Saturday, 1 June 2013

Kenson Fragment Quinny Zapp Xtra Review

One of the biggest decisions facing expectant parents is which pram to buy, it is also the biggest and most expensive purchase you will make. It doesn't matter if you are on your first or fifth baby, as needs change over time and the pram that was suitable for your last baby, may not be suitable for your next baby, or you might want one that will be suitable for any other children you might have i.e double or triple, tandem or side-by-side.

The best thing to do is to work out a realistic budget and work out exactly what kind of pram you will need. There are hundreds of different prams across dozens of different brands and they can cost anything up to £1,000, which is the price of a small second hand car. Prams to suit different budgets, different needs and different ages.

The most important thing when you buy your pram for your newborn is that it is suitable for a newborn. Some are suitable for older children who can sit unaided, but some can be adapted to use from newborn. You can even get some that attach to car seats to make it easier to get out and about with your little one, but please be aware that guidelines state that a newborn shouldn't be in a car seat for more than 2 hours at a time as the slightly upright position can affect the babies oxygen levels. 

You also need to think about how you get around, do you use a car or public transport, do you do lots of off-road walking or mostly in towns or city centres, as these can also have a big impact on the kind of pram you need. 

One important thing I have discovered, is to TRY the pram out before you buy. With my 3yr old I researched online and thought I found the perfect pram for her. It was a complete travel system but also a pramette which meant that the bottom of the stroller folded out to create a flat pram for when she was small and it folded small. Sadly I could only find online pictures and videos and I wasn't able to try it out before I bought it. Once we had the pramette I quickly discovered it had one major design fault, the 5 point harness to strap the child in was very complicated and time consuming as you had to attach each strap, including the shoulder harness, individually whilst pushing them through the padded waist strap. Needless to say once she outgrew the pram part I quickly sold it and bought a cheaper stroller. 

Another thing I have found in the past is that once my baby has outgrown the newborn stage, and no longer needs such a bulky pram, I've gotten strollers to make it easier to get out and about, as they are smaller and lighter to use. This of course means more money to spend and a pram that sits idle in the house. 

Now that I'm pregnant with my 5th, my needs have changed. With my youngest being 3 I don't need a double buggy as she walks everywhere as it is, but owning a people carrier to fit the whole family in means I lose boot space to gain extra seats. Therefore space is a priority and I don't want a pram which takes up too much room, but is suitable for a newborn. 

I was lucky enough to be given a Quinny Zapp Xtra to review in an exclusive design named the Kenson after the Belgian designer. There are two exclusive designs, the Kenson Fragments and the Kenson Signature and it was the Fragments I was given to review

Using images from busy cities he came up with two unique and limited edition designs, the Kenson fragments and the Kenson Signature,  especially for the Quinny Zapp Xtra and Yezz. See how he came about the design in this video. 

But those two designs are not the only choice as the Quinny Zapp Xtra is also available in 7 different colours and apart from the limited edition Kenson designs, the others can all be matched with a Maxi-Cosi Pebble's car seat in the same colour for a true colour coordinated travel system. 

The Quinny on it's own is only suitable for a 6mth old, but if you add a Maxi Cosi Pebble or CabrioFix car seat or a newborn inlay, then the Quinny is suitable for a newborn. 

I really like this pram, I like that it will grow with the child, as my 3yr old sat in it comfortably and even slept in it, but is also suitable for a newborn making it a long lasting pram. It's lightweight and it isn't bulky, meaning you have no reason to buy a smaller stroller as the child gets bigger.

I love how small the frame folds down, you unclip the seat and the frame itself becomes so small I can fit in in the foot well of my car by my 3yr old's feet and I don't have to worry about losing boot space, which as I have a people carrier is at a premium as you lose boot space to gain extra seats. Used with the car seat as a travel system it takes up even less room. 

The pram is lightweight to manoeuvre and even my 6 year old could push it with ease. It's also light to carry when folded and if you live in a block of flats, like I do, and you need to carry your pram upstairs, the folded seat unit can be carried one-handed, especially if using the car seat to hold the baby. 

With three wheels it makes for an all-rounder especially if you adjust the swivel wheels to fixed. You can then push it easily through sand or along a dirt path, much better than a tradition four-wheeled pram, making it ideal for a day at the beach or country walks which aren't tarmacked. Yet with the shopping basket which sits on the frame below the seat or car seat, it makes it an ideal pram for shopping around town, although one thing to be aware of, especially with lightweight buggies like the Quinny, overloading the handles with shopping and the buggy will tip! In fact there is a warning saying that the handles are not designed for shopping! 

Another feature I liked on the Quinny Zapp Xtra was the extra long hood, giving protection from the sun and keeping your baby in the shade, but if you wanted just a regular size hood you can tuck the extra back in on itself inside the hood. The Quinny also includes clips to attach a parasol if needed. 

The Quinny can also be used either forward facing or facing outwards and has 3 forward and 2 rearward recline positions. The seat is easy to recline with a switch by the hood and also easy to flip if you decide to let your baby see out or vice versa. The little footrest also adjusts which is handy for smaller children or if you have a sleeping babe.

Included with the Quinny Zapp when you buy it is a raincover, shopping, sun canopy, basket, parasol adapter and car seat adapters. There are also several other accessories you can buy, such as the parasol, birth inlay, bumper bar, cup holder, footmuff and changing bag. 

The Quinny Zapp seat cover is also water and dirt repellant so you can simply wipe-clean any spills. For major spills or dirt you can also remove the cover to be washed. With easy how to videos on the Quinny website telling you how to do this. 

I've had a Quinny before and I found the handle wasn't high enough as I'm 6ft tall however I am pleased to say that the handle of Quinny Zapp Xtra is slightly higher which meant I didn't have to stoop like I did with the previous Quinny. However one improvement I think would make the Quinny even better would be to add an extendable handle

Overall I must say how much I really liked the Quinny Zapp Xtra and how lovely it is having an exclusive design which meant I have had lots of admiring glances and questions whilst out and about. The hardest part now is persuading my 3yr old that it isn't her pram but her baby sisters! We have a nice new Maxi Cosi CabrioFix car seat and raincover for the car seat waiting for the baby's arrival and just have to order the from birth inlay which is available online from Mothercare.

We were given a Quinny Zapp Xtra in the Kenson Fragment design for free on the understanding I would write an honest review of what I thought about it. I received no payment and the review is my own honest and unbiased opinion of the product and I retail full editorial control and integrity. 


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