Back when I was first starting cycling, I remember how easy it was just to pack up and hit the road. But then I started a family, and things got a bit more complicated. The extra time that you once had suddenly becomes packed with bottles, diapers, and trips to the playground.
And although you get a pretty good workout chasing your kids up and down the jungle gym, as a parent, you still need time for real exercise. Not only is it beneficial to your health, but it gives you more energy to keep up with those little rugrats.
So how do you maintain an active lifestyle with a family?
Easy…bring the family along!
That’s what a bike trailer for kids will do. It helps you maintain an active lifestyle while bringing your kids along for the ride.
And it not only allows you to continue cycling, but it provides a positive influence on your kids. Being active and outside will help them develop healthy habits for the future.
So if you’re ready to start your new active lifestyle with your family, then this is the guide for you. First, you will learn how to pick out a bike trailer. Afterward, you will read about the best bike trailers for kids in 2019. So let’s dive in and get started.
How to Pick Out A Bike Trailer for Kids? Which is Best for Your Child?
When it comes to buying a bike trailer, there are many different factors to consider. We all live different lives. Our families are different sizes, we live in different places, and we all have different needs. Fortunately, there are a variety of trailers to satisfy whatever lifestyle you have.
But where do you start?
Before picking a trailer, its import it’s essential to know what you’re looking for. It’s better to get it right the first time instead of dealing with returns and refunds later. Because we all know the joy that comes with a call to those 1800 numbers!
So with that, let’s jump into how to pick out a bike trailer starting with the different types.
- Trailer Type
There are different types of bike trailers. The most popular trailer is the carriage style. The carriage type simply connects to the back of an adult bike. But not all carriage types are the same. Some also come as strollers and joggers. Yes, I know…pretty awesome. This is a huge plus because instead of buying a jogger for running and a trailer for riding, you only need to buy one that does both. Even more, it’s convenient because instead of storing two pieces of equipment you only need room in your closet and trunk for one.
Now, although the carriage type is the most common, there are still other styles available. One other type of bike trailer comes as an actual smaller bike. This serves more than one purpose. Yes, you primarily use it as a bike trailer, but it’s also a convenient way to help your child become familiar with riding a bike. They will get used to the feel and have the option to either pedal or cost.
Once you pick what type of trailer you want, next, you should determine how much room you need in the cabin.
- Cabin Size
Okay now that you know the type of trailer you’re looking for, it’s time to check out the inside if you choose a carriage style.
So, first and foremost, decide how many seats you need. Most trailers come with either two seats. However, some models may have the choice of either one or two. Even if you have one child you may want another seat for a friend, extra storage, or a dog.
But keep in mind there is a choice of seat number when ordering. Although the picture may show two seats, you could have the option for one seat when ordering. So make sure you pay close attention, so you order the correct number of seating with your trailer.
Also, take a look at the cabin size in general. Is there enough head and shoulder room for your kids? Children are all different sizes, and your child may be big for his age. So make sure it’s spacious enough for a comfortable ride for everyone.
- Weight Capacity
Each bike trailer has a rating for a particular weight. For example, if the weight capacity is 80 lbs., that’s 80lbs total between your kids AND storage. So you want to consider how what supplies you plan to carry in addition to the weight of your children.
But even though there are weight restrictions, rest assure you shouldn’t run into much of a problem. That’s because by the time your child weighs too much for the trailer they are usually ready to ride on their own. But still, weight is something to keep an eye on, especially if you are planning to pack a lot of extras.
Now that you have determined your weight capacity, it’s time to decide on what type of seat you want.
- Seat Type
Next, consider what type of seat you want inside the bike trailer. There are two common types: supportive and sagging. A supportive seat is when each passenger has their own individual seat. It’s usually a hammock style supported with a harness. This type of seating is much more comfortable and is ideal for long rides. It’s also safer in general. Alternatively, a sagging seat sits the passenger on the floor of the carriage. You typically find this style seat on the low-cost versions.
For the non-carriage style bike trailers, the seating is self-explanatory. If it’s you buy the small bike type of trailer then the seat is just your bike. And if it’s a passenger style, then they have their individual supported seat.
Whatever style you choose, you shouldn’t have a problem distinguishing between different seat types. So now that you know what kind of seat you want, let’s take a look at the various safety features available.
Maybe the most critical factor when choosing a bike trailer is safety. The big question of “is it safe?” needs to be answered. And although we make that decision for ourselves, one common denominator it certification. All the best bike trailers will have a nationally recognized safety certification.
In regards to safety features, there are many add-ons available. The first one to consider is the color itself. You might want to go with a bright color to make it more visible. A big bright yellow trailer will be much easier to see then say a sleek black trailer. Also, see what type of reflective gear it comes with. The best trailers have reflectors and reflective material on all four sides as well as reflectors on the wheels. Some also come with a caution flag that sticks up in the air. The point is that it’s critical for the trailer to remain visible at all times.
Here’s a fun fact: safety features can add comfort as well. For example, most trailers come with an external cover. This type of cover keeps out rain, bugs, and wind, all while allowing the air to vent in the cabin. Some covers even have a UV protection screen to prevent excessive sun exposure. I know how we can worry about our little one’s skin when spending the day outside in the sun. Other extras are pads on the seat as well as the seat straps, and a roll cage for added protection.
As we all know…safety comes FIRST. So make sure you feel completely confident with the safety of the trailer. From experience, any time I sacrifice safety for a few extra bucks, I ALWAYS regret it. So if you’re stuck in the middle, I recommend spending the few extra dollars for reassurance. This will eliminate any buyer’s remorse and keep your family nice and safe.
After you decide on your safety features, it’s time to determine how much storage you need.
- Storage Size
What do you plan to carry along when riding? Are you just bringing the essentials like diapers, drinks, and snacks? Or do you plan on spending the day outside and need more room for things like blankets and baseball equipment?
When shopping around, take a look at where the storage is located. Then check how big the storage compartment is. The dimensions are usually available in the bike trailers description.
Most storage compartments are in the rear of the trailer. There’s also basket attachments available for with some trailers in replace of its second seat. So take a look at the space, and find a size best for your needs.
After determining your storage size, next, take a look at the suspension system.
- Suspension System
First, do you even need suspension? Well, a good suspension system can make for a comfortable ride for its passengers. However, the need for a suspension system is typically dictated by the type of surface you plan to ride on.
If you plan on always riding on smooth pavement, then the suspension isn’t something to worry about. If it’s a popular bike trailer, chances are there will be enough suspension to ride on pavement without a problem. But if you plan to ride off-road, a high-quality suspension system will make all the difference in the world.
When choosing a suspension system, the trailer will either be adjustable or non-adjustable. A non-adjustable suspension system works well. But for added comfort, an adjustable system will be the best choice. This way you can adjust it depending on the weight of the trailer and the surface you’re riding on.
- Wheels, Brakes, & Handlebars
Last are a few details you may want to consider: wheels, brakes, and handlebars.
Tire type will affect the smoothness of your ride. Most bike trailers come in either: 16″ and 20″. They also come with metal or plastic rims. A 20” air-filled tire with metal rims will be more stable and will last longer than say a 16” tire with plastic rims. The plastic rims also ride rougher and are prone to warping and cracking.
Next, both foot brakes (complete stop) and hand breaks (slow down) can be found on different trailers. Foot brakes lock the rear wheels in place on all bike trailers. Hand brakes slow down the trailer and are only found on joggers and strollers. Needless to say, brakes are an import part of the construct. When making a pit-stop while riding, you will want to lock the trailer in place. And when jogging, a way to slow the trailer down is convenient, especially when navigating downhill while running.
Finally, handlebars are something to consider when purchasing the stroller or jogger types. You may want an adjustable handlebar. Some are simple two-level handlebars while the more expensive styles adjust to multiple sizes and also swivel. The handlebars with numerous adjustments typically adjust with ease whereas the dual adjustable handles usually must be attached.
- Attachment Type
Attachments can be both fun and frustrating. They are fun because there are many attachments available for different bike trailers. Some are stroller attachments that convert into a stroller or jogger. There are baby seat attachments for younger children. Basket attachments are used for extra storage. And some trailers even have ski attachments to get around in the snow.
Now…attachments can be frustrating also because of the fine print when making your purchase. When you order your trailer, be sure to make sure the attachment comes with it. If not, add it to your purchase. For example, a 2-in-1 jogger trailer could be advertised with a picture as a jogger. But it may need an attachment purchased separately to convert it. So, see what attachment they offer and make sure it actually comes with the bike trailer before placing your order.
Now that you know what you’re looking for let’s discuss the last key factor…PRICE.
- The Price
Last and certainly not least… PRICE. Now that you know everything to look for in a trailer, it’s time to price them out. Naturally, the more luxuries you add, the higher the price. So let’s find your price point. The trailers on this list range somewhere in the neighborhood of $70-$800. As you can see, there’s a trailer for every kind of budget.
But it’s not always as simple as determining how you want to spend. For example, as mentioned earlier, if you buy a trailer that’s also a jogger than you’re saving money. By purchasing a 2-in-1 you don’t need to purchase both a jogger and a trailer if you plan to run. Or if you buy a two-seat trailer with a detachable seat, when your oldest starts riding on their own, you can keep the trailer and now have extra storage. This saves you from buying another trailer with more storage space later down the road.
And of course, the better the quality, the longer it will last. So find a trailer that’s best for you and best for your children and…best for your budget.
Now that you know how to pick out a bike trailer, it’s time do just that, pick one out.
Instead of shopping through hundreds of different trailers in the market, we simplified the process for you. Below are the 10 best bike trailers for kids in 2019. There are different types, at different prices, with the some of the best ratings out there. So take a look, take your pick, and take your new trailer out for a spin with the family.
The 10 Best Bike Trailers for Kids in 2020 Reviewed
1. Burley Design Bee Bike Trailer – Best Choice for A Good Price Without Sacrificing Quality
The Burley Design Bee Bike Trailer is the perfect mixture of price, safety, and performance. Sure it’s not the cheapest in the market, but it’s built with excellent quality and at a reasonable price. What you will first notice about this trailer is its color. It’s big, it’s bright, and it’s YELLOW. As you can imagine, the color and reflective gear make it stand out. This makes the trailer safer when riding due to its visibility. Also, while on the subject of safety, this bike trailer comes with hammock style seats. So, instead of your kids riding on the floor, they strap into their own individual seat. There are two seats available in total. It also comes with tinted windows rated for UPF 30 to keep out rain and strong summer sun rays. The trailer is not just safe, but it’s convenient too. It comes with a spacious rear cargo area for storage. It’s users love it because it’s easy to setup and rides smooth.
- Pros– Big a bright so more visible to cars, fair price for its quality, harness seating, quick latches for easy setup, extra comfort for kids.
- Cons– Pricey for some budgets, not everyone likes the yellow color.
2. Aosom Elite II 3in1 Double Child Bike Trailer – Best Choice for Jogging After A Bike Ride
If you‘re looking for a bike trailer that’s also a jogger available at an affordable price, then this is the trailer for you. The Aosom Elite II 3-in-1 Double Child Bike Trailer is just that, 3-in-1. Its a trailer, stroller, and jogger all in one. With all three wheels, you can use it for a leisurely stroll. But if you lock the front swivel wheel, it turns into a jogger. Or you can completely remove the front wheel and use it as a bike trailer. I know, talk about getting the value for your money. You’re basically buying all three for half the price of most bike trailers in the market. It also comes with a full suspension system providing a smooth ride for your kids. And for you, the handles are adjustable for a comfortable run. Inside has hammock seating and a five-point safety harness for extra safety. It users love this trailer for the value they get at an affordable price.
- Pros– Its a 3-in-1 saving you time and money, adjustable handles for a comfortable run, affordable price, comfortable seating inside for kids.
- Cons– If you already have a jogger than its overkill.
3. WeeRide Co-Pilot Bike Trailer – Best Choice for Your Children To Learn How To Ride A Bike
The WeeRide Co-Pilot Bike Trailer is unique compared to the other trailers on this list. Instead of a carriage attached to the back of your bike, it’s another bike. This type of trailer can serve two purposes. One, you stay active as a parent, and two, your kids can learn how to ride a bike. They can now get used to the feel of a bike and have the option to pedal or coast. As far as the construct, it’s very sturdy with a metal frame. Hook-up is painless too. It simply attaches with a quick release latch system and is compatible with almost all adult bikes with a seat post. It even has handlebar pads for protection and you can adjust them along with the seat. It’s users praise this trailer for how well it prepares their child to learn how to ride a bike.
- Pros– Attaches to any seat post, an option to pedal or coast, helps your child learn how to ride a bike, quick and easy installation.
- Cons– Its a bike so no storage or seat belts, your child may be too young for this bike style trailer.
4. Thule Chariot Cross Multisport Trailer – Best Choice for Your Kids Comfort
This trailer is not just a trailer for cycling. And it’s not just a jogger for running. And it’s not just a stroller for walking. This trailer also has an attachment for skis! Yes, as in snow skis. It’s called The Thule Chariot Cross Multisport Trailer and if you’re into multisport, then you and your family will enjoy this one. Not only is it a 4-in-1 trailer, but the conversion between each activity is quick and easy. But remember, impressive options and convenience comes at a price. This trailer isn’t cheap. It’s the most expensive trailer on the list. So if you decide to go with it, make sure you know what you’re buying. The trailer comes in one passenger or two. Also, the jogging and skiing kits are sold separately but can be purchased as a package. A few extra notable features are how the seat can be removed for easy cleaning. We all know how skilled our little ones are at making a mess in their car seat. Well, they do an even better job in their bike trailer. It also has adjustable suspension, ample storage space, and it folds up compact to fit comfortably in your closet or car trunk. It’s users love this trailer for how comfortable it is for their kids. Between the reclining seats, adjustable suspension, and padded seats, it’s like buying a first-class ticket for your kids when traveling by bike trailer.
- Pros- Excellent comfort, shock absorbing, made for jogging and skiing too.
- Cons- High price, kits sold separately.
5. Allen Sports Steel Bicycle Trailer – Best Choice for A Lightweight Ride
When you first experience the Allen Sports Bicycle Trailer you can’t help but notice how lightweight it is. A light trailer makes riding a bit easier on yourself and your bike. We think a lot of the features of a trailer but sometimes forget about the wear and tear it puts on the bike itself. This bike trailer is comfortable too. It comes with two padded seats along with a safety harness for its passengers. It does an excellent job at keeping the rain out of the cabin also. That’s because the trailer comes with a removable velcro rain shield. So if it’s a beautiful day you have the option to roll up the outer covers and tuck them away in the trailers rear storage compartment. The best part about this trailer, is you get all of these benefits at an affordable price. So if you’re worried about how much use you will get out of it, or if this is your first trailer, it makes it an ideal buy. Its users say you get your money’s worth and the rain shields do a great job at keeping your kids dry.
- Pros- Affordable, super lightweight, detachable rain shields.
- Cons-Low price means less quality.
6. Clevr 2-In-1 Collapsible 2-Seater Trailer – Best Choice for Getting Your Money’s Worth
What stands out the most about the Clevr 2-In-1 Collapsible 2-Seater Trailer is its aluminum frame. An aluminum frame makes for a lightweight, strong, and sturdy bike trailer. As the name implies, it is a 2-in-1 so it can be used as both a bike trailer and a jogger. This saves you the money of buying both a trailer and a jogger. Plus you only have one piece of equipment instead of two. This makes you active lifestyle a bit simpler. Besides its lightweight nature, it provides a comfortable ride through its ultra-smooth rolling 20” rear wheels. This makes a big difference when you run as it reduces the vibration in your arms. It’s users say the combination of price and superior frame makes it one of the best bike trailers on the market today.
- Pros-Lightweight aluminum frame, it’s also a jogger, provides a smooth ride and run.
- Cons- Tough to turn, Many steps when breaking it down.
7. InStep Sync Single Bicycle Trailer – Best Choice for Shopping On A Budget
If you’re shopping for a bike trailer on a budget and only need 1 seat, then you may want to give this one a try. The InStep Sync Single Bicycle Trailer is built for a biking parent on a budget. It easily attaches to any adult bike through a simple to use hitch. It also transports quick and easy by folding up with a quick release action. Again, keep in mind, there’s only one seat, so if you need a trailer for two kids, then this is not the trailer for you. However, some users have reported clipping their small dog into the trailer along with their child. Its users say they love how you barely notice that it’s connected to your bike when you ride. Overall, this bike trailer is a great affordable option for one kid (and a dog!).
- Pros- Affordable, super lightweight, easy to fold and store away, folds flat, rainproof color to stay dry.
- Cons– seat sags, poor suspension.
8. Schwinn 13-SC677AZ Echo Double Bike Trailer – Best Choice for A Smooth Ride
Schwinn is the most reputable company on this list. When you buy a Schwinn product, you know you’re buying quality. And that’s exactly what the Schwinn 13-SC677AZ Echo Double Bike Trailer is, a trailer built for quality. The most noticeable difference between this trailer and others is the 20” air tires constructed with alloy rims. This provides an extra smooth ride for both your children and yourself. It also comes with large windows with both a big screen and a weather shield to allow a positive experience no matter the weather. It’s also bright yellow so you can’t miss it which makes it safe. It’s users praise it for how easy the setup is and how quick it connects to their bike.
- Pros- Brand name, great affordable price, weather shield, smooth ride, bright color for safety and style.
- Cons- Some thought the material was cheap.
9. Weehoo 2-Bike Trailer – Best Choice for Kids Feeling Apart Of The Bike Ride
The Weehoo 2 bike trailer is much different than other trailers as it’s not a carriage type. There are two adjustable seats inline. One seat in the front of the other. The front passenger can pedal while the rear passenger sits back and enjoys the ride. But here’s its greatest benefit: unlike a carriage, this trailer is an open concept with pedals. So your child becomes more a part of the biking experience. Also, once the oldest child moves up to riding a bike on their own, the rear seat can be removed. Here is where you can replace the seat with a storage basket. That’s additional to the storage already available right over the rear wheel. The point is you can use this bike trailer for a very long time. It’s users love this trailer for its straightforward assembly and hookup and praise the company for its top notch customer service.
- Pros– easy assembly and hookup, a lot of storage room, Customer service is top notch
- Cons– Anopen concept so no external covers.
10. Hamax Outback Multi-Sport Child Bike Trailer – Best Choice for A Safe Experience
Let me start by staying that this trailer has been a market leader in child carriers in Europe for 30 years. And even better, they take safety very seriously. Yes, it’s one of the more expensive trailers, but there’s a price for good quality. The Hamax Outback Multi-Sport Child Bike Trailer is a bike trailer first, but it’s also a stroller and a jogger. This makes it ideal for an active family lifestyle. And as I said already, this trailer is safe. To start, it is constructed with a low center of gravity to prevent tipping. Also, its built with an aluminum rollover frame designed for extra protection. There’s also a 5-point safety harness to secure your kids even further. And there’s reflective material and reflectors everywhere on the trailer shining from all sides. It even protects from the sun through it’s UV windows. The external cover also keeps out rain, bugs, and wind. Then add it the adjustable suspension, and it transforms into to the ultimate smooth and comfortable ride. Some may even go as far to call it the luxury car of trailers. It’s users praise this trailer for how smooth the ride is and how easy and convenient it is to remove the front tire turning it from a jogger to a trailer.
- Pros- 30 years in the market means its reliable, aluminum lightweight frame, many reflectors, top of the line suspension system for a smoother ride.
- Cons- High price, wider than average.
Whenever you pick out something new, things can get complicated, and in a hurry. As you can see with bike trailers, and after reading this guide, picking out a trailer can be a simple process. Now, you not only know how to pick out a bike trailer for kids, but you have the top trailers listed to pick from which will save you a whole lot of time. Less time in picking out a trailer and more time showing your kids what a healthy active lifestyle is all about.