Thursday, January 03, 2008

Stroller Reviews - Valco and Chicco

Brian and I tend to be a little neurotic when it comes to researching new products. We like to be "wise consumers" but that sometimes translates into weird obsessions in knowing every little detail about any product and it's competitors, as well as memorization of every review ever written on said product. Then there's price. We like to get the best possible price out there, which means we will search high and low, drive across town (or state or country), scour the internet, contemplate which "options" are worth paying more or less for...the list goes on. Case in point: Brian flew to Detroit when we felt we had finally found the perfect minivan.

Baby gear is no exception for us. In fact we might obsess even more over baby gear. We want a reliable product. We want durability, dependability, safety, ease-of-use, style, good warranties, etc. So over the past few months we have spent our time researching double strollers, and here's what we came up with.

Valco Baby Tri Mode Twin Double Stroller (Harlequin Black)

This stroller appealed to us because it is stylish, can pass as a city (or mall) stroller yet is rugged enough to go to parks, soccer games and other "rougher" outings. I like the four wheels (vs three like most joggers) and the fact that they can swivel or lock. I also like the dual canopies and reclines so each baby can have his own specific comfort. A cool feature of this stroller is that you can buy a third seat to mount above the baby seats, so a toddler can "float" above the babies. That might come in handy, for example, at Disneyland if Emma were to get too tired to walk. I haven't used the stroller with kids in it yet, but when I push it around the house it feels like it's floating on air. The negative side of this stroller is it's size: while it does fit through standard doorways just fine, it's not exactly compact when folded. It almost doesn't fit in the back of our van. And it's a little heavy and difficult to fold, which means that for quick trips with just me and the kids it might not be too fun. Which is why we felt we also needed this:

Chicco C5 Twin Stroller (Sydney)

A smaller, lighter, umbrella-folding stroller. Chicco is a very good brand that has managed to keep their prices down. In my opinion they are giving Peg Perego a run for their money, but at half the price. We have a single Chicco umbrella stroller that we got for Emma for $59 that's nothing fancy, but we've always been happy with. It's great for airports or just as a back up. This double stroller is a little more plush than our single, and reminds me of the Maclaren Twin Techno but for a lot less money (although Maclaren's does recline further and have a little more padding). I also haven't used this stroller yet, but am very happy with the way it folds and feels around the house. Also I love that Chicco has tall handles which makes it much more comfortable for tall people like me.

So far I am very happy with our purchases. More to come in a few months after we have "user experience".


Laura B. said...

I'm so glad to see that I'm not the only one out there who spends hours researching strollers.
I realized the other day that I'll have to buy another double, as my Maclaren (which I love) does not accommodate an infant car seat, which I'll need for the first couple of months.
So I think that I'm going to get the Graco Quattro Tour Duo so Claire and the baby will both have a seat.
Because can you really expect to put the new baby in the Bjorn every time you need to run into the store?
Thanks for the reviews! Can't wait to see what you think in a couple of months!

Mama Papaya said...

Hi Mama,

I have been checking in on you guys every now and again since I chatted via email with your sweet hubby about the Damu many moons ago. I am also a picky bargain hunter. :)

I have been very pleased with my couple of purchases from, including a twin techno in a one year old color/pattern for $180, give or take. They often have great deals on phasing out Britax patterns as well. Happy hunting!

Rabne Mill said...

Oh Really amazing!!!!! This is awesome! I LOVE that you made it look cuter than brand new -- and you didn't even have to buy a new stroller!!! It's so adorable! You did a great job! :)

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