- It is important to use prams and strollers that meet Australian safety standards.
- There are things to check for when buying a pram or stroller.
- It is also important to use a pram safely.
Should I buy a pram or a stroller?
The terms 'pram' and 'stroller' are often used interchangeably. In the past, prams were designed for younger babies who were too young to sit unsupported. Strollers were for older babies and toddlers who were able to sit upright.
Currently, most combination prams and strollers come with different seat positions, including:
- fully reclined
- upright seat positions
Prams and strollers come in a variety of designs, such as:
- three-wheel strollers that are suitable to use while doing physical activity
- strollers designed for children with disabilities
- double or triple strollers for multiple babies
Some 3-wheeled models are more prone to tipping backward and sideways.
What is a safe pram or stroller?
The most important thing to consider when choosing a product is safety. In Australia, there is a Product Safety Standard for prams and strollers, which should have:
- a 5-point safety harness — over both shoulders, both hips and through the legs
- simple, clearly visible safety warnings and information labels
- a safety (tether) strap on the handle
- a balanced structure to avoid tipping over
You may also want to consider sun protection. A canopy of mesh and UPF (Ultraviolet Protection Factor) of 50+ is ideal.
The pram or stroller should also have one or more brake options (parking devices). They should be:
- clearly visible
- generally positioned on the wheels and handle
- not accessible to the child when they're restrained
What else should I consider when buying a pram?
When choosing a pram, you should also consider how comfortable you child may feel in the pram. They will spend a fair amount of time in their pram.
You can also consider how comfortable the pram is to push and manoeuvre.
You can also look at prams with different folding options. Some may be better for fitting your pram in your car, for example.
Can I buy a second-hand pram?
Some parents choose to buy a second-hand pram. Second-hand strollers should also comply with Australian Safety Standards.
If you are considering a used or second-hand pram, make sure that:
- there are no signs of wear and tear
- the harnesses, brakes and tether strap are all working properly
- any information and safety warnings/labels are still present and legible
- full instructions for safe set-up of the pram are available
How do I use a pram or stroller safely?
Here are some tips for using a pram or stroller safely:
- Always strap your child into the pram when you go out.
- Use the tether strap to secure the pram to your wrist when you're walking or jogging.
- Apply the brakes when you take your hands off the handle.
- Not all strollers are suitable for activity, so make sure to find one specifically designed for running.
Never leave your baby unsupervised in a pram or stroller. They are not a substitute for a safe cot.
Avoid placing heavy bags on the pram or stroller handles. This can cause the pram to tip over, especially when a child is being lifted out. Place bags in the tray underneath the pram.
You should also avoid using a blanket or wrap to cover your baby while they're in their pram. On hot days, the temperature under a pram canopy can be up to 15 degrees hotter than outside.
Waterproof plastic rain covers can also reduce airflow and increase humidity inside a pram. Make sure you allow for adequate ventilation.
Resources and support
For more information on prams and strollers, you can visit:
Speak to a maternal child health nurse
Call Pregnancy, Birth and Baby to speak to a maternal child health nurse on 1800 882 436 or video call. Available 7am to midnight (AET), 7 days a week.
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Last reviewed: June 2023