Pimp My Ride, Stroller EditionCatherine Connors
We own a pretty big stroller. Like, one of the biggest that you can buy. It’s a double Chariot, and it’s huge. Not so huge that you can’t get it through a shop door, but pretty huge. Also: expensive.
After outfitting it with all the bells and whistles – infant sling for Jasper (we bought it when he was only a few months old), jogging wheel, bike trailer conversion, etc, etc – it ran into the low four figures. You heard me. Four figures. Which is why when I hear people gasping about the $1500 price tag on the new Bugaboo, I just roll my eyes. Been there, spent that.
And spending that was totally worth it. We needed a double stroller, because Emilia was still a toddler when Jasper was born. We need something with good carrying capacity, because I don’t drive, and this would be the vehicle for long excursions and the occasional small grocery shop. We wanted something that would grow with the kids, so the convertibility to a bike trailer was highly desirable. We wanted something that was really, really well-designed and built, with shock absorbers and waterproof covers and the like, because we would be transporting our precious, precious babies in it, and because we wanted it to last. Solid resale value was also a factor, as was the nice perk of it being convertible to a jogging stroller, in case I ever decided to, you know, jog. It was – is – three conveyances in one and it has served us well for over three years. We still use it as a bike trailer, and I occasionally still drag the kids in it to the grocery store with me. We’ll probably sell it soon, and recoup a good portion of of our original cost.
Good value? Yes. Absolutely.
Not everybody needs a super fancy stroller, of course. Some people can totally get by with something very basic. I didn’t use a stroller at all for the first couple of months of Jasper’s life, because he only wanted to be carried; when he absolutely needed to be put down and moved around, he went into his car seat on one of those Snap And Go chassis things (FANTASTIC for travel, people. Make a note of that.) But when the time came to start carting him around more conventionally, while also addressing his sister’s desire to be included in whatever mode of transportation we were providing for him, we knew what our needs were and we were happy to spend the money to get those needs met. Amortized over the three years that we’ve had the thing, the cost of its use has worked out to about $500/year. When we sell it, that number will go down, but even $500/year is a bargain for how well it’s served us. Less than $50/month. That’s less than many people spend on coffee.
Someone asked me, recently, whether I didn’t think that it was absurd that anyone would spend $1500 on a stroller, and by the way, what kind of stroller had I used for my kids? I laughed. And then I said everything that I said above. And then I pedaled away on my bicycle, dragging my expensive stroller loaded with groceries and children behind me.