Product Type: Phil & Teds prams, pushchairs and strollers
Newest Review: ... awkward and it just didn't feel right. Weight and Dimension: Dimensions of the Phil & Teds Vibe: Weight 10kgs Width 64cm folded 5 p... more
A versatile but expensive double stroller
Phil & Teds Vibe
Member Name: carlz2001uk
Phil & Teds Vibe
Advantages: Versatile, good quality, easy to fold and transport
Disadvantages: Expensive, have to buy extras
There is only 2 years difference between my two daughters so when my second daughter came along I knew I would need some kind of double pushchair. After a visit to Mothercare it was obvious that the only option was the Phil & Ted. They aren't cheap, and this particular model (The Vibe) will set you back £430 at the cheapest online retailer. I think we paid a hefty £475 but it has been worth its weight in gold. Transporting 2 children, especially when they are just 2 and a newborn is a difficult challenge for any busy mum (or dad) and so getting the right pushchair no matter the price, is extremely important. You simply cannot put a price on a pushchair which is comfortable to use and easy to fold away when you have two screaming children on your hands!
What will I get for my money?
Well for the £430 not actually that much. You will get the basic buggy but this is a single buggy and you will need the doubles pack to make it into a double buggy. This will set you back around £50. This is obviously essential if you are wanting to transport two children, but depending on how you want to actually transport them, this is where the 'extras' come in. The cocoon is like a flat carry bag with handles that transports a newborn in. This slides in and out of the doubles kit which is attached to the back of the pushchair (rather securely so no need to worry about safety issues). The cocoon can be used for babies up to around 3 to 4 months old, so you aren't going to get masses of use out of it, but it is so handy. When my daughter fell asleep while feeding, etc, I would put her in the cocoon during the day. This meant that if we needed to go out, she was effectively already in her part of the buggy and all that I had to do would be to put the cocoon in the pushchair and clip it in. This obviously didn't apply if we were going in the car first, but the cocoon is really handy for round the house too. The one thing I will say about the cocoon though is how unbelievably warm it gets inside. For everyday kind of use, in the park, round and about etc, it's fine. But we found if we went in shops and she already had a coat on, plus the padding from the cocoon meant she used to get very warm very quickly. You can fold the cover back on the cocoon but it is worth weighing this up with the pros and cons. You can also expect to see pushchair liners (effectively padded cushions for added comfort) in the accessories section when thinking of buying this. One other extra I would say you have to buy is the bag which attaches to the base of the pushchair. This is essential as storage on the system is poor and this sealed bag allows for a stash of emergency bottles, nappies, etc. This is priced at about £30. There are also a raincover and a sun mesh which zip into the hood - these are also extras.
How can I use it?
This is where the value of the system really shows. It can be used singularly to transport one child, add the doubles pack and you can transport a newborn and a toddler, or change the fit of the doubles kit and it transports two toddlers. Also, I think this is one of the only systems where you can transport the baby lying down and the toddler in the upright position. The three wheels on the buggy means it is perfect for off roading. Sounds a bit much for a pushchair transporting a newborn baby, but on walks in forests, etc, the bumpy paths really don't matter with the Phil & Ted. The tyres are effectively made from bike tyres and so it is even fairly easy to push on sand! I didn't ever have a problem with a flat tyre but you do get a pump just in case.
Folding? Easy or throw a tantrum in public difficult?
Surprisingly easy. It does take a short time to get used to, but this is the case with every single pushchair I have ever used. I can remember borrowing my mums pushchair once which she told me was 'super easy' to put away, and after bursting into tears in mothercare car park because I couldn't do it, I actually drove home (rather awkwardly) with it still assembles ready for a child to sit in!!! Safe to say that there are no such problems with this model, but like I say it will take you a couple of times to get 'the nack of it'. We actually took it on holiday with us, and getting on and off the plane was a breeze. If you do take it abroad with you, you'll be pleased to know it comes with a handy travel bag which zips around the buggy to keep it free from scratches and dirt. The aluminium frame makes it light to use (surprisingly light for a double), and the ergonomic spongy handle makes it comfortable to push.
Any other thoughts?
When I used this system you didn't see Phil & Ted buggys as often as you do now, so I did get the occasional strange look when people saw I had a newborn lying down in the back, but they are much more popular now so this probably won't apply.
Most of the buggy comes away so it can be put in the washing machine and washes really easily. The parts that can't easily wash down.
It is worth mentioning that my friend who is quite tall (nearly 6 foot) has this system and she found it quite difficult to use as it didn't adjust effectively for tall people. It does adjust for height, but she found this part quite awkward and it just didn't feel right.
Weight and Dimension:
Dimensions of the Phil & Teds Vibe:
Width 64cm folded
5 point safety harnesses.
Front bumper bar is removable.
Available in a choice of colours, it's perfect for girls and boys or a more unisex colour if you have one of each.
Summary: 4 stars
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