Bugaboo 'Donkey' Base
Innovative, but has its flaws
I have a Frog and a Bee, and when I found out we were expecting our second child, we sold the Bee and bought the Donkey. The Bee was so light and easily maneuverable that it totally spoiled me. The folding took a lot of time to get used to, and I'm still using it in Mono mode. I bought the off-white canopy, and it is already dirty (after only about 5 uses), since it practically has to touch the ground to open and close. Another flaw about this is that if you look for used models, you will see that the majority of them have torn handlebars. I'm not sure if that is because the handlebar WILL touch the ground if you don't have it all the way in the lowest position, or it if is just cheap. I didn't have that problem with either of my others. It is extremely heavy too, even in Mono mode (granted, I'm pregnant, but I'm not weak!). I like to refer to it as a 'beast'. We have a mid-sized SUV and I swear it takes up 80% of the cargo space. We are getting a minivan. :) The air pump is a total joke. I tried using it to pump the tires up the first time, and after having to look online for instructions, I pumped and pumped and pumped for a good 30 minutes and they were still mega flat. We just had to break the air compressor out. It would be nice if there was a window of some sort in the canopy to view my little troublemaker while he is forward facing. I also prefer the brake to be by the handlebar, as opposed to the foot brake. The last downside...it is expensive. However, Bugaboos hold a lot of their value, so when I go to sell it, I should be able to get a good amount for it.
Like other reviewers wrote, some things are unnecessary...the bassinet for one. With my Frog, I have the bassinet and the car seat adapter and I used the car seat adapter 99% of the time. He just slid around in the bassinet if we weren't on flat ground. Not purchasing all of the bells and whistles will keep the cost down a little.
I get stopped all the time and asked about it. I adore the shopping bag area. I love the fact that I could sell my expensive single stroller, use this for my multiple kids, then put it back to a single stroller when I'm down to 1 again. It pushes like a dream, but don't all Bugaboos? And, it is stylin'! What can I say, I'm a bit of a stroller snob. :)
LOVE this stroller!
When we found out we were having twins, we knew our stroller options would be limited. After doing some research, we ended up with the Bugaboo Donkey. Here's a brief summary of our experience so far after using it for 7 months:
(1) VERY good quality. Glides effortlessly - much better than the lightweight cheap strollers. You can just feel how great quality it is.
(2) Beautiful stroller. I can't tell you how many compliments I get on this stroller, and we're still use it in the snap-n-go mode!
(3) Snap-n-go feature: We use it with Graco carseats, and it's super easy. This way we don't have to buy a separate Snap-n-go and then separate Bugaboo. All you have to get is the 1 adapter.
(4) You can customize it based on your needs. If you don't want bassinets, don't buy them. If you don't want a cupholder, don't buy it.
(2) Weight. BUT I must say that if you want a good quality stroller, it will weigh more. There's a reason those junky umbrella strollers are so light - bc they're junk. All good quality strollers are heavy, including Stokke.
(3) Size. But then again, if you want a double stroller, you're going to have to deal with a larger size.
(4) Bassinets: Although most people love these, they were a total waste for us. That's because our babies HATE lying down. We never once used the bassinets successfully, and feel a lot of guilt having wasted all that money.
So if you take a look at my analysis, you can decide what's more important for you. I have to say that I absolutely LOVE our stroller, and wouldn't change my mind for any other. Good luck!
Rolls Royce Of Strollers
My husband and I bought a Bugaboo Donkey after extensive research on strollers.
Here are the reasons we are so happy with it;
1. The stroller can adapt and grow with your family. We love that it can be used in mono mode, in duo mode for two children of the same age or two children of different ages, and that there is even a foot board that can be used for a third child. We also love the fact that it can be used for newborns. Most strollers on the market cannot be safely used until age 6 months due to the fact that they do not recline appropriately.
2. The stroller can be used on all kinds of terrain with ease. Not many strollers can tout being able to handle well on pavement and in sand.
3. In concert with #2, the maneuverability of this stroller is fantastic.
4. The stroller has an adapter for the Maxi Cosi car seat which we determined, independently of the stroller, to be our pick for best car seat. We actually were not concerned if the stroller and car seat did not work together, as we do not intend to take the car seat out of the car, but it is a nice feature none-the-less.
5. We really appreciate that we can choose which bells and whistles we want to purchase to make our stroller custom to us. We know that it would be unnecessarily expensive to have "everything" included. Not everyone will need 2 bassinets for example. And, more along the lines of bells and whistles, while one family may want to purchase a foot muff for cold winters in New England, for example, a family in Arizona is not likely to want a foot muff ever. And hence the reference to the Rolls Royce, just as with an expensive car, you can tailor this stroller to your specific needs and desires. That's something you cannot do with cheaper strollers that come all in one.
Two final comments;
1. The stroller is not ultra lite, and does not fold into a compact tiny little thing, but you can't have everything. If the stroller was ultra lite and folded into a tiny thing, many of its most outstanding features would be compromised. Likewise, a Cadillac Escalade and a Smart Car serve two different purposes altogether, and no one would dream to begin to demand that the Escalade morph itself into the tiny frame of a Smart Car. So it is with strollers. If you want something tiny and light, buy a cheap umbrella stroller for those rare occasions where you may need it, or when you plan to travel by plane and don't want your really nice stroller to get extensively damaged. We put one of those umbrella strollers on our registry and it was so affordable we received it as a gift, and it wasn't even the cheapest kind! We don't plan to use it much, but for plane travel etc, it will be nice to have.
2. Nordstrom is exceptional, which is why over the years I keep going back over and over. And I am ecstatic that Nordstrom is offering things like strollers, car seats and baby carriers now, because there is no place I would rather purchase from. Their commitment to quality and customer service is truly unparalleled. To be honest, the reason that we even began looking at Bugaboos was because we saw that Nordstrom carries them, and we know that Nordstrom tends to pick those few things that are truly quality items. Out of the myriad of options there are in the stroller market, look how few Nordstrom carries, and there is good reason for that in my book. There are few truly standout strollers on the market and we researched them ALL.
Finally, as feedback to the customer who was frustrated assembling her stroller and having to inflate the tires, Nordstrom will allow the strollers to be shipped direct to them for assembly and all you have to do is pick it up, no hassle. We did not personally choose that option, but were offered the option just as a kindness, without even having asked. And as for why the tires are not inflated fully when they arrive, well, just think about how air pressure changes during shipping. This is really just to protect you and your expensive purchase.
I was so excited to get this stroller but extremely displeased with how difficult it was to put together, fold and unfold. The directions are not great for assembling the seat and bassinet. I also received the Uppababy Vista as a shower gift and that one took less than 5 minutes to set up from start to finish, while the bugaboo took 1+ hours. I don't feel this stroller is worth the money!