In-depth reviews guided by a Pediatrician

Bugaboo Bee3 Combo Review

Stylish stroller with easy car seat attachment
The Bugaboo Bee 3 is the easiest stroller to attach a car seat to. We used the Chicco Keyfit 30 seat and adapter in our tests.
Top Pick Award
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Price:   $719 List | $719 at Amazon
Pros:  Easy Chicco attachment, lighter
Cons:  Bulky fold, harder to use, expensive
Manufacturer:   Bugaboo
By Juliet Spurrier, MD & BabyGearLab Team  ⋅  Oct 14, 2019
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73
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#4 of 26
  • Ease Of Attaching Car Seat - 35% 9
  • Weight/Folded Size - 30% 7
  • Maneuverability - 10% 7
  • Safety - 10% 7
  • Ease Of Use - 5% 4
  • Quality - 5% 7
  • Ease Of Set Up - 5% 2

The Skinny

The Bugaboo Bee3 earned a high rank in this review. It is one of the easiest product to attach a car seat to, and it has an easy to use one-hand fold and auto-locking mechanism. With all-around shocks, single-action brakes, and storage bin, the Bee is an interesting choice for car seat combination and won a Top Pick for Urban Use. There are some downsides to this stroller, including the higher price tag and the 8.8 lb storage capacity, but depending on your lifestyle and needs, you might be able to overlook these flaws for the sleek design and easy car seat attachment.


Compare to Similar Products

 
The Bugaboo Bee 3 is the easiest stroller to attach a car seat to. We used the Chicco Keyfit 30 seat and adapter in our tests.
This Product
Bugaboo Bee3 Combo
Awards Top Pick Award Top Pick Award Top Pick Award Top Pick Award  
Price $719.00 List
$719.00 at Amazon
$500.00 List
$840.99 at Amazon
$120.00 List
$119.99 at Amazon
$100.00 List
$99.99 at Amazon
$360.00 List
$379.99 at Amazon
Overall Score Sort Icon
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Pros Easy Chicco attachment, lighterSuper easy car to strolling transition, easy to push and turnParent tray, compact fold, budget-friendlyEasy car seat attachment, lightweight, compact foldEasy car seat attachment, compact with easy fold, easy to maneuver
Cons Bulky fold, harder to use, expensiveLimited lifespan of 6-9 monthsLimited to Chicco car seats, short lifespanDual action brakes, harder to push and turnSmaller storage, small front wheel
Bottom Line Stylish stroller with easy car seat attachmentBest for city dwellers looking for a safe, quick transition from taxi to on-the-go adventuresEasy to use dedicated to car seat attachment onlyBest frame stroller with easy car seat attachment and parent consoleCompact Britax that works well with car seats and is easy to push and turn
Rating Categories Bugaboo Bee3 Combo Doona Combo Chicco Shuttle Chicco KeyFit Caddy Britax B-Free Combo
Ease Of Attaching Car Seat (35%)
10
0
9
10
0
10
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
8
Weight Folded Size (30%)
10
0
7
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
7
Maneuverability (10%)
10
0
7
10
0
7
10
0
5
10
0
4
10
0
7
Safety (10%)
10
0
7
10
0
8
10
0
6
10
0
6
10
0
6
Ease Of Use (5%)
10
0
4
10
0
1
10
0
6
10
0
5
10
0
6
Quality (5%)
10
0
7
10
0
7
10
0
7
10
0
3
10
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7
Ease Of Set Up (5%)
10
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2
10
0
10
10
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7
10
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6
10
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8
Specs Bugaboo Bee3 Combo Doona Combo Chicco Shuttle Chicco KeyFit Caddy Britax B-Free Combo
Weight 15.3 lbs 16.8 lbs 15 lbs 11.7 lbs 22.6 lbs
Folded Dimensions 18"W x 16.8"H x 36"L 18"W x 16"H x 28.3"L 20.1"W x 11.3"H x 28"L 19.8"W x 11.5"H x 33.5"L 24"W x 10.3"H x 27"L
Capacity Limits Minimum: Birth

Maximum: 37.5 lbs
Minimum: Birth

Maximum: 35 lbs/32"
Minimum: Birth

Maximum: Infants that are within the size and weight limitations of the infant car seat.
Minimum: Birth

Maximum: Max allowable weight/height for the car seat.
Minimum: Birth
Maximum: 65 lbs/45"
Included Car Seat Compatibility None Doona Chicco
KeyFit, KeyFit 30, Fit2
Chicco
KeyFit, KeyFit 30, Fit2
Britax All Britax Seats
Click-in Car Seat Adapters Britax
B-Safe, B-Safe 35, B-Safe 35 Elite
Chicco
KeyFit, KeyFit 30
Cybex
Aton 2, Aton Q
Maxi-Cosi
Mico AP, Mico Max 30, Mico NXT, Prezi
Doona Chicco
KeyFit, KeyFit 30, Fit2
Chicco
KeyFit, KeyFit 30, Fit2
Britax All Britax Seats
Strap-in Car Seat Adapters None None None None None
One-handed Fold No No Yes Yes Yes
Locking Fold Auto Auto None Auto Auto
Self-standing Fold No n/a Yes Yes Yes
Handlebar Height - Min/Max 34.5"/42" 32.5"/39" 42" 36"/42" 32"/44.5"
Sandal-friendly Brake Yes Yes Yes Yes
Storage Basket Size Medium n/a Large Large Medium
Included Accessories Rain Cover Infant Car Seat and Stroller In One None None None
Setup Time 23:03 n/a 7:45 8:28 6:45

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Bugaboo is the manufacturer of high-end strollers and luggage systems with a mission to "help you move freely." Bugaboo started in 1994 and has been creating what they call "game-changing" products that help families explore their world in "comfort and style."

Performance Comparison



The Bugaboo Bee works with many different car seat brands including Chicco (seen here).
The Bugaboo Bee works with many different car seat brands including Chicco (seen here).

Ease of Attaching Car Seat


The Bee earned a 9 of 10 for ease of attaching car seats mainly for its combination with the Chicco Keyfit 30. There is no easier car seat combo attachment in this group.


The Bee is compatible with the Britax B-Safe 35 Elite, Britax B-Safe 35, and B-Safe 35 Elite; Chicco Keyfit and Chicco Keyfit 30; Cybex Aton 2 and the Aton Q; Maxi-Cosi Mico, Mico AP, Mico NXT, and the Maxi-Cosi Prezi. We tested this stroller with the Chicco Keyfit 30 car seat, an award-winning seat from our infant car seat review.

The Chicco car seat adapter fits easily to the Bee frame.
The Chicco car seat adapter fits easily to the Bee frame.

The Chicco car seat adapter is an aluminum loop that requires a Phillips head screwdriver to assemble. The loop is four parts with four screws that are easy to assemble, and you only have to do it once. You need to remove the seat and canopy to use the adapter, but removal is easy, and they slide out with the push of a button — the adapter clicks-in using the seat connectors on the frame. The carrier sits in the loop and virtually installs itself by clicking into place when you let go of the carrier handle. This seat did not require any additional pressure in our tests and fully connected by itself test after test.

The Chicco car seat releases from the adapter on the Bee by squeezing the release handle on the back of the seat.
The Chicco car seat releases from the adapter on the Bee by squeezing the release handle on the back of the seat.

The Bee and the Chicco Keyfit 30 is one of the best combinations. Given that the majority of the car seat adapters for the Bee incorporate the use of a loop, we think that there is a chance that other seats will be as easy as this one, but we did not test any other carrier.

The Bee is fairly light for a standard stroller at 15 pounds with no seat  but it is sort of bulky when folded at 10 886 cubic inches.
The Bee is fairly light for a standard stroller at 15 pounds with no seat, but it is sort of bulky when folded at 10,886 cubic inches.

Weight and Folded Size


The Bee weighs about 15 lbs with the car seat adapter, which makes it one of the lighter full-size options.


The Bee is on the large side for a folded full-size stroller measuring in at 10,886 cubic inches. There are multiple non-frame stroller options in this review that fold smaller.

The wheels on the Bee all have coil shocks and are smaller than the majority of wheels for standard size strollers.
The wheels on the Bee all have coil shocks and are smaller than the majority of wheels for standard size strollers.

Maneuverability


The Bee is easy to push over most terrain, excelling on hard flat surfaces and negotiating tighter turns and smaller space. You do lose some control over the carpet and with the handle fully extended thanks to flex in the frame.


Overall, it is one of the easiest to maneuver if the ground is flat, but the smaller wheels struggle in the grass and gravel and over small bumps. You might be able to manage it over a green belt on the way to a play park, but it isn't going to perform well on a gravel trail.

The tires are foam-filled rubber that provides the benefits of rubber without the potential flats. The wheels turn easily, but their smaller size inhibits maneuverability and prevents it from being great over rougher terrain. The Bee has four-wheel shocks that are not adjustable. To learn more about the Bee and maneuverability, please take a look at the in-depth review presented in our full-size stroller review.

The handlebar on the Bee 3 telescopes in and out to adjust the height.
The handlebar on the Bee 3 telescopes in and out to adjust the height.

The Bee has an adjustable handlebar that telescopes in and out. We like this design because it allows taller people to find a good height without bringing them too close to the rear axle. The handlebar is smaller in circumference than some of the competition.

The storage bin on the Bugaboo Bee looks large  but it has some cross bars to contend with and the lowest maximum allowable weight limit in the group at around 8 lbs.
The storage bin on the Bugaboo Bee looks large, but it has some cross bars to contend with and the lowest maximum allowable weight limit in the group at around 8 lbs.

Ease of Use


If there is a metric where the Bee struggles, it is ease of use.




Fold and Unfold


The Bee requires two hands to fold and auto-locks. It does not self-stand, but it has a carry strap. Folding is easy, does not require bending, and rolls similar to luggage when folded. The car seat adapter does not interfere with the fold, but the toddler seat does. You can unfold the Bee with one hand if you need to. Unfolding the Bee might take a little practice, but it isn't tricky just different.

The large brake pedal on the Bee 3 is very easy to use.
The large brake pedal on the Bee 3 is very easy to use.

Brakes


The brakes are single action and very easy to set with a design that is friendly for feet wearing sandals. Releasing the brakes is achieved by either lifting the pedal from underneath or pressing it a second time.

The UPPAbaby Cruz storage bin (left) is considerably larger than the Bugaboo Bee3 (right) and holds 25 lbs compared to the Bee's 8.8 lb limit.
The UPPAbaby Cruz storage bin (left) is considerably larger than the Bugaboo Bee3 (right) and holds 25 lbs compared to the Bee's 8.8 lb limit.

Storage


The Bee has a medium size storage bin that fit our large diaper bag. It has access from the rear and front only. It has a limited weight allowance of 8.8 lbs which is unlikely to be adequate for all the things your baby will need. This limit could decrease outing types and length as it has no place to store items heavier than a loaf of bread (forget grabbing groceries).

The canopy on the new Bee 3 (right) is far larger than that found on the previous Bee (left).
The canopy on the new Bee 3 (right) is far larger than that found on the previous Bee (left).

Sunshade


The canopy is nice looking and larger. Unfortunately, the canopy needs to be removed to use the car seat. So you will need to rely on the car seat canopy for protection from the elements.

Ease of Setup


The Bee is one of the most challenging strollers to put together because it comes with almost nothing pre-assembled. This product took us over 23 minutes to assemble, which is over twice the time it took for the next hardest option. The documentation relies solely on illustrations with no written instructions. We put several portions of the product together incorrectly the first time with about ¾ of the time spent on the canopy and seat.

The Bee has a complicated frame with lots of plastic components.
The Bee has a complicated frame with lots of plastic components.

Quality


The Bee is higher-priced, which makes it's just above average quality level somewhat disappointing.


The Bee has a complicated frame with several parts and connectors. Surprisingly it manages to look sleek and functions without too much flex, though enough to impact maneuverability. The fabric on the seat and canopy fit tightly to the frame with no wrinkles or bunching, giving the product an overall nice fit and finish that stands out in a crowd with a stylish, high-end look.

Manufacturer Video




Accessories


Bugaboo makes a few different car seat adapters for coupling with popular brands of infant car seats. These adapters include:
  • Bugaboo Bee3 Maxi-Cosi Car Seat Adapter
    The Bugaboo Bee3 car seat adapter for Maxi-Cosi brand seats.
    We didn't test this adapter, but the two-sided design has us concerned that it will be similar to our testing experience with the Bugaboo Cameleon3 and the Peg Perego two-sided adapter, which was the worst in the group.
  • Bugaboo Bee3 Britax Car Seat Adapter
    Bugaboo Bee3 car seat adapter for Britax brand car seats.
    The Britax adapter may also be harder to use as you'll need to align both sides simultaneously and this has proven difficult, in our experience, with Bugaboo adapters.

Other Versions


Bugaboo also makes the Bugaboo Cameleon that we tested in this review. It might be a good choice for some parents, depending on what you want in a stroller. However, it did not win an award in this review thanks to a higher price tag than strollers that earned higher scores.

Juliet Spurrier, MD & BabyGearLab Team