Guest post by Marcia Nattress
There are lots of things to buy when your baby is young, but your budget may not stretch to everything you need. So it’s good to know how to save money on pushchairs, prams or child car seats.
Working out what to spend your money on
Whether you choose a pram or pushchair is down to you and your lifestyle. If you buy a new one, you’ll probably spend £200 as a minimum and once you add in the cost of a car seat and sling or carrier, you could easily double your spending. But there are ways you can keep the costs down, especially if you’re not worried about getting the latest models.
You will need:
A pram or pushchair: £100- £300 upwards
You’ll need a fairly strong pushchair in the first few months and one that lets your baby lie flat. After that, the choice is wide and varied.
- If you live in the country: you might want a three wheeler that can cope with paths and tracks
- If you live in the city: you might be better off with a lightweight pushchair that’s easy to fold away.
SAVVY TIP: Many manufacturers adapt the specifications or introduce new colours every year. It’s worth finding out when a new model is being launched (usually beginning of the year). Simply buying a pushchair you like in last year’s colours could save you up to £50.
Car Seat – £50 upwards (but many cost £100 or more)
By law, babies must use a car seat. If you buy new, you’ll know the car seat hasn’t already been in an accident and that it will protect your baby properly.
You will need:
- A rear-facing car seat for the first few months
- A forward-facing car seat once your baby weighs at least 9 kg (approx 20 lbs). Some say you should keep your baby in a rear-facing car seat for longer as it gives better protection.
SAVVY TIP: Not all car seats will fit into every car, so you’ll need to do some research beforehand. Try manufacturers’ own sites, such as Britax or Maxi-Cosi, which has a car fitting list. Isofix car seats which are forward facing are very popular because they slot into fixed points on the back seat, so you can secure the seat easily. The bad news is they’re usually more expensive. You can find out more on the website Childcarseats.org.uk. There’s also information about child car seats on the Gov.uk website.
- Car seat adjuster. If you have three or more young children, you may find your car isn’t wide enough to accommodate three child car seats. A system called Multimac, means children aged 0-12 years can travel safely in the back seat without you having to trade up to a people carrier. It’s not cheap, costing over £1,000, but it is probably cheaper than buying a bigger car.
Travel System – £200 – £400
The main appeal of a travel system is that the car seat clicks into the pushchair, so you can move your baby from one to the other without waking them up. There are two different types of travel system:
- A combination of a pushchair and a rear-facing car seat.
- A pushchair, rear-facing car seat and carrycot.
SAVVY TIP: Check that the car seat is compatible with your car, before you buy.
Sling/Carrier – £35 – £75
The chances are you’ll want to do some ‘babywearing’ (carrying your baby while you’re on the move!). Slings and baby carriers are ideal because they let you walk ‘hands free’ while supporting your baby.
SAVVY TIP: Your baby will be gaining weight each week, so you should choose a sling or carrier that’s supportive and comfortable.
SavvyWoman email newsletters: If you found this information useful why not sign up now to receive free fortnightly email newsletters with money saving tips and help? You can sign up at the top of any page on the website and your details won’t be passed to any other company for marketing purposes.
For price comparisons and product reviews on baby items, try a website that sells a wide range of baby products, such as: Kiddicare.com.