The Baby Trend Snap-N-Go EX Universal stroller disappointed us with a strap installation system that we worry will go undone leaving the baby in a potentially dangerous situation. The Baby Trend is a dedicated frame stroller designed as a universal option for almost any infant car seat brand. It is relatively easy to use and attach car seats, but features like dual action brakes, limited storage bin allowance, and dual plastic front wheels make it a stroller we don't love. We understand that the price is appealing, but the features and performance simply aren't.
Baby Trend Snap-N-Go EX Universal Review
Pros: Almost universal car seat compatibility, price
Cons: Strap car seat attachment, larger fold, dual action brakes
Manufacturer: Baby Trend
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Our Analysis and Test Results
The Baby Trend company has been a leader in the juvenile products industry for over 25 years. From the beginning, Baby Trend has created innovative gear for families including the first sit and stand style stroller, the Snap-N-Go stroller, and the Diaper Champ that works with regular garbage bags instead of spendy proprietary refills. The company also makes infant car seats, swings, bouncers, high chairs, and more.
Ease of Attaching Car Seat
Despite accepting a large variety of car seat brands, the Baby Trend is disappointing for car seat attachment because of the attachment method.
The Baby Trend is a frame stroller that works with most popular infant car seats. The car seat attachment works the same for all seats and includes two adjustable straps where the carrier sits.
The first step is adjusting the two straps, so the carrier sits inside the frame without falling too low or sitting too high. The plastic edge of the carrier should rest on the plastic edge of the frame. Adjusting the straps is done with a plastic toggle that is a little stiff and hard to adjust, but ideally, you should only adjust it once.
Once the carrier is resting in the stroller, there is a second set of straps that must be brought over the lower portion of the carrier to secure it to the stroller. If you skip this step, the car seat is not attached and is free-floating. Not using the straps means the baby could suffer from an injury or potentially death, so parents can't skip this step.
While attaching carriers to this product isn't difficult, we aren't fans. We worry parents will forgo the second step leaving the carrier unsecured. Some parents might skip the step thinking the carrier is secure enough, or they aren't "going that far," while others might forget the strap or won't know it is required. Unfortunately, we see parents all over skipping this step, which is why we prefer one step click-in products where the odds of doing it incorrectly are smaller.
We tested several car seats in the Baby Trend including the Cybex Aton 2, Chicco Keyfit 30, Peg Perego Primo Viaggio 4-35, Safety 1st onBoard Air, and the UPPAbaby Mesa. Most of the carriers feel secure, but the Cybex Aton 2 moves around a lot in the frame, and while it probably isn't going to fall out, it is worse than the other brands. If you are committed to using the Snap-N-Go, it's probably best to avoid the Cybex Anton 2 combination.
Weight and Folded Size
The Baby Trend is a lightweight stroller that folds into a larger product. We feel the weight and size are essential features to consider when looking for a car seat stroller. Because mom might have lifting limitations, we prefer a smaller and lighter product. The Baby Trend meets part of this requirement with a weight of 10.9 lbs, making it the lightest option in the review. Unfortunately, it is larger with an overall cubic size of 8,661 inches.
None of the frame strollers are easy to maneuver thanks to their smaller plastic wheels, and the Baby Trend is no exception. Given that this is not your lifetime stroller, it isn't worth getting too upset about, as it will do fine on hard flat surfaces where newborns travel.
The Baby Trend has small plastic wheels with the double front wheel design we find struggles to stay on track. There is significant frame flex, and it is better on hard surfaces than grass and gravel where we had difficulty turning. The wheels are small, foam-filled plastic that wobbles, rotate poorly, and look like those found on a toy. There is no suspension which means the baby will feel every bump and jarring motion. The handlebar has a soft rubber material cover that feels good but not durable and could result in chunks of the cover missing over time.
Ease of Use
The Baby Trend isn't that easy to use, but most of the aren't, and it is similar to other options. A lot of the features and conveniences that make a stroller easy to use are missing on the Baby Trend because it is a frame stroller that doesn't historically offer them.
Fold and Unfold
The Trend is easy to fold with only one hand. It has one to two steps, including an unlock and release button. The front wheels need to be facing forward to complete the fold and engage the manual lock. The Trend self-stands and rolls when folded, or you can use the carry handle. It unfolds just as easy as it folds.
The Baby Trend has double action brakes that require two separate pedals to activate. We prefer the single action brakes with a single pedal to avoid potential mistakes. The brakes are average for setting and releasing, and they cause pain to the tops of feet.
The storage bin is on the large side, but it has a 5 lb weight limit which severely limits what you carry. Unfortunately, we were only able to fit in the medium-sized diaper bag because access to the bin is poor. There is some access from all sides, but the carrier interferes with the basket. You will not be able to run errands or get groceries because it won't hold the weight, which makes it somewhat useless for city dwellers.
The Baby Trend is one of the few options that come with a parent console, but it isn't that useful. The cup holders are small, and the storage compartment is too small for even a standard iPhone. Also, there is a safety concern with putting taller items in the cup holders because they can fall out and onto your baby.
There is no canopy on the Baby Trend, and all car seat carriers will need to rely on their canopy for protection from the elements.
Ease of Setup
The Baby Trend is easy to set up and took us about 5 minutes to put together. This time is in spite of a poorly designed manual with a hard to find first step. The pictures in the manual almost make the simple process more difficult. Though it is easy to assemble, it requires more assembly than most of the competition.
The Baby Trend materials and components aren't the best. The storage bin material is flimsy, and it looks like a small cut will easily turn into a larger hole, and maybe why it has a small weight allowance.
The frame on this product is a little shaky and rattles when you place the car seat on board. The joints are not tight, and there is a significant flex in the frame. The plastic on the frame components looks different and potentially of lower quality, and we think it could fade over time. Overall the fit and finish aren't bad; they simply aren't as good as the competition. The components and materials used appear to be of lesser quality and the way the parts are put together and connected make the stroller harder to use.
— Juliet Spurrier, MD & BabyGearLab Team