Hands-on Gear Review

Onya Baby Outback Review

Price:   $139.00 List | $139.00 at Amazon
Pros:  Easy to clean and adjust for baby comfort
Cons:  Harder to adjust for parents, rougher mesh fabric
Bottom line:  Unfriendly fabric and difficult adjustments are disappointing
Editors' Rating:   
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Min/Max Weight:  15 (7 lbs with the infant booster) - 45 lbs
Carry Positions:  Infant Booster (7 - 15 lbs) Facing In (0 - 24 mo) Back Carry (6 - 48 mo/45 lbs) Hip Carry (6 - 48 mo/45 lbs)
Weight:  1.38 lbs
Manufacturer:   Onya Baby

The Skinny

The Onya Baby Outback is a soft structured carrier with a variety of features and functionality not commonly seen including the ability to use it to turn adult seating into a safe seat for toddlers. This carrier has multiple positions including a front, back, and hip carry for children from 7 to 45 lbs. With multiple storage pockets, slick ripstop fabric, and thick padded straps, it feels like an all-day adventure pack. However, in our tests, this pack is hard to adjust for the wearer on the go, and it has rough mesh fabric that rests directly on little one's skin. We think this fabric could cause chaffing or skin irritation. Overall, compared to the competition, it isn't as comfortable for the wearer or the passenger and for the price we think it should be.



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Our Analysis and Test Results

Review by:
Juliet Spurrier, MD and BabyGearLab Review Team

Last Updated:
Monday
February 19, 2018

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Onya Baby, a Santa Cruz, California based company, offers various baby carriers with ten options to consider. Each carrier they make also incorporates a harness that converts adult seating into a safer place for your little ones to sit.

The Onya Baby Outback is a soft structured carrier with multiple pockets and carry positions.
The Onya Baby Outback is a soft structured carrier with multiple pockets and carry positions.

Performance Comparison


This chart shows the overall score for the Onya (blue) compared to the competition.


The sections below provide performance details on how the Onya compares to the other carriers we tested in this review.

Our little testers never seemed entirely comfortable or content inside the Onya.
Our little testers never seemed entirely comfortable or content inside the Onya.

Baby's Comfort


The Onya earned a 5 of 10 for baby's comfort. Baby's comfort is critical if you plan to use your carrier frequently or for longer periods. This carrier has rough mesh fabric on the inside against baby's skin, and it could chafe or cause irritation for some children. The carrier and seat do not have much padding or structure, and the lack of padding for a soft structured carrier leaves little ones strangely unsupported compared to the competition.

The Onya is difficult to adjust with straps that are hard to make smaller without considerable effort. This strap issue makes it hard to find a comfortable fit.
The Onya is difficult to adjust with straps that are hard to make smaller without considerable effort. This strap issue makes it hard to find a comfortable fit.

Parent's Comfort


The Onya earned a 4 of 10 for parent comfort. While this carrier doesn't feel terrible, and some testers like it, it failed to beat the overall comfort of most of the competition with average scores over 6. The straps are a little tricky to adjust and depending on your flexibility you may need help from another person. However, the straps and waistband are wide and firmly padded, some say more akin to a bay backpack. Perhaps, the harder adjustability is what results in a less than cozy fit.

The safety functionality on the Onya buckle takes some getting used to but once you use it a few times you'll get the hang of it.
The safety functionality on the Onya buckle takes some getting used to but once you use it a few times you'll get the hang of it.

Ease of Use


The Onya earned a 5 of 10 for ease of use. Often additional functionality translates to being more difficult to use. That is part of the equation with the Onya. The basic design is intuitive, and on a basic level, it is simple enough compared to some of the other soft structured carriers in this review. The shoulder straps on the Onya need tightening on each side of the buckle. It is easier to pull the straps forward, so you need to leave the straps relatively short or cinch toward the back first. Unfortunately, you need to leave the straps long to get it on, and the side that needs the most adjustment is toward the back which is the side that is hardest to adjust. This design makes it difficult to adjust the carrier on the go or with your baby in the pack.

The Onya has a hood that offers support and protects your baby from the elements.
The Onya has multiple storage pockets that hold more supplies than most of the competition.

The Onya does offer a hood (above left) for additional head support, and it tucks away when not in use. It also has a pocket on the back side of the carrier back (above right). The carrier has multiple pockets, and some of them have zippers including a larger main pocket that expands somewhat.

The Onya is designed to attach to some chairs and has a feature to adapt the chair to create a safe place for little ones to sit.
The Onya is designed to attach to some chairs and has a feature to adapt the chair to create a safe place for little ones to sit.

This carrier is the only option we tested or know of that can also be used to help your little one sit in an adult chair.

The Onya is machine washable and can be tumble dried  but it isn't easy to spot clean should you have an accident on an outing.
The Onya is machine washable and can be tumble dried, but it isn't easy to spot clean should you have an accident on an outing.

Ease of Cleaning


The Onya earned an 8 of 10 for ease of cleaning. The Onya is a machine wash and wear choice that can tumble dry, so there is less downtime waiting for a hang dry carrier. The only real downside is if you have an accident while on an adventure, it isn't as easy to spot clean or quick to dry should you need to do a quick cleanup. However, outdoorsy folks will likely be attracted to the outer fabric despite the cleaning issue.

Manufacturer Video



Juliet Spurrier, MD and BabyGearLab Review Team

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Most recent review: February 19, 2018
Summary of All Ratings

BabyGearLab Editors' Rating:  
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  • 5
 (2.0)
Average Customer Rating:  
 (0.0)
Rating Distribution
1 Total Ratings
5 star: 0%  (0)
4 star: 0%  (0)
3 star: 0%  (0)
2 star: 100%  (1)
1 star: 0%  (0)


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