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Like lots of expectant parents, me and my partner spent hours deliberating between the overwhelming selection of pushchairs. In fact it's the one thing we couldn't agree on and was left almost too late, we only bought ours with days to spare!
We were lucky enough to have the huge Kiddicare base within minutes from our home. Kiddicare is one of the most comprehensive online baby retailors and their flagship and only store in Peterborough is like a baby Ikea! It has an entire floor dedicated to prams and pushchairs so we spent hours in here testing the prams and trying to decide which catered for our needs the best.
As first time parents we had that 'glow' and went a little mad buying things for our bundle of joy. I think thats the way when it's your first! We didn't have a price range in mind for our pram but we did have our own specification. We wanted to get a package deal that included our babies first car seat, we needed something that had storage space and we also needed something that would work for a baby and suit a toddler too as I didn't think I wanted to buy a new pushchair after a year or so. So although we weren't restricted by price we did rule out many prams due to these things.
I had a pre-set idea in my head from the beginning, I had falled in love with a Maxi Cosi pram, and I had also fallen deeply in love with the I-Candy range of prams. In my mind we were having one of those but somehow by the time you added everything up with the I-Candy you were looking at well over £1000 for everything you needed as nothing came with the frame and had to be purchased seperately. Although we didn't have a budget after months I still couldn't bring myself to justify that money for a pram, no matter how beautiful! So after months the I-Candy was out.
Slowly I began to go off the Maxi Cosi too and I began to get a bit worried I wasn't going to fnd one. The Quinny display at Kiddicare was huge but I hated three wheelers! By my seventh month I thought I should at least test one and so I did and instantly I clicked with it and realised it would be ideal!
We finally settled on the Quinny Buzz 3 by the time I was 8 months pregnant. We bought our pram for £700 but we got a great package for that. We got the Quinny Buzz 3 frame and seat, a Maxi Cosi Pebble car seat, a Quinny Dreami Carrycot, Raincover and Footmuff. The only thing we did have to purchase seperately was the shopping basket to attach underneath which cost £18. Considering the car seat retailed for £130, the Dreami Carrycot for £150 etc we had saved over £150 by the time we bought the package rather than individual bits and pieces. We also didn't need to wait long for delivery which was great.
My son is now one and we still use this pram and after a year of using it I feel ready to review it. The Quinny Buzz 3 was the best possible choice for us and has been a very useful and ideal pram in many ways. Firstly the ease of putting it up and down. I've not come across any pram or pushchair that is as easy as this to get up and down. When collapsed in order to put the frame up all you do is pull a flip back and it literally springs up. You don't need to pull or push anything. You then clip the seat/carseat/carrycot on top and it's up and ready to go. To put it down you remove the seating with on push button either side and to collapse the frame there is a switch which you pull down while holding an opposite button and pull towards you. Not as easy as putting up but still very straightforward and not fiddly or time consuming.
It's ability to suit all ages was great too especially with the package that we bought. You get free adapters which mean it can securely hold in place which ever seating element you choose. In his early days my son like most babies would sleep in his car seat so the adapters meant I could just lift the seat from the car to the fram of the Quinny Buzz with minimal effort and they would click and attach in place safely-and I never needed to wake up my sleeping prince! It was the same with the carrycot, it would click in place eitherside and attach to the frame with the easy in/out adapters. This meant my son could sleep flat on his back if we went for walks or were out for longer than a few hours. Now he only uses the main seat that came with the frame but it still perfect because it can be tilted to three different angles and for the first few months I could have my son facing me as we walked and now he's older he can face outwards too and watch people etc as we walk around so it's multi direction was perfect for a growing child.
The handle itself is one handle that lines the top rather than one for each hand. There is a button located centrally which means you can pull up or push down the height of the handle for comfort. This is great because my partner is taller than me and when we take our con out we can alter this to suit whoever is pushing with absolutely no effort at all.
We managed to get a speacial edition Quinny Buzz 3. Ours had a very rare all black frame as most Quinny's come with standrad silver frames. Ours is gorgeous and we choose the material in black too so it's all black. I was concerned with how it would conduct the warmth from the sun in the summer months but we actually had absolutely no problems with this. The frame never got hot so I never worried it would burn my son and the material of the seating was breathable and although my son would sweat in the heat sometimes like all children, I never worried he would overheat due to being in the pram itself. Having all black material on the seat is great too because when my son eats or drinks in there and has spillages I don't worry that it looks tatty as the colour masks this quite well until we get home and the covering is wipe clean and really easy to clean up.
In the winter we did use the foot muff which came with the pram. It looked so cosy with him in it, it was fluffy lined and the outside was thick and looked like it would withstand a lot of rain and wind. When he was in it he looked really warm however he did overheat quickly in this, even in winter and he would get so hot and sweaty and it wasn't easy to attach to the pram and hold in place so we didn't get a great deal of use from this in the end.
Using the Quinny is like a dream! It feels light when you push it around and it's three wheels make it so easy to manouvre around that I never feel unable to turn corners etc or get where I need to be with minimum effort. You can lock the top wheel in place so it doesn't rotate 360 degrees and will only go backward or forwards in straight lines but I haven't figured out why anyone would prefer that to be able to turn and go in any direction!? But it's still a possibility! It's large wheels can also be easily pumped up and we always go to the garage and do ours and you notice it suddenly flies around again! It's so lightweight to actually push you sometimes don't realise how fast your walking!
The shopping basket we bought seperately is my main bug bear with this pram. It's tiny and is the only way to hold anything underneath while your out and about. Not having handles makes it very difficult to carry shopping as you can't hang them off anything and the basket is so tiny and very shallow so you literally can get one of two bags of shopping in there and thats it. It's not very wide and it's lack of depth is so frustrating. I find it problematic when I need to pop to the supermarket etc because I don't always need a full trolley's worth of grocery's but I can't very easily push the pram and hold a basket, but neither is the shopping basket underneath large enough to hold a good quantaty of items while we roam the isles. So in that sense it's probably very poor as I know most of my friends have huge shopping baskets which are already built in too.
The frame itself although easy to put up and down is far heavier than I expected. I'm only a tiny lady and it's not too heavy but it does need a good heave-ho to get in and out of the boot. It's a thick metal frame with huge wheels and this really weighs a lot and you do need to strain to hoist it in and out. It's not too heavy it's impossible but it's far from comfortable. However I accept this because I feel it's a very well made, sturdy and safe pram for my son. I feel he's protected in this and I don't worry about it's quality and should an accident occur I feel he's safe in this so I guess it's acceptable to me for that.
It's size is another slight issue. It's very large frame collapses flat and being a three wheeler with large wheels outside the frame rather than under it, it will take up your whole boot and wont even fit in smaller cars at all. This is a pain because my partner has a 3 door car and it wont fit in his boot so we always have to take my car as it's 5 door.
However it's weight is probably the reason I am turning more to a stroller now. I didn't ever intend to purchase another pushchair as the reason I bought this was beacause it was designed to be used until my son outgrew the need for any type of chair support. It's weight annoys me now after a year and I get frustrated with it's lack of shopping space and I feel now he's older by mid next year I may look at a cheap and cheerful pushchair that's lighter and smaller for the car.
Overall a would give this pram 4 stars out of 5. It's been a fantastic pram for the past year. It's easy of putting up and down and ease to manouvre makes it feel like the easiest pram to wheel around. I felt we got a great deal too with everything we got for one price. It's safe and reliable and we've never had a major problem with it so it's worthy of four stars. The downsides are lack of shopping storage and it's large, heavy frame. But I've yet to hear any mother say they have the perfect pram!
If you are a potential parent-then I would recommend you give a Quinny a go-you won't look back easpecially for that first year-there is very little on the market that will beat it!