Ahhh… the double stroller dilemma. With my girls now 3 and almost-2, I’m almost done with mine… yet I still feel that oh-so-big decision of what-to-get that loomed over me just two years ago (before my youngest was born).

As many of you know, I opted to push a long train as opposed to a wide load.

It was a rash and hasty decision. Being a little exhausted and totally uninterested in doing any research whatsoever about which double strollers worked best for new families like mine (with 2 kids barely a year and a half apart), I bought a double stroller on a whim. I totally wasn’t into it. I saw double strollers as the most ‘un-fun’ thing for me to care about. Literally, I was at a store that will remain unnamed and just bought the most convenient and cheapest one displayed. And then I nicknamed it ‘The Suburban.’

More than year later, I still wish I could go back and undo it. Or rather, RE-DO it.

Double Strollers

FLASHBACK! About a year ago.

No hate to my choice… I just wish I had thought ahead about it more. The stroller started out fine, but when my ‘newborn’ hit a year old things started to change. I found myself wishing for other features – that existed on side-by-side strollers – that I hadn’t considered back then. For instance, when my youngest started ‘getting an opinion’ about things, it suddenly became a screaming protest contest when both girls wanted to sit in the front. Fun.

So, I urge you, if you’re in the market for a double-stroller:

Don’t rule out side-by-side doubles. I thought that getting a front-and-back type would make more sense going through doors or shopping through aisles in stores…. NO. Truth is, most side-by-sides are made slim enough now to fit through most places that you’re going to be headed with kids. Not to mention, now that my girls are ‘buddies’ that giggle it’d be a hoot to watch them entertain and chat to themselves side-by-side when we’re out at malls.

Consider the steering. Most upper-end strollers have MUCH better steering (i.e.: easier) than your basic brands. (I say this as a longtime fan of ‘basic affordable brands.’) However, once your babe grows up a bit (like, a year) he/she gets heavier and trust me — that stroller gets harder and even more challenging to push if the ride isn’t manufactured to be an easy one from the get-go. I wish I’d shelled out a bit of extra cash a year ago for better steering.

Make sure EACH seat can fully recline. At first (with a newborn who was stuck in her carseat/basket) this didn’t matter because she was already reclined and could sleep comfortably without an issue. Now? If I find myself at Disneyland or something and it’s someone’s nap time, we run into problems. The older toddler complains about wanting to lay down. The younger toddler just screams. (These are girls who actually DO sleep on the run should their seats lean back.) How can I expect my girls to get their snooze on in a stroller whose seats don’t fully recline? Idiotic on my part.

Front-to-back works fine… but believe me when I say that I now regret my misinformed choice regarding side-by-side strollers.

Are you happy with your double stroller? What works best for you?

 

About 

Jill Simonian is a Television Host, Entertainment Journalist and Founder/Author of TheFabMom. Having two "surprise" baby girls in two years (September 2010 & March 2012) she contributes to ModernMom, Momversation, BlogHer, has guest-blogged for BabyCenter and was a co-host for the 2011 web series HerSay alongside Soleil Moon Frye. Jill's day jobs have included on-camera work for CNN/HLN's "Showbiz Tonight", Travel Channel, KTLA-5 (Los Angeles), ReelzChannel, the UK's popular ITV morning shows "Daybreak" & "Lorraine" and more. Jill lives in Los Angeles with her husband and girls, and has a blast trying to keep life ‘fabulous' after having babies.

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2 Responses to Double Strollers: Front-to-Back vs Side-by-Side

  1. Love love LOVE my double Bob. It does fit in standard doorways but you have to be careful because it’s a tight squeeze.

  2. serena says:

    Yes, the ugly truths of the front-to-back. We’re going through the same process, have encountered similar pros and cons and am coming around to the side-by-side. I was concerned about the doublewide being “rude” on city sidewalks but in reality, most of them are only 4 inches wider than an Uppababy Vista or City Select. And don’t forget that steering a long stroller also has its challenges – although a different than those of a wide one. If you have kids of differing ages and want the option to switch back and forth from single to double stroller while you wear one or buggy-board one, then the front-to-back might be best for you.

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