Only women who are about to be moms or recently have become moms know how big the excitement of expectation is. A new coming baby is a life changer and everybody wants to provide the best for the new member of the family. People say that with baby number two on the way, things are a little bit more settled and calm, but only a mom of two or more kids can tell that this is not entirely so.
Expecting a second baby brings the same lovely emotion of wanting to provide and take care of it and for some parents gets to be even more exciting than when they had their firstborn, of course, you have the benefit of knowing what to do and being able to use some stuff you have been using with the first baby, like bottles, steamers and so on, but there is one thing you need to really think about and that is purchasing a new double stroller, so that you can feel comfortable and safe carrying both of your little ones out and about.
Here we need to mention of course, the families that are expecting twins, where the need of a double stroller is evident and fortunately, there are some great double strollers for twins available that will help parents of twins feel great about their choice.
Having in mind that a second baby or twins increase the expenses of the family, you do not have room for experimentation and mistakes, especially when it comes to the most expensive items that you will need, like a double stroller would be. This is the reason why our team of moms of different age children and twins have gathered up, not only to offer you honest reviews of the best double strollers to fit the family's particular needs, but we have also prepared a buying guide where we are aiming to structure simple and clear the things you need to look for when looking to purchase a double stroller in order to really make it the best double stroller for your own family and needs.
We are sure that moms that have already owned a single stroller and are a little bit more experienced already have an idea what they would want from it, but when looking for a double stroller there are some differences that have to be taken in mind, not to mention that the parents expecting twins need some more information and guidance that we have tried to collect and offer, as our only goal is to help parents feel more comfortable and confident.
Twins or small age gap children - seats and positions
First of, we need to clear it out that there are different types of double strollers, like models aimed for newborn and toddlers and other aimed for twins. Some of the best examples for a double stroller for newborn and toddler are the phil and ted’s models; the sit and stand double stroller offered by Baby Trend for example is a great double stroller for infant and toddler where the infant can stand on the platform behind the seated toddler; and there are quite a few models of double strollers for twins that almost every brand offers.
But let's divide these models and get into details.
If you are expecting twins, then you need to think about if you want to get a side by side double stroller that sometimes might be too wide and fitting it through standard doorways might be tricky or even impossible.
Usually, this would be a great choice for families who live in houses and can leave the stroller in the backyard or in the garage and plan on using it only for walks outdoors. Some double stroller brands offer models aimed for twins that are as wide as a single stroller, so if you live in the city and you need to use public transport, then these models might be more suitable for you. Here is a good moment to say that if you go for a double stroller where the children are seated one behind another, yes it will be easy for you to fit it through any door, but you might need to compromise on the reclining position of the seats and in this way compromise with the comfortable nap of your babies.
You also need to consider if you would use the double stroller since birth - in this case you are better off looking for one that accepts two car seats and as soon as the babies get to a proper age you can attach the regular seats where they can travel. Usually, double strollers for twins that can be used from birth with car seats are a bit more heavier and of course, a bit more expensive.
If you already have one baby and the age gap with the newborn is small, then you would probably be looking for a double stroller for newborn and toddler and in this case the stroller can be able to fit one seat and one car seat. Fortunately, there are a lot of models like that and they are usually known as travel systems. Great examples are the Chicco Cortina Together and the Baby Jogger City Select Double stroller that can easily be used for twins or for newborn and toddler as they offers quite a lot of seating combinations.
Size and maneuverability
The size and maneuverability of the double stroller are related to the seating positions and the model. In general the side by side double strollers are divided in jogging double strollers and umbrella double strollers.
The double jogging strollers are usually wide, but very sturdy and fitted with pneumatic bicycle wheels that provide great maneuverability and comfort. The downfall is that they are heavy and difficult to store and transport.On the other hand the double umbrella strollers are very easy to fold, store and transport, but they have small rubber wheels that sometimes can jeopardise the maneuverability and comfort of the traveling babies.
The size is obviously not that big of an issue if you go for a double stroller where the seats are positioned one behind the other, but the wheels still stay to be a thing to look for, as it is up to their quality to offer comfortable ride for you and your little ones.
Usually, bigger size pneumatic wheels will provide greater maneuverability and comfort, but they increase the storage space and need maintenance, same as bicycle wheels. On the other hand, smaller rubber wheels need no maintenance, but might not cope with all terrains.
Folding, weight and storage
We have been talking a lot about the size of the double stroller so far and there is another reason why it is so important and that is the storage. Not only concerning the question if you will be storing it in a flat or a house, but also would it fit the trunk of your car. In this sense the easiest models to be stored, even in a small trunk of a car are the double unbrella strollers. They have small wheels and fold like an umbrella, so they do not take a lot of storage space.
So, related to the storage space in a way is the way the double stroller folds. Of course you will be looking for one that folds easily and fortunately the most recent models can be folded even with one hand. However, there are models that even being super easy to fold, are quite heavy, so there is no way to lift them and store them in the trunk of your car unless with additional help, so always look for the overall weight of the double stroller.
In a way related to the so discussed size is the handle. Adjustable handle is always a plus and it kind of changes the height of the double stroller, so that it can fit taller or shorter parents.
If you have read somewhere that the handle of a particular double stroller is not adjustable, then a good thing to do is find it in a store where you can actually try the stroller out and find out how it fits to your height. However, you need to keep in mind that even if the handle height is right for you, your partner, grandparents or nanny might struggle with a non adjustable handle.
Same rule goes for the brake, especially when it is foot activated. It really depends on your height if you will feel comfortable hitting the foot activated brake. Bare in mind that some breaks are so hard to hit and release that if you are wearing flip flops you can even take skin off your foot. In this situations a hand activated brake might be a better choice.
With the hand activated brake, you need to be aware that it is usually located near the parent's tray (if any) and if you have bags hanging of the handle it might get hit occasionally, which is a pain too.
Having mentioned the parent’s tray, they are always welcome. You have the chance to fit your phone and keys and some offers offer cupholders and even built in speakers ( usually the double jogging strollers) so that you and your little ones can enjoy favourite tunes while out and about.
The parent’s tray is just one more place to store stuff, which is a great deal when you have drinks and snack prepared for a trip out.
As we have mentioned the parent’s tray, we can not go about without mentioning the kids tray. Not all double strollers offer it, but it is always a plus. It seems like not only kids are loving it, but parents as well. It is great to be able to place each drink and snack into each child’s tray and at the same time the kids tray seems to work as another safety feature.
No matter how we love the parent’s and kid's trays, the main storage space is always the storage bin and here there is only one simple rule - the bigger, the better. Well, not only this, it needs to be easily accessible too, as there are some models of double strollers that are fitted with massive storage bins, but you can hardly fit anything or get to take stuff out as you can't reach them.
Canopies and visors
There is another thing that follows the same “the bigger, the better” rule and this is the canopy. It seems like when it comes to double strollers the manufacturers struggle to cope with fitting them with large enough canopies, but thankfully some models actually are equipped with nice large canopies that are able to protect your babies from the sun.
If you have found your best double stroller, but the size of the canopy is the only downfall that is concerning you, then at least make sure it is ratcheting, so even if it is small you will be able to move it around and still be able to protect your kids from the sun. Of course, you can always buy additional umbrellas for more protection, but sometimes this might be an issue budgetwise.
Some canopies though are big enough and even have visors fitted to them, so that you can easily keep an eye on the babies without the need to move up and down the canopies. When there is a visor fitted to the double stroller that you like, pay attention if it is velcro closed or it uses magnets as sometimes the velcro might be a bit noisy and may cause your babies to wake up when you open and close it.
Seats and harness
Last, but for sure not the least are the actual seats that the double strollers come with.
The first thing you would want from them is to be roomy and comfortable for your children. Always look for the lbs the seats can take, so you assure yourself that they are convenient for your children. The fabric that the seats are made of is not to take lightly, as you would want fabric that is easy to clean and at the same time soft and comfortable for your babies.
What is also important for the comfort of your little ones is the ability of the seats to recline. We have already mentioned that with some double strollers the reclining ability is not that big due to the positioning of the seats itself. Usually, almost all side by side double strollersoffer a full reclining position of the seats, so that your babies can take a nap while you are out. What you also should be looking for is what you need to do in order to get the seats to recline. Some models of double strollers offer a strap system and some use sort of a lever.
The lever is comfortable as you only need to push a button, but the reclining positions are preset. On the other hand, the straps allow you to choose the degree of reclining, but you need to use both of your hands to do so. We guess, here all it takes is time to just catch the habit.
In all the double stroller reviews we offer you, we have followed this pattern of main features, so that you have complete information about every aspect of the double stroller and help you take the right decision when looking for the best double stroller to suit your needs.