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Blog (Product Review): Double Duty (Summer Infant’s 3DTwo Double Convenience Stroller)

Play dates are always fun for kids, but most of the time us moms like to schedule these days so that there’s a great reason to leave the house for a bit and talk to another mom…human being…adult…who isn’t crying over a ‘baba of milky’ or who likes to stand in the doorway, read a book with you, or pull your arm as you go pee. It’s refreshing, rejuvenating and much needed. I feel like I’m writing the tagline to a spa…a spa…sigh…how many more months until Mother’s Day?

Anyways, we’re fortunate to have my sister-in-law and brother live about 10 minutes from us, so MJ gets to see my niece Eliana quite a bit. They are only 4 months apart so it’s awesome to watch them grow up, play and communicate with each other, even if it’s in a language only they understand.

On one of our ‘play dates’ – a journey to the park to get some much needed Vitamin D – and to let the kids play of course – we yes 3decided to make things a bit easier on the both of us, and put the Summer Infant 3DTwo Double Convenience Stroller to the test. Summer Infant sent this double stroller for a review and the weather had been so perfect, it was a great time to do so. The product description on the Summer Infant website said that this was ‘finally a twin stroller that is as compact and lightweight as your convenience stroller (a.k.a an umbrella stroller). You’ll never even know you’re pushing a double!’ I must admit, prior to this review, I had never actually pushed a double stroller, but always gave major props to any momma I’d seen pushing one, because it looked like quite the workout.

Well I was about to find out what I was in for. We tested it with my 16 month old niece and 20 month year old son. Read on for my findings:

PROS

Versatility:

yes 1This stroller holds up to 75lbs in combined weight, but keep in mind that neither seat should exceed 50lbs in weight or 109cm in height. The combined weight provides you some leeway if you have children whom are more than a year apart. For example you can have your three year old (at approx. 30 – 40lbs) in the front and still have 35 – 45lbs to spare for your second child in the rear seat. A five point harness buckle is on both seats and always puts me at ease for safety -it really hinders the child from leaning forward – which I love.

Size/Manoeuvrability:

There really isn’t much width to this stroller, as it’s quite narrow (a plus to it not being a side by side double stroller) and due to its narrowness, the stroller was quite easy to manoeuvre with one hand. I had assumed it would be quite heavy, with double the weight, plus the sturdy chassis, but that wasn’t the case at all. A big plus for grocery shopping for sure!

The wheels also provide some manoeuvrability assistance, as the back wheels have the usual lock option, but the front wheels have a lock option pertaining to swivel.

Transportation:

This double stroller is super easy to fold and unfold…once you find the appropriate latches and locks (read the manual!). Once folded (quite compactly I might add), the shoulder strap makes transportation easier than you’d originally think. Seems odd to say that a double stroller would be both compact and lightweight, but this one truly is.

Recline:

Both seats offer a 2 position recline, which is quite surprising, seeing as though you’d assume that the front seat would recline into the legs of the back baby, but it actually isn’t that bad.

Storage:

Stroller storage space is always a huge factor for me, because I tend to over pack when we go places and this strollers has a nice large bottom compartment (which is still accessible once the back seat is reclined), as well as an additional mesh storage compartment on the side. The more the merrier!

Accessories:

Pretty basic accessories on this stroller, as it’s a ‘convenience’ stroller, so the single cup holder just snaps into place, there’s also a padded bumper bar for the front seat (also a Con, see below), and nice tall handles with a decent grip. Handle adjustability would definitely be a plus, but in my case I didn’t need it.

Canopies:

Canopy coverage is great on both seats, however there was a bit of a Con with these canopies, as you’ll see in the list below.

open canopy

Price:

The Summer Infant 3DTwo Double Convenience Stroller retails for $249.99, which is definitely a nice low price point when compared to other double strollers.

CONS

Assembly:

I found two things quite tricky with the assembly of this double stroller:

(1): The canopy’s have to be attached, which seems pretty straight forward, however the latches that they attach to aren’t easy to find and bending the canopy to attach the latch, is a bit of a pain.

(2): Attaching the 2 sets of wheels had me a bit confused. They’re individually packed and aren’t labelled front and back. The pictures in the instruction manual aren’t descriptive enough, so it was a guessing game in terms of which wheels (they both have locking mechanisms, which didn’t help) went where. Additionally, they were all supposed to be easy to attach – just a push and a click – but two of them proved to be frustrating to click in.

Visibility/Canopies:

For the child in the back seat, visibility isn’t the greatest, as their seat is only slightly raised. Their line of sight also significantly decreases once the canopy on the front seat is in use. This visibility deficiency can also turn into a ‘seating inequality issue’ as the children get older and realize that one of the them will be sitting behind the other, and thus finds this less desirable. Better start devising a ‘who sat where when’ chart now!

I also found that my niece was leaning forward and taping/patting MJ on the head quite a bit. He didn’t mind, but as an FYI, this could turn into a ‘don’t hit him/don’t bother him/stop it’ conversation between you and your children.

yes 2

Cup Holder:

This is definitely not a necessity, but I like to have the option of a cup holder within baby’s reach. With just the bumper bar for the front seat and nothing for the back seat, I think a mini tray or cup holder is a miss on this stroller.

Footrest:

The front seat has what I call a ‘calf rest’ – which can either be positioned horizontally flat, or can be angled straight down. If you use the horizontal position (as I did with MJ in the picture), you’ll notice that his feet just dangle which I definitely don’t like. So my suggestion is to angle their feet down so that they can reach the rubber footrest provided. It’ll all depend on their height more than their age.

Final Verdict

As Summer Infant had stated on their website, this stroller is indeed remarkably lightweight and compact for a double stroller.

I do however feel it is important that when you’re shopping for a double stroller, you have to keep the below factors in mind:

– Total weight of the stroller.

– Can it collapse easily?

– Ease of manoeuvrability (is it too wide for shopping/going through door frames? Can you easily turn it around corners?)

– Will the weight/height/configuration of the stroller work for your current situation?

With the above in mind, I think that the only deterrent for me at this point is that the current stage of motherhood that I’m in, doesn’t lend itself to this type of double stroller. With MJ almost turning 2, if I were to have another baby within the next year, I would be looking for the type of stroller that could be versatile enough to not only click in a bucket car seat for a newborn and have a seat or platform for MJ to sit or stand, but potentially also come with another stroller seat, to use once baby #2 is out of the bucket.

This stroller however, is a great cost efficient stroller for those who have twins, have two children quite close in age or whom are going on vacation with or live close to friends or family members with children around the same age as theirs.

So just make sure you answer some of the above questions prior to purchasing a double stroller, as it’ll really help narrow your search results. In the meantime, I’m going to go enjoy my little guy…and maybe get started on number #2 so that this stroller gets put to good use. My husband is thanking Summer Infant already!

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