Mellow Mummy: Buggy Wars - Travel System vs Umbrella Pushchair : Taking life as it comes...

Thursday 10 February 2011

Buggy Wars - Travel System vs Umbrella Pushchair

I'm beginning to think that there are few UK parents who get through life with a single pushchair. Is there really such a thing these days as a pushchair that will last from birth all the way through childhood? Of my friends and colleagues, I can't think of one person who owns less than two pushchairs, in fact, I know of some who have four or five different brands and types for different occasions.

As one of the most expensive items of baby kit that you have to invest in, most parents spend a lot of time evaluating which brand or model of buggy to buy.; the intention being to only ever buy one. I know we spent hours pouring over catalogues and trying out buggies on the high street before opting for a four-wheel travel system with big chunky wheels. Our decision was partly driven by the convenience of being able to attach the car seat and bassinet to it, partly due to the percieved sturdiness and partly to do with style. We noticed that there are few umbrella pushchairs on the market that are suitable from birth upwards (especially for mums as tall as me).

I loved the travel system to start with but as Lara grew out of the car seat, and out of the pram and we needed to use the main pushchair seat more often, I began to resent it. It was heavy to get in and out of the car and the house and trying to remove the seat from the wheels would often reduce me to tears. When Lara was three months old, we went abroad and couldn't face taking the bulky travel system with us so we bought a second buggy – a lightweight, foldable, umbrella pushchair. Originally it was intended for the odd occasion where we needed more space in our boot, or had to reduce our luggage. Over the months, it has slowly become our primary pushchair (because it just seems easier) until this weekend when we noticed our poor folorn-looking travel system in the garage and decided to give it another shot.

Is it a luxury to be able to have one pushchair for some scenarios, and a different pushchair for other scenarios? Do you wish you had made a different decision when choosing your buggy? What tips would you offer to parents-to-be to help them decide whether they should buy a travel system or a lightweight buggy?
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