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I was scrolling through Facebook’s marketplace the other day (part of my never-ending search for a mid century credenza on the cheap) and spotted a side by side double stroller for $40. My stomach did a little flip! This time two years ago I was in an absolute (hormone induced) frenzy over finding a good deal on a sturdy, jogging style double stroller.
I was a little obsessive researching them and looking for deals! Along with that nesting urge that had me cleaning my appliances, I spent a good chunk of time for about a month straight on this double stroller hunt.
I ended up paying more like $150 used for a Bumbleride Indie Twin , but it has been well worth it because I love my “BRIT” and still use it all the time for my 1.5 and 3 year old. Once I realized what they cost new…I knew I got a deal!
I struggled myself with the side by side vs tandem (front/back) version of a double stroller and found out that I am 100% team side by side. I know there is no wrong answer here, but if you must pick one and if you’d rather not spend precious moments of your life doing the same research, maybe this blog post in argument of the side by side will be of use to you!
1. Maneuverability. My double has “real tires” that need to be pumped up with air, not the plastic stuff that skids across the concrete and makes that nail on a chalkboard sound. I hate those plastic wheels! My front wheels in the side by side jogging style can swivel and turn 360 degrees and the stroller honestly feels like it has a zero turn radius. It’s sooo easy to push that it glides. And that’s with a 30 and 40 pound kid in tow!
I can push it even with one hand and walk the dog simultaneously. Tandem strollers are so long they are like trying to turn a barge (only pushed them in store without a kid inside, so I can’t even imagine with weight). It’s a slow process that needs two hands and some oomph!
2. Equal viewing/seating. I was surprised at the number of reviews I read where moms lamented the inevitable arguing their kids would do over who got to sit in the better seat in front/back strollers. I would like to think my kids would know I wouldn’t put up with that (yeah right) but still, why risk it?
It is true that a side by side offers equal everything. Equal foot space, equal views, equal air flow, etc. Sometimes the front and back style appears to have one kid super scrunched up or blocked by their sibling.
3. They can be buddies. I can’t tell you how many times I look down to find my kids holding hands! They talk to eachother and interact. In a front back, they can’t see eachothers faces and more likely than not, that back kid is messing with front kid’s hair or kicking the back of their seat like mine do to me in the car…
4. They do fit through doors, really they do. A lot of people struggle with the idea of a double fitting through doorways. After 2 years of use I have never once had this issue. I store it in my front entry closet and walk it out the front door with ease each time I use it. I am much more of an outdoor stroller person and I don’t take it to a ton of indoor stores, but it has been to zoos, crawfish boils, those huge consignment sales, etc. without ever having an issue of not making it through a door way.
I often hear the argument that side by sides are too wide to navigate in a mall, but I have only attempted a mall with a stroller a few times, so it wasn’t as important to me. I read during my research that side by sides are required to fit anywhere a wheelchair does, which may surprise some people.
5. Terrain. The side by side strollers work better on grass, gravel, brick, cobblestone etc than a front/back style. Since we use the stroller for outdoor walks 99% of the time, this was a no-brainer for us. Something about the tandem style makes me feel like it could tip over if one kid wanted to lean just right while on rocky terrain! Probably not so, but the wide base of the side by side makes it very sturdy.
Tandem may very well be the style for you, but I wanted to share why I am all about the side by side!
Other things I discovered in my hard core stroller research was that people out there really take time to customize their strollers. I saw some go so far as to dye the fabrics a custom color or even paint the frames, in matte black for example. They add special add-ons and features, etc.
I like to craft and DIY…but not so much with a stroller. One thing I do love for a stroller upgrade are unique handlebar grips ….especially since my stroller was previously used. I love the leather look but they also make a sort of neoprene material as well. You can use these for comfort or for looks, or like me to hide a little wear and tear!
Here are a few more shots of us enjoying the double stroller life through the years. This is probably my three year old’s last summer in the stroller 🙁 Time truly flies!