Pushchairs are one of the most frequently used pieces of travel equipment so choosing the right one and understanding how to use them properly is super important to get the most out of it. There are so many beautiful strollers to choose from with lots of different handy features and mechanisms and we’re here to help you find the perfect one.
As well as choosing your stroller, you need to make sure your little one is as safe as possible and the best way to do that is to know how to properly use your pushchair. Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered because we’ve provided you with the ultimate guide for babies and pushchairs that answer the most frequently asked pushchair questions.
Pram vs pushchair vs stroller
Many people wonder what the difference is between a pram, pushchair and a stroller as the three terms are used interchangeably with the occasional buggy thrown in there too. Generally speaking, a pram refers to a travel system that carries newborns, usually while they’re lying down in a carrycot or fully flat-reclined seat.
A pushchair, stroller or buggy are all words used to describe the same thing. A pushchair usually refers to a type of travel unit that older babies (6 months +) use once they can sit up with a little support. A stroller will have a seat unit so your baby can sit up and view the world.
Prams and pushchairs aren’t always two separate products. You can purchase a 2-in-1 travel system that has a seat unit and carrycot which are interchangeable. Some parents choose to upgrade their stroller to a lightweight, fast-folding system with a seat unit attached once their little one reaches the toddler phase.
A travel system is a complete bundle that provides you with everything you need to travel with a baby. We have different bundles to choose from, including 2-in-1 travel systems, 3-in-1 travel systems and all-in-one travel systems but you can also purchase strollers and pushchairs independently.
An example of a fantastic all-in-one travel bundle is our Ickle Bubba Stomp Travel System.
The package includes:
- Stomp Luxe pushchair
- Pushchair seat unit and carrycot
- Stratus i-Size car seat
- ISOFIX car seat base
- Car seat adapters
- Car sunshades
- Changing rucksack and mat
- Pushchair apron, footwarmer, seat liner and rain cover
So you have everything you need to travel with a baby with the only element that will need upgrading is the infant seat carrier. The carrycot and seat unit are interchangeable as they both attach to the chassis.
If you purchase a travel system, you will get a carrycot as part of the bundle. As mentioned earlier, the carrycot is perfect for newborn babies until they reach around 6 months old. Carrycots can either be parent-facing or world-facing but most parents choose to have their baby facing them so they can check on them easily while on the go and interact with them when they’re awake.
Some carrycots are suitable for occasional overnight sleeping, whilst others are suitable for more regular overnight sleeping. Always make sure you follow safe sleep advice when your baby is asleep in their carrycot, such as keeping them in the same room as you and making sure there is nothing in their sleep space that could block their airways.
If you decide to purchase a separate carrycot, or for twin or double strollers, make sure that your carrycot is compatible with the chassis. In some cases, you can mix and match brands using universal adapters.
For example, our Maxi Cosi Oria Carrycot is compatible with all Maxi Cosi strollers. It is a large and spacious carrycot with a comfortable mattress, giving your baby a luxurious place to sleep when they’re out and about.
If your little one falls asleep and you don’t want to disturb them when you get home, the carrycot has a 2-click modular system with a memory button that allows for a smooth and secure detachment and has an integrated carry handle, too.
The carrycot’s high sides, cover and sun canopy all help to protect your baby on windy or sunny days and help to create the perfect space. You can enjoy a family day out, whatever the weather, knowing your baby is snug and cosy. Ideal for limited storage space, the Maxi Cosi Oria folds flat, making it great for storing away neatly.
We have many different brands of carrycots to choose from on our website that all offer different features with the same great comfort and protection.
As mentioned, once your little one reaches around 6 months old, you can transfer them from their carrycot to the seat unit. All pushchairs and strollers come with a seat unit, but you can purchase additional seats for twin or double strollers.
Depending on the stroller you buy, seat units can be parent-facing or world-facing if the unit is detachable. If you purchase a single-unit stroller, these seats are forward-facing only. Some strollers are suitable from birth because they have a lie-flat recline feature.
Our Joie Litetrax Pro Stroller is suitable from birth without the need for a carrycot. It has a simple one-touch brake, a 5-point safety harness and an easy-folding mechanism that allows the pram to stand once folded. It has a large shopping basket and a parent tray so you can shop and store your essentials because pushchairs aren’t just for your baby’s comfort.
When to move baby from pram to pushchair
Babies need to lie flat in their pram and most parents tend to use a pram with a carrycot as they provide a cushioned, comfortable cocoon for babies, as opposed to a stroller with a lie-flat feature, but the choice is yours.
Your baby should remain in their carrycot until around 6 months old when they have built up enough strength to hold themselves up and sit with a little support. Until then, a seat unit wouldn’t support a good posture or sitting position. Some parents choose to move their baby earlier but we don’t recommend making the transition unit at least 4 months old.
Front-facing vs parent-facing
For reassurance, most babies prefer to be parent-facing so they can see and interact with you. The older your baby gets, the more likely they are to want to be forward-facing so they can take in more of the world around them. Ultimately, the choice is yours as there is no right or wrong answer. It is, however, recommended to keep a baby under 6 months old facing you.
Choosing a pushchair
When choosing a pushchair, consider what you want to get out of your stroller and what sort of lifestyle you have. For example, if you have an urban family who needs a nimble and agile city stroller to tackle bumpy pavements and busy streets, look for a lightweight stroller with small wheels, a large basket and an easy folding mechanism, like our Bugaboo Butterfly Compact Stroller.
If you have an adventurous family that enjoys off-roading, consider a 3-wheel Hauck Runner Pushchair that has extra-large air wheels and super suspension with good air circulation and a ventilation window.
For growing families or for multiple babies, choose a tandem pushchair or a double pushchair that is lightweight, compact and easy to manoeuvre because double the size doesn’t need to mean double the trouble.
As you can see, a pushchair isn’t just a seat on two wheels, it’s much more than that. There are different types of pushchairs to suit different types of lifestyles to suit your needs. Along with the handy features, we have some stunning pushchairs and travel systems in a range of colours and styles to match your taste so your baby can travel in style.
The most important thing to remember is to keep your baby in a flat position until they are around 6 months old, in a snug carrycot or a flat-recline seat unit. Take your time choosing the perfect stroller for you and your family because you will be using it a lot on your many family adventures.