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How To Choose a Twin Stroller: Don't Buy Cheap!

Updated on December 7, 2010

Maybe I didn´t choose the best title for my Hub, because it is (almost) all said and you don´t really need to read on. But it is smeting I learned the hard (or better: expensive) way and I can´t stress it too much: Buying a cheap twin stroller is throwing your hard earned money down the gutter, at least that is what I experienced.

I am a mom of twins, a boy and a girl who will be four in a couple of months. I still use a stroller on a regular basis because I prefer walking to school, to the supermarked etc. over getting out the car for every errand I have to run. My kids are perfectly capable of walking certain distances of course. But when we are in a hurry (like most morning) it is good to have the stroller to fall back on.

Foto: stock.xchng:grafiker

Control Your Twin Toddlers!

Choosing a twin stroller is somewhat more complex than buying a stroller for just one kid. Raising twins involves challenging situations, especially if you are on your own most of the time. My husband works a lot so I am the one who brigs the kids to school, picks them up and runs errands with them. And depending on the age of the children a twin stroller is not only a medium of transportation, it is a way of controlling your twins.

As you know, toddlers have their own head. Especially during the “terrible two's” they seldomly do what you tell them. Imagine yourself going for a walk with your twins: It won't be long until one of them absolutely has to investigate the snail / bug/ pebble next to the sidewalk, while the other one runs off. What do you do? Or you stay with the first one or you run after the other one - in either case you have an extremely dangerous situation at hand. While your twins might be perfectly capable to walk, for safety reasons you inevitebly will have them strapped in in their stroller for a longer period than a single child. Or you only leave the house when there is a second person available to help you out – not really an option either!

Another aspect you should take into consideration before buying a twin stroller: two kids have double the weight than one. Although that seems mundane, it is extremely important. While you should think that twin strollers automatically are build sturdier than single strollers, that doesn't seem to be the case. Two of my strollers broke down months after purchasing them by th pure weight of my twins. And they are by no means overweight...

Before buying a twin stroller ask yourself these questions:

  • Do you live in the country or in a big city?

  • Do you have to carry up the stroller five stairs to your apartment every day?

  • Do you have to use the subway or the bus regularly?

  • Do you have to fold up your stroller to put it in the trunk of the car often?

  • How is the pavement in the area you will be using the stroller most often?

All these factors should influence your decision.

Do you live in the country or in a big city?

If you life in a city and have to navigate busy city center streets on a daily basis, you want a stroller that is not too big, very navegable and not too heavy. On the other hand you won't have to deal with bad pavement or even dirt streets, so the small plastic kind tires should be fine. If you kow that you will be dealing with a lot of potholes etc. you should go for bigger tires, maybe even the rubber ones.

I live in a small mediterranean village with cobble stone streets that are virtually inavegable with a stroller with small plastic tires. If you have to deal with anything rough like dirt roads, cobblestone or if you even want to use your twin stroller offroad, you need rubber tires, the bigger the better.

Do you have to carry your stroller a lot or do you have to use the subway or the bus o a regular basis?

Then you want a twin stroller that is not too heavy, obviously. You also need a stroller that is not too wide, or you won't pass though any door. You might be best off with a buggy style stroller.

Do you have to fold up your stroller to put it in the trunk of the car often?

This is a tough one! The first stroller I bought for our twins simply didn't fit in the trunk of our car. I had to basically dismantle it every time we wanted to put it into the car. There wasn't left any room for luggage either so we eventually bought a new car (there were other reasons as well though) talk about expensive! Twin strollers are bigger than single strollers by nature. If you have a small car you'd better study the measurements provided by the producer very carefully. Another option is to head for a baby outfitter with your car and just try whether the stroller you fancy fits in your trunk.

Side by side or one behind the other?

These are generally the possibilities you have. Both have their pro's and con's. The side by side strollers (the babies are sitting next to each other) are more stable and don't trip over that easily. But they are wider too, and you there are doors you won't get trough with them. I found the tandem strollers (one baby behind the other) a lot harder to handle as they are really long. It is not too easy to get up a curb for example and there are lots of elevators that you won't be able to use because the stroller is too long to fit. I definitely liked the side by side ones better! But again: it depends on your personal circumstances.

Foto: stock.xchng: svilen001

What to look for when buying a twin stroller

After buying a total of five strollers for my twins (shame on me!) here are my recommendations:

  • go for quality – cheap will cost you dearly!

  • Listen to what others have to say! Read testimonials, ask friends and remember that the interest of a salesperson might differ from your best interest (no offense)!

  • Consider all factors that should enter in your decision: where do you live, what do you want to do with the stroller...

Remember: the stroller for your twins is like a tool for your new “profession” as twin parents and possibly one of the most important ones you will buy. So give it thought before buying and spend an appropriate amount of money – it might be different for every family, but you wouldn't want shaddy working tools for your “real” job either, right?

Foto: stock.xchng: jzlomek


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