Everybody I know is having babies at once, and they all have the same question. Which one is the perfect stroller? This is going to sound trite, but the fact is…there is no perfect stroller. Selecting this piece of gear that you are going to rely on heavily is pretty personal. It's all about your family, your style and your needs. It's not about finding the perfect stroller. It's about finding the perfect stroller for you.
We've been using one lately that checks all the boxes for our family.
In case you're wondering why we're posing at a Shell, it just so happens that they have the best hand car wash in the county and there's a taqueria here that makes some bomb-ass burritos.
Welcome to San Diego, where you can literally buy tacos at the gas station!
What We Look For in the Perfect Stroller
I have three kids, so for me the most important thing in the perfect stroller is a space to stash ALL our goodies. The GB Evoq that we've been using has a GIGANTIC basket that's totally accessible.
The telescoping handle means that Nate can easily push this thing with his hulking 6'4″ frame. Score! My favorite part by far, though, is the hop-on board at the bottom that makes it easy for Some Boy to
be corralled hitch a ride. I've tried quite a few buggy board attachments for various strollers in the past and I haven't found one that offers this kind of stability. The fact that it's built in means you don't have to worry about it popping off when you hit your stride (yes, I have had this happen with other boards in the past and it sucks just as badly as you would imagine).
The wheels on this thing are big enough for our urban adventures, but not TOO big. It can still fold down neatly to fit in the trunk of our Elantra.
I actually prefer to take the seat off and stash the components side-by-side so I have a little extra room in there.
Speaking of the seat, it can face forwards or backwards, which is an absolute must-have for me nowadays as I alternate between pushing a baby who wants to see me and a toddler who wants to look out at the world. This one lays completely flat for on-the-go naps (or diaper changes), with a generous hood that fully blocks the sun and offers a zip-open vent for hot days.
Another crucial thing to me, juggling an infant and a toddler, is the ability to use the stroller as a traditional travel system WITHOUT AN ADAPTER. Adapaters are such a pain in the butt, and I'm lazy. The GB Evoq comes with a car seat and base which install and adjust easier than any others I've seen. The car seat can strap directly into the stroller so I can pull off the regular-sized stroller seat and go straight to the car seat without any hassle. The hood on the car seat is a little shorter than I'd like, but I always carry a muslin blanket as a cover and it doubles easily as an additional sun shield.
Just like the seat, the car seat can quickly pop in and out and face forward or backwards. And the final touch that makes this the perfect stroller for me? The included cup holder. Starbucks is a critical part of my lifestyle, so lack of a cup holder would probably be a deal-breaker for me at this point. It's the little things. I've also discovered that this cup holder serves as a pretty dang functional purse holder, in case I'm feeling too lazy to bend down and toss it in the basket.
So, to recap…
Things to consider when choosing the perfect stroller for you:
- Basket: do you carry a lot of stuff? If you have a child, the answer is likely a resounding YES. The perfect stroller for most families, in my opinion, will have a large basket.
- Handle: Are you tall? Does the handle need to be long or telescope to go between a tall person and a short person?
- Hop-on-board: Do you or will you have children back-to-back and want your older kid to hitch a ride?
- Wheels: are you a city-dweller with well-paved sidewalks or a make-your-own-road adventurer dealing with bumpy terrain?
- Size: Do you need your stroller to fit in your trunk? I'm gonna go out on a limb and say yes, your perfect stroller should probably fit in your trunk.
- Hood: Kids generally don't like the sun in their eyes.
- Positioning: Do you want a seat that can face forwards and backwards? If you plan on keeping one stroller from infancy through toddlerhood, it is very likely that your infant will want to face you and your toddler will want to face the world.
- Travel: Do you want the ability to hook a car seat into your stroller? Many toddler and older-baby strollers have optional adapters, but take care to read reviews about how secure they are. If you plan to switch back-and-forth between car seat and stroller seat, it may not be ideal to be hooking-and-unhooking an adapter each time so you'll want to look for something like the GB Evoq that offers direct connection for each seat type.
- Cup holder.
What do YOU look for in the perfect stroller?