Oct. 28, 2013 at 7:24 PM ET
Whether you're expecting twins or have a second baby on the way, you're probably going to need a double stroller. From lightweight umbrellas to joggers, side-by-sides and front-to-backs, we've tested the newest double strollers—with each model evaluated by an expert and also road-tested by parents who've been there. Here are the best double strollers of 2012 so you can find the right one for your little duo.
Baby Jogger City Mini GT Double
Weight capacity: 100 lbs.
Stroller weight: 32.5 lbs.
Dimensions: Assembled: 44" x 29.5" x 30-43.5" Folded: 31" x 29.5" x 12.5"
Car seat: accommodates two infant car seat (adaptors sold separately)
Buy It Now:Pish Posh Baby
Expert Review: The new 2012 City Mini GT Double has well-padded seats (now 1.5" taller), full-coverage canopies and a complete recline to keep your kids happy. The new adjustable handlebar and pedicure-saving hand break will make you a fan. Storage is limited, however: The underseat basket is a good size but difficult to access and there are no included storage accessories. New all-terrain, "forever-air" tires (a rubber tire inflated with a lightweight foam instead of air) provide good maneuvering on a variety of surfaces and an impressive turning radius making the City Mini easy to handle around stores or on city streets. Our favorite feature: the one-step fold is simple, effortless and leaves this double stroller compact and easy to lift.
What We Love: Great canopy coverage; full recline; easy assembly; adjustable handlebar; compact fold; accessory mounting bracket to easily customize and attach accessories; excellent handling.
What We Wish It Had: Easier access to underseat storage; storage options for parent and child; included cup holder for parent/child.
Great For: Twins; parents who need to fold/unfold the stroller often; indoor; outdoor; grass; playground; easily adding accessories to customize the stroller with the accessory mounting bar.
Bottom Line: While we love the easy assembly and excellent maneuvering of the City Mini GT Double, it's the quick and easy folding that makes this stroller a best pick for parents who need to frequently fold (and unfold).
Parent Rating: "The sturdiness and ease of handling are a big plus for me. After buying lightweight strollers in the past, it's fantastic to be able to walk this one over any kind of ground—blacktop, grass, broken sidewalk—and have it be a smooth ride for both me and the girls."
"I also love the parking brake—it's so easy to use and handy. I'm used to foot brakes, but this hand brake seems much easier."
"I love that the hood comes down so far—it really cuts the wind and provides nice sun shade."
"The ease of handling sticks out as most impressive. I can push this stroller with one hand which amazes me given the sturdiness of the stroller."
"Folding the stroller is also incredibly easy for such a heavy-duty piece of gear. Just one motion and it's in half. And it unfolds in a second—truly the easiest unfold of any stroller I've tried."—Maryellen and her 2-year-old and 3-year-old, from East Islip, NY
BOB Duallie Revolution SE
Weight capacity: 100 lbs.
Stroller weight: 34 lbs.
Dimensions: Assembled (in swivel mode): 52.5" x 40.5" x 30.5" Folded (in swivel mode): 39" x 16" x 30.5"
Car seat: accommodates two infant car seats (adaptor sold separately)
Buy It Now: Let's Go Strollering
Expert Review: The BOB Duallie isn't high on style, but what it lacks in fashion, it makes up for with function. Updated for 2012, the BOB Duallie Revolution SE boasts improvements to its already amazing suspension, redesigned seat backs, a new integrated accessory adaptor and black fabric option. A large underseat basket gives you plenty of room to stash your stuff and full-coverage canopies provide ample shade. Mesh pockets on the back of each seat and on the inside of each seat give you additional storage options for drinks, snacks or to hold the included rain shield. Superior maneuvering, turning and suspension make the BOB one of the easiest strollers to push whether you're adventuring through Target aisles or forest trails. Plus the unique fine-tuning tracking knob (one of the only ones on the market!) ensures the wheels actually go straight when locked for running. The stroller folds and unfolds with ease though at 34 lbs., it's still a beast to lift.
What We Love: Excellent suspension; one-handed maneuvering; fine-tune tracking knob; mesh storage pockets for kids; large sunshade; large underseat storage basket; easy cleaning.
What We Wish It Had: Included accessories; more color options.
Great For: Anywhere and everywhere; trails; jogs; runs; errands; parks; parades; rough terrain.
Bottom Line: Whether you're an actual jogger or just want to look like one, the BOB Duallie's maneuverability and suspension provide one of the smoothest and easiest rides on the market.
Parent Rating: "I cannot say enough about the BOB stroller. The colors are great, and the design is sturdy and sleek."
"The elastic mesh pockets on the rear of the seats are great. I always keep the rain hood in there. I also really like the elastic mesh pockets at hip level inside each seat. They are great for kids to easily access their cup of choice."
"The maneuverability is really impressive. I can definitely maneuver the double BOB jogger one-handed. You can feel the heft of the stroller, especially when kids are in it, but it moves very smoothly, has great shocks and turns on a dime."
"The design makes it easy for my kids, regardless of their age, to climb right in. The seat is almost bucket-like, so it's not as easy for them to climb out."
"The stroller is extremely simple to fold. I love the flat fold and strap to secure it closed."—Kelly and her 5, 4, 2, and 1-year-old, from Chatham, NJ
Weight capacity: 55 lbs. top seat, 35 lbs bottom seat
Stroller weight: 32 lbs. (with second seat)
Dimensions: Assembled: 40.75" x 45" x 26.5" Folded: 30" x 16" x 26.5"
Car seat: Can accommodate two infant car seats (adaptor for non-Britax car seats sold separately)
Price: $500; $150 for second seat
Buy It Now:Amazon
Expert Review: Sleek and stylish, the modular B-READY grows from a single stroller into a double with 14 different seat configurations to choose from. The new 2012 model includes upgraded foam-filled, rubber tires so you'll never have to worry about a flat, a fourth upright seat position and a deeper storage basket. The canopy provides good coverage, an extra fold out expansion, and mesh peek-a-boo window. The adjustable handlebar is not only designed for comfort, but has a low position for shorter parents and letting siblings help push. One of the best features of the stroller is the unique underseat basket that has zippers on the front and sides to allow for easy access regardless of the seating configuration. Also, the B-READY is the only inline modular stroller in our line-up that can fold with both seats attached.
What We Love: Multi-point access to the underseat basket; full coverage canopy; adjustable height handlebar; ability to fold with second seat attached; versatile seating configurations; one or two-handed handlebar comfort; 4-position recline; cushioned head pad.
What We Wish It Had: More included accessories; snack tray; safety wrist strap.
Great For: Growing families; various height parents; easy access to storage basket; seat versatility.
Bottom Line: The new foam-filled rubber tires and improved shocks give the B-READY a smooth ride and its ability to fold with both seats attached gives this modular stroller a notch up on the competition.
Parent Rating: "The underseat storage on this stroller without the second seat in is amazing! When the second seat is in on this stroller, the underseat storage also doubles as footrest, so anything in there's bound to be a little beat up. But the zipper access points on all three sides of the basket were very helpful and useful when using both seats."
"One of my favorite features on the stroller is the great harness system -- easy to use, well-padded and easy to get the child out quickly."
"I also love the ease of function. You can pop out the seats, change the orientation from forward to backward, and pop in the second seat with such incredible ease, it makes using it so enjoyable! While it seems this ease of function is for the mom, it's actually a huge benefit to the child that all of these things are done so quickly."
"Another great feature is its great turning radius and maneuverability. It turns, backs, and maneuvers around things very smoothly. You can definitely push it with one hand, and it was easy to navigate between aisles while shopping."—Jenny and her children (6yrs, 5yrs, 3yrs, and 6mo) from Sherwood, OR
Contours Options LT
Weight capacity: 80 lbs.
Stroller weight: 33.8 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled: 26" x 49.5" x 39.75" Folded: 26" x 21" x 38.75"
Car seat: Can accommodate two infant car seats (one car seat adaptor included)
Buy It Now: Amazon
Expert Review: Make sure you're looking at the LT version of the Contours Options stroller as this updated model includes a lighter frame and an easier fold than the previous models. The interchangeable and reversible seats are the highlight of this tandem (6 seating options total), each with a 5-point harness, infant head support, canopy, adjustable footrest and multi-position recline. Included extras are limited (dual bumper bars and an adjustable parent cup holder), but you won't miss them with the huge storage basket and easy handling. The Contours Options LT performs well on turns (despite being one of the longest strollers in our line-up) and on a variety of terrains (though not well-suited to going off-road). The stroller folds easily, auto-locks and stands on its own when folded, but the two seats must both be facing forward or removed in order to fold -- a potential hassle depending on your children's favorite seat positions.
What We Love: Interchangeable and reversible seats; huge underseat basket; excellent maneuvering; easy fold.
What We Wish It Had: Peek-a-boo windows in the canopy; adjustable handlebar; cup holders for kids; more foot room when seats face each other; key/phone compartment.
Great For: Twins; versatile seat options; lugging a lot of stuff around with you.
Bottom Line: The Contours Options LT is a great choice for parents who like seat versatility and lots of storage room and don't mind the additional length.
Parent Rating: "My favorite feature is the versatility of the seats. It gives my children an opportunity to face one another and keep each other occupied while also providing me the option of facing them away from one another when I need to."
"The underseat storage provided with the stroller is not very accessible especially when both children are facing one another. The only time that it is functional and accessible is when the children are both facing opposite directions."
"One of the most useful accessories was the infant car seat attachment mechanism. Many stroller companies make you purchase the infant car seat attachment at an additional cost, but it was included with this stroller."
"The stroller requires you to make maneuvers using both hands, but does so with ease."
"Although the stroller is narrow enough to move through doorways it is difficult to push through because of the length of the stroller. Because the stroller is so long, it is difficult to hold the door open while pushing the stroller through."
"The folding process was very easy. With both seats facing forward, all I had to do was press a button and pull the stroller up, and it folded like an accordion."—Christine and her 3-year-old and 1-year-old, from Bayside, NY
Bumbleride Indie Twin
Weight capacity: 90 lbs.
Stroller weight: 34 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled: 29" x 36" x 34.5" Folded: 29" x 32" x 15"
Car seat: Can accommodate one infant car seat with universal adaptor or two Maxi Cosi Micos (adaptors sold separately)
Buy It Now: Fawn & Forest
Expert Review: Chic and stylish, the Bumbleride Indie Twin offers the perfect blend of style, luxury and functionality. With ample comforts for baby (head and should strap padding, multi-position footrests, backrests and canopies) and parent (adjustable handlebar, zippered storage pockets on the canopy back and included cup holder), the all-terrain Indie Twin maneuvers well in stores and on sidewalks, through thick grass and on dirt trails (we even jogged effectively with it!). The seats recline nearly flat making them suitable for infants and the high canopies allow older children to ride without feeling scrunched. Plus there are 8 colors to choose from, from subdued neutrals to show-stopping brights.
What We Love: Infant headrest and shoulder pads; adjustable handlebars; large canopies with SPF 45; large underseat basket; all-terrain wheels; large color selection; narrow width; good maneuvering.
What We Wish It Had: Ability to hold two infant car seats; included tire pump.
Great For: Style-conscious parents; parents of different heights; handling various terrains; plush padding for baby.
Bottom Line: For parents who want equal parts style and substance, the side-by-side Bumbleride Indie Twin offers the fashion, comfort and functionality to keep newborns through toddlers content (and looking cute) on any terrain.Parent Rating:
"Everything about this stroller feels really top of the line and well made—from the handle bar to the big wheels, to the thick padded fabric, you're definitely pushing around a luxury stroller."
"I did the braking-in-sandals test and this stroller passed with flying colors. Sometimes pushing up or down the break bar with open shoes can be painful and hard—this was effortless!"
"At one point I had a both seats fully reclined and a 3-year-old and a 5-year-old sleeping comfortably side by side. This stroller grows with your family!
"Love, love the super easy jogging stroller fold. Just lift the strap and the whole thing collapses."—Liz and her 3-year-old and 5-year-old, from Montclair, NJ
Mountain Buggy Duet
Weight capacity: 80 lbs.
Stroller weight: 34 lbs.
Dimensions: Assembled: 40" x 25" x 48" Folded: 38" x 25" x 12.5"
Car seat: Can accommodate two car seats (attachments sold separately)
Get It Now: Giggle
Expert Review: Fear doorways no more! The new Duet from Mountain Buggy is the same width as their single stroller—just 25 inches wide! Inside this compact frame you'll find lots of exceptional standard features like padded seats with a full recline, full-coverage canopies, a multi-position handlebar and unique twist-and-slide harness adjustments that let you kiss tangled straps goodbye. The Duet has an impressive turning radius, though maneuvering takes more effort than the competition (erhaps due to the stroller's 34 lbs). The folding latch is located on the child's footplate which means you have to face the front of the stroller in order to fold it. It takes some getting used to, but the stroller locks shut and stands when folded.
What We Love: 5-position handlebar adjustment; full-coverage canopy; full recline; durable fabric and footplate; narrow width.
What We Wish It Had: An included tire pump; more storage options for parent and child; included accessories like rain covers or foot muffs.
Great For: Twins; parents of various heights; rugged terrain; maneuvering through narrow aisles, hallways and crowded streets.
Bottom Line: The narrowest stroller in our round-up, the Duet delivers easy turning, comfy seats and full-coverage canopies. But it falls short on storage options for parent and child.
Parent Rating: "The best feature of this double is by far the size and its compactness for a side by side -- a great feature as we would take it everywhere and through any door."
"The sun shields provides great coverage, and the footrest is extra big and sturdier than most other strollers."
"I also love the adjustable handlebar. My husband is 6'2" and I'm 5'3" and we both loved it."
"I don't particularly like the harness belts because they are very difficult to open and close. We spent a lot of time trying to get children in and out of the belts."
"The maneuvering of this stroller is superb. We both could push with one hand. It is very easy to turn and it fit really well in tight areas in stores and restaurants. We even took on a ferry and it was extremely easy to get on and off."
"The folding process is a bit complicated, as two to three steps are required to fold it. You must fold in handlebar, lock the tires and then pull both sides at the same time."—Sadia and her 6-month-old, 2-year-old and 4-year-old, from New York, NY
Bugaboo Donkey Duo
Weight capacity: 74 lbs.
Stroller weight: 33.1 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled: 29.1" x 32" x 35" Folded: 34.3" x 23.6" x 15.7"
Car seat: compatible with two infant car seats (adaptors sold separately)
Price: $1,499 (Duo—comes with 2 seats, 1 bassinet); $1,659 (Twin—comes with 2 seats, 2 bassinets)
Buy It Now:Magic Beans
Expert Review: With a simple click of three latches on the frame, the unique design of the Bugaboo Donkey expands from a single stroller with a side luggage basket to a double stroller. Parents will appreciate the reversible seats, interchangeable bassinets, easy recline and extendable handlebar. Plus, both the bassinet and seat can be used independently of the stroller for midday naps at Grandma's house or giving your child a seat at your park playdate. The all-terrain tires handle everything from grass and gravel to snow and sand but do require pumping up. The folding process involves a number of steps and isn't compact. But the folded stroller does stand on its own.
What We Love: Seat versatility; ability to grow as your family grows; using seats/bassinets independent of stroller; maneuvering; extendable handlebar.
What We Wish It Had: Peek-a-boo windows; more compact fold; smaller price tag; included accessories like cup holders and parent compartment.
Great For: Twins; parents who don't need to fold up their stroller; buying one stroller to grow with your family through multiple children; the ability to easily switch from a double stroller to a single with storage; varied terrains.
Bottom Line: The unique expandable frame means one stroller can last you through a growing family. But the price tag and size may be too hefty for some parents.
Parent Rating: "My favorite feature for my child had to be the comfort of the seat. Both the bassinet and child seat material and design are very comfortable."
"A nice feature of this stroller is that you can adjust the length of the handle depending on your height, and it was very simple to do. I also like that you can have the seats face you when your child is smaller or away when they are a little older."
"I was a little disappointed in the size of the underseat storage considering the size of this stroller. My diaper bag had to be shoved in and didn't leave much additional room for anything else. For smaller items the space is easily accessible from the front and back of the stroller."
"The maneuverability is the best feature of this stroller. I was able to do circles with the double stroller using one hand. That was pretty cool."
"It is a very large stroller, so maneuvering through a store when using as a double is rather difficult. I can't imagine taking this stroller to the mall or shopping. It is just too wide for maneuvering through doors and aisles."
"The first couple of times I tried folding the stroller, I found it very difficult. You need to press in two buttons, which because of the distance apart it is a little awkward, but with a little practice it got much easier."—Melissa and her 5-month old and 2.5-year-old, from Milwaukee, WI
UPPAbaby 2012 VISTA with Rumble Seat
Stroller Stats Weight capacity: 50 lbs. main seat; 35 lbs. Rumble SeatStroller weight: 29 lbs. with Rumble SeatDimensions: Assembled: 25" x 41" x 31" Folded: 21.5" x 32" x 15"Car seat: can accommodate one infant car seat (adaptor sold separately)Price: $700; Rumble Seat $100
Buy It Now: Hip Baby Gear
Expert Review: Sleek, modern and utterly sophisticated, the 2012 VISTA includes a new adjustable height canopy, lay-flat fifth-position recline and fresh color combinations on the new carbon black frame. The canopy and mattress of the included bassinet have also been redesigned to allow for more ventilation. The best feature is the amazing canopy. Fully extended, it provides excellent coverage, but also includes an additional fold-out SPF 50 sunshade and a large, magnetic-closure peek-a-boo window (read: quiet). The combination of foam/rubber wheels and improved suspension provide a smooth ride and easy maneuvering for you. Folding, with or without the main seat attached, is one easy step, but the stroller can't fold with the Rumble Seat on –- a major drawback.
What We Love: Maneuvering; magnetic-closure peek-a-boo window; reversible elevated seat; superb canopy coverage; fold-out SPF 50 sunshade; vivid color selection; extendable handlebar; easy access to underseat storage; included rain shield and mesh bug net.
What We Wish It Had: Side carry handle for easier lifting when folded; ability to fold with Rumble Seat; reversible Rumble Seat; cup holder.
Great For: Easily switching between being a single and double stroller; parents that don't need to fold the stroller often; providing excellent sun protection.
Bottom Line: While its multi-feature canopy makes the VISTA ideal for sunny locales, the style and performance make it an excellent choice for any growing family. But its inability to fold with the second seat attached may be a deal-breaker for some.
Parent Rating:"The look of the stroller is modern and sleek. I love the look!"
"The underseat storage is one of my favorite features. There is more then enough room to put all of the kid's and my stuff. It is so much bigger than other strollers I've used."
"I love the harness straps and the adjustable seat positions. The straps are so soft and easy to use!"
"One of my favorite features is the on/off brake pedal -- just one gentle click to lock the wheels."
"The way this stroller maneuvers with two kids in it is fantastic. It is lightweight and fits like a glove through all doorways."-- Kristin and her 4-month-old and 2-year-old, from Hubertus, WI
Instep Safari Tandem
Stroller Stats Weight capacity: 80 lbs.Stroller weight: 39.5 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled: 60.6" x 25.2" x 43.3" Folded: 32" x 25.2" x 43.7"Car seat: accommodates one infant car seat
Price: $260 ($199 at Walmart)
Buy It Now: Walmart
Expert Review: This unique inline jogging stroller means you don't have to sacrifice width on your walk or run. But at nearly 40 lbs., the Safari Tandem is the heaviest stroller in our line-up which impacts the ease of maneuvering. The stroller performs reasonably well going straight, but despite the front swivel wheel, turns are still tricky. Seats are wide (though not tall enough for some) as is the underseat storage area -- though the lack of a supported bottom keeps you from packing too much. Both parent and child (front seat only) have dual cup holders and a storage compartment but both run on the small side. Folding is a simple process, but the effectiveness of the locking mechanism seems to vary. Carry handles do help you heft it into the car.
What We Love: Generous seat width; built-in reflectors; narrow stroller frame; included infant car seat attachment.
What We Wish It Had: Adjustable handlebar (fixed 43" handle may be too high for some); bottom support in underseat basket; canopies with more coverage and easier to adjust; higher seat back; head support; larger parent cup holders and compartment.
Great For: Parents who don't like the width of traditional double strollers; long straight paths; jogging in crowded areas where a traditional jogger would take up too much room.
Bottom Line: A unique jogging stroller for those who love in inline design even for exercising.
Parent Rating:"I would not use the front seat if I was jogging. The backrest offers no head support (it came to the top of every child's shoulders). We started out on several long walks and the front passenger complained every time. The back seat offers more support, but the seat height again is not as high as it could be."
"One nice feature is that the stroller includes an infant seat attachment to be used in the back seat. It was very easy to add and detach."
"The storage compartment under the back seat was very user friendly. It was large enough to store a few shopping bags. Also, the back seat had a foot carriage so my son’s feet were not in that space."
"The parent tray was a problem. The cup holders had interior plastic guards which were so small they dented my 16oz cup. I had to literally squeeze the cup every time I tried to put it in or out! I tried it with a 12oz cup which was only slightly better. Plus the compartment on the tray was not large enough to fit my iPhone."
"The front swivel wheel makes maneuvering the stroller easier. But since the stroller is so long, turning is still not super easy. Pushing it one-handed is possible but probably not very far. It is a fairly heavy stroller."
"The inline design of the tandem makes it ideal for going through doorways."
"Folding it was easy, but it is still large and heavy and hard to lift easily into the back of the car."-- Alison and her 2, 3 and 5-year-olds from Sherwood, OR
Simmons Tour DX Side X Side
Stroller Stats Weight capacity: 70 lbs.Stroller weight: 26.4 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled: 34.25" x 29.5" x 42.25" Folded: 16" x 17" x 44"Car seat: NonePrice: $220
Buy It Now: Bed, Bath & Beyond
Expert Review: Umbrella strollers are often bare-boned, but this Simmons gives parents adjustable-height handles and a pair of cup holders while kids will enjoy the comfortable Simmons memory foam-filled seats. The stroller is surprisingly nimble with a good turning radius and smooth maneuvering. Folding involves just a few steps, and the locking frame and side carry handle make transporting the stroller a breeze.
What We Love: Padded seat; adjustable handles; side carry handle; cup holders; sturdy frame.
What We Wish It Had: Larger underseat storage; bigger cup holders; smoother seat recline; bigger sunshade; included rain shield.
Great For: Lightweight strollering; traveling; comfort in a lightweight, compact frame; a sturdier frame than many umbrella strollers.
Bottom Line: Whether you're traveling overseas or just around the block, this sturdy umbrella stroller is comfortable, stylish and easy to carry.
Parent Rating:"The seat recline is great. There is a pulley system in the back that allows you to lock it into place at any position. The recline goes back far enough that my kids will be able to nap in there without any problem."
"The underseat storage is small, but it's nice because there are two baskets, one underneath each seat. The manual says they only hold 3 lbs each so it's definitely still an umbrella stroller, but at least you have two decently accessible baskets."
"I like the built-in cup holders. They sometimes hit my belly as I was walking, but I was glad they were built in!"
"You can push it one hand but the handles are slanted so it's easy to push with two. It's small (although slightly heavier than I would have thought), but maneuvers very easily."
"Each wheel has a break which is a little annoying as you have to break all three tires instead of applying one break."
"Once you get the hang of folding it, it's fairly easy. Though many times I would need to manually push the stroller down further to engaged the side locks and ensure it didn't pop back open."-- Sherrill and her 16-month-old and 3.5-year-old, from Newton, MA
Graco Ready2Grow Stand and Ride Stroller LX
Stroller Stats Weight capacity: Front seat, bench seat & standing platform holds child up to 50 lbs.; Rear seat holds child up to 40lbs.Stroller weight: 33 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled: 41.5" x 27.2" x 22.5" Folded: 15" x 48.5" x 21.5"Car seat: can accommodate one or two Graco car seatsPrice: $180-$190 depending on fabric
Buy It Now: Diapers.com
Expert Review: With 12 seating combinations to choose from including forward, backward, with an infant car seat, sitting bench or standing, the Graco Ready2Grow LX offers lots of versatility for a growing family. The stroller also includes snack/storage trays for both parent and child and a large underseat storage basket. But the canopies provide only moderate coverage and the front seat is unusually narrow (8"). Easy maneuvering and turning are not the Ready2Grow's strongest assets, but the true one-handed fold (when the stroller is in the right configuration) is unique for double strollers and though bulky when folded, it does stand on its own. Choose the basic model for fewer features or this LX model for upgrades like comfort grip handles, padded seats, head support and harness covers.
What We Love: Seat versatility; infant car seat, seat, stand or bench options; parent and child trays; large underseat basket; easy fold if stroller is in the right configuration.
What We Wish It Had: Better handling; larger canopies; deeper front seat; way to remove/flip up standing platform when not in use.
Great For: Twins; kids who like seat versatility; older siblings (bench and standing options are especially big-kid friendly).
Bottom Line: A versatile stroller best for those with older kids who will appreciate the bench or standing option and parents who need a large underseat basket.
Parent Rating:"The flexibility in seating was my favorite feature. I think that as your kids grow, it's great to give them options rather than limiting them to the same seat."
"I LOVED the amount of space in the storage basket. I was able to go grocery shopping and put a lot of the items in the basket without having trouble getting them in."
"The front seat doesn't have something to keep an infant from sliding out of the bottom. When I first put my 13-month-old in the seat, he slid out when I unlatched the harness. The same thing happened when I put him in. While I fumbled with the difficult harness system, he slid through the space and onto the floor."
"Pushing the stroller was not a problem. It rolled along quite well though I had difficulty at curbs. I couldn't lift the front wheels up by simply pushing down on the handle bar, but had to step on the standing board really hard and force it up and over the curb."
"The folding process was both complicated and time consuming depending on how you arranged the seating. Because of all the steps, I just kept it set up except when we put it in the car. But it was quite easy to open the stroller from the folding position."-- Anne and her 13-month-old and 2.5-year-old, from Brooklyn, NY
Valco Baby Zee Two
Stroller Stats Weight capacity: 90 lbs.Stroller weight: 26.8 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled: 29.5" x 34.5" x 40" Folded: 29.5" x 26" x 18"Car seat: can accommodate one car seat with adaptor (sold separately) Price: $529.99 (But $500 with coupon WELCOMEZEE at www.valcobaby.com); or for coupon Valco Baby
Expert Review: This brand new release from Valco has a durable frame and well-padded seats, but weighs in at only 26 lbs. The only included accessories are dual bumper bars, but the Zee Two has easy seat reclines, adjustable footrests and full-coverage canopies with additional zip-out extensions. The Zee Two folds down relatively compact, locks closed and is easy to carry over your arm with the handle -- a rarity for double strollers.
What We Love: Narrow silhouette; lightweight yet sturdy frame; full-coverage canopies; easy maneuvering; easy to carry; large storage basket; quick opening frame.
What We Wish It Had: Dual car seat capabilities.
Great For: Parents needing to carry the stroller upstairs; securely locking in tiny escape artists with the child-proof 5-point harness.
Bottom Line: At just 26 lbs., the Zee Two is extremely lightweight for a double stroller (tying for first place with the Simmons Tour DX in our line-up). But unlike the Simmons, the Zee Two has the look, maneuvering and durability of a much sturdier stroller.
Parent Rating: "I can't believe how lightweight it is for a double stroller. You can actually fold it up and carry it!"
"If you want a side-by-side stroller that's good for the city, the width is narrow enough that you don't feel like you're taking over the sidewalk.""The storage basket is great -- I was definitely able to load it up."
"I realize the color has nothing to do with its performance, but I LOVE the powder blue. It's such a great shade, works with boys and girls, and you'll never get confused about which stroller is yours."--Jennifer and her 4-year-old and 1-year-old, Queens, NY
Maclaren Twin Techno
Stroller StatsWeight capacity: 110 lbs.Stroller weight: 26.9 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled – 43” x 29.5” x 31” Folded – 44.5” x 21” x 19.5”Type: side-by-side, umbrella strollerCar seat: Cannot accommodate infant seatsPrice: $380; includes rain cover, mosquito net, head cushions, two baby bottle holders
Get It Now: Shopping.com
Expert review: Though pricey for an umbrella stroller, the Maclaren Twin Techno offers comfort and handy features in a compact, lightweight frame. Sturdy and stylish, each seat is lined with soft material and more padding than other brands. It also comes with two head cushions as well as a 5-point harness with shoulder covers. Seats can recline to five different positions, though the increments of recline are small (with the deepest recline only getting to about 45 degrees), and the reclining process requires two hands. Dual canopies provide good coverage, including an additional fold-out sun/rain shield. But the peekaboo window is on the back panel of the canopy instead of the top and doesn’t provide kids with the best view. There’s easy access to the twin underseat baskets, two Velcro pockets on the back of each canopy and two baby bottle holders that clip onto the back side of the stroller. The Techno maneuvers well on smooth surfaces but doesn’t fare quite as well on tougher terrains, like a gravel driveway. Folding took some muscle, but seemed to get easier with each use. The stroller folds compactly (though the final shape is a bit awkward), locks shut and has a convenient carrying handle on the side.
Why we love it: Lightweight but sturdy; plush seats; good storage; nice maneuvering.
What we wish it had: Deeper seat recline; more color options (only black and grey offered); parent cup holder; lower price.
Great for: Sidewalks; smooth, indoor surfaces like a mall or airport; narrow aisles.
Bottom line: A little expensive for an umbrella stroller, but the Twin Techno is lightweight, compact and offers sturdy construction and nice extras for parent and child.
What Our Parent Tester Thought: “The handles are very comfortable and tall enough for my husband to push without having to bend down, as he’s done with some of our other umbrella strollers.”
“Recline is a little difficult, especially if the child is in the stroller. But once it’s done, the seat is comfortable enough for sleeping.”
“Love the sun canopy and rain protector. It’s large, has full coverage and can be removed -- but doesn’t pop off during normal usage.”
“It is a little difficult to get open and closed. There is a place to put your foot and push down to lock the stroller in place, but you have to put all of your weight on it to get it down. And to push it back up when folding it up. I think this will get easier with time, but it definitely takes a little oomph to get it right.”
“This is a luxury umbrella stroller. I love the size, and it has so many great features like the seat recline, underseat storage, sun shade, foot rest, bottle holders and padded seats.”
- Keri and her 11-month-old, 3-year-old and 5-year old, from Senoia, Ga.
Chicco Cortina Together
Stroller StatsWeight capacity: 80 lbs.Stroller weight: 34 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled - 47.25” x 23.5” x 45.5” Folded - 44.5"x23.5"x13"Type: front-to-back, full-sizedCar seat: Can accommodate two Chicco Key Fit or Key Fit 30 car seats; no adaptor neededPrice: $300; includes interchangeable armbar and cup holders for the child, and parent tray with cup holders and storage compartment
Get It Now: Target
Expert review: Want a seamless transition between your car seat and stroller? Consider the Chico Cortina, which is easy to fold and locks automatically. But there are drawbacks: The stroller’s small wheels make maneuvering difficult, especially in rough terrain or bad weather. Assembly will take 20-30 minutes, so keep the directions handy and be prepared to work. In order to even open the stroller, you have to lock in the parent console -- a process that’s awkward and tricky. Assembling and attaching the wheels, canopies, storage basket and other accessories also takes multiple steps. But once you attach the parent console (which includes two cup holders and a lidded compartment) and open the stroller, you can enjoy features like an adjustable position handlebar, excellent storage space under each seat (plus a zip-down back pocket for easier access), and small but adjustable canopies that can rotate nearly 180 degrees. Each seat has a 5-point harness, footrest and padded shoulder straps. The front seat can accept either the included bumper bar or dual cup holders, but only offers two seat positions, fully upright and very slightly reclined -- unlike the back seat, which lounges to an additional third recline position. The back seat can also be transformed into a makeshift bassinet enclosure (though it’s not well padded nor completely flat).
Why we love it: Parent console; ability to accept two infant car seats without additional adaptors; large storage basket with easy access; automatically locks when folded.
What we wish it had: Higher weight limit; easier assembly; better maneuvering on rough terrains; bigger canopies.
Great for: Fans of Chicco’s Key Fit car seats; pushing over paved roads and smooth sidewalks; indoor surfaces (like a mall or grocery store).
Bottom line: The Cortina Together lacks quick assembly, large canopies and easy maneuvering, but redeems itself with excellent storage, an included parent console and the ability to accept two infant seats without additional adaptors.
What Our Parent Tester Thought: “I like the look of the muted aluminum. It adds a modern touch to the overall appearance of the stroller. I also like how there aren’t a lot of plastic pieces to the stroller.”
“I didn’t like that only one seat fully reclined. That may be tough for parents who need both children to be reclined in order to nap. But the seats are very easy to adjust.”
“The front canopy is disappointingly small and provides almost no sun coverage. The back seat canopy is barely larger then the front, but still very small and does not cover the child adequately. Also, the front canopy fully disconnected from the stroller when I folded the stroller. I would have to reattach it every time I unfolded the stroller. Plus the rear sunshade would not stay closed. It would always fall partially open, making it impossible to keep an eye on my child in the rear seat.”
“The storage basket was very adequate in size. I loved the zip feature when the back seat was fully reclined - very easy access. Plus it was mostly mesh, so it was easy to see where your things were.”
“There are two cup holders that can be attached on the front seat instead of the bumper bar. It was disappointing that I could not have both the bumper bar and a cup holder in front. The back seat has no storage or cup holders for the child.”
“I used this stroller in the mall and it worked great -- no complaints at all. The stroller maneuvers easily despite the size. You can push it with one hand and the turn radius is surprisingly small considering the length of the stroller. But on the dirt roads around where we live, the maneuvering and pushing become much more difficult. And forget enjoying your walk if there is gravel. It’s almost impossible for a smooth and easy push. Larger, inflatable tires work best for where I live.”
“The attachments, such as the sun canopies and parent cup holders, seem a bit flimsy. During a walk, as I struggled to push the stroller though gravel, looked down a few times at the front wheels wobbling. I thought one or all might pop off.”
“I loved the way this stroller folded and unfolded. It was so easy, and I loved how it automatically locked. I did not have to sit on top of it to fold and lock it like other strollers I've used.”
- Allison and her 5-month-old and 18-month-old, from Palmer Lake, Colo.
Valco Baby Twin Tri Mode EX
Stroller Stats Weight capacity: 180 lbs.Stroller weight: 33 lbs.Dimensions: Assembled: 29” x 37” x 43” Folded: 28” x 29” x 18”Car seat: accommodates one infant car seat (adaptors sold separately)Stroller Price: $699.99Joey Seat Price: $80
Buy It Now: Valco Baby
What We Love:The Joey seat allows for triple seating; one-touch full recline; full coverage canopy; large underseat storage basket; all-terrain wheels.
What We Wish It Had: Easier assembly; the ability to stand when folded.
Great For: Growing families with twins or triplets; parents who don't need to fold the stroller often; parents of varying heights; easy access to ample storage.
Bottom Line: If you've got three small children that need to be contained, this is a luxury stroller that will provide a smooth, safe ride and comes complete with lots of storage.
Parent Rating:“Despite being a side-by-side stroller that sits three, not two children, the Twin Tri Mode can fit through all doorways. Revolutionary!”“The pneumatic air tires make for a super smooth ride, it’s essentially an all-terrain and a hiking/jogging-friendly stroller. Great for outdoors.”“The seat design is awesome in that I can have one child in the Joey, alert and looking around, one baby sitting upright but shielded from the sun, and my newborn asleep, fully reclined in the shade.”“There are lots of pockets on the stroller—zip-off storage on the back of the seats, plus pockets on the side of the underseat basket—which is a huge perk.”“The wheels pop on and off easily. We have to take them off to transport the stroller in the trunk of our car, but they are very quick and easy to put back on.”“The downside is that it does not fold down small, and is therefore a bear to get in and out of the car quickly. This stroller weighs about 8 pounds more than most other double strollers. But considering it's a stroller for three children—of which there are not many on the market—it's a downside we're willing to accept, give the many, many upsides."-- Courtney and her 18 month, 9 month and newborn, from Brooklyn, NY
A version of this story originally appeared on iVillage.