City Select versus Britax B-Ready
With three kids under four, including twins, I've had my fair share of double strollers. The Baby Jogger City Select and the Britax B -Ready look very similar, but they're not when used in doubles mode. Which stroller is better really depends on the age of your kids. For twins or children close in weight, I found the City Select has more advantages, but if you have different age kids, the Britax is worth a look.
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* The City Select stroller was Baby Gizmo's top tandem stroller in 2010 -- the 2011 model has been redesigned with deeper and firmer seats, improving an already excellent stroller.
* Of the two, the City Select is a better stroller for twins because of the 45 lb. weight allowance for each of its full-size seats (child's weight and baggage, for a maximum of 90 lbs overall), foot wells that expand to 10.5 inches and large canopies that raise up to 24", allowing you to use it all the way up till your children are age 4 or 5. The Britax only has one full size seat as the second seat has a lower weight capacity than the main seat.
* The Britax B-Ready is a good option if you have two kids of different ages (1 & 3 for example) given the different weight limits on its seats. If you have twins, you'll be limited by the second seat's 35 lbs. weight capacity and a 22" canopy, to about 3 years old - only one child will be able to ride in the stroller past this weight (I still use my City Select with my 4 year old but will be able to use it with both my twins till this age as well).
* Another important consideration is that the telescoping handle on the City Select extends from 39" to 41", whereas the handle on the Britax B-Ready does not (it has a pivot handle that goes up or down but does not extend). This comes in very handy for taller parents, when you raise the canopy on the upper seat (when stadium seating) to give you additional clearance, or when hanging a diaper bag with the seats in the rear-facing position, so the baby is not kicking it.
* The City Select offers more clearance for walking with the second seat in than the Britax, either front or rear facing.
* Both seats recline on the Britax forward facing, but the second seat is not reversible. On the City Select, both seats are reversible, but they recline fully only in the rear-facing position (with lots of leg room). I actually prefer this configurations as twins are people-magnets and when they are facing towards me and napping it's easier for people to stay away.
* You can hang a larger than average diaper bag (like the Lassig Messenger Eco-Friendly Diaper Bag) from the handle with two seats in the City Select. (Note: the stroller handle says not to but because of the weight distribution I haven't had any problems).
* The City Select allows for 16 configurations including two carrycots (Britax has 14)
* The Britax B-Ready has a more compact footprint than the City Select, a plus if you don't mind the handle that doesn't extend or are not a tall parent.
* For the City Select - handling curbs can be challenging going forward but if you pull the stroller backwards upor down the curb, it's actually easier than most strollers because of the large back wheels. It hasn't been an issue for me.
Some similarities between the two strollers:
* Similar width at 26"
* Huge storage basket in both.
* Tires that handle all surfaces well, indoors and out. It's worth mentioning that neither stroller is meant for jogging.
* The City Select with the second seat weighs 33 lbs., similar to Britax's 36 lb weight, less than iCandy's hefty 44 lbs.
* Both have the same recline mechanism on the seats.
* Easy fold for both. With the Britax, you can leave both seats in and fold quickly. With the City Select, both seats need to be in stadium seating, fully upright with the foot wells folded down as far back as they will go (not horizontal), and then you can fold it with both seats. Honestly, it's a lot easier and faster to just pop off the seats and fold the frame (plus it fits in most cars because it's very compact, with the frames and seats folding flat separately).
* For the City Select, the "Baby Jogger City Select Second Seat Attachment Brackets" are sold separately if needed on mystrollers dot com. You do not have to buy the whole second seat as some older reviews state.
* Neither stroller's seats are appropiate for babies 0-6 months (even if the seats recline fully, they're in a "V" shape as the whole seat tilts). You can get optional car seat adaptors but if you live in a city, you may find that a single snap-n-go/ infant seat with an Ergo carrier for the 2nd baby (w insert #2 for babies 0-4 months) is the easiest way to get around for the first year. A double snap n go is even better and less expensive, and will allow you to use infant car seats so they can nap on outings. Another option is the Maclaren Triumph which folds compactly @ 22 lbs, reclines fully and can be used from birth up, if you want to have a stroller for travel for later on.
Lastly, I also have Maclaren double strollers (Triumph & Techno) and the Bob Duallie. If you're looking for other alternatives, they're all good, but of all of these, I find the City Select is the easiest and most versatile to use with twins or a preschooler & baby (see my profile for a full review with pros and cons). If you're looking for getting one all-purpose stroller, regardless of whether you have kids close in age or not, it would be my pick. I only wish I had known about it before buying the other double strollers.
UPDATE 1/07/13: This review was first posted in June 2011. At 2.5, my twins are now 38" & 32 lbs, and my six year old, 48" & 40 lbs. The City Select is still going strong, day after day of heavy use, for shopping, trips to the park, the grocery store, almost anywhere really. I'm so glad I went with this stroller as they would have almost outgrown the Britax at this point, when used as a double.