdy, and easily folded and assembled. The system is of excellent quality for a reasonable price. The coloring of this design is perfect for boys or girls. The only issues reported were due to pieces missing from the box when purchased, with some difficulty having them replaced by Graco.

Things we like
Things we didn’t like
  • Great price
  • Stands upright when folded
  • Moveable storage basket
  • 1 year warranty
  • Handlebar not adjustable
  • 4 wheels not as maneuverable for turns or on rougher terrain
  • Possible issues with replacement parts

5. Graco Verb Click Connect Travel System
The Click Connect feature creates a secure 1 step attachment of the Snugride 30 infant car seat to the base or the stroller. When folded, the stroller is self-standing, and has a carry strap for easy transport. The front wheels on this 4 wheeler are swiveling, but also lock for stability. The seat has a multi-position recline and a convertible 3 or 5 point harness. It also includes a large canopy, storage basket, and a body support that can be used in both the stroller and the car seat. The parent and pivoting child trays each have 2 cup holders and a storage or snack area.
This system is rated 4.7 stars on Amazon. Customers loved the Click Connect feature, the reasonable price, and the lightweight stroller that is stronger and easier to steer than an umbrella stroller, but takes up only a slightly larger area in a trunk or closet.

Things we like
Things we didn’t like
  • Large storage basket
  • Click Connect for easy transition
  • Great price
  • 1 year warranty
  • Pinkish color best suited for girls only
  • Handlebar doesn’t adjust
  • Not interchangeable with other brands of strollers or car seats

Though all the Graco travel strollers were excellent, the Baby Trend came out on top because of a few key features. Like the Graco strollers, it has storage below the seat, parent and child trays, easy folding and a compact size. The car seat also attached easily, as with the Graco Click Connect models. But the Baby Trend has an adjustable handlebar, which is important for those parents of differing heights. The parent tray storage area is covered, which protects anything held inside from theft or weather. The stroller is also a 3 wheeled model, which is better on most terrains than the 4 wheel models. The price is also the best, and the reviews were excellent. But how the travel stroller weighs against the car seat stroller is a matter that still must be discussed.

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