I.believe Buggy (Review)
As Bear gets older, she prefers to walk than be pushed around, restricted in a buggy. So we made the tough decision to get rid of our wonderful Baby Jogger City Mini and buy a cheap stroller for the occasions she’d struggle to walk the whole time. Then, I got a lovely email from Phil at yourbuggyshop.com asking if I’d be interested in reviewing one of the new I.believe buggies his company had just started selling. I said no, the timing wasn’t right, but he managed to persuade me to give one a go and a so we chose the sunshine yellow option.
When it arrived in two boxes, I really wasn’t convinced. There were lots of parts and it looked like it was going to be a headache to put together. However, some of the packages were unexpected extras that are included in the price: cosy-toes, raincover, and even a nappy bag! And putting it together was a breeze, following the simple instructions.
I couldn’t wait to take it for a test run as it looked fantastic, especially with the multi-position, eye-catching, bright yellow hood. I wasn’t disappointed either. It was very, very easy to control and push my heavy two and a half year old in the buggy, even one-handed when I had to hold Bunny’s hand to cross the road, with an adjustable height single handlebar (a godsend for a shortie like me!), four wheels and lightweight aluminium frame (the pushchair weight is just 9.1kg). Lightweight enough to carry up and down stairs with toddler in situ if needed, thankfully!
But the biggest revelation is that Bear actually asks to go in the buggy! Something she’s never really done before, unless very, very tired! She has taken many naps in it, making the most of the fully and semi-reclined positions, but is also very happy with the upright position that allows her to see what’s going on around her. In fact it is more upright than the Baby Jogger and with the included handrail/buggy bar, she really seems to enjoy riding in it. Point to note, the handrail comes undone easily on just one side at a time and swivels out of the way, making it really easy to get wriggly children in and out. However, reclining the seat (which can be forward/rearward facing) takes some practise as you need to push the buttons on either side of the hood at the same time as making the seat adjustment! But it can be done!
The five point harness is very easy to clip into place and undo, although possibly a little too easy for inquisitive little hands – not that she’s done it yet. And I should also mention the wonderful footbrake: a bar travels right across the rear of the buggy, and can be very easily pushed down using just one foot to secure the buggy in place with the rear wheel brakes. It’s far and above the best brake I’ve used.
Finally, folding and unfolding the pushchair is very easy too. Not as easy as the innovative one-handed fold of the Baby Jogger, but very manageable nonetheless. There are two catches either side of the frame, one with a red safety lock which once pushed out of the way, allows you to pull the catches up and then just push the buggy down from the handlebar into its folded position.
To make it less cumbersome once folded, the 12″ rear air tyres and handrail/buggy bar, are very easily removed, to give folded dimensions of 96cm x 59cm x 40cm. To unfold it, simply pull it up from the handlebar and it locks into place in seconds. No fiddling about with multiple bars or locks.
The only grumbles I have with it are that the shopping basket underneath is too shallow, and while a good size and easily accessible (unlike the Baby Jogger), can’t hold very much without concern it might fall out. It would also be useful to have some pockets elsewhere for smaller bits like beakers. Also, most adjustments have to be made using two hands – reclining the seat is far more difficult than need be and folding it up is a little tricky but straightforward.
I have to admit to being absolutely in love with this buggy and look for opportunities to use it all the time. I only wish Bear was smaller so we could use it for longer. It’s great to know that it can be used from birth with the car seat or carrycot options and even as it is, in parent-facing position with full recline is perfect for babies.
We’ve not used the locks for the 7″ rubber front tyres (with 3 suspension settings that adjust according to the child’s size/weight to ensure a smooth ride), and haven’t had to remove the cover to wash it yet either, but both are possible should it be necessary.
At £245 it’s extremely good value for what it is and has certainly given our previous pushchair a good run for it’s money – and I didn’t think that would ever happen! The included extras give it the edge and the option to change the hood for other colours means you can match it to your outfit or mood should you so desire! The sunshine yellow has garnered many admiring looks and comments in the month we’ve had it though, so we’re more than happy. I am really glad we gave this a try as it has been very impressive so far, even with an older child.
If you want to see more, they are for sale exclusively through yourbuggyshop.com.