Buying a pushchair is hugely exciting but it also also be very overwhelming. Likely to be one of your biggest purchases for your new baby you don't want to get it wrong. When you visit a shop remember to go prepared; think about what you want, what your baby needs and your lifestyle. Check out our reviews and then hit the shops. Our advice is don't buy before you try!
So, here is a guide to the questions you should really be asking when buying your pushchair.
1. Can I test it out?
This is the first question for a reason, it is probably the most important. Chances are you will not be able to leave the shop, but if you can ask the assistant to let you push it around, this will certainly give you a feel as to if this is the right one for you. Take it through narrow spaces and up curbs and if possible, get some weight to put in the seat, to give a true feel of how it will handle. If you don't feel comfortable with it, then you know it is not for you.
Another thing to try is the fold. If you are not confident, ask them to give you a demonstration and try it yourself two or three times. See how different pushchairs fold and which one is easiest.
Once it is folded, pick it up. Is it too heavy for you to lift comfortably? We would also recommend that you measure it both standing and folded. Will it fit in your storage at home? Will it fit in your car boot?
2. What car seats are compatible? Can you show me the configuration?
When you are investing in a pushchair, it is important to make sure that you only spend what you need to, so think about all of the extras which are available, especially the car seat. If you already have a car seat, it would be a good starting point to make sure you get a pushchair which is compatible with the model. Many car seat manufacturers make their own brand of pushchairs, but for those who don't, always ask about the available adapters and check the price for these too.
It is a good idea to be shown the different configurations of your pushchair. How does the car seat fit on the chassis? Does it come with a carrycot? How does that fit? How do you fit the doubles kit? Get them to take it through with you step by step and if you suffering from baby brain, take pictures or even a video on your phone to look back on later.
3. How easy is the harness to use?
Harnesses come in many different types, from a simple clip to a 5 point safety buckle, each has their own merits and their own challenges.
Fastening a harness when there is no child in the seat, is easy, but when your little one isn't keen on going for a stroll, fastening them in can be a nightmare, so look for a harness which is both secure and easy for you to use.
Another aspect of the harness to take into account, is the adjustment. How difficult is it to shorten or lengthen the straps? This can easily be overlooked when you are looking at seats, but it is certainly something to investigate and try out in the shop.
4. What would you compare it to i.e other pushchairs
Buying a pushchair is not too dissimilar to purchasing a new car, you very rarely go for the first one you see. You will often try out a few models before making a decision and it is no different for pushchairs. The benefit of going to a store like Kiddicare, Mothercare, Peppermint for example, is the wide variety of different pushchairs on display, which you can compare to each other to make a more informed decision.
Compare all of the elements, the fold, the control, the fabrics, the chassis and so on and make a note of which one is the strongest. You may have your favourite brand, but it is always worth taking a look at what is available elsewhere too.
If you aren't fortunate enough to be able to visit a large pushchair superstore, then ask at your local shop. Pick a model you really like and ask them "which other pushchair would you compare this too?" If they have it in-store, then take a look, but if not, at least you have a model which you can research and look at elsewhere.
5. Would it fit my lifestyle? Tell them about your lifestyle
We all know that we buy pushchairs for our little ones, but it is also important that it fits your lifestyle too, so tell them about it.
Firstly, where do you live? In the country or in the city? If you are living on a farm, you will be no good buying a pushchair designed for the urban market and vice-versa.
Secondly, look at your hobbies. Do you like running? Do you like shopping? Do you like going for walks? All of these questions have an effect on which pushchair you should choose. Make a list of all the things you will be doing with your little one and take it with you.
6. How much does it cost? Do you price match?
For many people, this is the most important question. You could find the world's most perfect pushchair, but if you can't afford it, then it is pointless. Make sure you have in your head before time, a rough figure which you can afford to spend on your new purchase.
When you have found the one for you, it is always worth researching who offers the best price. If you find a cheap offer online, try asking your local store if they will price match it for you. Also, ask if there are any deals on at the moment. Perhaps it is cheaper to order it online. A pushchair is a big investments, so if you can save some money along the way, then it is certainly worth asking.
7. What accessories does it come with and what can you buy additionally?
Accessories are an important part of the buying process. This can be a deal clincher, so it is always worth asking what is available for your chosen model.
From raincovers, to mosquito nets and even travel bags, get a list of the available accessories for the pushchair and what they cost. This way you won't face a nasty surprise down the line when you need a new footmuff.
Many pushchairs will come with certain accessories like a raincover, but many do not, so it is always worth checking to see what comes in the box.
8. Confirm the warranty
Last, but by no means least, always, always confirm the warranty. This can save you a lot of time, hassle and money later on, especially if you have a mishap in the first year or so. Pushchairs are a large investment, costing a lot of money, so it is vital that it is protected with the warranty. You may even be able to extend the warranty beyond the standard 12 months. Not a bad option for some.
Well that is
our list. Have we missed anything off? Did you find this useful? Let us know
below if there are any questions you always ask or if these questions helped
you make your decision on a new pushchair.