Every new parent knows the importance of having a car seat and a stroller, so why not buy them together? Strollers and car seats sold in travel system sets are typically less expensive than buying the two separately, and they can be clicked together to be used as one big system.
The Baby Trend EZ Ride 5 Travel System is one of the least expensive travel systems available, but is it worth it to spend a little extra for higher quality? Read on to find out.
The Baby Trend EZ Ride 5 Travel System has Flex-Loc technology that you see on many of the newer infant car seats. Graco has a similar system called Click Connect. The car seat comes with a base that can be installed using the LATCH system. To install the car seat in your car, you simply click the car seat itself into the base. The LATCH system is easy to install and allows you to keep the base in the car so you don’t need to install your child’s car seat with every car trip.
The car seat can be easily removed from the base in your car and clicked into the stroller. This is typically done while your child is still small. Once they are bigger and have better neck control, they may be more comfortable sitting in just the stroller itself.
When using the car seat in the stroller, your baby will face you (the car seat faces backwards). This way you can keep a close eye on your newborn. When you just place your child in the trolley itself, your child will face away from you. There is a “peekaboo” window in the canopy, however, so you can check on your little one while walking.
Multiple Reclining Positions
The baby buggy in this travel system has multiple reclining positions. This allows for you to sit your little one upright or lay them back for a nap. I always liked having many reclining options because on a sunny day it allows me to keep the sun out of my son’s eyes by having the variety of positions.
Easy to fold
The stroller in this system features a one hand fold mechanism; allowing for quick and easy storage. I will note that the one hand fold feature does take some getting used to – it isn’t as simple as they make it sound. It is still a rather large stroller (at 33 pounds, this is definitely not an umbrella stroller!) that you’re trying to fold up, so it does take some coordination. But a couple of practice runs, and you’ll fold it up like a pro in no time.
5 point harness system
If you have ever read through reviews of car seats, you may have heard parents rant or rave about different seat belts and buckles. Who knew you could spend so much effort trying to adjust a simple harness? Luckily the harness on the Baby Trend EZ 5 car seat is easy to adjust and to click into place.
This travel system gets extra points from me because the stroller has a 5 point harness as well. This is always a must for strollers I purchase because it ensures my son won’t wriggle his way out!
Snack Space & More
The Baby Trend EZ 5 Travel System does have your typical features for the parent pushing it. It features two cup holders, a height adjustable handle, and a peek a boo window in the canopy. It also has two cup holders (because we all know kids like a variety of options!) and a snack tray for your kiddo.
At only 16.5″ in width, this car seat is narrow, which is a good thing if you have a small car or are trying to fit multiple car seats in the same vehicle. There are some higher quality choices for both travel systems and narrow car seats as we explain in those articles.
The infant car seat has weight restrictions of 5-30 pounds. When I first got my son’s car seat and saw that it had a maximum weight limit of 35 pounds, I thought “Great! This will last at least a couple of years!”, thinking he wouldn’t reach that weight for a long time. What I didn’t realize is that kids will typically reach the height limit first. The Baby Trend EZ Ride 5 Travel System has a height limit of 30 inches. And even if you have a smaller child, it is recommended that you switch to a convertible seat by the time your child is one year old.
The stroller for this travel system has a weight limit of 50 pounds, giving you plenty of time to get good use out of it.
Lower quality than other travel systems
The Baby Trend EZ Ride 5 travel system is one of the least expensive available on the market and it does have a few downfalls. It doesn’t feel as sturdy as other, more expensive models like the Baby Jogger Citi Mini or BOB strollers. This may not bother you if you’re not looking for a top of the line stroller, but it is worth noting.
Hard to maneuver
The Baby Trend EZ Ride 5 stroller also has bad handling, leaving it hard to maneuver around. This is probably due to its small front wheel. If you are planning on only using the pram on flat, smooth surfaces such as a sidewalk or street, you shouldn’t have any issues with handling.
But if you’re taking this stroller on grass, or even trying to maneuver it around clothes racks while shopping, it will quickly become frustrating. I use my stroller several times a week, so it is really important for me for it to be user friendly and easy to push around.
The car seat that comes with this Baby Trend EZ travel system is rear-facing only – it does not convert to a forward facing car seat. Some experts insist on switching to a convertible car seat by the time your child is one year old. This means you might only get one year’s use out of this car seat.
It really depends on what you’re looking for out of a car seat for your newborn. I personally wanted a car seat that was lightweight, like the one that comes with this system, and I was willing to then buy a convertible car seat when my son was a year old. But you can opt for a typically heavier convertible car seat to start with and that way you can get more use out of it.
When the seat is fully reclined in this stroller, you do lose some of the storage space in the basket underneath. As someone who jam packs the storage basket, this could definitely become a nuisance. However, if you are a lighter packer, this might not affect you so much.
Not enough head support
This stroller says that it features a large head support that can be used in either the stroller or the car seat. Firstly, this means that you’ll have to switch the head support between car seat and stroller if you don’t use the car seat and stroller as a combined system. Secondly, the head support just doesn’t offer the same support as other similar head supports seen in similar car seats. You may find yourself looking elsewhere for an extra insert to keep your infant’s head from slumping to the side.
This Baby Trend travel system is amongst the cheapest you will find. This is a classic “you get what you pay for” situation in that you will get better quality if you are willing and able to spend more.
- 3.2 stars, 5 reviews – Kohl’s
- 4.2 stars, 177 reviews – diapers.com
- 4.3 stars, 109 reviews – Walmart
- Flex-Loc connect system makes it easy to install car seat in car and on stroller
- Multiple reclining positions
- One hand fold
- 5 point harness in both car seat and stroller
- Low quality
- Hard to steer
- Reduced storage when seat is reclined
- Insufficient head support for newborn
Ease of Use Ratings
When it comes to safety, installation and ease of use are incredibly important. While all car seats are required to pass federal safety testing, some are easier to use than others. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration computes an ease of use rating for every car seat in several categories. See the ratings below.
Overall, the Baby Trend EZ Ride received a rating of 4 stars.
The Baby Trend EZ Ride 5 travel system is much cheaper than similar models by other manufacturers. You know how they say sometimes less is more? Well, in this case, less is well…less. Its small front wheel will leave you frustrated and the storage is nothing to write home about.
If you’re looking for a basic model, this may be right for you. But in my opinion, it is worth spending a little extra for a higher quality travel system. You don’t want to dread using your stroller every time. If this is something you will be using on a weekly or daily basis, look into higher quality models available. You will thank yourself later!