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It shouldn't be hard to agree that people around the world have babies, and people with babies like to take walks with their babies. So we invented various wheeled devices to securely hold baby during the walk, allowing parent and baby to get fresh air, experience new sights and sounds, and for parent at least to get exercise. What we can't seem to agree on is what to call the silly things, even among people who speak English.

In the title, I am wondering about the following possible substitutions:

  • name: stroller, pram (perambulator), buggy, carriage, cart, etc.
  • optional prefix: baby-, jogging-, etc.
  • location: US, UK, Australia, India, or any country/culture/region where English is the dominant language.

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As in the images, some key differences seem to be:

  • Whether baby is seated, or lying down
  • Whether baby faces the direction of walking, or backward toward parent

For purposes of this question, let's ignore that several newer higher-end models are modular/convertible between these options.

Some less important differences might be:

  • Number of (sets of) wheels, three or four
  • Size and type of wheels, smaller hard-plastic casters versus larger bicycle-style (Which I think may just be the difference in adding a "jogging-" prefix or not)

My prior reading has turned up only articles that focus on one specific term, or one specific location. My hope is someone here can pool all this into one comprehensive discussion. With that in mind, I would prefer not to get one answer of "American here, and we call them..." and another of "I'm an Aussie, and they are called..." but rather one answer by a well-traveled or well-researched user. If this isn't possible, then maybe let's start a Community-Wiki answer and have each region edit in its versions of these terms.

  • UK: First 3, [baby] buggy, stroller. Last 2/3, I'd use pram, but I notice younger speakers often call them all buggies. – FumbleFingers Mar 18 '16 at 12:46
  • @FumbleFingers I dispute that the Americanism stroller is used widely in the UK (except perhaps by manufacturers who want a global brand because they can't be bothered to differentiate). – Andrew Leach Mar 18 '16 at 13:09
  • US (Florida): First three are strollers. The last two are baby carriages. I'd call the fourth one a stroller instead of baby carraiage, but that is mostly because it has a more modern styling. The third one looks to be a jogging stroller, but I would only add the jogging- when I needed to emphasis that functionality. Depending on how the first one folds, I might call it an umbrella stroller. – bradimus Mar 18 '16 at 13:20
  • @Andrew: I put stroller second because it's much less common than buggy. But I do at least hear it occasionally. – FumbleFingers Mar 18 '16 at 13:29
  • One very important difference is the age of the speaker. – Hot Licks Mar 22 '16 at 22:29
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This Community Wiki answer is intended to bring together all the different possibilities. Users from a given region are encouraged to edit by inserting the terms in use in your region. Reference links are still encouraged, but if all you have is your knowledge of what you and those around you call the thing, then go ahead and contribute.

First, let's establish our terminology:

  • Type "A" device has baby in a seated position, low to the ground, and facing the direction of walking.
  • Type "B" device has baby laying down, higher off the ground, and facing toward the parent or other person pushing the device.
  • Type "C" is a sub-set of Type "A." This type specifically has larger bicycle-style wheels. Normally there are three wheels, but four is not unheard of.
  • If there is another type in your region, edit to insert it here.

In England

  • Type "A" [Baby] buggy or pushchair. The baby may face the parent in some designs but without lying flat. A car seat may be fitted to form the seat part.

  • Type "B" device is called a perambulator, frequently shortened to just "pram."

  • Type "C" buggy, pushchair less common

In the United States and Canada

  • Type "A" is called a stroller (def #4).

  • Type "B" is called a baby carriage or baby buggy. Note that these dedicated reclining baby transports are relatively rare in the US today; they are still associated with infancy, appearing in baby-related art such as on baby announcements, but aren't a standard part of modern baby gear. Instead, various forms of convertible stroller (or a baby carrier) are commonly used for the few months before baby can sit with assistance. At the high end, these may occasionally also be called prams, possibly because they are literally British imports.

  • Type "C" is called a jogging stroller.

Two other variants are common in the US:

  • Umbrella strollers are very lightweight Type "A" devices, designed to fold up, similarly to an umbrella, into a roughly tubular shape.

  • Twin or double strollers are designed to carry two children (or occasionally more) at once. There are two major sub-types. "Side-by-side" strollers look like two Type "A" or umbrella strollers attached at the hip. Tandem strollers carry children one in front of the other, and come in various configurations (a simple row, back seat higher, sit-and-stand, etc.). Tandem strollers can sometimes accommodate three or even more children, and the term may now refer to any stroller for multiple children, regardless of configuration.

In Australia

The federal government defines a pram as carrying children in a fully recline position and a stroller as carrying them in an upright or adjustable position. In practice, pram appears to be common as a hypernym for the category.

  • Type "A" Stroller, although buggy is common

  • Type "B" Pram or, within context, a 4-wheeler

  • Type "C" Jogger pram or, within context, a 3-wheeler

In India

please edit

In (edit to add name of your region)

please edit

  • I've got the "England" section started for people to weigh in. – Chris H Mar 22 '16 at 20:20
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A term that has emerged in recent years, probably to justify the enormous expense (one of the biggest sellers, the Bugaboo Chameleon, is around £700-£800, or $1000 to $1200 if you like - this is more than i've paid for a car before!), is travel system.

This grandiose term is intended to refer to the fact that they can be adjusted into different modes. For example, they might come with a seperate bassinet style attachment for when the child is up to 6 months, or the seat might be able to be adjusted into this. Similarly, the seat might be able to be detached and plugged into the base unit of a car seat, allowing you to transfer a child between car and pram (sorry, travel system) without waking them up. The seat might be able to be taken out and put back facing the opposite way, etc.

In this way, one product can act as a pram (baby lying down) and a buggy (older child sitting). The fourth photo in your question looks like a prime example of one of these, I think it might be the aforementioned Bugaboo Chameleon with the bassinet attachment.

That said, I think there are very few parents who would refer to the product as a "travel system", for fear of confusing people, being laughed at, or thought of as pretentious. Most people would still call it a pram or buggy when in pram mode, and a buggy or stroller when in "stroller" mode (here in the UK at least).

Speaking personally, my wife and I have a "travel system", which we call "the pram" and a more traditional smaller folding upright seat (like your first photo) which we call "the stroller".

  • We do use "travel system" but mainly to refer to the whole lot or to avoid ambiguity (actually more applied to the car seat element). – Chris H Mar 22 '16 at 20:26

protected by tchrist Feb 18 '18 at 13:01

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