Product Reviews

Is It Worth It? One Mom Shares Her Review of the Doona Car Seat and Stroller

written by TWYLA ADKINS

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Graphics by: Anna Wissler
Graphics by: Anna Wissler

Before I was a parent, my memories of driving in cars with children were stressful. The process of getting into the car was confusing. And if car seats were being transferred, it became a game of patience. It started to seem like no matter what you do, there will always be a battle between parent and car seat. So when I was pregnant, I knew I’d appreciate the ability to get my newborn son in and out of our vehicle with ease—but what was the best way to do that?

Everyone has different priorities for where they spend and where they save on baby gear. I was willing to splurge on comfort and convenience. That’s where the Doona Car Seat and Stroller came in. Its “travel system” is the first of its kind. Meaning, it’s a rear-facing infant car seat that doubles as a stroller with a button click. With that in mind, it’s not surprising why it seems to be the most-talked-about stroller and carseat on the market. The travel system comes at an investment price, though. So many parents might wonder whether it’s worth the $550 price tag. Here, I’m sharing answers to common questions about the Doona based on my experience—including whether I thought it was worth the cost.

 

Doona Car Seat and Stroller Review

 

What comes with the Doona?

Out of the box, the Doona comes ready to use. It was important to me to choose a safe and tasteful car seat. And I wasn’t disappointed. My husband and I felt safe knowing our son would be protected in Doona’s car seat mode with safety features like side impact protection, a five-point harness, and an anti-rebound bar. When using it in stroller mode, it has a water-repellent, UPF 50+ sun canopy and you can choose from an array of color options. We went with the ‘Racing Green’ color. And I loved having a sunshade on the car seat during sunny days.

doona stroller review
Doona
All-in-One Infant Car Seat and Stroller

Doona's innovative all-in-one travel system includes an infant car seat that's got its own compact stroller and integrated wheels built into the base.

many colors available

Shop now

While Doona sells an array of add-on accessoriesthe only Doona accessories we bought were LATCH Bases and vehicle seat protectors for my car and my husband’s car. Having those accessories made it easy—and cost-effective—to switch the Doona between vehicles. As a bonus, it also meant I could avoid unnecessary re-installations of the car base.

Doona latch base
Doona
LATCH Base

This car seat base will be installed in the vehicle to ensure correct installation every time.

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Doona vehicle seat protector
Doona
Vehicle Seat Protector

Keep your vehicle clean from stains and soiling with this $15 add-on product.

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As I think about it now, however, there are some other accessories I would consider purchasing for added convenience and safety. For example, we’re a big walking family and I started to realize it would be nice to have things like cup holders and an added snap-on storage bag for convenience’s sake. For those walks on colder days, I also think it would be worth it to have one of Doona’s footmuffs on hand to make sure my little one is as snug as can be. My baby fit into the Doona nicely. But for infants who may weigh less, their infant inserts are also a must-have for safe use. 

Doona cupholder
Doona
Cup Holder

At just $12, the Doona add-on cup holder would have been nice to have.

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Doona snap on storage
Doona
Snap-On Storage Bag

Most strollers have storage but since the Doona doubles as a car seat, it doesn't unless you purchase this additional snap-on storage bag.

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Doona footmuff
Doona
Footmuff

For strolling during cold weather, this Doona footmuff is a helpful add-on purchase to make.

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Doona infant insert
Doona
Infant Insert

This insert correctly cradles and supports infants while using the Doona as a car seat and stroller.

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How long can your baby use the Doona?

The Doona Car Seat and Stroller’s weight limit is 35 pounds and up to 32 inches. Because of those restrictions, the reviews left us worried about whether our son would grow out of the Doona too soon. Some reviewers said that their child grew out of it in three months, and it wasn’t worth the cost— but I was willing to take that chance. I was already nervous about parenting with a disability, so I wanted to invest in convenient options.

Our son was able to use it for 20 months as a car seat and a stroller. However, one consideration to note as your child grows is they may want to look out at their surroundings and not only at the person pushing the stroller. After 14 months, we bought a new stroller only because we wanted him to be able to sit up and look around more on zoo or museum trips. But I wouldn’t trade the time I was able to look down at him, either. Had it not been for wanting him to see more, we would not have felt the need for another stroller until he outgrew the size requirements.

 

 

Is it easy to use the car-seat-to-stroller transition feature?

It took us about three tries to get familiar with transitioning from car seat to stroller with the Doona. The process afterward was seamless—you don’t even need to remove the baby from the seat. The removable interior material was washable and made cleaning up simple. Locking the Doona into place on top of the LATCH Base was also easy when using it as a car seat. All around, after a few tries, we felt like we mastered it. 

The swift move from a stroller to a car seat was such a welcome relief, especially during unfavorable weather or when my son fell asleep while we were running errands. As we all know, convenience is key with a little one—not having to lug the heavy car seat around was a new mom win! 

 

How did the Doona stand up to everyday use? 

The Doona Car Seat and Stroller has a two-year warranty, but we didn’t have any issues with quality or durability. It held up through the seasonal elements and felt sturdy. The Doona is easy to navigate, the wheels locked as intended, and the handlebar never stuck. We could easily use it again if we choose to have a second child.

 

 

Is the Doona worth it?

For me, yes! Having something as intuitive as the Doona Car Seat and Stroller simplified my first two years as a new mom. In those pivotal postpartum moments, all the little things helped. The convenience was priceless post-C-section. It was also convenient later when I was exhausted or if it was cold outside. As a mom with a disability, the Doona was especially helpful on the days when my mobility was limited and my chronic pain was high.

I cannot recommend the Doona Car Seat and Stroller enough, especially if you live in a city, don’t have a car, or only have one car. It’s also ideal for travel with babies as it fits down the aisle of an airplane and can be used (without the base) as a car seat on most airlines, according to Doona’s website. Not to mention that you can use it as both a stroller and car seat when you reach your destination. In this case, you can just check or gate check it prior to the flight. 

When it comes to the $550 cost, it’s worth noting that the cost of an infant car seat and a stroller separately is pretty comparable. After my son outgrew the Doona, we bought the Even Flo EveryFit 4-in1 Convertible Car Seat ($209.99) and the Baby Jogger City Mini GT2 All-Terrain Stroller ($399.99). Together, they cost $609.98, which is $59.98 more than the Doona Car Seat and Stroller.

To me, $550 was worth making my day-to-day as a new mom more convenient for 20 months. I’m only now disappointed that Doona doesn’t have bigger car seats for my growing son. But the Doona website’s FAQ hinted that it might be an option in the future. My husband and I loved the Doona Car Seat and Stroller. For me, it was 100% worth purchasing, and I have no regrets.

Doona-stroller
Doona
All-in-One Infant Car Seat and Stroller

Doona's innovative all-in-one travel system includes an infant car seat that's got its own compact stroller and integrated wheels built into the base.

many colors available

Shop now
doona midnight edition
Doona
Special Edition Infant Car Seat/Stroller & Base

This special Doona Midnight Edition features a diamond-stitch seat cover, black-anodized aluminum, and faux-leather accents throughout. Plus, a Doona Midnight Essentials travel bag is included in the price.

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