Traveling With Kids: Choosing the Best Stroller for Your Trip

Little boy pushing stroller
Bonus win — if your older child will push the younger one!

You planned an awesome trip and it’s time to pack!  You’re cruising along collecting everyone’s stuff when you hit the age old traveling-with-kids question — “do we bring a stroller?” If you have more than one stroller,  the next question is likely “which one?”  The answer of course, depends on where you’re going and what you’re doing.  How much space you have and whether you need the storage bin.  It’s not one size fits all.  Our handy stroller decision chart can help you determine the best stroller for your trip, quickly and easily every time!

THE “BEST STROLLER FOR YOUR TRIP” SCOUTING REPORT

This decision chart is designed to simplify packing and traveling with kids.  To find the best stroller for your trip, just click on the decision chart below!  A few notes:

Boy sitting in foot area of BOB stroller
Sitting in the front of the jogger

1)  This chart assumes you have one child who will primarily be using the stroller.  In a couple cases it will ask you about a second rider, but if you have twins or two children who will both want the stroller regularly, your calculations will be different.  For the rugged jogger, I am picturing an older child riding on the front foot area for short periods of time like in the picture.  (Note:  it is up to you to decide if this is right for your family — we can’t take responsibility if this arrangement isn’t safe for your child).

2) I am not assuming that everyone owns four strollers or wants to buy a new one.  We don’t!  I am simply trying to help you figure what would work best — you go from there with what you have!  If needed, you can also consider upgrading what you have by adding a “side saddle” storage bag, or a stroller hitch for an older child to ride on.

3) Car seats — this chart does not look at whether you’d need to put an infant car seat on the stroller. That said, most double strollers and rugged joggers are able to hold car seats with a bar attachment (which may be sold separately).  Umbrella strollers are typically not able to hold car seats, so if car seats are a key consideration, you may need to go with a jogger, or consider a simple car seat carrier.

4) Finally, while I designed this decision chart to look at strollers for travel, I have found that it also works relatively well for day trips.  So if you’re headed to the zoo or a day out in the city, try it out!

THE STROLLERS

The strollers linked are examples — there are many kinds and brands that would work similarly!

Mid-size umbrella stroller
Beefy Umbrella

~ Simple Umbrella Stroller  — This is a bare bones umbrella stroller for one child.  It is typically inexpensive and does not have any storage.  It folds up easily to a compact size.

~ Beefy Umbrella with Small Storage — This stroller still folds up relatively small, but it typically does have at least a small storage basket, and it has a few additional features such as the ability to recline, and a sturdier sun shade.

BOB Jogging Stroller
Rugged Jogger

~ Rugged Jogger with Storage — This stroller typically has larger wheels that are able to handle running and rougher terrain.  Most have significant storage baskets and many features and add-ons.  It is a very comfortable and capable stroller, but typically much larger in size.

~ Double Stroller with Large Storage — This stroller comes in many different arrangements, but is typically quite large and bulky.  In exchange for its size, this stroller holds two kids and lots of stuff!  If you only need to transport one child, you can even add a “shopping basket.”

~ None.  Sometimes a stroller is just not necessary or may be more trouble than it’s worth!  In this case, a baby carrier such as an Ergo or a child hiking backpack such as an Osprey might be a better option.

Happy packing!

 

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Stroller Decision Chart
Click here! Graphics by FridayView.com.

This article is part 3 of our “Travel with Kids” series —
Part 1“Best Of”: Awesome Hacks for Stress-Free Travel with Kids
Part 2All the More Epic:  On Adventure and Kids

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