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Do We Really Need a Stroller?

The stroller is typically one of the most researched and important new-baby purchases that parents make. For good reason, it is expensive and gets used a lot. Or does it get used a lot? The more I think about it, the more I’m convinced that we might not need a stroller. At least for the first few months, I think we can get by with a baby sling or wrap to tote our bundle around (and a car seat when we have to drive, of course).

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Look at how much use these strollers are getting!

So what are strollers good for anyway? Will we use the stroller for these purposes?

  • Walks to the park – sure, but I’d rather use a sling/wrap, especially for the first few months.
  • Walks around the neighborhood – yes, but again, baby-wearing is cool with me.
  • Shopping at the grocery store – nope, with Baby1 we put the carseat in the cart (in the big basket part). Pushing around a stroller AND a cart doesn’t work. Using just the stroller doesn’t work either because the basket is too small and awkward to reach.

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    A stroller or a shopping cart?

  • Hanging at the mall – I don’t hang at the mall (and if I went to do some serious shopping, the stroller is too big for most of the stores I’d want to go in anyway).
  • Trips to the zoo – it bothers me when big strollers take up all the exhibit room. A wrap is better here.
  • Traveling via airplane/walking the airport – simply because lugging the carseat around sucks, this is the only place I could see the stroller winning out over the wrap. But we don’t plan on traveling with Baby2 for awhile so this one doesn’t carry much weight (haha, get it?).

See, I don’t think we’d really use it all that much. The most we’d use it for is walking to the park when we take Max (which is every day) but we’d have to push it in the grass, up hills and around dog poop; that could be more trouble than it’s worth. Just to be sure, though, I examined some pros and cons:

Pros of Stroller Cons of a Wrap Pros of a Wrap Cons of a Stroller
You can put your child and stuff in it and push it around Only room for baby You can wear a back pack too to even out the weight and carry your stuff The basket is only so big (but, then again, so is the back pack)
It isn’t as hard on your back when baby gets a bit too heavy for the wrap. Baby can get heavy There are good wraps that distribute the weight pretty well. Only light when you’re pushing it (not when loading in the car, getting on the bus, etc.)
?? ?? Completely hands-free It isn’t hands-free, you’ve got to use at least one hand at all times (even when stopped – you’ve got to be safe!)
?? ?? It doesn’t take up any room! It takes up a lot of room (in the aisles, on the bus, in the trunk, stored in the house, etc.)
It’s super cute! ?? Compared to a stroller, it’s cheap ($300-500 compared to $30-50). And you can get them in all sorts of colors! It’s expensive
?? ?? Baby is right there next to you! It’s easy to soothe baby if he/she gets fussy. Baby seems so far away from you and maybe a tad isolated too

I’m biased now, but I’m thinking the pros of a wrap and the cons of a stroller are really backing up my hypothesis here.

The good thing is, we still have several months to make this decision. I know we’ll end up getting a stroller at some point, but I’d much rather spend $20-30 on a little umbrella stroller when Baby2 is big enough rather than a having huge expensive stroller at birth that we’ll barely use.

Now on to research all the baby sling and wrap possibilities!

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8 responses »

  1. Whenever I start thinking about strollers, I think of that part in “Away We Go.” Why do you want to push the baby away from you?!

    Reply
  2. You don’t really need one. I had similar thoughts and we ended up getting one because my mom bought it for us… but we hardly ever used it. The umbrella stroller DOES come in handy when you have a somewhat older baby/toddler who doesn’t want to be strapped to your body but also can’t walk for any length of time. I would also say that it was much much easier to have him in an Ergo carrier during times that we traveled.

    Advantages to a stroller… my husband used it for walks. He was willing to use carriers but for him it seemed easier, most of the time, just to plop the baby in the stroller. Also, we have insanely hot summers when having a baby attached to your body is just unbearably hot and sweaty for everyone – not that the stroller was much cooler, he got sweaty in there too – but you probably won’t have that issue!

    Reply
    • Yeah, since I’m due in July there’s a part of me that thinks we might need it if the weather is too warm to baby-wear. And at the very least an umbrella is a must for a toddler. The debate rages on I suppose!

      Reply
      • Ergo does have a “sport” model that’s supposed to be breathable and more suitable to hiking, hot weather, etc.

        It won’t be a terrible problem if you end up having to buy something after baby is born, too… we didn’t buy a swing until our little one was 3 weeks old.

      • Ooo yeah, I need to look into Ergo too. I’ve heard great things about their carriers!

  3. Such good points! I totally think you could make do without a stroller. My son is 4 1/2 months and we’ve used the stroller all of two times so far. I do think that once he gets bigger, we might use it a bit more…but if nothing else you could wait until after your little one is born and then see if you need it down the line!

    Reply
    • We’ll see how we end up, but I think I’ve got Mr. Handsome on board. Or is that off board? I know we’ll need one eventually but I hope by that time we can just get a little umbrella one or something. I’ll ask you for your baby wrap reviews!

      Reply

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