My weekday stress point is double parking the car outside the elementary school to run, car seat in hand no less, while I pick up my oldest. It’s close enough that it’s not worth getting out the stroller but as each day passes, that car seat gets heavier and more awkward to tote up to the school doors. Just one of those mildly annoying parenting growing pains, that we’ve all lived with, but we don’t have to. Meet the Doona system, a car seat that transforms in to a smooth riding compact stroller with one click.
Yes, that really is a car seat and stroller in one.
Once I saw it, I couldn’t imagine how no one had thought of this before. The Doona comes to us from Simple Parenting, a company that prides themselves in seeking out the biggest trouble spots from day to day parent living and figuring out how to fix them. Which they seem to do, beautifully, if this is any indication.
The Donna is no flimsy disposable bit of baby gear; this is an extremely well made and thoughtful item designed to truly make your life easier and well simpler. You don’t even have to put anything together! This baby comes completely intact and ready to roll.
At first I thought that it was going to sit too low and that I wouldn’t feel comfortable with the Doona, but that is not the case at all. The sleek design, adjustable handle and smooth ride make this handy item easy to use and a true helper. Simple Parenting also goes above and beyond in it’s safety measures with extra protection and fail safe mechanisms that give a nervous new parent a little more peace of mind; like a memory foam infant head support that hardens to protect on impact.
Having just booked a family vacation I am kind of excited to know this aircraft approved system will make our packing and transport so much easier from the plane to the rental car, saving us extra carry ons and trunk space. Then when we drop it down to its folded position so it’s just an infant seat (say while we’re grabbing some overpriced breakfast in the airport restaurant) we can even use the extended handle to rock it.
Yes, it literally rocks. Which is way easier than pushing the stroller back and forth with your foot to soothe baby while you pretend to relax.
Simple Parenting offers a rear facing car seat base for the Doona as well as a wide selection of accessories to allow you to customize yours to your experience and comfort level. My only initial gripe is the lack of built-in storage for all my errand running. You can grab a bag that snaps on to the back of the stroller for an extra $30 that should solve some of the storage issue but don’t expect to load it up with 50 pounds of kale.
(Are people buying 50 pounds of kale at a time these days? Seems that way.)
I also would take advantage of the optional wheel covers to keep your car clean– after all the wheels are going from dirty sidewalk to your backseat, if you’re the kind of parent who thinks about such things. I do.
The main downside I can see, behind the price tag which will obviously be prohibitive for a lot of parents, is that the car seat is a tad heavy, weighing in at about 5 pounds more than most infant car seats. But hey, it’s got wheels on it! The idea is that you shouldn’t be carrying it so much in the first place, because the stroller conversion is the whole point.
Shop for the Doona car seat stroller at Happykidzusa.com to find a retailer near you. It retails for around $500. Curious how it works? Just check out their super cool interactive user video for the very thorough details. Thanks to the company for sending CMP a unit for review.