Last year buggy theft rose by 50%. It is estimated that the black market for stolen buggies is worth over £60 million. With pushchairs costing hundreds of pounds it’s not surprising that they have been targeted by criminals.
Even before I knew those figures I was always a bit wary about leaving my pushchair unattended. I’d hate going to places where I couldn’t take the buggy in or at least have the buggy in plain sight. The paranoia for me started when I got my Easywalker Duo. It got so much attention when I was out that I started to worry about somebody helping themselves to it. With it being so big there were often times that it just wouldn’t fit so it had to be left outside somewhere like a cafe. If I couldn’t see it, I couldn’t relax. Our local Sure Start Centre was the worst place. They had a buggy park outside and I worried about someone “accidentally” taking the wrong pushchair home. This untrusting side of me hasn’t stemmed from nothing, when I was 18 my car got broken into and had all of it’s contents stolen. I felt totally violated that someone could have the nerve to take something that was mine, that I had worked hard to pay for and with the police quite frankly not giving a damn, I started to take a lot more care of my things.
Imagine my delight when I discovered the BuggyGuard. Available in 4 different animal designs, they are attractive and a fun addition to any pushchair. They feature a 4 foot, vinyl coated cable which means you can attach your pushchair to a stationary object, another pushchair or even put it through the wheels and lock it so that it can’t be wheeled away. It’s not totally theft proof, like most lockable devices there are ways around getting into them but it can’t be cut off easily and acts as a brilliant deterrent. It offers peace of mind to any parent that has to leave their pushchair unattended.
When not in use it can be attached to the pushchair using a reinforced Velcro strap so it is always to hand without having to remember to pack it in a bag or the basket. The cable has a retraction button so it shoots back in quickly and easily after use. It also has a 3 digit combination dial so that you can set any combination that you want and not have to worry about fiddling with a key to unlock it.
We were asked to review the cute little Panda BuggyGuard. Initially he comes wearing a vibrant red bow tie but in the packaging you find a pink and a blue bow tie so you can add a bit of personaliation to him. Spud decided he liked the red bow tie so that’s what we stuck with. I was very impressed with how solid it is. I have no worries about it staying attached to my pushchair and surviving being taken in and out of the boot or being stored in the cupboard, it will definitely take some bashing. It fits really easily onto the side of the pushchair and the anti slip reinforcement on the Velcro strap means it stays where you put it and doesn’t slide down to the lowest point.
It is so easy to operate. The instructions are clear and easy to follow so I started by changing the code which took a matter of seconds. There are a few buttons located on the BuggyGuard so it is best to check the instructions to see what each one does. I often leave my pushchair in front of the house if there is only a matter of hours between Creche runs so I started using the BuggyGuard to secure it there. The highest number of buggy thefts do happen in and around the home so I constantly had to check it was still there. Now I can park it, secure it and leave it until it either rains or I need to use it again! I locked my two back wheels together and I also had a go attaching it to a pipe. The cable was a little bit stiff to start with and one annoying thing is that you can’t retract it after it’s locked into place. It would have been handy to do because when I pulled out too much cable the panda was sat on the floor. It also doesn’t fit through the two back wheels of the Easywalker Duo. It’s not a huge problem because it fitted through the front two and will be able to secure it to a stationary object.
One of the best things about this product is that it is so versatile. It will last far longer than the amount of time that you use a pushchair for and can then be securely attached to bikes, scooters and other precious toys that often have to be left somewhere. With it having a cool design it will be much more appealing for children to lock their belongings and I’m sure by the time Spud goes out alone he will be able to operate it. BuggyGuard’s have an RRP of £19.99 but to protect an £800 pushchair it is a small price to pay so well worth it.
I would definitely recommend a BuggyGuard to anyone that has a pushchair, their slogan sums it up perfectly: “If you Love it – Lock it”