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This pram is great; expensive, but great.
It easily holds two children up to 4 years (dependent on weight) as well as being suitable for a child from approximately 3 months (as long as they can sit up right and they're heavy enough for the straps to be snug.)
Unlike most double prams, it's extremely light and easy to control with the front wheels having a lock on/off swivel.
The pram is also easier to fold than most basic single strollers, it also folds almost completely flat (about 4 inches in depth when folded) and should easily fit in the boot of most cars.
The hood is also an extreme positive. It can be folded out so that it just sits over the children's heads, however it can also then be folded out again so that it completely shields most of the child from sunlight etc.
The only downfall to this pram other than cost, is, as with most side by side double buggies, it can be very awkward in shops or doorways as it is very wide.
When I found out I was expecting twins I soon realised I was going to have compromise on some of the products that I was planning on getting, the pushchair being one of them. I had always thought that getting a travel system where you attach the car seat onto the pushchair would be what I wanted but this changed after having my first look at double pushchairs. There was so many things to consider that I'd never thought that despite there being far less choice of double pushchair that we would make a decision.
We first went shopping to look at double pushchairs when I was about 5 months pregnant, I was already struggling to walk due to problems with my pelvis so didn't want to leave it too late. Even though we went to a large city centre and visited several shops none had on display the model that I really wanted to see but we were happy to look at some of the others. The first thing that struck me was how long it took to put them up and down, we took one out to the car to try and when after what seemed like forever it was finally in the boot I felt like crying. If it was going to take that long to get the pushchair in the boot and I'd got to get 2 babies in car seats too was I ever going to leave the house?! Looking back at my hormone fueled panic at that point I'm so glad we found the Baby Jogger City Mini which met everything on my pushchair must have list. This list included
- Suitable for newborn twins (many double pushchairs are only suitable for 1 newborn or from 6 months)
- Fitting in the boot of our car
- Being able to see my babies when pushing the pushchair
- Easy to put up and down
I have the 2010 model and the 2012 model does include a few updates which I will include
This pushchair has 2 seats which can be adjusted individually by a toggle and strap on the back to recline through any angle down to a completely flat position which is suitable for newborns. The seats are vented when reclined although there is a cover for this vented area if you need it. The seats have a decent amount of padding and my babies were always comfortable enough to sleep straight away when I took them out. They did look tiny in it when they were newborns but Baby Jogger now sell compact carrycots which you can attach to the buggy for newborns. I would have gone with this option if it had been available then.
It has a 5 point harness which is padded between the legs and on each shoulder. You can easily change the tightness of this as the babies grow and I've always found them really secure. As baby gets taller where the harness attaches to the back of the seat can be changed so it's always the right height.
Quick fold Technology
The best part of this pushchair for me is how simple it is to fold down. There is a material handle located in each seat and you just pull them both at the same time and it collapses, brilliant! You can then lift it into your car boot and off you go. Another new feature of the 2012 model is a strap to keep it closed whilst folded, this isn't something that I've missed having though. There are poppers either side that hold the handle strap in place whilst babies are in it but these only take seconds to do and undo.
I really love that each seat has it's own individual hood/sun canopy so you can have them in different positions if necessary. They have 3 positions of which 2 have a clear plastic window so you can see that baby is okay. When fully extended baby is covered well and there is no need for a separate sun umbrella.
The buggy has 8" wheels with the front 2 being closer together than the back 2. The front wheels can either be left free moving or can be locked into position, I always have mine free moving as I'm normally needing to turn but it's a good option to have. The wheels have a 'quick release' which I rarely use but may be necessary to fit it into a small car boot.
It is easy to push and negotiate curbs with and I'm always pleasantly surprised at how easy I can manoeuvre it.
This is located on a bar between the back wheels and is bright red so easy to find. You operate it by foot and apart from once needing a spray of WD40 it is still fully functioning after 2 years.
There is a large shopping basket under the pushchair but this is quite difficult to access on the 2010 model, I'm pleased that this has been improved for the 2012 model and hopefully is no longer a problem. There is also netted storage on the back of both seats which is really handy for keeping bits and pieces like hats and drinks.
Baby Jogger offer a choice of material colours and these tend to change with each years new release. Ours is black although I like the look of the purple one! It is durable material and is still looking good. You can remove the cover but I have never attempted this. It is wipe clean only and I just use baby wipes for this.
This pushchair can not be used as a travel system for twins and although on odd occasion it would have been handy to have been I'm still happy I chose it.
I have a rain cover and cosy toes for the buggy although neither are Baby Jogger branded both fit really well.
Dimensions and weight
H104.7 x W76 x D73.6cm and weighing just 11.8kg this pushchair fits into both our medium sized cars. The 76cm width fits through all standard shop and lift doors. We always planned to keep the pushchair in our garage so didn't need to worry about it fitting through our front door which was a relief as I don't think it would fit!
The handlebar height is 107cm which both my husband and I find comfortable despite the difference in our heights. The handlebar has a durable rubber cover and although it says not to hang anything off it I've always carried my changing bag over it with no problem.
Price and Availability
We paid £315 from Boots for ours and it also had triple advantage card points. I think this is excellent value as it has lasted from newborn through to toddler brilliantly. Many twin mummy friends who had expensive travel systems to start with now have Baby Jogger Minis so I'm pleased I saved myself lots by buying it from the start.
Prices do vary so it is worth shopping around and if you are buying for twins to check if they offer a twin discount.
Would I recommend?
Yes, it's worth writing a list of what you need from your double pushchair as we're all different but for me it has been great. I've walked miles with this buggy over the last 2 years and the twins still love it.
Something I remember being said to me when I was pregnant with my twin boys by a fellow twin mummy was "the perfect twin pushchair does not yet exist" and six months into the boy's lives I understood why. We had been using a tandem which I deemed "perfect" initially, however that came with some great disadvantages (see my review for the iCandy Pear Stroller) so I opted for a side by side twin pushchair which I hoped would be easier to manoeuvre and store. The winner in my search was the Baby Jogger City Mini Double.
***Baby Jogger City Mini Double***
The Baby Jogger City Mini Double is a side by side double pushchair. I was immediately attracted to this pushchair because it is more compact and slim-line than many other double side by side pushchairs. It is only 75cm in width which means the pushchair can fit through standard doorframes (including my own front door).
The pushchair comes in 7 different colours, (including red, cream, orange and grey) however as I like to play it safe I opted for a completely black model. There are a number of matching accessories available such as footmuffs, changing bags, a bumper bar, cupholders and a buggy board for an older child to be carried on. You can also purchase a car seat adapter to attach ONE car seat onto the City Mini Double.
The pushchair is a standard side by side pushchair with the seats facing outwards, which is the only position the seats can be positioned in. The seats are fully reliable so the Baby Jogger City Mini is suitable from birth however it only has the option to connect ONE car seat to the pushchair chassis so this is not a complete TWIN travel system.
I purchased the Baby Jogger City Mini Double from a local independent pushchair shop. However Boots, Mothercare, John Lewis and Kiddicare also sell the pushchair. It is worth noting however the range of colours is limited from these retailers to the black or the red and cream model.
I paid £279.99 for my pushchair. Currently Kiddicare are the cheapest retailer online selling the pushchair for £279.99. Prices range up to £349.99 with other retailers.
I bought a number of accessories to go with my pushchair which included 2 Baby Jogger footmuffs (£59 each) and a bumper bar (£30) to fit across the pushchair.
***Using the Pushchair***
One of the advantages of this pushchair it is ridiculously easy to fold and assemble. To assemble the pushchair all you have to do is unfold the pushchair from its folded position and it literally clicks and locks into place and is ready to use.
To fold the pushchair all you have to do is pull a cord in both of the pushchair seats and the pushchair literally folds in half and the wheels tuck in against the frame. I have never had issues with folding or carrying the pushchair when folded although my mum does find it difficult. My mum however is very small (less than 5ft) and has mobility issues, meaning a traditional umbrella folding stroller is easier for her to assemble and fold. The design of the Baby Jogger makes storing it very easy as it folds flat and means it fits into a car boot easily. I can fit it into the back of my Seat Leon lying flat (59 reg model) plus still have enough room for a full week's worth of food shopping to sit on top. The pushchair also fits into the back of my mums Ford Fiesta with the wheels off lying down flat.
The handle of the pushchair can't be adjusted however it is a perfect position for my height (I'm 5ft 5) and my partner who is considerably taller also finds it is a comfortable position. The handle also has a rubber grip covering it which is made from a very durable material and makes gripping onto the handle easy even if your hands become hot.
The Baby Jogger City Mini is very easy to push. This is due to a number of factors. Firstly this is a very lightweight double (11.2kgs) which is surprising as the pushchair looks and feels very sturdy as it is a very good quality product. Secondly the wheels make the pushchair very easy to manoeuvre and steer. It is possible to push on more difficult terrains with one hand and can be steered around corners (with two children inside) with one hand.
The biggest issue I have with the pushchair is the shopping basket. The shopping basket is relatively large as it is the size of the pushchair width and almost length wise and is reasonably deep. However it is very low down on the pushchair, meaning if you put anything remotely heavy inside the shopping basket drags on the ground, affecting how easy the pushchair manoeuvres. By remotely heavy I mean a 2 pint bottle of milk!
The seats do recline fully making the pushchair suitable from birth. The seats can be adjusted independently from each other by a strap on the back of each seat which is very easy and quick. Because the seats inside the pushchair are quite large when I first used this when the boys were six month old (and the size of average 2 month old babies) they did slip around in the seats slightly, especially when sitting up. A number of friends who have used this pushchair for their children from birth commented that their tiny babies look lost in the seats. To give your child a more comfortable snug fit you can purchase "head huggers" which support your child's head and can be attached inside the seat in the Baby Jogger. These can be purchased from Kiddicare and Mothercare and cost around £7.99 per support. These were a massive help and I have only recently taken these out of the seats now the boys are almost 12 months old. The seats also have vents on the back of each seat which can be opened during warmer months to let the air flow to your baby and so they do not over heat, and during the winter kept shut so your child stays warm.
The 5 point harness inside of each seat is also very secure and adjustable into a number of positions onto the seat so it accommodates a newborn baby as well as it would a three year old child. My only issue with the harness and straps is that when the pushchair was new adjusting the strap lengths was difficult because the straps felt quite rigid and stiff. This has corrected itself within a few months of use and the straps area lot more flexible and soft feeling.
The hoods on the pushchair are massive advantage as you do not need parasols to shade your baby from the sun. They can be pulled down fully which shades your baby completely as they cover the entire seat. Although as your child gets older you may need to ensure that their legs are kept covered as the hoods will not cover the legs of toddler (from about 2 years old) when their legs are rested on the foot support. The seat hoods are also independent from each other so you are not restricted to having the hoods over both children if this is not necessary. The hoods also have clear viewing panels inside in two places in each hood; therefore you can see each child easily.
The pushchair also comes with a raincover. This fits over the pushchair entirely and has small clips to attach it at the bottom of the pushchair so the cover fits securely, brilliant if it is windy and raining as even in gale force winds the raincover does not lift off. The raincover is very easy to store when it is not is use and as it is compact fits in the shopping basket under the pushchair leaving room for other items.
The additional accessories I purchased for the Baby Jogger City Mini are also of a very good quality. The footmuffs were relatively expensive (costing £59 each) however match the pushchair perfectly and are very versatile. These are large in length wise meaning these can be used for older toddlers as well as newborn babies. The front of the footmuffs also zips off easily meaning your child can sit on the fleece inner lining and you can zip the front of the footmuffs off when you enter a shop and then zip it back on if you go back outside. The fleece liners on the back and zip off piece of the footmuffs can also be zipped off so you can put these in a washing machine if necessary.
The bumper bar which attaches all of the way across the double pushchair was also a very worthwhile purchase. This clips on and off and the click of a button yet is very sturdy meaning you can attach toys to it for your children to play with. You can also adjust the height of this bumper bar.
***As a pushchair for twins***
Probably the best piece of information I can give about this pushchair is the following. Out of the 10 sets of twins that regularly attend the local twins club we go to (ranging from newborn babies to 3 year olds) 8 of the mothers have a Baby Jogger City Mini. That to me is a brilliant recommendation for this pushchair.
The compact nature of the pushchair means although it is a side by side double, it is very narrow and can get through standard doorframes. Meaning you don't have to worry about going shopping and not actually being able to fit through the shop door. The pushchair is also very easy to push and manoeuvre as it is light and the wheels are very easy to steer, even as your children grow and get heavier. A big advantage for parents is that the seats can be adjusted independently as can the seat hoods allowing you to have one baby awake and the other baby asleep (and pull the hood down).
My only downside to the pushchair is that in between the two seats is a piece of black material separating each seat, which means smaller children and babies can't see their sibling. Once children reach 2 years old I wouldn't imagine this isn't such a problem but currently at a year old my boys get concerned that they can't see or touch each other. Sometimes however this isn't a bad point, especially if your children are antagonising each other!
This is by far my favourite double pushchair. The quality of the pushchair is excellent, not to mention it is easy to manoeuvre, light and compact.
As the pushchair is suitable from birth it's a brilliant solution for parents of twins or two children, especially as you can use this up until your children outgrow a pushchair so is extremely good value for money. A definite winner of a pushchair in my opinion.