When Cosatto announced the new Cosatto Ooba 3 in 1 Travel System I was rather excited and could not wait to get my hands on one to try, Cosatto gave me this opportunity this year and sent me the Cosatto Ooba in Marzipan. From what I saw online I loved everything about it but did I still feel the same after actually using it? Unlike other reviews posted on the Cosatto Ooba, I’ve used it over some time before bringing you this honest review.
What do you get in the box?
Upon delivery, you receive one box, and I thought there had been a mistake as I didn’t believe it could it all fit into that one box. Well, it did, and this is what we pulled out..
In this bundle, you will find:
Seat Unit and Raincover
Chest Strap Pads
Carrycot, Raincover and Apron
Changing Bag which contains Changing Mat and Mess Bag
Carseat Adapters for the Cosatto Hold Carseat which isn’t included.
Assembly of the pram is required and being nine months pregnant at the time I undertook this task with the husband’s help. I cannot fault them on the packaging as Cosatto had gone to great lengths to make sure the chassis didn’t get damaged in the delivery process.
Setting up was basically about slotting everything together, putting it up and adding the wheels. I tweeted as we set up and these tweets can be found over at #emmasexpectingcosatto where you can also find some more photos of us assembling the Ooba. We had fun doing so but even with the two of us doing it did take some time. This may be something to bear in mind if you are expecting baby rather soon after purchasing it.
To me, this is one of the most important parts to the Ooba as this is where everything gathers to make it the pram you need it to be. Be it adding the carrycot or adding on the car seat, everything revolves around the chassis. This is where you find will the handle, and this has the added function of being adjustable to suit your height, but mine has broken, and the handle no longer adjusts.
You also can flip the handle over instead of turning around the whole seat unit. This could come handy for some but for me I found pushing it rather difficult with the two bigger wheels at the front. I found the same with the Graco Symbio which had the same function, and I find the Cosatto Ooba is rather similar to the Graco Symbio in many ways. You could use it to remove a sleeping baby from the carrycot/seat without the risk of bumping them into the handle.
Just below the top handle and to the side you will find the hand brake. I thought I might like the fact the braking system was controlled by hand, but I couldn’t get on with and found myself craving a foot brake. I especially disliked the fact you could see the wire for this and found it to be an eyesore.
Something that can bug me is when the pram chassis gets scratched and leaves marks which cannot be removed. In all our time of using the Ooba, it has yet to gain any kind of scratch which has ruined the paintwork.
We actually cannot give you a user recommendation for the carrycot based on the fact ours was faulty. Assembling was simple enough, but when it came to attaching the inside carrycot liner, I couldn’t do so because the teeth for the zip were breaking away. By the time we got a new carrycot for the pram, Charlotte had outgrown wanting and needing to use it.
Something to note about the Cosatto Hold Carseat is that it is not actually included and you need to buy it separately. We were also sent one of these to review; it wasn’t our main car seat when Charlotte was born as we used one with a base. If you want to use this Cosatto Hold Carseat with a base, then they also sell Universal Base/ISOFIX Base. Charlotte preferred using car seats on prams to carrycots in those first few weeks, and I put this down to her size and the fact she most probably felt more secure and comfortable in the snugness of the car seat. All babies, however, are different and I remember using a carrycot with my first son for the first month of his life.
I do like the hold car seat and it is nice to have an actual car seat that goes with the rest of the pram. With the added head hugger which can be removed once outgrown, Charlotte was content travelling around in it and had many trips out with this as her mode of transport. It also comes with added chest pieces and cushioning around the straps to help keep baby comfortable.
Personally, I refuse to use any car seat which does not have a 5 point harness, the hold car seat has this, and I’m comforted by this certain security aspect when travelling with my baby.
If after paying out for the pram and car seat you cannot extend to the base then it can just as easily be used with your seatbelt system. This is Charlotte at six months travelling in the car via her Cosatto Hold car seat.
It clicks on and off with easy release buttons allowing you to move the car seat with the baby in it without disturbing them. For me using the car seat on the school run meant I could easily bring her into the house if she had fallen asleep without waking her up or trying to battle the pram through the front door without making any loud noises.
I do find the car seat has a slight wobble to it when on the chassis but then I have often found this with car seats which have to be attached to the pram chassis with adapters.
The Seat Unit
Once baby has grown out of the carrycot and/or the car seat it’s time to move them onto the seat unit. It’s suitable for age six months onwards with it holding up to 15kg. We used the seat unit straight away with our toddler, and I found it to be a snug fit for someone who is almost 2. No complaints from Dylan though and I would often find him wanting to sit in the seat while it was stored in the hallway.
The seat unit can face either you or out to the world; I often favour the children facing me in their first year. You have three different recline positions to the seat and reclining it is easily done by squeezing the button on the back of the seat unit.
Like the Hold Carseat, the seat also has a 5 point safety harness which for us is a must have on any seat unit, the children will be going up & down kerbs, hills and across roads, so they need to be safe and secure. It also has a bumper bar for that extra piece of mind, but we love these for adding toys to keep the children entertained while out and about. It is easily removed to aid in getting your child in and out.
As well as using the bumper to attach toys the UPF 50+ sun canopy also has toy loops to add them to. You will see that in most of our photos we have the footmuff attached as without it I have found the seat unit to feel hard so have kept the footmuff on for my children’s comfort but then extra layers like this are not ideal when it comes to the warmer weather.
Our first experience of using the Cosatto Ooba was with Dylan who was one at the time, after putting it together we couldn’t wait to take it out on the school run with us. I was quickly disappointed, it did not handle how I had imagined it would and pushing it was more of a chore than a pleasure. Going up and down kerbs were lots of effort, and I was instantly craving the use of one of my other travel systems which have the delights of suspension built in. The Ooba does state that it has all-round suspension, but I am yet to discover this.
It felt like the Ooba was controlling me more than me controlling it. The Man goes as far as comparing it to pushing a double wardrobe, and I wondered if this was because we were using it with the toddler, but all these thoughts and this experience continued when we started to use the Ooba with the baby.
You can feel the weight of the Ooba as you push which is not ideal as your child gets older and heavier. It is not exactly the lightest of systems, and its size is something I still find overpowering despite using it for so long and using similar systems of similar sizes.
Of course, the best part to the ride is the fact the child can see the world, the high up seating system is my most favourite aspect to the Ooba and having a seat unit so high up is something I urge parents to consider when pram shopping.
Without a doubt, we all test our pram systems to the limits when it comes to shopping. Even when we are told we should not hang shopping off handlebars, we all do. There are no handlebars on the Ooba to be this naughty, but it does offer a generous size basket which is big enough basket to handle all that our five years old can throw at it on top of storing the rain cover in it. I should note the back of the seat unit has a net where you can store some small items.
When Cosatto announced the Ooba something, I noticed people commenting on was the wheels and how they would get easily get dirty because they are white. We have not found this an issue at all, and if anything I love the brave move of adding white wheels to a pram, it’s something which makes the Ooba stand out from other similar systems. In all our time of using it, we of only had to wash them down once or twice, and this was because of extremely muddy dog walks. If you like the Cosatto Ooba and the white wheels are the only thing holding you back from buying it, push those concerns aside and see for yourself how white they stay.
The front wheels are lockable, but we have not used this function. I have found lockable wheels handy in the past on other pram systems when trying to rock my eldest to sleep.
Putting Up & Folding
You cannot collapse the Ooba with seat unit attached; this needs to be removed before attempting to fold the system. You then push the handlebar lever in and guide that towards the floor and then follow the 1, two system to release the catch and then lift the handle and the Ooba will fold. Putting it up consists of lifting the handle and swinging out the wheels.
I cannot complain about the view when the Ooba is facing outwards, I would much rather be seeing my child’s face, but the marzipan hood/canopy with its funky pattern does rather make up for it. The view inside of it is a similar story for the child with this rather colourful pattern. We have grown to like this pattern more than the actual marzipan colour itself.
Colour wise I loved the marzipan when I saw it on screen, but I cannot say I like it that much in the flesh. Unlike other systems in the same price range, you cannot change the textiles, so you are stuck with the same colour for as long as you own it. So I will echo what I say to anybody spending over £500 on a pram system, go and see it in the flesh and see for yourself if you like the colour away from the screen/catalogue and then you can also actually have a go at using the pram to see if it is the one for your needs.
The included footmuff is a bonus if you receive your pram in the colder months. It means not having to pay out extra to get one or having to bundle lots of blankets on your child. I like the fact the footmuff has the same feature as the Cosatto Supa footmuff where there’s space for the child to tuck their hands in. Something for the older children, especially those who are not fans of wearing gloves.
It is easily removed for the summer days, or you can use it with the footmuff apron taken off. The pattern from the inside hood continues to the footmuff which helps to brighten up the pram on those dull winter days.
Probably one of my most favourite things about this pram is that it comes with a matching changing bag, I never did get round to getting a matching changing bag for my prams previously with the boys because, by the time I had bought the pram, pennies never did reach as far as changing bags. I have always seen it as a luxury being able to have a changing bag to match your pram, but Cosatto has gone as far as including this little luxury to save you spending extra.
Not only do you get the changing bag with the Ooba but you also get the accessories that you would find in any other changing bag – a changing mat and mess bag. I love the changing mat so much that it comes with us everywhere even on days where the Ooba isn’t with us, even at home it is favoured over the boring changing mat we have.
The Shopping Test
With each pram, I review I have decided to do a small food shop which consists of me raiding the reduced section at our local supermarket which is just within walking distance. As you can see the Ooba basket easily holds this small food shop.
Cosatto Hold Carseat
Universal Hold Base
ISOFIX Hold Base
I have spent the last several months trying to urge myself to love this pram system especially with other reviews popping up and the general conclusion being that the user was happy with it. Maybe it is because I spent longer actually using the Ooba or that I have used many other prams with similar price tags and have found that they offer more for your money and that is without the added extras. The car seat does the job but it is basic, and because of that I think it is pricey and it would add to the £800 price tag of the pram if it were included in the package, especially as you cannot attach any other brand of car seats to the chassis.
Mounting kerbs was an issue and seeing as the main function of the pram is to get you from A to B smoothly then I cannot see myself recommending this pram when asked for pram recommendations. The ride is the important aspect and the fact we did not like this and found it an issue tops off all the other issues we had with this Ooba. However, this is our own opinion and what may not work for us may work for you.
I may think of thought it special at first but after using it I cannot be that excited over it any more, I actually find myself more excited over the changing mat then the actual pram. It does, however, stand out from the crowd like most Cosatto prams, but then I find this is the appeal with Cosatto. They seem to put more effort into the design than the actual working logistics of the pram. I do applaud them for having the seat unit up so high, something which is brilliant about the pram and the one positive thing I will take away from using it.
As I write this I’m hanging up our Ooba wheels as the handle is broken and no longer adjusts, I cannot pull it out any more, and it hurts my back to push it with the handle down so low. I have let the Cosatto PR know this has broken but I am yet to receive a reply. As a customer, if you were to receive any faults with your system, then your first point of call would be to use your free 4-year guarantee.
23/1/15 Cosatto customer service has got in contact after seeing a tweet offering to pick it up to have it looked at or just collected. Of course, I would like it looked at and to have the Ooba fixed. Pretty sure they wouldn’t offer a customer the option of just having it picked up, and I would like to be treated the same as a customer. Will again update as and when the Ooba gets picked up and when I receive it back in working order.
20/4/15 still waiting for Cosatto to pick up my broken Ooba, I am hoping actual customers do not have to wait this long for a solution to their broken pram.