Friday, December 2, 2011

Gear: Uppababy Vista

The grocery cart/nap wagon
What is it?
Uppababy Vista Stroller
Why is it good?
The Vista comes with all the extras: bassinet, bassinet 'boot', bug screens, rain cover, huge basket. There's no need to buy many accessories unless you want to convert it to a double stroller (rumble seat & 'skateboard' attachments are available). The two I did buy were the cup holder, which easily pops on & off either side of the handle & flips up for tight spaces, & the snack tray. The tray is really easy to clean--its frame pops on & off easily & the tray comes out of the frame & can go in the dishwasher.
Though it's not a small stroller, the Uppababy excels on transit. In its rear facing configuration it's easy to get the stroller into position with baby facing away from the direction of travel, as is safest, & lock the wheels. Sitting behind the stroller, the handle is easily to grab in case of sudden stops.
When you configure the stroller to be forward-facing, it's balanced perfectly & handles really smoothly. The rear-facing position changes the centre of balance, but it's still a smooth ride. I can easily flip it from forward to backward with 24-pound Sprout in the seat.
The recline is super easy on the toddler seat: a one-handed flip of the lever at the top of the seat & you can set it to any one of four angles from flat for naps to nearly vertical for alert toddlers.
Works as a high chair too!
Call me silly, but I loved being able to choose from six different colours. I find most baby stuff to be the most hideous colours (boring beige? neutral grey? baby blue? light pink? barf!) so I was happy that I could choose between a range of bright colours. The fabric is somewhat reflective too, so this stroller is a little bit more visible when headlights shine on it.
I attribute Sprout's vampire-like pallor not to sunblock, because we rarely used it, but to the great coverage he got from the canopy & SPF-50 extension on it. The bassinet has the same silver extension so you can keep baby out of the sun from birth onward.
The large wheels of the stroller are rubber, so it's a pretty smooth ride, but they're foam-filled, so you'll never get a flat. Speaking of large, the basket on this thing is massive. We often get a week's worth of groceries in there, easily.

Where can I get it?
Westcoast Kids, TJ's Kids, Jack & Lola, & many other independent retailers.
How much does it cost?
$700+. This seems like a lot, but trust me, it's worth the investment if you walk a lot. Also, these strollers are in high demand on Craigslist & tend to go for 50-75% of their purchase price used. If yours is in good shape when you're done with it, you can get back some of your money!

*I didn't get any freebies from Uppababy to write this review. Just bought the stroller after doing some research & have loved it for over 15 months now.

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