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Stroller Reviews

By: Saundra Latham on March 17, 2017

Editor's note:
The tried-and-true Baby Jogger City Mini replaces the Britax B-Agile 3 as our favorite traditional stroller, while the UPPAbaby G-Lite supplants the pricier G-Luxe as top umbrella stroller. The updated BOB Revolution is still our favorite jogger, but the Graco Verb has bumped the Graco LiteRider as our cheap pick -- it offers more bang for your buck.

Baby Jogger City Mini Review
Best Reviewed
Specs that Matter Weight: 17.6 lbs. Capacity: 50 lbs. Fold: One hand, auto lock

Best stroller

The lightweight, highly maneuverable Baby Jogger City Mini is a nimble pick for day-to-day strolling, reviewers say. A one-step fold, no-rethread harness and generously sized, SPF 50 sun canopy are among the attributes that make the City Mini a winner, and the compact fold means it won't hog space in small trunks. The City Mini is also compatible with a wide range of accessories, including several car seats with an optional adapter.

Buy for $259.00
Graco Verb Review
Runners Up
Specs that Matter Weight: 18½ lbs. Capacity: 50 lbs. Fold: One hand, standing

Best cheap stroller

The inexpensive Graco Verb has some nice convenience features typically limited to higher-end strollers, including a one-handed, self-standing fold; multi-position recline; and a suspension system to smooth out bumps for small riders. The stroller also includes a parent and child console, which often cost extra with other models. It's compatible with Graco's popular Click Connect car seats with no need to shell out for a separate adapter.

Buy for $78.00
UPPAbaby G-Lite Review
Best Reviewed
Specs that Matter Weight: 11 lbs. Capacity: 55 lbs. Fold: Two hand, standing

Best umbrella stroller

At 11 pounds, the UPPAbaby G-Lite is one of the lightest umbrella strollers around. Parents also appreciate its smooth, convenient standing fold and sturdy carrying strap – especially if you need to use public transportation. Stain-resistant mesh fabric keeps things clean and cool, while a large sun canopy and a cup holder are among convenience features. The ergonomic handle is also set high enough so taller parents won't have to slouch while strolling.

Buy for $179.99
Summer Infant 3D Lite Review
Runners Up
Specs that Matter Weight: 12 lbs. Capacity: 50 lbs. Fold: One hand, auto lock

Best cheap umbrella stroller

The 12-pound Summer Infant 3D Lite is a lightweight stroller at a great price. A one-handed fold and automatic lock also add to the 3D Lite's portability. The stroller's convenience features include a sunshade with a pop-out visor, a parent storage pocket, a storage basket and a removable cup holder. The anti-shock front wheels and nicely padded harness help keep the ride smooth and safe for babies, too. 

Buy for $62.67
BOB Revolution Flex Review
Best Reviewed
Specs that Matter Weight: 28 lbs. Capacity: 75 lbs. Fold: Two hand

Best jogging stroller

Reviewers say no jogging stroller can match the smooth glide and durability of the BOB Revolution Flex. The swivel front wheel makes the stroller more versatile than a fixed-wheel jogger, while adjustable shocks keep babies from being jostled too much, even on rougher terrain. A large sunshade, ample storage basket, several mesh storage pockets, and a high 75-pound weight limit are among the stroller's conveniences. It's also car seat compatible.

Buy for Too low to display
Baby Trend Expedition Review
Runners Up
Specs that Matter Weight: 27 lbs. Capacity: 50 lbs. Fold: Two hand, standing

Best cheap jogging stroller

The Baby Trend Expedition is a longtime favorite for those who want a jogging stroller that doesn't break their budget. A swivel front wheel makes the stroller easy to maneuver in tight spaces, and a relatively compact fold means it will take up less storage space than bulkier joggers. A huge storage basket with integrated cup holders and a smartphone-friendly console are also parent favorites. It's also car seat compatible.

Buy for $104.46

Types of Strollers

Strollers

Traditional, full-size strollers occupy a sweet spot for many families. They include a wide range of features, including ample sunshades, cup holders, snack trays, reclining seats, and car seat adapters. Some pricier models even offer bassinets for tiny babies or ride-on boards for older kids. Comfort and performance can vary depending on how much you spend, but a traditional stroller will generally beat an umbrella stroller (but maybe not a jogging stroller) in both categories. Keep in mind that the more fully featured you go, the heavier and bulkier your stroller is likely to be. If weight or storage space is a consideration, look into umbrella strollers; if you want to run with your stroller, look at jogging strollers.

Umbrella Strollers

If you're short on storage space, travel a lot, or simply want the lightest stroller possible, an umbrella stroller will probably fit the bill. Umbrella strollers boast compact folds that won't take up too much space in your trunk or garage. Though most umbrella strollers will at least have a sunshade and maybe a storage basket, you may sacrifice other features that would add too much bulk. Umbrella strollers are also meant for use on even, flat surfaces -- the basic wheels won't be able to handle much else. Some may not accommodate car seats or recline flat for naps, making them unsuitable for infants.

Jogging Strollers

A jogging stroller can let you squeeze in a workout while your baby benefits from some fresh air. Jogging strollers are among the sturdiest strollers available: Most have a shock-absorption system, air-filled tires that further minimize bumps, and a lockable or fixed front wheel that won't wobble at higher speeds. However, they can be quite bulky in a trunk or a crowded store. Also, experts say a child should be between 6 and 8 months, and have full head control, before jogging with them. Until then, stick to walking.

Beware of recalled strollers

Strollers are a frequently-recalled item due to various safety issues. The most recent recall, in March 2017, involved more than 700,000 Britax and BOB strollers due to a fall hazard when using the stroller as a travel system. The issue is the "Click and Go" receiver mounts that attach the car seat to the stroller; they can fail and cause the car seat to disengage. Consumers should immediately stop using the stroller/car seat as a travel system, although both can be used separately. If you already own a Britax or BOB stroller, you can see if your model is affected here. If you are thinking of buying a used stroller, be sure it has not been subjected to a recall, either this one or in a past recall. You can find that information at CSPC.gov.

Finding The Best Strollers
Our Sources
"Strollers, Diaper Bags, and Other Gear to Go"
"Best Baby Strollers of 2016"
"Traditional Stroller Ratings"

Expert tests and reviews of strollers are abundant. Most helpful are hands-on tests from sites like BabyGearLab.com, ConsumerReports.org, TheNightlight.com and Good Housekeeping. BabyCenter.coms's Mom Picks Awards also provide a quick snapshot of the strollers most parents prefer. Amazon.com is the most helpful site for owner feedback, offering hundreds of parents' perspectives on how their strollers stand up to day-to-day and abuse. To pick the best strollers, we evaluated these reviews by focusing on durability, ease of use, lifestyle considerations and safety.

The best full-featured strollers

The Baby Jogger City Mini (Est. $259) hits all the stroller sweet spots, reviewers say: It's lightweight, it's a snap to fold, and it maneuvers like a dream. The three-wheeled City Mini also has a full recline, so it can accommodate children from birth, and it tops out at 50 pounds. It weighs 17.6 pounds – not too shabby for a full-sized stroller. Note that in spite of its name, the City Mini is not a jogging stroller, something that seems to confuse many reviewers. You should never jog with a stroller that is not specifically made for jogging.

The City Mini's biggest selling point is its easy, one-handed fold that reviewers say is as simple as can be. It also folds compactly enough to fit in most car trunks. The seat recline is a one-step, one-handed move; the front wheel locks for more stable strolling, and the rear wheels pop off easily with the push of a button. The harness can be adjusted from the front of the seat so there is no rethreading. The seat is machine washable, but must be air-dried attached to the frame to keep the fabric from shrinking. This stroller is narrow and maneuverable enough to navigate cramped store aisles, while the locking EVA wheels can handle rougher terrain.

One of reviewers' favorite features is the City Mini's huge SPF 50+ canopy with ventilation and two windows. The storage basket below the seat will fit a medium-size diaper bag, but it is a bit hard to access because of the stroller frame, note BabyGearLab testers. The handle is not adjustable and can be uncomfortable to grip, they also say. A mesh pocket on the back allows parents to stow essentials. A variety of accessories are available to pimp the ride, including a Compact Pram (Est. $160), Deluxe Pram (Est. $200), Child Tray (Est. $20) and Glider Board (Est. $70). The stroller is compatible with several car seats with optional adapters (Est. $30 - $60).

The City Mini comes with all the safety features you'd expect in a high-end stroller, plus some. It has a padded five-point harness, and the "strangely designed" buckle is hard to release – though this applies to parents, not just tots, according to BabyGearLab. There are one-touch linked brakes. The front-wheel suspension keeps your baby from too much jostling.

The four-wheel UPPAbaby Vista (Est. $840) comes with some luxury touches that make it one of the most comfortable rides on the market. At 27½ pounds, it's not for the suburban parent who needs to frequently lift it in and out of a trunk, but it could be ideal for an urban dweller who puts serious mileage on a stroller. An included bassinet means you can use the Vista from birth, and the regular stroller seat accommodates children up to 50 pounds. For parents who want to use the regular stroller seat with a newborn, the optional Infant SnugSeat (Est. $40) insert should be used.

Reviewers say the Vista is very easy to push and maneuver, and its front- and rear-wheel suspension ensure a smooth ride for babies. While it's not difficult to fold or unfold, it does require two hands. It locks and stands when folded. The seat has five recline positions and reverses so that your baby can face toward you. Fabric is removable and washable, and the bassinet mattress comes with a zip-out liner. The adjustable handlebar is particularly good for tall parents, and there's no rear axle to accidentally kick. Wheel and brake levers operate with a simple touch of a button.

The Vista really shines when it comes to features: It has a large, accessible basket that Meg Collins of LuciesList.com calls "the best on the market." The full-coverage canopy has SPF 50+ fabric. A rain shield and bug shield come with the stroller, too. There are several accessories available, including a Rumble Seat (Est. $180) that turns the Vista into a double stroller, a Piggyback Ride Along Board (Est. $120), a Snack Tray (Est. $40), an Adult Cup Holder (Est. $25) and a Parent Organizer (Est. $25). If you have an UPPAbaby MESA Infant Car Seat (Est. $300), it will click in without an adapter; adapters for Maxi-Cosi and Chicco car seats are available separately (Est. $45).

The Vista has a padded five-point harness and swing-away bumper bar. The bassinet and seat attach securely to the stroller base with red/green indicators to assure a safe attachment. The Vista has one-touch linked brakes, and the wheels can swivel or lock for extra stability. BabyGearLab's tests put this stroller at average risk for tip-overs, but parents always need to be cautious about hanging items from the handle.

Buyers interested in a used Vista will want to note that UPPAbaby recalled about 71,000 strollers, including the Vista, in 2015 because children were able to bite off pieces of the foam bumper-bar covering, posing a choking hazard. Affected models were sold from December 2014 through July 2015. Check model numbers with the Consumer Product Safety Commission; if it's on the list, UPPAbaby will provide a free bumper bar cover that you can request on their website.

A great budget stroller

If you're on a tight budget, take heart: The four-wheel Graco Verb (Est. $85) shows that a good workhorse stroller doesn't need to cost an arm and a leg. It has great features for the price, including a one-hand, self-standing fold, multi-position recline, and parent and child convenience tray. At 18½ pounds, it's also relatively light for a traditional stroller and weighs the same as the pricier Britax B-Agile 3. It accommodates children up to 50 pounds, but does not have a full recline, so is not suitable for infants who do not yet have full head control. However, they can ride in an attached car seat until that time.

The Verb requires more assembly than pricier strollers, but parents say it's easy to put together. The stroller has a one-handed standing fold that reviewers praise for its ease, though some warn that it still takes up a decent amount of space in a trunk when folded. There is a suspension system to smooth out bumps and the wheels lock for greater maneuverability on rough surfaces. Compatible Graco car seats attach easily with the Click Connect system.       

The Verb boasts included cup holders as well as parent and baby trays -- features that cost extra on our pricier stroller picks. The baby tray is removable. The sun canopy looks to be a bit skimpier than some others, and some parents complain that the medium-size storage basket can be hard to access when a car seat is attached to the stroller. The Verb accepts all Graco SnugRide Click Connect car seats. There are no adapters for other car seat brands.

With a five-point harness and individually locking rear brakes, the Verb checks the major safety boxes, but note that the brakes aren't as convenient as one-touch linked brakes common on more expensive strollers. Tip-over tests aren't available, but parents should avoid hanging bags or putting too much weight on any stroller handle. 

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