Choosing the right buggy for your Nursery or Early Years Setting isn't easy.
You can look at a combination of double & triple buggies - but the cost of these mounts up at £200+ a throw, so you'll probably save some pennies by buying the larger 4-6 seat buggies & strollers that are on the market.
In addition, having the buggy that accommodates more children will mean your staff can be more efficiently utilised, with one employee accompanying 4-6 children on a walk, rather than 2 or 3 employees each with a double buggy.
Plus for the children themselves of course, it's much more fun to be riding along with a few of your pals!
For a start you need to find the money - they are not cheap. There are some in the lower price bracket of less than £300 for a 4 seat buggy, but as the old adage goes - "you get what you pay for".
As an Early Years supplier, here at Hopscotch School Supply we've only taken multiple buggies & strollers into our range which fits certain criteria.
Hopscotch Director & Early Years Professional, Elaine Stephen explains: "As an early years teacher with many years experience, I know that whilst budgets are always tight in Nursery settings, the resources that we have invested a little more money in for our children have always lasted the longest. I've lost count of the times I've had to throw out resources that looked good when they came out of the box, only to find after a month of use by active 4 year olds, they fall apart. So with his in mind, I was determined to find resources for Hopscotch which would provide real value for money. In the case of our range of Buggies & Strollers, we have made sure to include products from the best brands & trusted suppliers who we've known for many years. These are suppliers who focus on innovation and creative design, with really strong materials to make sure the buggies are built to last."
OK - so here are our Top 5 Tips for choosing that multiple stroller for your pre-school setting.
1. Figure out how many children are you likely to take out at any one time?
The answer to this will in many cases be dependent on your adult to child ratios.
With a 4 child stroller, you're going to be limited to the number you can take out at any one time, to up to four children. But the larger 6 child prams will obviously give you more flexibility to take out more children, with potentially less staff. Of course the larger stroller will cost more - for example the two Flagship strollers from US manufacturer Angeles the 6 Child Bye Bye Stroller is about £130 more expensive than the 4 Child Bye Bye Stroller
But that extra cash you pay out for the larger buggy will give you a lot more operational flexibility.
2. When Investing in a Multiple Buggy Don't Make (Lowest) Price the No 1 Priority
As noted earlier - you get what you pay for - a pram for 4 or 6 kids will be more expensive than a regular double buggy - in some cases much more expensive. But we've lost count of the times nursery owners have come to us to say "we bought a cheap quad buggy but it only lasted a couple of years, and was falling to bits by the end".
The range of multi seat prams in Hopscotch's range will last for many years. Take a look at our Winther 4 Seat Kiddy Bus which retails at over £1100+vat. It is a lot of money - yes - but you will get many years use from it, meaning it won't give up the ghost after a couple of years.
These buggies are built to last and with some care on your part, you should easily manage to get 10+ years from your initial investment. Another buggy we feature is the superb 6 Seat Bye Bye Buggy from Angeles. Like the Winther example, this is a built to last, hard bodied stroller, and it retails at just under £1100+vat. We were at an Education Show several years ago in the States, and went on the Angeles stand and spoke to many of their customers. We were astonished at how many of them had their Bye Bye Buggies (& Strollers) for 10, 15 even 20 years. One Nursery owner proudly showed us a picture of her Bye Bye Buggy that she'd had for 25 years, and whilst it had it's share of use, she had just had a set of new wheels fitted to it and as far as she was concerned it would be good to go for many years to come!
So remember whilst the price tag may initially look high, in terms of the value you should get from a 4-6 seat pram should mean you make a good investment.
3. What are the Roads, Pavements & Paths like near your Location?
If you are surrounded by smooth, flat, wide pavements then you need have no worries about any of Hopscotch's range to suit your needs.
But if your pavements are maybe a little narrower, and there are some more inclines or even hills to push the children around in, then you may want to look at a great four child buggy we have in our Range - the Cabrio. This is one of our best sellers and is a compact, and slightly lighter multi child buggy. Like many of our range it comes with a free rain cover.
Is the around around your childcare centre hilly?
Take a look at the Cabrio's two bigger siblings which each have a small engine - yes NO PUSHING!
You can see them here
So if you are situated in a hilly area, and worry about pushing 4 or 6 kids around - maybe the Cabrio Plus is for you!
Whatever your budget, location or however many children you want to take out at any one time, you're bound to find a great multiple seat buggy from Hopscotch's huge range.
- November 04, 2016
- John Stephen