I have been asked by fellow Graco tester, GhostWriterMummy to link up
to her Graco Symbio B review blog post….So here is my version:
Sam is 9 months old, and in that time we have had 4 pushchairs!
The most recent one being the Graco Symbio B, which we’ve been testing
for several weeks now, and I have to say: it has been brilliant.
To begin with, there were a few niggles, but the only one which is still an issue for me is the size of the basket.
The 5 things I would put on my, “What do you look for in a new pram?”
checklist are quite similar to GhostWriterMummy’s – the only difference
really is that I have put “Ease of use” and “Practicality” together, to
make way for “Safety.”
I have called my number 5 “Brand” rather than “Customer Service” purely
because I have always found the customer service is linked to wherever
you make the purchase from, not the actual manufacturer. So for that
reason, I called it “Brand.”
My list is also sorted into the order which is most important to me.
The 5 things I look for when shopping for a new pushchair are:
1). Safety –
After having the brakes fail on our first pushchair, this is always the
first thing I check now. I like to test them on upwards slopes, downward
slopes and on flat, slippy surfaces too. (This usually causes a few
raised eyebrows in shops, but hey – I’d sooner spend 5 minutes looking
like a crazy lady than have my brakes get stuck in the ON position &
have to carry an 11kg pram, a 9kg baby & 3 bags of shopping across a
dual carriageway at rush hour…!!) I also check the straps have a 5
point connection so baby can’t wriggle free, I make sure the reclines
are strong & not likely to fall back if my son flings himself
backwards in his seat (which he does often)!
The Symbio B feels very sturdy, the 3 recline positions all lock in
place firmly and the straps are strong too. The 5 point harness is also
great, and the extended hood protects your little one from those harmful
UV rays. The brakes are brilliant on all terrains I’ve used it on
(hills, gravel, shiny surfaces, dirt paths).
– my 2nd pushchair looked beautiful, but its small wheels got stuck in
every crack in the pavement & while the single handles were great
for putting extra carrier bags over, they hurt my wrists – a lot. I am
also taller than most, so I need to make sure the pram is comfortable
for me to push. The weight limit of the pushchair is also something I
check too – My son is already over 11kg at just 9 months old, so he will
be too heavy for a lot of pushchairs soon. Also make sure you check the
pushchair is going to fit in your boot, and that you can lift it! One
of my friends spent £700 on a pushchair, only to find it didn’t fit in
her boot, so she could never take it out! Make sure the basket meets
your needs too.
The Graco Symbio B is not height adjustable, but it is a good height
for me. If you are much taller than 5 foot 9 or shorter than 5 foot 2
ish, it’s probably worth test driving one with a baby in it before you
purchase though, to make sure it is going to be comfortable to push. The
Symbio B has a weight limit of 15kg, so it is fine for the majority of
babies and toddlers – unless you have a huge baby. I am lucky enough to
have a large car, so fitting the Symbio B into my boot is not a problem.
It separates into 2 sections, so is lighter to lift than most standard
pushchairs. I’d check your boot measurements if you have a small car,
though. It is very easy to use the Symbio B, it’s a dream to push and
the flip handle is a genius idea, too. The basket is a little on the
small side, but you can purchase a clip on bag to provide extra (safe)
3). Price –
Yup, I’m a sucker for a deal BUT at the same time, I believe you get
what you pay for. I like to use price comparison sites to ensure I get
the best deal possible on large purchases, and I did this with my
The Graco Symbio B has an RRP of £475, but it is currently available
for £340 if you shop around. It was reduced to £275 recently, too.
4). Looks – I’d
love to pretend I’m not a vain person, but I’m too honest to lie to
you! I have certain things I look for in a pushchair & wouldn’t use
something if it didn’t fit my criteria! I won’t use something with
plastic wheels – you know the rickety stroller ones? I hate them with a
passion. I also won’t use something which looks like it’s from the year
3ooo. I like a traditional style, but with modern safety, a strong
chassis and great quality fabrics on the seat unit too. Plastic or nylon
seats make me want to cringe – those poor babies must have very sweaty
I think the Graco Symbio B looks great, but I know it’s not
everyone’s cup of tea. I think it looks more expensive than it is, and
it has a great modern design while managing to remain looking like a
5). Brand – I
like to stick to well known brands who are easy to contact should any
issues arise. I like to do my homework before I make any large purchase,
and well known brands tend to have great websites, lots of videos, good
customer service and lots of online reviews to help me decide which
purchases to make. It is worth remembering that wherever you purchase
your pushchair from will be your first port of call if it develops a
fault – so keep your proof of purchase, and shop from a reputable
company with a good reputation.
Graco is a hugely popular brand in the UK. I doubt there are many
parents who haven’t owned at least one Graco product by the time their
baby turns 1. They can be contacted easily via Facebook, Twitter and via their website
for any support you need. They are very active online, and respond
quickly to any queries they receive via social media channels.
You can find my fellow reviewers’ versions of this post via GhostWriterMummy’s blog, HERE:
A final point from me: No two mummies (or babies) are the same, so what is essential for me might be irrelevant for you.
I’d recommend making a “Wish list” of things you hope to get from your
pushchair before you choose one. Then find the one which meets the
majority of your needs.