Double strollers are a big investment, and deciding between a side-by-side and tandem double stroller is a tough decision. There are many things to think about when deciding whether a tandem or side-by-side double stroller is right for you. In completing our analysis of tandem and side-by-side double strollers, we’ve looked at the following important factors: maneuverability, weight, “kid-friendliness,” and price. Here’s what we came up with in determining whether a tandem or side-by-side double stroller is the best for you.
Maneuverability: We have to admit, we were afraid that both the tandem and side-by-side double strollers would be too tough and bulky to use on a regular basis. We were pleasantly surprised to see that both the tandem and side-by-side double strollers move quite well, even over uneven sidewalks. We weren’t sure if the side-by-side stroller would easily fit through doors, but found that the Graco DuoRider side-by-side stroller was sufficiently designed to allow for moving through any doorway. We found that the side-by-side and tandem strollers were even as far as maneuverability goes.
Weight: Whether you have twins or two youngsters who are close in age (as we did in this test), the stroller weight is very important in determining which double stroller is right for you. The lighter the double stroller, the easier it will be for you to push it (and two kids) up hills when you go for walks around the neighborhood. The stroller weight will vary by manufacturer, but we found that side-by-side strollers were typically lighter in weight than tandem strollers. For example, the Graco DuoGlider tandem double stroller weighed about 31 lbs, while the Graco DuoRider side-by-side stroller weight about 23 lbs. In this case, the side-by-side stroller won.
“Kid-friendliness”: This is a big one! We feared that the kids would fight with each other in the side-by-side double stroller, but found the opposite to be true. The kids enjoyed being next to each other instead of fighting over who could ride in the front with the tandem double stroller. The tandem stroller does allow parents to put babies who in their car seat straight into the stroller (the Graco DuoRider actually has room for two Graco car seats). The Graco DuoRider side-by-side stroller does not accommodate car seats, but does incline to allow babies to sleep while strolling. We thought that putting the car seat directly into the stroller would be more important to us than it actually was and had no problems using the Graco DuoRider with our young one. In our final analysis, the side-by-side double stroller won for “kid-friendliness.”
Price: Again, price is going to depend upon the manufacturer. We looked only at the popular Graco models and found that the Graco DuoRider side-by-side stroller ($129) was much less expensive than the Graco DuoGlider tandem stroller ($159). We bought our strollers at Burlington Coat Factory and with discounts were able to get the side-by-side stroller for about $100, which is a great deal
Our testing found that the side-by-side stroller was much lighter and cheaper than the tandem stroller, and the kids liked it better too. Therefore, we deem the side-by-side stroller to be the winner of the best double stroller challenge!