Babywearing & public transit?? - Mothering Forums

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Old 02-17-2013, 03:11 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm due with my 1st in April, just a few short months away!  My plan is to babywear, but I don't drive & take public transportation (generally the bus) fairly often.  

   

What do people recommend for safety purposes??  Is she supposed to be safer in a stroller on the bus than strapped to me?  I don't really want to have to carry a stroller around because of bus trips, but I guess I would if I had to.  
  
I've asked a few women I've seen out & about wearing their babies, but they've all stated they have cars & use car seats for transportation.  *sigh*  

  

Thanks for any help and/or insight!

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Old 02-17-2013, 04:39 PM
 
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When I take the bus or streetcar I always wear my baby. Normally I try and sit down in one of the seats that face forwards, to me they seem a little safer since in an accident or sharp stop other people are less likely to end up in your lap.
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Old 02-17-2013, 04:45 PM
 
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Hello :) I have never taken public transit while babywearing but have taken my daughter at 2 in her jogging stroller on the light rail train. It was a pain! It was bulky and in the way. I would think that babywearing especially on the front would be pretty safe on the bus or train. There would be no chance of the stroller rolling away, and less chance of strangers touching the babe orngbiggrin.gif. Also You are much more hands free with out the stroller to hang on too. Good luck and I hope you find what works for you.

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Old 02-17-2013, 05:36 PM
 
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I baby-wore with ds on public transit all the time and do again now with the baby I nanny. I think on you is easier than in a stroller. Takes up less space. You know right where baby is all the time. No fear of rolling at a stop or anything.
I have ridden buses, trolleys , trains, and subways all while baby wearing. It is certainly easier than lugging a stroller.
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Old 02-17-2013, 09:21 PM
 
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Some towns ban strollers from busses (they can take up A LOT of room...especially if you get more than one on the bus). Babywearing is where it's at for public transit!!

 

As babe grows it can get trickier to sit and still acommodate their legs, but WAY better than lugging a stroller around.

 

The times it gets tricky are if you're buying a lot of stuff (in which case you could get some kind of shopping cart/trolly thing if need be).

 

The best carrier will change seasonally and with the growth of your babe, so no easy answer there. The type of bag you take will also depend on the carrier you're using and what you plan on doing while out, but none of that needs to be perfect and you'll figure out what works for you as you go.


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Old 02-17-2013, 11:27 PM
 
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I take public transit all the time.  When DD was a newborn, I found it more convenient to babywear and just have her on my front when I rode the bus.  But that's because here you have to fold the stroller up when you get on the bus and I thought it was a little bit of a hassle to get her out and fold it up.  And she was so light, carrying her was more convenient.  The heavier they get, the less hassle the stroller seems, lol.


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Old 02-18-2013, 08:57 PM
 
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I have a car but I cannot think of anything more inconvenient than using a stroller with public transit.

 

if I were you, I would totally invest in a good backpack and a good carrier.  it seems a lot easier, safer, and more fun!

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Old 02-18-2013, 09:13 PM
 
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I take public transit (bus) or bike everywhere, and the bus drivers around here actually wont allow a child to ride on the bus while sitting in a stroller. So babywearing is actually much easier and more convenient than using a stroller. And safer, according to the bus drivers!

Married 12/08 to Chilean DH and mama to DD 2/2/10. We're a bilingual home and we familybed1.gif and toddler.gif

 

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Old 02-19-2013, 12:14 PM
 
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Buses in the DC metro area do not allow you to keep your child in a stroller while riding. You must take the child out of the stroller AND fold the stroller up for safety reasons. I'll ask my husband later if it is just certain transit systems or all transit systems in the country, he works for the Federal Transit Administration particularly with buses.
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Old 02-19-2013, 12:59 PM
 
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I wore my daughter in the sling on the subway and it worked like a charm. I imagine people would offer their seat if needed...


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Old 02-20-2013, 09:45 AM
 
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Babywearing much easier than stroller.

Lots of places I've been required the child to be out of the stroller and the stroller folded.
also a pain locating elevators in train/subway stations.
Strollers are nice when you are carrying lots of stuff.

mom to 14yr dd and 4yr dd
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Old 02-20-2013, 10:00 AM
 
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Lots of people use strollers on the bus here, and the kids are always getting tripped over, nearly tipping over, nearly getting dropped getting on and off the bus, etc.... it's not good.  Not to mention that during rush hour there often isn't a physical way to fit a stroller on the bus, which can mean standing in horribly miserable weather for a long time.

 

I babywore on the bus for a LONG time, and it meant I could always get on the bus, I almost always had a seat (people give up their seats to babywearers around here), my kids were never tripped over or fallen on, and getting on and off over snowbanks was not much harder than it is kid-free, and certainly safer than with a stroller.   Also, in that awkward stage when the kids wanted to walk sometimes, but not all the time, it was easier to carry a carrier just in case, than to carry a just-in-case stroller, or to carry an overtired child in my arms.

 

The few times I took, a stroller I planned extra carefully to make sure I avoided rush hour, and chose wheelchair accessible routes to avoid dealing with stairs.

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Old 02-20-2013, 10:10 AM
 
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The worst is when you DO bring a stroller, but your over-tired toddler refuses to sit in it so you have to carry her in your arms without the added support of a carrier, AND you have to lug around a folded umbrella stroller.

Married 12/08 to Chilean DH and mama to DD 2/2/10. We're a bilingual home and we familybed1.gif and toddler.gif

 

Expecting #2 in late June!

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Old 02-20-2013, 11:09 AM
 
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Definitely better to wear baby in public transit than to lug around a stroller! Where I live, they require you fold up the stroller in the bus anyway. And when the bus is full, it's so much easier when you take up less space and are able to move around quickly! Also, when my daughter was still tiny and vulnerable, it was nice to have her close to me, not being breathed on and touched by strangers in public transports. I can't say enough good things about babywearing when using public transportation!
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Old 02-20-2013, 11:13 AM
 
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Also, n regards to seat when babywearing, I straight up ask people to get up so I can sit and not risk tripping with my baby. If the basis full I ask the bus driver to make the announcement. Never had a problem. I also aske bus driver to wait until I sit before he/she starts the bus.
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Old 02-20-2013, 11:27 AM
 
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If you use a stroller, the stroller must be collapsed to take it on the bus. That means you're holding the baby. If the bus comes to a sudden stop, you may not be able to hold onto your baby. I think it would be safer for you to be wearing the baby, rather than holding the baby.
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Old 02-20-2013, 12:02 PM
 
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Women in the town in Kenya I lived in for my thesis research wore babies on their backs in wraps on buses.  It never seemed to present a problem for them, but of course baby on the back is the norm there.

 

Given the shape and size of seating on buses in the West, front carries are generally easier.  I usually see tiny babies worn in slings on buses around here, and toddlers on the back or front in Ergos or other SSCs, but I have used front carries with my wrap and found that to be the most comfortable.  But if you're going to stand, or you're taking a lightrail train or trolley to a location where you will walk around a lot (the zoo, a museum, the farmer's market), I would probably opt for the back carry.

 

In any situation where you're going faster than a walking pace and an infant isn't traveling in their own safety seat, babywearing is pretty much going to be the safest option.

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Old 02-20-2013, 03:57 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pek64 View Post

If you use a stroller, the stroller must be collapsed to take it on the bus.

It depends where you are, but strollers are tricky on the bus either way.

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Old 02-20-2013, 08:39 PM
 
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Yes, wearing the baby is much easier on the bus or subway than a stroller.  I used a ring sling when she was a newborn, then a Baby Bjorn until her legs kicked me too much, and now I'm back to the ring sling snuggling her into my hip.  Taking stroller on the bus is always a production - good to know you can do it if you have to, but babywearing is always easier.

Good luck!

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Old 02-21-2013, 02:21 PM
 
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Babywearing, hands down is best for public transportation.  It gives you both hands free even if you do take a stroller also.  I've ridden public transport all over the country  and it varies on whether you are allowed to have stroller unfolded on the bus and a child in it or not.  But every place I have been, you have to take the child out of the stroller, fold the stroller and then get on the bus.  This reallly sucks when the child is asleep in the stroller and has to be woken - sucks for everyone on the bus and the mom and baby.  Maybe some places let you use the wheelchair access?  Still the children in strollers always looked stressed and so did their mothers for all the reasons other people have allready commented on.  The babywearers are so much more comfy and stress free.  With my first born I only had to take public transport once and that was a subway - I didn't have to think or plan about anything the way I do when a stroller is involved.  Just on and off as easy as if it were just me.

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Old 03-07-2013, 03:47 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you all so much for your insights!  I had completely forgotten that you are, in fact, supposed to take the baby out of the stroller & fold it up - because NO ONE does it here!  But it is supposed to be done!

I often see two or three mothers all trying to fit their strollers on the same bus in the morning, and it's *such* a hassle for them & frustrating to watch. But I couldn't recall if it was supposed to be safer for babe; honestly, it didn't *seem* safer to me, but sometimes laws don't always make sense. ;)

But all these comments reminded me that I'm supposed to take her out of the stroller anyway.

Yay!  Sling it is!  *grin*

Thanks again!!

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Old 03-15-2013, 01:17 AM
 
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joy.gifYap made a good choice. We don't have car so we always use the public transportation. Very helpful,. the only hassle is when the space is small your baby feet might be squeeze.. but other than BWing using a carrier in a travel is really easier., Thanks to my Action baby carrier.


Living is great but being a MOM is even better

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Old 03-16-2013, 08:51 AM
 
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Wearing my daughter since birth on public transit (I don't drive either). 

 

She's 8 months. We take up less room, she's more observed by others than a stroller baby, lots of people talk to us on transit (this is a plus for me). I have come to pop her out of the carrier on longer rides so she can sit on my lap. Just get a good forward facing seat.

 

I'll take up two seats only when I have heavy groceries and a half empty bus, otherwise we are wedged in. My daughter and I like to be in a spot to observe people on the bus and traffic outside.

 

Hearing about having to fold up strollers before riding the bus! That would cause such an uproar in my city, especially in the cold of winter. Though my babe keeps warm off my body heat and parka covering us both.

 

My biased opinion is that it seems easier to wear them. Period.

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Old 03-26-2013, 01:03 PM
 
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I started wearing my baby on the bus and subway at 3 weeks old. I do drive, but at that time I couldn't imagine driving somewhere with baby in the back seat, just the two of us. (At 4.5 months I still avoid driving solo with him!) I take public transit even when it takes longer than driving, because it's just so much more pleasant for both of us to be close to each other. Baby can look around at the other people and out the window, and when he gets tired, he can snuggle up and go to sleep with minimal fussing. I also have never had to bundle him up like i would if he were in a stroller, because he's inside my coat next to my body where it's warm.

A lactation consultant once told me that wearing your baby on public transit is actually preferable to using a stroller, from a health perspective. I forget if it's because of skin-to-skin contact or breathing the same air or whatever, but if someone else on the bus has an airborne illness, your baby will be better able to resist it if s/he is on your body. I don't have a source for that, though, and I'm not sure if it only applies if the babywearer is also the one breastfeeding.

Anyway, babywearing and public transit go hand-in-hand, IMHO.
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