A random wheel circles forlornly round and round the baggage carousel, whilst a small child screams inconsolably and a couple of harried looking adults sag in despair, all wondering how they are going to get through their holiday with a two wheeled, bashed and broken pushchair…
Ok, that might be a bit dramatic. But it’s always a worry with air travel – it’s bad enough entrusting a suitcase of clothes and toiletries to the less than gentle processes of baggage handling, without wondering if your often-rather-expensive pushchair is going to arrive at your destination in the same good condition it started out in.
And of course, there are – if you happen to be travelling to the other side of the world, as we sometimes do since the Other Half is from New Zealand – often transfers to factor in too. Whilst some airports such as Dubai offer basic pushchairs for airport use in between flights, most don’t in my experience – and this made our four hour delayed transfer in Sydney, for example, a bit of a pain. No easy way of transporting ourselves, our carry on and the Wee Man; and no secure place to strap him into or settle him for a nap without imprisoning ourselves on some hard metal airport seats, either.
BUT the Babyzen YOYO looks set to tackle this tale of woe. And that’s because in theory, it’s small enough to be cabin baggage- in fact, it’s the only pushchair that’s fully compliant with IATA cabin baggage guidelines. So, you can take it along with you, make sure it doesn’t get bashed about, and have an easy and familiar transportation method on hand for your little one wherever you end up. Plus, in the grander scheme of holidaying considerations, it is SMALL, and it is LIGHT. Which, if you’ve ever packed to take a small person on holiday (the first time we went on an aeroplane with the Wee Man he had more stuff than the Other Half and I combined…) you will very much appreciate is a definite good thing.
So, in practice, is it as good as the theory suggests?
Turning up at Heathrow for a flight with BA to Dublin for a couple of days, it passed the first test with flying colours – it is indeed well within cabin baggage measurement requirements.
On to security, and it went through the x-ray machines with no problems…and then, it tested positive for explosives!
Well, not really. It did initially, but – as I suspected, since I knew it was in fact a pushchair and definitely not a blowy up thing, the test was a false positive.
It DID mean that the airport security team had to intricately examine both myself and the pushchair (that body scanning machine they have now is actually pretty cool!) and the security personnel were amazed that the bag contained a fully functioning pushchair. in fact, one of them decided it would be a good idea for her daughter…
Anyway. Nothing blew up, we got through security, we unfolded it, folded it up again ready for boarding and then it was time to get on the plane.
Seeing a sign at the gate stating ‘you must be able to lift your luggage into the overhead locker yourself’ I did have a momentary mental image of a pushchair landing on my head as i tried to jam it in. But it turns out my fears were unfounded as I lifted and stowed it with ease. It fit into the overhead lockers with room to spare. Perfect!
Definitely a massive bonus for holiday travel by air. If you’ve got a little jet setter in the family then it’s definitely worth getting.
Next week: how does the YOYO handle holiday terrain? Yes, we’re off to the beach, hooray!