Take your kids out for a bike ride using any of these fun bicycle trailers. Fit for comfort and designed with safety in mind, there is no better way to enjoy the warm breezy days of summer.
If you are a passionate cycler or simply enjoy an occasional bike ride, the hobby doesn’t have to end once you have kids in the mix. Hauling your little ones around in a bicycle trailer is the perfect solution. Not to mention, trailers make it so you can take your children out on an exciting adventure with fresh air.
Taking the kids anywhere for any adventure is an experience in itself. Even a simple one-hour bike ride takes lots of planning, and every child has their own needs. From remembering sippy cups, understanding when to use weather shields, we’ll provide all the tips you need for safely riding with a trailer.
Table of Contents
- Tips for Using a Bicycle Trailer
- Bicycle Trailers to Consider
Tips for Using a Bicycle Trailer
Bike trailers are great for getting you and your little ones outside for exercise and fresh air. Before you consider purchasing a trailer, though, check out our tips.
Hauling a Trailer Is Not the Same as Solo Riding
If you are accustomed to taking off on your bike for a solo ride, you’ll quickly learn that towing a trailer (with kids inside) is definitely not the same.
There will be many stops along the way, and you’ll have to entertain them if the views and ride don’t cut it. Plus, your pace will likely be a bit slower than a solo bike ride. But as a parent, you probably already know this. Pack water, a snack, or even lunch if you plan to stop somewhere for a picnic.
Most trailers have plenty of cargo space, so you can pack things like sunscreen, a blanket, extra water bottles, and anything your child might want to stay entertained. With the insect screen zipped shut, you can keep your child (and all their toys!) trapped inside without worrying about losing them.
All things considered, riding with your little ones is an enjoyable way to get active and teach your kids the importance of being outdoors.
Make Sure Your Child Is Ready
How do you know if your child is ready for a trip in a bike trailer? Here are some basic guidelines:
- The recommendation, directly from the bike trailer industry itself, is to wait until your baby is at least 12 months old.
- Regardless of age, the child should be able to hold their head up, independently, while wearing a bicycle helmet.
When in doubt, speak to your child’s pediatrician, so they can help determine that your little one is ready.
Helmets Are a Must
While we’re on the topic of safety, be sure you have a helmet for you and your little one. In some states, it’s the law that a child wears a helmet while riding.
Choosing a helmet for your little one is no easy feat because their heads are so small. However, the helmet must fit properly. When selecting a helmet, you’ll want to ensure it has a Consumer Product Safety Committee (CPSC) label or sticker on the inside. All helmets are required by law to meet the CPSC standards for high-level protection against impact.
Schwinn Infant and Toddler Helmet
The petite helmets are perfect for smaller riders.
Finding a helmet with an adjustable turn dial helps tighten and loosen as they grow—this Schwinn helmet is sized for smaller heads and features an adjustment dial.
Tip: When shopping for a bike helmet for an infant or toddler, don’t shop by the age designation provided by the manufacturer, shop by the circumference of your child’s head. The label doesn’t matter—the fit does.
When you buckle the chin strap, the helmet should fit snug and comfortably. If you can easily move the helmet from side to side or front to back, it’s too loose, and you might need to adjust or find a smaller helmet that fits better.
Check the Safety Harness Straps
After placing your little one in the trailer, make sure the straps are adjusted to fit your child snuggly. The five-point safety harness system in a bike trailer is a must, as it provides additional support over the shoulders and hips.
We like to purchase separate strap covers for additional comfort to ensure the original straps don’t rub on our child’s neck.
Jolly Jumper Sherpa Strap Covers
These soft strap covers will keep your child's neck abrasion-free on long rides.
I prefer these over the thin strap covers that originally came with the trailer we have. Not only do I know my little one is safe, but she has an extra cushiony and comfortable set of safety straps, too.
Use the Insect Shield and Safety Flag
The bug shield is basically a netting material that can be zipped shut (or rolled-and-stowed) much like the netting on a camping tent. Although it is marketed as an insect shield, we’d recommend using it all the time as it also works great to keep road grit, little rocks, and other flying objects that would otherwise get kicked up directly at your kiddo’s face.
If the weather turns, you can also use the additional weather shield to protect your child from getting drenched in the drizzle. Additionally, most trailers feature a removable safety flag—use it for optimal visibility.
Make Sure the Trailer Is Compatible with Your Bike
Trailers are usually attached to your bike in one of two ways. It is typically fastened to your bike’s rear axle using a coupler or hitch, or on the seat post, by placing the hitch onto the receiver.
Ensure that your bicycle brakes, axles, or drivetrain are not an obstacle for connecting the trailer. Finally, be sure that the coupler or hitch is universal and not brand specific.
Enjoy the Ride
It can feel like a bit of a task, lugging the bike and trailer elsewhere to go for a ride, but it is so rewarding once that wind hits your face. Make sure your child has everything they need (sippy cup, book, favorite toy, blanket) so they can enjoy the ride, too.
If you have a local bike trail, take advantage of this, as it’s a much safer alternative to cycling on the road where there are fast-moving cars and potentially distracted drivers.
Bicycle Trailers to Consider
Now that you understand all the safety features and tips for an enjoyable ride, it’s time to choose an ideal trailer for you and your kiddos!
Best Overall: Schwinn Trailblazer Trailer and Stroller
We love a trailer that doubles as a jogger, especially if it offers a double seater. The Schwinn Trailblazer has it all. Plus, it offers all the safety features you’d want in a trailer, including a 5-point safety harness, safety flag, bug screen, and weather shield.
You can either place two children in the trailer or fit one in the middle and rotate the straps to fit the center buckle attachment. We love the double-seater option, even for one child, because it offers more room for toys, and we always have the extra room for a friend or another toddler in the future.
The unique frame and quick-release wheels make it easy to fold up and store away, and it features a universal coupler, which means it will work for most bikes. The best part is that the price is just right, especially if you use it throughout all four seasons! Make the most of a fantastic trailer with a trusted brand like Schwinn. We’ve had our Schwinn for over a year and plan to rave about it for decades.
High-End Quality: Thule Chariot Cross Multisport Trailer and Stroller
Our top pick for high-end trailers is the Thule Chariot Cross Multisport. We love that this expertly designed contraption works as both a bicycle trailer and an excellent stroller, but it does so even more with the right attachments.
With a separate purchase, you can turn this one-of-a-kind trailer into a ski pulk or jogging stroller. The oversized wheels help glide along various terrains, making it perfect for families with an active lifestyle.
The padded recliner seats bring ultimate comfort for your little ones riding along, and the adjustable handlebars and compact fold make this one worth the splurge.
Open Concept: Weehoo Tag Along Child Bicycle Trailer
If you are looking for a more engaging adventure for your child to partake in, perhaps an open concept-style trailer might be for you. Rather than placing your little one into a trailer with walls, your child will have a trailer-style back seat to ride along in.
The Weehoo Blast Bike Trailer fits up to 80 lbs and is super easy to install. It’s suitable for younger children ages two to five and features a footrest with safety straps. You’ll love the patented hitch for its ability to easily install and remove your trailer whenever you want to switch back to solo rides.
Budget Option: Allen Sports Deluxe Steel Child Trailer
Finally, if you’re looking for a safe and reliable trailer with a friendly price tag, the Allen Sports Deluxe Trailer is an excellent option. The lightweight trailer seats two children with a max load of 100 lbs, and the tires are inflatable, which is a must for any bicycle trailer.
Take advantage of using the bug and rain shields whenever necessary, and enjoy the safety flag and five-point harness included with the trailer.
This summer, rather than leaving your bike to gather dust until your kids are old enough to ride on their own, grab one of these fun trailers and haul them along for the ride!