How many of us have tried supermarket-brand baked beans and thought “Hmm, not bad” but never bought them again and gone back to our favourite brand? The supermarket brand comes with an attractive price and the reviews tell us they’re just as good, but are they what we really want or just a financial compromise?

So how does that compare when you’re pram shopping? Are you a member of the Bugaboo brigade, a Silver Cross champion or are you willing to try a store’s own brand or perhaps a value model that you’ve never heard of?

Some parents adore baby brands with the unbridled passion of Christian Grey and wouldn’t be seen dead pushing anything else. They’ve got to have the latest model with all the official accessories and nothing else will do. Oh yes, believe me – pram snobbery is alive and well!

Could it be true that you only get what you pay for, or are own brand / value range prams just as good as the top leading brands? I once heard a father say “Let’s face it – all prams do the same thing!” But is this true?

chris

I don’t believe there’s such a thing as a perfect pram no matter how much you pay. A perfect pram is as elusive as the perfect child. I think what we are all looking for is a leading brand pram with the price tag of a value range pram.

If we look at Which magazine’s top 10 prams, 8 out of 10 are from leading brands. This may be because the branded pushchairs are tuned to perfection and super stylish, whereas value range prams are just creative lookalikes that fail to hit the mark. The bonus of most own brand prams is that they usually come complete with all the accessories, which for some parents is what ultimately seals the deal.

A budget will of course play a big part in your selection. Not everyone can take out a second mortgage to afford the latest ‘never to be made ever again’ model, so I wonder how many of us would consider buying a second hand top branded pram over a brand spanking new value range pram?

What part does advertising play in our selection? Glossy magazines show celebrities posing with their offspring (that’s the one with an unpronounceable name) strolling along in the sunshine with the latest edition pushchair that comes complete with all the bells and whistles. The yummy mummy looks like she has just walked out of a beauty salon with no hint of baby puke on her top or bags under her eyes from sleep deprivation. Would she look quite as glamourous if she was pushing a value range buggy?

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When my children were young the choice of prams was very limited. All you needed from your pram was that it could carry two kids and a week’s shopping  in the tray underneath. When my children had outgrown it, it was either passed on to the next lucky pregnant family member (whether they wanted it or not!) or given to the neighbours’ kids who’d make a go-kart out of it.

How many of you out there are pushing your little darling in a family heirloom? How many children has your pram survived and what do you plan to do with it when you have finished with it? Please don’t think I am a pram snob; I have had two children and had a hand-me-down pram for both but managed to afford new buggies for them when they outgrew their splendid chariots.

Do I wish there had been the choice then that there is today? I’m not sure. Whatever brand you choose or how much you pay make sure you enjoy your choice of perambulator because it will carry the most precious cargo for many years to come!