- Age matters.
Infant baby strollers must recline fully to keep your baby's head stable. But they also weigh more and may not be needed after six months. If you're looking for a second stroller or transitioning from an infant stroller to a toddler stroller, a lightweight model is a better choice.
- Drive time.
Is car seat integration a must for a baby stroller? Some baby strollers use adapters to work with your car seat but are often bulkier than lightweight baby strollers.
- Hit the road.
What kind of surfaces will you be using your baby stroller on? Bumpy dirt paths require a different type of wheel than paved city sidewalks. All-terrain air tires have superb suspensions but add weight and puncture risk, while rubberized wheels are lightweight but not suitable for rough roads. Finding the right balance is key, but you can never go wrong with all-wheel suspension.
- Take it for a spin.
Think about the places you'll use the baby stroller. Crowded city streets, narrow subway turnstiles or tight restaurant doors all require a baby stroller you can maneuver easily. When you're baby stroller shopping, push it in a tight circle to test the turning radius and handling.
- Closing time.
You'll spend a lot of time opening and closing the baby stroller, so make sure the folding mechanism feels good to you. How long does it take? Does the baby stroller stand by itself when folded? Can you lift it easily with one hand? A baby stroller that's ready to grab and go makes it easy to bring your baby into your world.
- Give it a lift.
How far will you need to carry the baby stroller? A baby stroller that you'll only be lifting in and out of the trunk doesn't need to be as light as one you'll take on public transportation, haul up two flights of stairs or carry through a busy airport. Lightweight baby strollers are a good solution, especially if they include integrated carrying straps.
- Parking space.
How much space will you need to store the baby stroller? Some people will just leave the baby stroller unfolded in the garage, while others need something low-profile that can be folded up and stored in a foyer closet.
- What about you?
You want a baby stroller that's comfortable for your baby, but don't forget to make sure it fits you too. Do the handles feel comfortable in your hands? Does the height feel okay? Low-profile baby strollers can be tiring for taller people. Let everyone who'll be pushing the baby stroller take it for a spin, so you can find something that works for everyone.
- Basket case.
How roomy is the storage basket? Is it easy to access while the baby stroller is unfolded? Can it hold everything you need without weighing you down? You shouldn't hang things from the handles, since that can tip the baby stroller.
- Bells and whistles.
Don't be swayed by baby strollers with all kinds of extra features and accessories. When you are trying to get out and about, those things often just get in the way. But consider your life and what you might really need. For example, if you live in a rainy climate, a rain cover could be a good investment. Or if you live somewhere cold, you might consider a foot muff to keep your baby's toes warm on the go.