A travel system is one of the biggest purchases you’ll make when you’re pregnant and it’s so important to pick the perfect one. I’d like to say we umm-ed and aah-ed for a while before buying ours but it was love at first sight. For me, when it came to the Cosatto Fable travel system, it was all about the aesthetic appeal and had I been expecting my second child, or had spoken more to other parents about theirs, I may have made a different decision. So here’s a little review for anyone who’s about to make the ultimate purchase.
Why did we buy the Cosatto Fable travel system?
First of all, look how pretty! Secondly, we were under the impression that it would be everything our child would need pram/stroller/car seat-wise until s/he was about two years old. And the purchase had to made at the time because the car seat was free for a limited time.
How was it in practice?
The most important thing was that Jenson was comfortable but we had some issues with the practicalities of a wide-set base and three wheels. Sometimes getting on and off buses was difficult if it wasn’t able to lower and on the rare occasion that we had to collapse it we couldn’t get it as flat as we would like.
We also had issues with parasols. Cosatto don’t do them to fit their systems (god knows why!) so we got one of their little clip on sun shades. The coverage was terrible and it flapped about in the wind constantly. A trip to the Mothercare store found me walking out with a ‘universal’ parasol (and an additional adaptor) which still didn’t hold out well in the wind.
I had expected it to last Jenson for a couple of years but I think he’s a bit on the long side. At a year old, his feet were already reaching the bottom and, even though he slouches a lot, I thought we’d have problems with the cosy toes come the winter.
As for the car seat, it was little used as we don’t drive ourselves, but it was nice that it matched. We never attached it to the travel system base (just used it in the car a few times) but it did the job. Jenson never really seemed all that happy going into it (he seemed quite confined and looked a little squished by the time he was nine months old) but fell asleep soon enough.
All in all, the Cosatto Fable travel system did the job, was super-sturdy and safe when Jenson was small and got us from A to B but it definitely wasn’t worth paying out over £500 (well, my aunt paid…) just for something which looked a bit nicer than what you usually find on the market. Although Jenson did love the coloured spots on the interior. It made a change to see something where the creators thought about what the baby would see when s/he is using the pram.
When Jenson was a little over a year old, we decided to switch to a more lightweight stroller and opted for the Mamas and Papas Swirl Confetti Spot Pushchair. At the time it was on offer for £49.99 (now £69.99) and just what we needed – a pushchair with foot muff and raincover. We’ve bought a separate parasol, which was pretty cheap, and is doing the job better than the old one – not perfect but better.
How does the Mamas and Papas pushchair compare?
It took some getting used to as the handles are higher and not adjustable, so there was some surprising shoulder strain for a while. It’s also a lot narrower than the Cosatto, which had me a bit anxious that Jenson wouldn’t be in it very long. It’s meant to suit babies up to three years/15kg and Jenson isn’t exactly a small child but I’m sure it’ll be fine. The edges are soft and with a lot of give.
The raincover is certainly a lot better than the Cosatto, which often fogged and smudged in the rain. Jenson can see clearly out of this one which is great. It’s also the first time he’s been forward-facing, which he loves. It just means we have to keep a close eye out for any dummies/toys/shoes/hats being thrown on the floor!
I’ve realised that I took a couple of things for granted with the Cosatto too. Now that we’re using the Mamas and Papas, I’m finding that I can’t manage as much shopping as it’s not as sturdy and it’s also harder to push along the cycle path (bumpier) and along sand (just doesn’t shift). Those big wheels had their uses!
We’ve also upgraded to a forward-facing car seat, which I don’t have any photos of yet, so I’ll post a mini review of that at a later date.
How did you select your pram/pushchair/car seat? Do you feel like you made an informed decision? Any regrets/recommendations? Do let me know in the comments.