Parents, especially first-time parents, want to safeguard their infants and are generally looking for economic solutions for the whole transportation issue. As such, they’re looking for the best infant car seats and strollers.
In the marketplace, these car seat and stroller carriers are called combinations. They’re a combination of an infant car seat, a mounting base for the car, and a stroller. A two-for-one solution, the term combination makes perfect sense. But what are the best infant car seats and strollers? We take a look based on several sources, including Consumer Reports ratings (subscription required), ease of use ratings from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), and others.
Pros of travel system car seat/strollers is that it allows you to move a sleeping baby from the car to the stroller and back without disturbing the child. On the negative side, such systems may be bulky and difficult to handle, especially if your car has limited space.
- Chicco Cortina Travel System – Experts and parents recommend the Chicco Cortina Travel System which comes with the Chicco KeyFit car seat. The Chicco Cortina Travel System is available with Chicco KeyFit 22 car seat that fits infants up to 22 pounds and 30 inches in height, or the Chicco Cortina KeyFit 30 Travel System, which includes the Chicco KeyFit 30 car seat that accommodates babies up to 30 pounds and 30 inches.
- Graco MetroLite Travel System – The lightweight, 17-pound Graco MetroLite stroller is the base for this travel system that comes with either a Graco SnugRide 32 or SnugRide infant car seat. Both car seats are easy for parents to use and all that come with the MetroLite travel system have a front-adjust harness. About.com’s Baby Products features a more complete review of the Graco MetroLite Travel System. And Babble.com says the Graco SnugRide 30 is the best travel system.
- Eddie Bauer Trailmaker Travel System –– The Trailmaker travel system from Eddie Bauer holds children up to 50 pounds, features a multi-position, reclining seat, and the infant car seat holds babies from five to 35 pounds, featuring an ergonomic Carry Curve handle. There’s even an extra base that can be ordered for the infant car seat to make transporting between two family cars easier.
- Britax Chaperone Travel System – Although it’s bigger and heavier (and fairly expensive at around $530) than some other of the best infant car seats and strollers, the Britax Chaperone Travel System comes from a company that has a long reputation for its excellent car seats. This system features a comfortable Chaperone infant car seat and a full-size, 55-pound capacity stroller in one package. The Britax Chaperone car seat accommodates babies from four to 30 pounds and has an anti-rebound bar on the base designed to reduce rotational forces on the car seat and baby occupant in the event of a vehicle crash. See more in a review on About.com’s Baby Products site.
Other best infant car seats and strollers to check out include the Evenflo Aura Elite Travel System (with Evenflo Embrace infant car seat), Graco Quattro Tour Travel System (heavier than the Graco MetroLite Travel System, but with excellent reviews and many features). Quite simply, if you have a favorite car seat maker that you prefer, check that manufacturer out first to see if they offer a car seat/stroller travel system that meets your needs.