Contours Options Elite Vs Baby Jogger City Select Review

by Ayesha Ahmed |

Choosing the right stroller for a growing family can help make your life ‘on the go’ so much easier. If you’re leaning towards a double stroller then the Baby Jogger City Select and the Contours Options Elite Tandem Double Stroller will definitely be on your list. And if price is not one of your concerns, then I would highly recommend the Baby Jogger City Select. It’s a complete bundle of convenience, ready for your children.

The Options Elite is a fantastic option at a lower price, however, it is far bulkier to use especially if purchased for a single child.  Baby Jogger City Select flat out wins for being a stroller that starts with a single child and goes up to 3 kids.Image of the Baby Jogger 2016 City Select Double Stroller with 2nd Seat, Onyx

As with all baby gear, it’s absolutely essential to keep the baby’s and your own safety in mind when making a decision. Among many other attributes, you will need to look into proper storage, practical brakes and a strong harness system as well. We’ll find out more, as we look at the features of what Baby Jogger and Contours Options Elite have to offer.

What are some of the similar features?

Stroller weight and dimensions

Contours Elite and City Select are both fairly similar in weight. Elite being 34 lbs and City Select being at 35 lbs. For a double stroller that is still pretty heavy and with the added weight of the kids, you will need to use some serious muscle for maneuvering. To give you a better idea of the sizes, below is a quick summary:

Contours Options Elite:

  • Folded dimensions:
    • 29” W x 44” H
  • Overall dimensions
    • 49.5″ L x 26″ W x 39.8″ H
  • Total weight 34 lb

City Select:

  • Folded dimensions:
    • 35”L x 26”W x 12”H
  • Overall dimensions
    • 46” L x  26”W x 40-43”H
  • Total weight 35-36 lb

Child weight limits

The Options Elite allows 40 lb per seat, going up to 80 lbs of the kids total weight. City Select, on the other hand, allows for up to 45 lb per seat, going up to 90 lbs total weight. In addition to that, a glider board can be added to the City Select for a third child, with a weight limit of up to 45 lbs.

Image of the Contours Options Elite Tandem Double Stroller, Carbon

Multiple seat configurations

Both the Elite and City Select allow for multiple seat positioning . Options Elite allows for 7 different seat configurations that include forward, backward, face-to-face and back-to-back seating choices.

City Select has 16 multi-seat positions,with the inclusion of the pram bassinet kit. However, most configurations don’t let you recline one or both of the seats fully so you end up having at least one child sitting up. I’d say instead of the 16,  about 8 – 10 of the positions are the ones you would be using most often.

If you have twins, you’ll want to be able to use this as a travel sytem with the car seats. Both of these strollers deliver that capability. For more best double stroller for twins ideas, visit our Best Double Stroller article.

Image of the Baby Jogger 2016 City Select Double Stroller with 2nd Seat, Onyx

Large coverage canopies

Both strollers have rather large canopies that have great coverage. They can be adjusted for coverage and have a great sleek look. Contours and City Select both have mesh window that allows you to peek through. City Select has the peekaboo magnet closure that can be covered as desired as well as UV50+ protection.

Car seat adapters

With a universal car seat adapter in addition to the brand specific one, Options Elite allows for many car seats that can be used in tandem (see what I did there!) with the stroller. For City Select, you can also purchase a separate car seat adapter for some of the popular car seat brands.

Overall, Options Elite has a lot of car seat adapting options than the City Select, so be sure to check for the car seat adapter availability before making your decision.

Smooth ride

The wheels on the Options are 8” in the front and 10” in the rear, Image of the Contours Options Elite Tandem Double Stroller, Carbon with shock-absorbing, never-flat tires. City Select has 8” in front and 12” in the rear allowing for the stroller to cover all sorts of terrain. That pretty much means that both the strollers should be able to handle some bumps and some rough surfaces.

Neither comes with accessories

With pretty strong price points, neither of the two strollers come equipped with accessories such as car seat adapters, parent consoles, cup holders. Those you would have to purchase separately. That’s such a bummer, I would at least expect a parent console or snack trays when you buy the stroller.

Contours Assembly

City Select Features Video

What makes each stroller different?

Can be used as a single

In my book, a stroller that truly grows with your family is the one which starts off for a single child. That ensures your garage is not stuffed with too many strollers, baby gear and general chaos if that’s even possible.

City Select begins as a single stroller that can be changed into a double stroller with an added on second seat kit. The Contours Optioncan be used as a single stroller too but it’s just too bulky and long that it kind of defeats the purpose for a single. With just a single seating option, it gives the feel of those grocery shop carts with kids carts in them.

Essentially both strollers do allow for single seat options, but City Select looks and feels like a single stroller. Options Elite, on the other hand does not.

Image of the Baby Jogger 2016 City Select Double Stroller with 2nd Seat, Onyx

Accessories – glider board

Having a glider board option is the ultimate indication for a forever stroller, and a double stroller at that!

It provides a space for the older child to hop on board whether you use the stroller as a single or a double. It probably saves you from constantly hearing “I don’t want to walk” for a few minutes too!

City Select has the option for adding a glider board by attaching it to the back axle of the stroller. The board has a non-skid surface which makes it super easy for an older child to stand up with stability. Unfortunately, the Contours Options Elite currently does not have that option available.

Self standing stroller

Looking at the self standing option from new parent’s perspective may not seem much, but once you’ve opened and folded a stroller enough times, you want it to be upright while you adjust/remove attachments. It’s a small enhancement that goes a long way, especially when you have kids who can’t wait and a tired adult’s body.

Options Elite works amazingly well with the self standing option. In addition to that, the lift assist grip makes it a tad bit easier to lift the stroller while storing or taking it out. City Select currently does not have this feature which is weird since they are known to be the essence of convenience. A must-have in a stroller, in my opinion.

Adjustable handle

This is such a fantastic feature. Whether you’re tall or have a spouse who may not be as tall, the adjustable handle on the stroller makes it super easy to adjust without having to strain yourself. When you have more than one kid, trust me you need all the opportunities to save yourself from all sorts of strains.

City Select lets you adjust the handle by around 2” which is not a whole lot especially with it being a telescopic option. I feel they could have done a better job with this and made it in to a winning feature. Not something I will solely base my decision on for sure. Contours Elite does not have any such option currently.

Image of the Contours Options Elite Tandem Double Stroller, Carbon

Hand operated brake

Another smart idea. I don’t know why all strollers are not made this way. It’s so much easier to park the stroller with a hand brake rather than playing footsie with the foot brakes. You’ll get the brake right every single time with the hand operated one.

A lot of the high end strollers have started incorporating this option as did City Select. This is a move in the right direction since I’ve managed to kick and scrape the brakes of our older strollers.You may be afraid of pinching your fingers the first couple of times you use the brake, but after that, it starts to come naturally.

Options Elite allows for the foot braking system. That’s not a bad option at all but for further improving the parent’s experience, I’ve started preferring the hand-operated brake.It’s more of a personal preference really.

Universal car seat adapter

Another key difference between the Options Elite and City Select is the allowance of infant car seats via adapters. Options Elite allows for far more options. Especially with the use of its universal car seat adapter which can be used with up to 13 different car seats or 8 different brands. It also has brand specific car seat adapters.

You may purchase a brand specific car seat adapter too, but a universal car seat adapter’s versatility is too great to ignore. City Select currently only has a few car seat adapters that can be used with around with different compliant adapters. Great option to have especially if you already have purchased the car seat prior to buying the stroller (and the car seat falls within the supported brands list).

Image of the Baby Jogger 2016 City Select Double Stroller with 2nd Seat, Onyx

Quick Summary

Contours Options Elite:
  • Universal car seat adapter along with brand-specific adapters
  • Great storage basket
  • Excellent tires and suspension for a smooth ride
  • Weighs 34 lbs
  • Allows for up to 80 lb of total weight
  • No glider board option
  • Self standing
  • 7 multi-seating configurations
  • Foot operated brake
Baby Jogger City Select:
  • Brand specific car seat adapters
  • Great storage basket
  • Bigger rear tires for a smoother all-terrain ride
  • Weighs 35 lb
  • Allows up to 90 lb of seated children’s weight
  • Glider board can be added for a standing child
  • Does not stand on its own when folded
  • 16 multi-seating configurations with different conversion kits
  • Hand operated brake
  • Telescopic adjustable handle
  • Canopy is UV50+ peekaboo window with magnetic closure

Image of the Contours Options Elite Tandem Double Stroller, Carbon

Customer reviews

Contours Elite:

4.7 stars, 18 reviews – Walmart.com

4.7 stars, 80 reviews – Buybuybaby.com

4.4  stars,  7 reviews – Albeebaby.com

City Select:

4.4  stars,  694 reviews – Albeebaby.com

5 stars, 6 reviews – Toysrus.com

My recommendation

The City Select and Options Elite both have their pros and cons. They are both fairly similar, you can even say that the Options Elite is a more affordable version of the City Select. The striking difference is the ability to add a glider board and sort of turn the double into a ‘triple’. Its versatility with an adjustable handlebar, hand operated brake tipped me in favor of Baby Jogger City Select.

Needless to say, the Contours Options Elite has all the main features of a great double stroller with a sleek modern look. It’s self-standing and compatible with multiple car seats with great maneuverability.

 

Ayesha Ahmed
I'm a stay at home mom to a 2 year old daughter. My background is in consumer behavior so I'm super critical and wide angled when it comes to making baby product purchases. Unless they are so darn cute that all logic escapes my mind:)

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