So you’ve chosen your pram – well done! One of the biggest and most important decisions ticked off the list!
Next comes the car seat. Arguably a much simpler decision than the pram, a car seat’s absolute top priority to keep its precious occupant as safe as possible. Of course, it also has to be comfortable for baby – both awake and asleep, and there’s always a budget... right?
But that’s not where it stops. Once you learn about Infant Capsules which are ‘travel system compatible,’ a whole new world of travelling with baby beckons.
Wait, what is a baby travel system and why should I consider one?!
For the uninitiated, a travel system capsule is a newborn car seat that doubles as carrier, i.e. you can lift it in and out of your car (with baby still in it), and then carry baby in it and attach it to your pram or stroller.
The biggest advantage of a capsule is that you don’t need to disturb baby when moving them from car to pram and vice versa. Most parents who have used a capsule will tell you it’s a lifesaver, especially for those most testing first few months.
If you want more on this and to understand if a capsule might be right for you, read ‘Do I really need a Capsule?’
How to know which capsules work with which prams
One of the most common questions about the Cybex Cloud Q is, ‘Which prams are compatible with it?’ The short answer is check with your pram/stroller brand, or the retailer you’re purchasing it from.
As the responsibility of capsule compatibility ultimately rests with the pram or stroller manufacturer, they will usually state which capsules are compatible with their prams. And sales staff in retail stores should be adequately trained on this information.
Until then though, here’s some insights into why and what factors impact a capsule's compatibility with a pram or stroller.
First off, the pram/ stroller must be travel-system compatible – this feature will usually be stated quite clearly in the features. Most prams have Capsule adapters available as a separate accessory, or some prams come with them included.
When considering a pram/stroller + capsule travel-system, there are two main factors which affect compatibility:
- Security of fitting: will the capsule connect safely and securely onto my pram’s adapters?
- Stability: will my pram be stable with the capsule attached?
Some of the most common capsules use the same connection system to attach to prams. For example, the Cybex, Maxi Cosi, Nuna (including Bugaboo Turtle) and Joie brands all use the same connection system on their capsules.
However, be warned that this does not necessarily mean that if an adapter is compatible with one then it is compatible with the other brands.
Whilst a capsule may attach to the pram adapters just fine, it’s important to consider the stability of the pram or stroller with the capsule attached. Prams, strollers & capsules can vary in weight & size, and this along with many other factors can have a huge impact on the stability of the pram & capsule combo.
This means that in order for a pram manufacturer to offer a guaranteed compatibility with a capsule, they would most likely have conducted some form of testing with each of those capsules which covers fitting & stability.
In the pram/stroller’s list of features (or on the capsule adapter accessory), look out for a list of capsules which it is certified as being compatible with.
In most cases, the pram and capsule will be from two different brands and manufacturers. While this is not an issue in itself, it’s important to consider that the ‘compatibility’ is through two different brands/manufacturers, each with different design & engineering teams, and of course different production facilities. Furthermore, even the slightest changes in production of either brand can cause compromise or friction in the compatibility.
What if the capsule and pram or stroller are from the same brand?
When you have single brand that offers both a great capsule and a great range of prams and strollers, you can breathe a sigh of relief and bypass most of the concerns that you might have with a pram and capsule from different brands.
Knowing that the same brand designs and manufactures both the pram and capsule – and knowing they are built for each other, offers the unique advantage of complete trust in your pram and capsule travel system combo.
Unfortunately, such brands are few and far between in the Australian market.
However, Cybex, a popular and innovative German brand, more than fits the bill. Not only do they offer Australia's best-in-class capsule - the Cloud Q, but they also offer one of the broadest range of prams and strollers in Australia. From the luxurious and fashionable Priam, to the super adaptable Gazelle S, to the compact Mios, right down to the ultra-compact travel strollers from sister-brand GB, the chances of there being a pram and/or stroller that suits your needs are more than likely.