I was super excited waiting on the Joovy Ergo Caboose to arrive. I loved the look of the stroller and knew I’d be the super cool mommy strolling around the park while pushing it.
The Ergo Caboose is a stroller for two, best suited for families with children of different ages. My 2 1/2-year-old doesn’t always like to be buckled in like her baby sister, and I thought she’d enjoy the freedom of sitting on the back bench seat or standing on the platform instead.
Once the box arrived I couldn’t wait to tear into it. I pulled the stroller out and dove right into getting it assembled. I’m not much of a direction-reading person, but I didn’t even know where to start with this stroller. The manual was helpful and had great pictures to help me along. It took me a good 30 to 45 minutes to get the stroller together. One of the most difficult parts was unpacking on the pieces! Everything was tied so tightly I was afraid I was going to scratch up the stroller trying to use the scissors. Once I finally got everything unpacked, it was relatively easy to assemble. I did have some trouble inflating the back tires and had to get my husband to help. I felt like the materials were great quality and made to last, and I really liked how the wheels were rubber instead of plastic.
The Ergo Caboose also has a universal attachment for a car seat. My youngest is over the minimum age limit of 6 months and able to sit in the front, but I like having the option of using the stroller as a travel system, and I’m sure parents of younger infants will too. When the car seat is attached, the baby is positioned closest to the parent and the older child is in the front seat. The attachment was fairly easy to put onto the stroller and allows you to use any car seat. I could not find a weight limit for the adapter but I am assuming it is the same weight limit as the car seat.
I buckled my 9-month-old into the front seat to check it out, she seemed content as long as the stroller was moving. The straps were easy to adjust, although my husband had some trouble figuring them out. The seat is designed to not put pressure on any of your child’s pressure points. The seat has a mesh make-up, which almost allows the passenger to feel as if she is “floating.” This seems comfortable, and I think the mesh is great for hot summer days, but I’m not crazy about the mesh seat for the winter months. I’d like a seat with less airflow in the winter to keep baby warmer, which is probably why Joovy sells colorful seat covers for an additional $50. For the price of the stroller, however, I wish the cover was included. The seat reclines easily to about a 45-degree angle. It’s not really far enough back for baby to sleep, so I can’t see using the recline much. The upright position is close to 90 degrees though, so if your baby is not a good sitter, you may need to have the seat reclined for more support. You can also purchase Snuggin Go supports for your baby to use in the reclined position in the front seat for $35, which would make it more comfortable for a baby and easier for them to sleep in the stroller. The weight limit is 45 pounds for the front seat and 40 inches tall with a minimum age of 6 months.
I was looking forward to trying out the back bench seat for my 2 1/2-year-old daughter. The seat is slightly rounded and padded, making it comfortable for the child. I was happy to see that there is an easy-to-adjust strap to buckle the child in—this was necessary as my daughter wanted to jump up and run out! The minimum age for this seat is 2 1/2, but even at this age, it’s not ideal for my daughter. I’m sure though as she gets older (and a little more settled down) this seat might work better for her. While riding, she kept trying to get up and put her feet on the wheels while we were moving, causing the stroller to stop or her foot to stuck. As far as her standing on the platform, this isn’t something she’s ready for at her age. There is no strap at all when they are standing, not even one behind them in case they lose their balance. There are nice handles, however, and this would be a good option for a 4-year-old. The weight and height limits for the rear seat are 45 pounds and 44 inches.
My two favorite features of the stroller are the large canopy and the basket underneath. The canopy is very large, providing great sun protection for both children as long as they are sitting. When the child in the rear is not sitting, you can remove the cover over the back portion to make room for her to stand. This is very easy to do, but I did have some trouble keeping this detachable part of the canopy correctly attached. It was also easy for my daughter to grab it and detach it from the sides. The only drawback to a tandem double stroller is that you can’t really see the child in the front. The large canopy doesn’t have a peek-a-boo window, so you have to go around the front to see the baby. I love, love, love the basket under the stroller. Not only is it large, but also easy to get to because the bench seat folds up for accessibility. I can actually get the diaper bag in this way! My only complaint is that I have to unbuckle my daughter and have her get up every time I want to get something from the basket. A small price to pay for a large storage basket!
I wish that the Ergo Caboose included a cup holder included for the parents. This is something you can purchase in the form of a parent organizer for an additional $30. There is a good sized snack try for the child in the front. The cup holder is somewhat small, and the sippy cups we own won’t fit in it. It is detachable, however, and the stroller also comes with two cup holders you can attach instead of the tray. The only problem this poses in my household is that one kid can reach two drinks and the other kid can’t reach any.
The Joovy Ergo Caboose is perfect for strolling in a park or around the neighborhood. It rolls easy and turns easily as well. Because of its 49-inch length, it is somewhat hard to maneuver around sharp turns in a store, but this is a problem with most any double stroller.
The stroller is easy to fold and unfold in just one step. You do have to use two hands, but it’s not complicated. You also need to be sure the brake is on. Another great thing about the Ergo Caboose is that the brakes are attached so when you lock one wheel you lock both. The locks are at the bottom and easy to engage with your foot. When the stroller is locked into the folded position, it can stand on its own. It is large and could not fit in the trunk of my husband’s car. I drive a minivan and usually have the back seat down in order to keep the stroller in the van and have room to put other items. The stroller definitely takes up all the space in the back if I don’t fold the seat down. At 30 pounds, the weight isn’t terrible and is easy to pick up and move. Because of the way it’s designed, there are almost built-in handles for picking it up.
Overall, this is a quality, sturdy and easy-to-use stroller. The stroller is available in black, which, though not as fun as some of the more colorful models in Joovy’s collection, will continue to look sleek for years to come (and will also clean up easily with a quick wipe down). I enjoy using the Ergo Caboose, and know that as my currently all-over-the-place toddler matures it will be even more enjoyable.
To buy: joovy.com