It’s an elusive beast, the perfect pram.
You may think you’ve found it. Then you realise the storage basket requires you to dislocate a wrist trying to stash a pack of nappies. Or that the handlebar only lets you walk briskly if you’ve the legs of a penguin, but the arms of an Orangutan.
Yes, #pramproblems are a real thing. Real AND frustrating, especially when you consider just how many hours you’ll spend pounding the pavement with your chosen set of wheels.
Take it from a mother who has been there and pushed that (three times). A good pram is an essential tool in your mummy arsenal. No, it can’t make you your latte. But get one with a cup holder and it will stop that coffee spilling as you stroll. And it can definitely make life easier in all sorts of other ways too.
That’s why we’ve put together the real mum pram buying checklist. It tells you what you really need from a pram and which features are essential to rock (or let’s face it, survive) #mumlife. Cup holder NOT optional!
Real Mum’s Pram Buying Checklist
1. Can you fold it without swearing?
Chances are good that at some point, you will need to do the ‘fold and stash’ AKA fold your pram and stash it somewhere. You may end up needing to do this daily, sometimes multiple times each day. Collapsing some prams can be as painful as trying to wrestle a furious toddler into a car seat; slow, painful and requiring some aggression. A one-hand fold coupled with a light chassis can mean the difference between a daily struggle, complete with swearing and tears and a quick, easy getaway that will leave you feeling smug a-a-a-all day long.
2. Can it fit in your boot?
Ever laybyed a super swish pram, waited months, paying it off bit by bit only to finally get it home and realise it doesn’t fit in your boot? Let’s just say I have some personal experience in this area. Do as I say and not as I do and choose a pram that’ll fit in both your current boot (take your car to the baby shop and try it out) AND future boots. Because there’s a chance your pram will outlast your current car.
Top (slightly unrelated but relevant) tip: If you live in an apartment, make sure your chosen pram isn’t too wide for the front door of the building. Because that would be really embarrassing.
3. Can it cruise the supermarket aisles AND pound the pavement?
A pram is only as good as its ability to navigate narrow supermarket aisles and swimming pool turnstiles, smooth pavement and bumpy footpath, because who really knows what conditions you’ll face on a daily basis? So a pram with suspension, that can absorb all those little knocks and bumps, is a must. And if you regularly walk on bumpy or sandy surfaces, you might want to opt for a pram with lockable front wheels to help steer your ride. Because when you’ve just spent 463,636 minutes getting that baby to sleep, the last thing you want is a giant jolt snapping their eyes back open. It’s the stuff mummy nightmares are made of.
4. Does it fully recline or offer a carrycot option?
If you want to use your pram from birth (and let’s face it, when you’re handing over a solid wedge of cash, you want to get the most bang for your buck), it needs to be able to fully recline. Teeny, tiny bobble headed babes require a flat surface for safe sleeping and you better believe you’ll want to utilise the ‘pram sleep’ to get important life admin done (or just, you know, enjoy a coffee while it’s hot).
The other option is a detachable carrycot which can also be used as a portable sleeping space when you’re out and about. Just make sure the one you choose is safe for longer naps and overnight. This is super important as many carrycots and car capsules are NOT SIDS safe for sleeping babies.
5. How’s the hood and basket?
Some countries might have rain and snow to contend with. In Australia, it’s the sun. A hood with built-in sun protection that shields the pram (and its precious cargo) is essential, especially for summer babies.
Let’s talk baskets for a second too. Chances are good you’ll go shopping with your pram. A small, cramped pram basket is not only annoying, it’s completely impractical. Look for one that’s oversized, easily accessible and can hold up to five kilograms. That’s plenty of room for a bulk pack of nappies AND wipes. Or a whole stack of groceries.
6. Is it customisable to suit your needs?
Chances are good you’ll use your pram well into toddlerhood. Especially if you have a toddler who enjoys a fast paced sprint away from his parents. And maybe for a second – or third – baby as well. This means that you need options. A pram that goes from a single to a double is useful. You might like one that comes with adaptors to create a car seat compatible travel system or with an adjustable handlebar so tiny grandmas, (little) big siblings, medium mamas and super-tall baby daddies can all push the pram with ease. The ability to both parent face (so you can keep an eye on baby and chat to them as you stroll) and face outwards (as bub gets more curious about the world around them on outings) is another useful feature to look out for,
7. Is strapping your kid in easy?
There is nothing more fun than trying to strap an angry, squirming, most likely sticky, toddler into a pram that they just don’t want to be in. Actually, throw a newborn into the mix and say, a hot drink and you’ve really reached Nirvana. Borrow a friend’s baby or toddler and check how easy – or not – it is to get them in and out of the prams on your shortlist.
8. Will it grow with your family?
If you’re investing in a pram, you want that baby to last. Having to buy another pram a couple of years after your original purchase is not only expensive, it’s a pain in the bum. All those hours of research. Test driving pushchairs with a toddler underfoot. No thanks! Make sure the pram you choose can expand into a double down the track.
9. Do looks really matter?
Ahhh the age old question. Look, we know safety is important. And longevity cannot be underestimated. BUT when you’re pushing something every day, for two plus years, it’s kind of nice to have something pretty to look at.
And that goes for if you’re a put-together mama or if you’re rocking a day three mum bun, milk stained singlet and a pair of pants that possibly belong to your husband.
iCandy Peach ticks ALL the boxes
The iCandy Peach has all the features in our pram buying checklist – one-handed fold, a carrycot option, adjustable heights and handlebars, even double pram capabilities. The iconic leatherette handlebar is also pretty swish and the pram hood has SPF50+ sun protection. It comes in eight really rather awesome colour options that allow you to customise your pram to match your style, including the limited edition Jet 2, exclusive to Baby Bunting. Take a closer look at this British pram beauty for yourself.