Four-wheel strollers review

Nine out of the 12 strollers we tested passed safety and durability tests — a good result.
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04.What to look for

  • Weight, size and width. The lighter the stroller, the easier it is to carry up and down stairs or on buses and trains. As for dimensions, none of the tested models had difficulty fitting through doorways or into a reasonably large car boot.
  • Wheels. Bigger wheels tend to be better than smaller ones over rough ground, kerbs and stairs. However, they can also be harder to fit into a car boot.
  • Handle. Check the handle to make sure it feels comfortable to grip. If you’re particularly short or tall, you may need a model with adjustable handle height. A reversible handle (or seat) is useful if you’d like the option of having your child face you rather than face forward, but check that it’s easy to operate.
  • Brakes. Some strollers have individual brakes on each wheel; others have brakes linked by a bar, so you only push down on one mechanism to activate them. If the stroller handle is reversible, it’s best to have brakes on the front wheels as well, as these will become the rear wheels (nearest your feet) in the reverse configuration.
  • Swivel wheels (all except the Stokke) at the front make steering easier (but they should also be easy to lock); all the tested models have these. If the stroller has a reversible handle, check whether its rear wheels can also swivel; that will make manoeuvring much easier when you reverse the handle and they’re at the front.
  • Harness. Look for a five-point harness (two shoulder straps attached to the backrest at shoulder level, a waist strap and a crotch strap). The waist straps in particular should be securely linked to the stroller’s frame, so the child can’t lean out and tilt it. Give the harness a tug to check the seat doesn’t pull away from the frame. Make sure the straps are easy to adjust and the buckles easy to fasten and unfasten (for you, not your child).
  • An adjustable legrest and footrest help accommodate your child’s growth, as well as keeping their feet clear of the ground and wheels.
  • A basket or tray underneath the stroller should be easily accessible in both upright and layback positions, roomy enough to hold a few essentials and deep enough to stop items falling out. Don’t overload it or the stroller may become unstable and hard to move.
  • A retractable hood/canopy with (except the Valco Baby) a viewing window.

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