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The height-adjustable seat means you can bring your baby much closer to you than with many other pushchairs, which means less stooping or bending when you need to check on or reassure your baby. As well as being extremely well thought out and put together, the Graco Near2Me also delivers on style, and comes in at a budget-friendly price point of £270.
It’s suitable from birth (thanks to its lie-flat seat) up to around 4 years (22kg), and is travel system friendly, being compatible with the Graco SnugEssentials iSize car seat, as well as the Graco Time2Grow carrycot.
Mum of 2, Jaya, tested the Graco Near2Me with her 10-month-old son, on long school runs to pick up her 6-year-old daughter, as well as regular walks during her maternity leave.
What were your first impressions?
I was sceptical at first when I saw the RRP for this product – it is comparatively very cheap to many other well-known brand competitors and so I didn’t know what to expect in regards to quality. At £270 this pushchair certainly sits at the cheaper end of the market, but it has so many brilliant features to boast, I needn’t have been concerned.
How easy is the Graco Near2Me to assemble?
The pushchair was incredibly easy to build. It arrived pre-assembled and all that we had to do was remove the packaging, unfold the chassis and attach the seat unit and footmuff. It probably took less than 5 minutes, so very user-friendly in this regard.
How do you fold the Near2Me pushchair?
It’s fairly easy to fold the Graco Near2Me; there is a simple push button on either side of the chassis, just below the handle bar – push these and the chassis will collapse down.
Although the manufacturer’s website talks about the one-hand fold mechanism, I couldn’t find a way to do it without using both my hands. It would have been nice to be able to do a one-handed fold; using two hands can be somewhat frustrating if you are juggling a baby, changing bag and the pushchair itself, but this is a minor oversight in my opinion.
How compact is the Graco Near2Me when folded?
Folded, the unit is freestanding – if the brake is on – and measures H:80.3cmxW:33cmxL:60cm, so it’s certainly not what you’d call compact. It fits in the boot of my car, although it does take up most of the space. The wheels are also removable which means it can fit in to smaller vehicles if necessary, but it still is rather bulky. This is something backed up by a number of Amazon reviews, with parents pointing out it’s not suitable for small car boots. If a compact fold is important to you, if may be better to consider something like the Micralite ProFold (H:51.5cmxW:44cmxL:24cm) or the Joolz Aer (H:53.5cmxW:44cmxL21cm).
How do you rate the buggy handle?
The Near2Me has a tan leatherette handlebar, which is a very stylish touch that feels great and gives this pushchair the look (and feel) of a much more expensive product.
You’re not able to adjust the handlebar, but I felt it sat at a good height for most average height individuals.
What is the hood like on the Graco Near2Me?
The hood is large and can be pulled all the way over your baby, so that their face is no longer visible, perfect for shutting light and distractions out during naps. It also has UPF+ 50 protection.
Is the storage basket a decent size?
Yes. The storage basket is wonderfully large, big enough for storing everything you might need. It is easily accessible due to the adjustable height of the seat, which means you are not trying to cram things into a tight space or yank them free again.
I easily fitted in 3 full shopping bags in the basket, perfect if you do your shopping on foot. I also managed to fit my daughter’s scooter in there and often carry her school bags and coat, as well as the baby changing bag and raincover inside, so there really is plenty of room.
One thing I did find a little frustrating, was that due to the way the Graco Near2Me folds, the basket needs to be completely empty in order to do this, otherwise things will fall out. Being that I see the large basket as such a great selling point for this pushchair, it is a shame that the manufacturers haven’t thought about that in regard to folding the unit. For example, if you have the basket full of things and are out for the day and then need to get on public transport or in a car, you need to take everything out in order to fold the buggy. This could be problematic, especially if you have filled the basket to its large capacity – however, I appreciate this is the case with a large number of pushchairs.
How well does the Graco Near2Me cope with different terrain?
As the wheels are very well made and easy to manoeuvre, the Near2Me gives a very smooth ride for your baby. Unlike some other buggies I have used, where the wheels can get stuck and cause the pram to jolt, this pram moves perfectly around corners and over obstacles such as kerbs, tree roots and uneven pavement. On most terrains I found the Near2Me easy to push, and kept my baby safe and secure without too much bumping around.
The pushchair also works well in both rain and snow; the weight of the unit helped it push through snow easily and the wheels have good ground-grip in wet conditions.
Does the Near2Me come with a raincover?
A raincover is included in the package and it’s a good fit. However, my one qualm would be that it doesn’t have an opening for easy access to the baby once it’s on. I have used pushchairs before where the raincover has a zipped opening, so that you can easily attend to your baby when it’s raining, without having to remove the entire cover. The Near2Me’s raincover doesn’t, which is a shame as it means risking your baby getting wet in the rain if you need to get to them at all.
Is the Near2Me a stylish pushchair?
Absolutely. The overall look of the pushchair is sleek and modern. It only comes in one colourway – Steeple Gray– but I found this grey and black colour combination to be a lovely gender neutral and stylish choice.
What’s in the box?
- 1 x Near2Me™ pushchair seat unit with canopy & bumper bar
- 2 x chest pads
- 1 x pushchair chassis
- Front & rear wheels
- 1 x rear brake assembly unit
- 1 x luxury footmuff
- 1 x rain cover
- 1 x instruction Manual
What are the additional accessories you can buy?
What do you think of the Graco Near2Me’s seat unit?
I love that this pushchair’s seat unite reclines completely flat and can be used from birth without the need for a separate carrycot. The seat is padded and comfortable for my baby and the incline has a wide range of adjustable angles.
The seat can be front or rear facing, which gives parents flexibility to adapt as their child grows, and changing between the two is so quick and simple, perfect for adjusting throughout the day if you wanted to. The height adjustable element of the seat also helps with the pushchair’s longevity, as does the adjustable foot rest that can be altered as your baby grows, for maximum comfort. All these touches make me confident that the Near2Me will last for the duration of the pre-school years.
One issue I had was that the seat does not sit fully upright, so is always angled slightly back. As my son is older now, he does like to lean forward and peer out, so he is often sitting unsupported by the back of the seat. Having said that, he doesn’t seem uncomfortable when doing this, so it’s not a dealbreaker.
Does the Graco Near2Me have any special features?
The real stand out feature of this product is the adjustable height of the seat, meaning that you can bring your baby much closer to you than you can on other prams. My baby loves to be worn in the carrier but this is not always practical, and so this pushchair is the perfect solution. Having the seat on the highest setting means my baby can be comforted and feel close to me, and it also stops me having to constantly bend over to tend to him. Now that he is slightly older and beginning to snack on the go, it is great that he is close enough for me to hand him nibbles and drinks without putting constant pressure on my back.
What’s the chassis like?
The chassis is quite a large frame, but feels well-built and sturdy. The material is black matte aluminium which seems to have worn well and hasn’t got many scratches on it from use, so far. I felt it managed to feel robust without being too bulky or large, although the back wheels are quite wide set, and it can be a struggle to get the unit out of the door if it is unfolded. A number of Amazon reviews pointed out that the chassis was quite wide and overall felt quite large when pushing around.
How much does the Graco Near2Me weigh?
A not insubstantial 11.19kg. This puts the Near2Me, weight-wise, somewhere between the Venicci Tinum at 12kg and the Silver Cross Pioneer 2020 at 10.2kg. It is fairly weighty compared to some other pushchairs I have used, however I feel that this is a positive in regard to feeling as though baby is safe and secure. Having said that, if you are often carrying the pushchair in and out of a car, it might not be the best product for you.
What are the brakes like?
The brakes are in an obvious and convenient place, on the right side at the bottom of the chassis. They are easy to use, do not require much force to put on and off and are very effective. You cannot push the buggy at all when the brakes are on.
What is worth knowing before buying the Graco Near2Me pushchair?
I would have liked to know that the folded unit is fairly bulky and takes up a fair amount of space in the boot of a car. I would also have liked to know that the 5-point harness is difficult to use with the footmuff attached and involves a lot of searching around which can be time consuming when you’re in a rush.
Is the Graco Near2Me worth the money?
With an RRP of £270, I think this pushchair is extremely economical, considering the stylish finish and sturdiness it offers, as well as the large, practical storage space underneath and luxurious extras such as the footmuff, raincover and leather handlebar.
The fact that it is suitable from birth, without the need for a carrycot, saves you from having to buy one separately, although you can if you prefer. Yes, it doesn’t include a car seat as many travel systems on the market do, however, for the price it could hardly be expected – and compatible car seats are available to purchase separately at reasonable price points.
Who is the Near2Me most suited to?
This buggy would be well suited to most expectant parents, due to the low price and great usability. I think that, specifically, it is a great product for those on a budget and also those who don’t have a car – as it’s quite large and heavy, and the fold can be frustrating, so better suited to those who don’t need to fold and unfold a buggy often.
How does the Graco Near2Me compare to similar pushchairs?
|Product name||Weight||One hand fold?||Folded size?||RRP|
|Kinderkraft XMOOV 3in1||11.8kg||No||H75xW62xD42cm||£329|
|My Babiie Belgravia Travel System||11.5kg||No||H71xW57xD65cm||£599.99|
Where can I buy the Graco Near2Me pushchair?
Overall, I think the Graco Near2Me is a brilliant pushchair that fulfils everything it promises. It is a great idea to produce a product that allows you to be closer to your baby during walks, which are so important for parent’s mental health and for baby’s awareness of the world. This pushchair means that you can explore together, keeping your baby comfortable and close to you, allowing you to share smiles and interaction during your adventures. Having an adjustable height seat is also a great way to help your baby make the transition from sling to pushchair, too. The Near2Me feels sturdy and very well made, each adjusting feature is easy to manoeuvre and the pushchair can be assembled and folded within seconds – a must for any busy parent.
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Dimensions & Weight
|Dimensions||H:119cm W:65.5cm L:94.2cm|
|Dimensions (folded)||H:80.3cm W:33cm L:60cm|
|Child age (approx)||Birth to 4 years|
|Child weight||Up to 22kg|
|Travel system compatible||Yes|
|Compatible car seats||
Graco® SnugEssentials™ iSize baby car seat
|Seat facing direction||Forward facing and parent facing|