Updated April 2019
Regular side-by-side strollers have “normal” sized wheels – bigger than what you’d find on an umbrella stroller, but smaller than on an all-terrain stroller. They’re made to be used on smooth surfaces, like smooth sidewalks, roads, and indoor floors (for shopping and such).
These “regular” side-by-sides fall somewhere in the middle in the weight department and generally have better storage, steering, and handling than umbrella strollers.
Best Side-by-Side Strollers
$$ ~ Joovy Scooter X2 ~ Economy Pick ($210): roomy double with amazing storage and large canopies, but on the heavier side.
$$$ ~ Baby Jogger City Mini Double ~ Editor’s Choice ($320): a top-notch double with desirable features, including car seat compatibility and a standing fold.
$$$ ~ Zoe XL2 Best V2 ($249+): Best lightweight general purpose SBS double with solid features, but not the easiest to maneuver — choose this if weight is your biggest consideration
$$$ ~ Britax B-Lively Double ($400): Replaces Britax B-Agile; accepts one infant car seat (must be Britax or BOB brand), and has extra-large under-seat storage that can be accessed from the front; holds 50 lbs per seat.
$$$$ ~ Peg Perego Book for Two ($649): A very narrow SBS double that’s easy to maneuver and has luxury features; can be used from birth (as a double travel system) up to 45 lbs (per child).
Price: MSRP $280, Amazon $210
Weight: 32 lbs
See also: Joovy ScooterX2 Review
The Joovy ScooterX2 is a neat economy side-by-side stroller whose chief bragging right is TONS of storage. For the price, this stroller is a great value! The thing that makes people wild about this stroller is the amazing low price — about half of what you’d pay for a City Mini double or the like. If there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that everyone loves saving money!
Our favorite features include a large sun canopy, big seats (45 lb weight limit each seat) made with durable 600-Denier polyester that recline (nearly flat) independently, and did I mention the storage?? Good storage is REALLY hard to find in double strollers, but Joovy really nailed it with this one.
The ScooterX2 has 7 inch front wheels and 9.5 inch rear wheels. These larger wheels add a few pounds of weight to this stroller, unfortunately, but it’s well worth it for the better handling.
See the complete written review of the ScooterX2 here and the video review below (for the older model, but you can get the gist):
Bottom line: The reviews for the new Scooter X2 are overwhelmingly positive. There are very few complaints, other than the weight. The Joovy ScooterX2 offers great features, such as large seats for bigger kids, a fabulous canopy, bigger wheels and an incredible storage basket – all for a great price. It won’t do very well on rough terrain (especially when loaded down with heavier kids), but for smooth surfaces, the ScooterX2 is a top pick. It’s also one of our top choices for a nanny-share stroller. See FULL review here.
2016 (current model) Baby Jogger City Mini Double ~ MSRP $449 – Sale Price $314
Weight: 26.6 lbs
Baby Jogger has offered a wonderful double version of an all-time favorite stroller, the City Mini, since 2007.
The City Mini Double is one of the best (durable, high quality) side-by-side strollers for the money. No, it’s not an all-terrain stroller, but it is better than your typical side-by-side stroller. In fact, you’ll be able to roll over grass and bumps MUCH more easily with this than you would with an umbrella stroller or a cheaper side-by-side.
Size & Weight
The City Mini is 29.75” wide and will get you through a standard door frame, but not with a ton of room to spare (standard door widths range from 32 – 36 inches). In the weight department, the City Mini weighs in at 26.6 lbs.
The City Mini holds an impressive 100 lbs of total baby meat (50 lbs in each seat).
The City Mini is compatible with several car seat brands, with the exception of Britax infant seats. There are adapters for the City Go infant seat, the Graco SnugRide ClickConnect, Maxi Cosi and Cybex seats (no Chicco, booh!).
**Remember also that you can use this stroller from birth without any car seat because the seats lie nearly flat (below).
The seats recline independently and nearly flat, so they can be used from birth. It also has flaps you can roll up for ventilation, which expose a mesh backing.
A note about the seats: due to the design, the seats don’t sit totally upright, even in the most upright position. This is a complaint you’ll occasionally see for its single counterparts as well. If being slightly reclined will annoy your child (or you), then look elsewhere. While it’s a deal breaker for some, most kids don’t seem to notice it.
The City Mini has an adjustable height harnesses. To adjust, simply twist the stopper, feed it out, and feed it back in at the desired height.
Canopy, Braking, Storage, Accessories
The canopies are amazingly huge and have two peekaboo windows each. In fact, these are some of the biggest canopies on the market and do not disappoint.
The handlebar on the City Mini does not adjust. However, it was elongated in the 2016 model to make it better for “the tall.” It also has easy, one-step braking.
Now let’s talk storage baskets: if you own a regular City Mini, you know the storage basket isn’t huge and the same holds true for the double (below). Rather, the storage basket is pretty big, but not very accessible.
It does have pockets in the back of the seats for smaller items. It doesn’t come with a parent console, but accessories can (and should, for your sanity) be purchased separately.
Wheels & Suspension
Again, the wheels on the City Mini Double are quite good for a “regular” stroller.
To make for an even smoother ride, it has front-wheel suspension. It maneuvers quite nicely and turns on a dime, although when weighed down with two heavy children, you’ll undoubtedly have to use two hands.
Folding & Carrying
Thanks to Baby Jogger’s patented Quick-Fold technology, the fold for the 2016 City Mini was improved, along with the new autolock mechanism.
The fold: with one hand on each of the fold handles, simply pull up and – BAM! – the stroller folds in half (above). Turn the front wheels to the side for a tighter fold. Note: the City Mini does not have a self-standing fold. The size of the folded stroller is somewhere in the middle for a double, and will fit into any large trunk and even medium-sized trunks like that of a Ford Focus. Micro trunks, not so much.
* Note, all strollers in this category have roughly the same folded footprint.
Bottom line: The City Mini Double is pretty great. The BJCM, as we call it, is highly rated, takes a number of different car seat brands, and has a beautiful build quality.
Price: MSRP $349, $199 on Amazon
Weight: 17 lbs (!!!!)
See also: Zoe XL2 Best V2 Review
The Zoe XL2 Best V2 is a perfect convenience and travel stroller. Yes, you read that right, it’s only 17 lbs — half the weight of most strollers in this category. It’s HIGHLY loved by people who own it.
- 17 lbs and 29” wide
- Lots of storage in the one large basket underneath
- FOUR panel canopies covering all the way to the belly bar
- 50lb weight limit for each seat
- Includes a belly bar, cup holders (for parents & kids), snack holder, and strap pads
- Quick & compact fold, can stand upright when folded
- Lifetime guarantee & replacement on the wheels,
- On the downside, the wheels are not the sturdiest for off-roading, however they are 50% bigger than the previous model, so a little better for going over bumps
- Recessed brake bar & higher handle bar for taller parents
- Flip flop friendly brake bar
All in all, they hit all the high points on this stroller: lightweight, amazing canopy coverage, big storage basket, high weight limit, and a wheel replacement guarantee. The only drawback is the tradeoff of performance for weight.
Please note: Zoe calls this a double umbrella stroller, but it is not, due to its larger, rectangular fold — which means a MUCH bigger folded footprint for your trunk or whatnot (see below).
Read our full review here.
Bottom line: The Zoe Best V2 is SUPER duper lightweight and retains all the convenience features parents want — excellent canopies, storage, etc. The big tradeoff is that because of the small wheels, it falls on the “less maneuverable” side, especially if your kids are older/heavier.
Weight: 29 lbs
The Britax B-Lively Double, which replaces the Britax B-Agile Double, is a brand new side-by-side double stroller that can be used from birth up to 50 lbs per seat (100 lbs total). It comes in two colors: black (Raven) and grey (Dove). It accepts one infant car seat, which must be either Britax or Bob brand; adapters are sold separately. This is a relief because the last version of the Britax B-Agile Double did not accept any car seats (and everyone was super pissed about it).
However, seats do recline fully flat, like a pram, so you can place newborns 5 lb+ directly in them without car seats. Woot woot!
At 29 lbs and with an aluminum frame, the B-Lively Double is lightweight, making it easy to push, lift over curbs and into your trunk. It also has an adjustable handlebar, so parents short and tall will find it comfortable to push. It’s also comfortable for your tots: the all-wheel suspension means your duo will enjoy a nice, smooth ride.
The Britax B-Lively Double has some other great features as well. It offers a quick and simple self-standing fold, which is really nice when you have two kiddos (and all their stuff) to contend with. Plus, it makes it easy to store in the garage or your trunk.
In addition to the under-seat storage, the B-Lively Double also has six easy-to-access back pockets for all your must-have items.
The large independently-operated canopies are UV 50+ and have breathable ventilation windows to keep your kiddos cool (and so you can keep tabs on them!).
The linked braking system is pretty neat too — simply step on the single brake lever, and it locks both wheels.
Bottom Line: The B-Lively Double, which replaces the B-Agile Double, is new to the scene and available for purchase now (Spring 2019)! It has so many awesome features, and we love that it accepts an infant car seat (Britax or BOB only). Note that the wheels aren’t anything to write home about, so this stroller is best used on smooth surfaces. The stroller’s light weight, plentiful storage, self-standing fold, adjustable handlebar, independent and infinite recline, separate canopies and linked brake (etc.!) definitely make it a solid choice for your side-by-side double stroller.
Weight: 30 lbs
See also: Peg Perego Book for Two Review
The Peg Perego Book for Two is a luxury side-by-side double stroller. It can also be used from birth as a double travel system using two Peg Perego Primo Viaggo 4/35 infant car seats only. You can find the single adapter here and the double adapter here. (Note: If you have infants, you can lay them in the Book for Two without car seats, but Peg Perego doesn’t recommend doing so until they have the upper body strength to hold themselves up.)
The Book for Two has some awesome features. First of all, it’s super narrow. At only 29 inches wide, this stroller fits easily through standard doorways. Most side-by-side double strollers are verrrrrrry wide, so the Book for Two’s compactness is a huge bonus. But with all good things also come some pitfalls: because the stroller’s seats are narrow, they may not comfortably fit bigger kiddos with bigger bottoms. Just something to think about.
The Book for Two also offers independent seat recline, so each kiddo can sit as far back (or upright) as they prefer. This means that if one kiddo wants to nap and one is awake, no problem. Woohoo!
Some twin parents we talked to who own this stroller say they love how easy it is to push — even one-handed — as well as the adjustable handlebar; this makes the Book for Two comfortable to push for short and tall parents alike (this is a feature that many side-by-sides don’t offer).
The seat backs offer storage pockets to fit smaller belongings, as well as mesh windows to allow for air to flow through. There are also peek-a-boo windows with magnetic closures on the tops of the canopies, which is much quieter than Velcro. Oh — and the canopies are independently operated, so if one kiddo wants sun and the other prefers shade, no problem!
The Book for Two has a pretty large storage basket that can fit many things — however, twin mom Kelly, who owns the Book for Two, says, “originally, I liked that there wasn’t a bar splitting the basket underneath in two sections…. but without the bar, the basket sags with heavy items, so I can’t put my diaper bag in it. Not ideal. Coats and a purse are fine, though.” Probably not a deal-breaker, but IMO, this is something important to know before purchasing.
The “Soft Ride” wheels are filled with polyurethane, and come with ball bearings and suspension. This creates an extra smooth ride, and gives the stroller 360-degree agility. Plus, you’ll never have to inflate these tires (yay for no flats!).
The Book for Two folds inward (like a book!), and parents who own it say it’s easy to do with one hand. Once folded, it self-stands.
Bottom line: The Book for Two is a very narrow side-by-side that can be used from birth as a travel system, and as a full-sized double stroller without car seats. It fits through doorways, is easy to maneuver and fold, and is relatively lightweight. It rides well over various types of terrain and has a lot of luxury features that make it a solid pick for two kids. One of our twin mom readers, Mary Alice, says, “I thought about getting the City Mini, but when I tried them both, the Peg Perego’s ease of steering and lighter weight won out. I don’t regret that choice.”
…That was fun, no? Onward.
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