Recently upgraded, the Orbit Stroller Travel System G2 offers continued excellence in safety and design, along with parent-suggested improvements in function and convenience. It’s loaded with smart features and unique components that—in conjunction with its signature appearance—set it apart from the rest.
The Travel System includes three pieces: an infant car set, a stay-in-car seat base and a stroller frame. Let’s talk about how the G2 fares as a car seat first, then as a stroller.
At first glance, Orbit’s infant car seat is obviously distinct. (The brand name Orbit seems appropriate, as their product looks super-futuristic—almost as if it just landed from outer space!) The cool-looking seat was not founded on looks alone, however; the unique deep-cradle design actually provides incredible side impact protection. Furthermore, the SmartHub docking system (that’s code for the stay-in-car base with a circular lock-in-place mechanism) offers multi-directional impact protection. You see, the stainless steel ring that the car seat secures into has four radial latches around it, which serve to hold the seat in place regardless of from where the impact strikes. Neat, huh?
The infant seat can be installed with the seat base (using LATCH/UAS or a seat belt) or without the base (using a seat belt). Now although the seat is designed to be safe, we all know that it’s only truly safe if a parent is able to install it correctly, right? Fortunately, the seat base is equipped with several safety checking measures to ensure every necessary precaution is taken. For example, a strip of color stitching on the LATCH/UAS belt helps make sure the belt is properly centered. A green/red indicator confirms whether the seat is installed levelly. A StrongArm knob at the front of the base amplifies manual strength to easily tighten the base into place. I took a fair amount of time to read through the instruction manual (which has real life photos—not just illustrations!—depicting the written directions) before I began working with any of the equipment. When I got to actually installing the base and seat, I was thrilled by how quickly and smoothly the process went. Once the installation process was, I slipped the instruction manual into the handy pocket in the rear zippered panel at the back of the car seat. I know it’s small potatoes, but the fact that there is a spot to store the manual inside the car seat where it won’t get lost and will always be readily available absolutely genius. I’m obsessed with this feature!
OK, we’ve covered safety and installation—onto the car seat itself. It’s rated for passengers between 4 and 22 pounds and 19 to 29 inches, and it includes a removable infant insert. The seat has a UV sunshade with Paparazzi Shield extension, which completely covers the seat in a breathable fabric to provide privacy (and protect from flashbulbs, I suppose!). All of the upholstery is Oeko-Tex—a type of eco-friendly fabric that is good for baby and the earth; the upholstery is also machine washable and can be taken off without removing the 5-point harness. One of the neatest features of the car seat? The soft carrier handle. Unlike the hard plastic carry handles found on, well, every other infant car seat I’ve seen, Orbit’s infant seat’s carry handle is structured yet bendable, so the seat can be held in the crook of your arm with the weight of the seat and baby close to your body to minimize strain. While the carry handle truly does make toting the infant seat comfortable, it’s worth noting that the weight of the seat (10 pounds) is relatively heavy on its own (and with a passenger inside, even more so). I don’t mind carrying more weight if I can do so more comfortably, but some parents may be deterred by the size.
Of course, you don’t have to carry the infant seat far—that’s why the travel system includes a stroller frame! Weighing in at 16 pounds, the one-hand fold (really, one hand will get the job done) frame folds fairly compactly to fit in most car trunks with ease. When you’re running errands, just pull it out, remove the infant seat from the car and secure it onto the frame, and you’re good to go. The frame features a built-in cup holder and key tray, height-adjustable handles, one-foot touch brakes and a wrist strap safety tether. It also has fantastic maneuverability and incredible shocks—I really think you could take a sleeping baby down a cobblestone street and not disturb her afternoon nap in the least. (The new G2's tires are also hassle-free with no pumping required!) The under-stroller storage basket is actually a removable carryall that is intended to serve as a diaper bag as well. It has two bottle pockets and two mesh side pockets, as well as a roomy interior. I’m hesitant to give up my pretty Storksak tote completely, but the for certain occasions I can certainly appreciate the option of streamlining my baggage.
I haven’t mentioned yet one of the coolest aspects of the Orbit Stroller Travel System G2: the ability of the seat to be placed on the stroller and seat base at any angle and then rotated as desired. This means that the car seat can be placed into the car with ease and turned to the rear-facing position when baby is happily situated. And that baby can face forward, backward or even sideways as she strolls along. How cool is that? (Right answer: very.)
There are all sorts of accessories for the G2, as well as a Stroller Seat for when baby outgrows her infant seat. (You can check out the entire line of products here.) If you’re looking for a star stroller system—both in its performance and celebrity following—the Orbit Stroller Travel System G2 is a smart, safe and stylish choice.
To buy: shoporbitbaby.com