Best Lightweight Strollers for Parents who Don't Need the Extras

By Nikki M

Lightweight strollers offer all the conveniences of a traditional, full-size stroller, but in a much more compact package. If you want something that grows with your child but don't want a bulky piece of gear, this is the stroller for you.

The Good

  • Weight: If you're going to be doing a lot of lifting — whether it's in and out of the car or up and down subway steps — you're going to appreciate having a stroller that doesn't weigh like a boat.
  • Compact: Lightweight strollers fold quite flat and compact, making them perfect for small cars, closets, and other tiny storage spaces.
  • Streamlined: No bulging pieces, awkwardly huge bits, and unnecessary parts here. Just sleek, functional good looks.
  • Full-Featured: These strollers are lighter in every aspect except for the features department. Not to be confused with the bare-bones umbrella stroller, lightweight strollers can have full-sized reclining seats, large canopies, storage baskets, lockable swivel wheels, adjustable handlebars, and more.
  • Maneuverable: A gigantic stroller may be tricky to maneuver in packed places and busy sidewalks, but something slim and low-profile will glide effortlessly through a crowd.
  • Affordable: While a full-sized stroller and all its accoutrements can run you close to a grand, an excellent lightweight stroller can start at about $250.

The Bad

  • Smaller wheels: While a traditional, full-size stroller can have rear wheels up to 12 inches in diameter, lightweight strollers only have them at around 6-8 inches. (But for a good cause. Smaller wheels = a more compact fold.) Rides won't necessarily be any less smoother, but it will be trickier to go over less-than-ideal terrain.
  • Smaller storage: An ample storage basket is usually the first to go in a lighter stroller.
  • Not modular: Most lightweight strollers usually can’t accommodate bassinets and second seats. For those features, opt for a full-sized stroller.

Best For

City dwellers. Cars with smaller trunks or those with little storage space at home. An excellent secondary stroller for keeping in the car. The best choice if you don't really need extra add-ons.

Our Favorites

Bugaboo Bee

Sleek, modern, and creature-like, the Bugaboo Bee is one beautifully crafted piece of gear. The canopy is huge, protecting your little one from the sun, wind, and rain. It has a reversible, extendable, and height-adjustable seat that you can modify within seconds according to your needs.

It's great for newborns, as the seat can recline completely flat (they even make a gorgeous bassinet for it). It has the incredibly smooth ride that Bugaboo is known for, thanks to its 4-wheel independent suspension. This stroller is fully customizable: choose from a variety of colors for your chassis, seat, and canopy, or splurge on one of their designer collaborations!

Uppababy Cruz

The Uppababy Cruz rivals many full-sized strollers when it comes to its extensive list of features. It has a reversible toddler seat with one-handed recline, an enormous storage basket with easy access, and an awesome telescoping handlebar. We love the incredibly smooth ride thanks to its huge, AirGo foam tires. The best part? The convenient, one-step fold — and once folded, the stroller is ultra-compact and even stands on its own!

Baby Jogger City Mini

We absolutely love everything by Baby Jogger, but the award-winning City Mini is hands-down the holy grail of lightweight strollers. It packs a lot of punch in its tiny, compact frame: a comfortable, full-sized seat, a large, SPF 50+ canopy with peek-a-boo windows, 8-inch lockable swivel wheels with suspension, and Baby Jogger's signature, one-hand fold. Want something a bit more rugged? Check out the City Mini GT — all the features of the regular City Mini, but with robust all-terrain wheels.

Mamas and Papas Armadillo

Touted as "The Big Little Stroller," this adorable pushchair boasts an impressive list of features for something that folds surprisingly compact. It has a roomy seat that reclines flat (perfect for those long, leisurely naps), an extra-large hood for maximum weather protection, and an easy, one-handed fold. As for its namesake, we might even say that it rivals actual armadillos when it comes to the cuteness factor.

Quinny Zapp

The Zapp is a strikingly sleek stroller with smart features perfect for the modern parent. It has one of the most compact folds we have ever seen, perfect for storing in the tiniest of spaces. It's extremely maneuverable, with its ultra-responsive swivel front wheel. This tiny stroller even has a travel system option (works with Maxi-Cosi infant car seats), making it perfect to use from birth.

Stokke Scoot

Stokke is known for its elegant, contemporary designs, and the new, lightweight Scoot is certainly no exception. Created with the urban parent in mind, the Scoot has a ton of convenient features: a two-way seat with multiple recline positions, an adjustable rotation handle, large, foam-filled tires with independent suspension, a spacious storage basket with all-around access, and an oversized, ventilated canopy with SPF 50.

It's got the same high seat position its full-sized, modular sister Xplory is known for. The Scoot folds impressively compact, with a convenient carry handle. Although $500 isn't exactly pocket change, it's a steal considering how much the other Stokke stroller models cost.

BabyHome Emotion

The BabyHome Emotion takes lightweight to a whole new level — weighing a mere 13 pounds (!) this stroller doesn't cut corners when it comes its features. It has a cozy seat with a 150-degree recline and a 5-point harness, a large, windowed canopy with magnetic closures, and an oversized carry basket (surprising considering the stroller size!).

The Emotion is wonderfully maneuverable with one hand, thanks to tires mounted on ball bearings and suspension on all four wheels. When not in use, the stroller folds to a very compact size.

Britax B Agile

This versatile stroller is suitable from birth, thanks to its multiple seat-recline positions and the ability to be used seamlessly with a Britax infant car seat (simply "CLICK & GO!"). Features include an adjustable 5-point harness that doesn't need re-threading, wheel suspension for a smooth ride, a swivel front wheel for easy maneuverability, and an incredibly convenient, one-hand, quick-fold design. Most stores sell it bundled as a travel system with the B-SAFE infant seat.

Babyzen Yoyo

Known for its record-breaking compactness, you'll be surprised to find out that this astonishingly lightweight stroller can be used from birth. It can be used rear-facing for your newborn, and road-facing once your kiddo sits upright.

Weighing a little over 13 pounds, this stroller can be folded, unfolded, and pushed with one hand. It has 4-wheel suspension, easy maneuverability even on tough terrain without having to lock the wheels, and a handy carry strap when folded. It's the perfect travel stroller, as its dimensions are fully compliant with IATA standards (the first in the world!).

What’s the ideal stroller for you? Share your top picks with us.

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