Each time we get pregnant, at some point I realize we need an infant car seat and stroller. So I head to Babies R Us and end up feeling completely overwhelmed and frozen with indecision.When I was pregnant with Cate, almost all the car seats and travel systems were UGLY. (Remember the plaid phase?) So, I’ll admit, I pretty much selected our travel system based on looks. We ended up buying an Eddie Bauer Vector stroller (three-wheel style) and car seat. It was actually really easy to use – easy to fold the stroller, easy to snap the car seat in and out of both the car base and the stroller, and the large wheels made for easy strolling over all kinds of terrain. But the back wheels were so wide it drove me bonkers when I went to any stores. When Cate grew out of the system, I sold it and for almost the same amount I bought it for. (Note, they don’t make this system anymore.)
For Anna, I bought a used Peg Perego system (it was practically new, great condition). I had a few friends who literally gushed over their Peg Perego car seats and strollers, so I thought I would love it. And I didn’t. AT ALL. In fact, the whole time we used it I was wishing I still had the old Eddie Bauer system. It was nearly impossible to snap the car seat into the stroller without a major struggle, it was not very easy snapping it into the base in the car, and folding and un-folding the stroller was a pain in the patootie. I didn’t even bother selling that one, I just gave it away.
Enter pregnancy #3. With no car seat or stroller in sight, I was going to just get the Graco Metrolite or Chicco systems, keep things simple. But then I decided it would be fun to do a review or two on the blog and actually try out some strollers and car seats that I would want to use, based on research. Today I’m reviewing the Orbit Baby travel system, a high-end product that I am sooooo excited to have. Later this week I’ll review a travel system in a lower price-range and let you know how they compare.
As I was editing DailyBuzz Moms one day, I came across this review of the Orbit travel system. I had never heard of Orbit and was immediately intrigued, especially when the title of the post included the words “life-changing.” I contacted Orbit and thankfully they decided to work with me. Yippee! They provided me with a Stroller Travel System G2 to review and use with our new baby. Orbit is based in the Bay Area, so I had the chance to meet them at their offices, where they gave me a tour of my new travel system.
First impression – parents designed this system. There are so many little things that only a parent would have thought of that are incorporated into the design. To name a few:
- Easy to fold and unfold the stroller base.
- Soft carrier handle on the car seat…it is so much more comfortable to carry on your arm!
- Paparazzi shield built into the canopy – no more trying to get a blanket to stay in the right spot when you want baby covered.
- You don’t have to remove the straps from the car seat to remove the cover for washing. Love this feature.
- You can rotate the car seat on the stroller base and the car base. This feature ROCKS. It’s handy when using the stroller to be able to choose which direction you want the baby to face, but it’s especially handy with taking the baby in and out of the car. You can click it in whatever way it lands and then rotate it to the proper position, or you can just leave the car seat in the car and turn it to face you to put the baby in. It’s pretty much genius.
- Side impact protection on the car seat.
- Babies can use this car seat up to 30 pounds, and, from what I can tell, there appears to be ample room for baby to still be comfortable up to that weight.
- They used certified green materials.
- The stroller base folds up compactly.
- The front wheels can swivel or be locked straight.
- Handle height on the stroller is adjustable.
- When you fold the stroller, the handles hit the ground really easily. I think they’re going to get banged up pretty good, but at least the folding process is a snap.
- The car seat is quite large. When placed in the center of the backseat of our Ford Taurus (yes, we drive a wicked-cool Ford Taurus), it stands very tall, making it hard for me to see the girls on the sides. There is still plenty of room for the girls, it’s just really tall, blocking visibility for me.
- The storage space under the stroller is removable, so you can pack it up in your house, carry it around, etc. I think I’m going to like this feature because I do believe it’s hard to stuff things under strollers in general. It’s really easy to remove the pod and put it back on the base. But I’m still wondering if it will really be easier. I’m just going to have to use it to see what I really think!