A stroller in Taiwan?

Old Aug 16, 16, 1:13 am
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A stroller in Taiwan?

We're going to be in Taiwan for 7 weeks this winter. Home base will be around New Taipei City and Taoyuan City, in the Linkou district close to the Mitsui outlet. I think there is a Metro stop near there, and there are also shuttles to get us around.

We have two boys, one who just turned 6 and one who will be 4 in October. I'm trying to decide if I should bring along our stroller for the trip for our little one. The boys are pretty good about not wandering off, but we'd be able to move a little faster with the little one on wheels, and I'm sure it would help to have him contained when in crowds.

However, I'm not sure what elevator service is like in the Taipei Metro, or if the streets are very compatible with strollers.

We'll be spending time with grandparents, exploring all the sites in Taipei, and we'll probably take some trips to more scenic areas, like the southern coast. The boys would probably really like the high speed rail! We'll be in an apartment, so we'll have room to store it.

Any insight in this fabulous group? I know a lot depends on everyone's style and preferences and those of everyone's kids. But any and all experience and thoughts would still be appreciated!
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Old Aug 29, 16, 10:08 am
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I would bring a stroller, but bring one that can easily fold up and moved out of the way. I have 3 kids, youngest is 6 and we've been going to Taiwan almost yearly for 15 years. We no longer need a stroller but had one or two on all our trips when they were younger. They do take up space and can be a bit of a nuisance in the crowds so sometimes the smaller umbrella strollers are best rather than the larger ones, we've used both.

Elevators are available at most (but not all) Metro stops. At some of the transfer stations it can take longer to find and take the elevators and there were many times, elevators weren't available, out of service or inconvenient. However, if that was the case I'd just carry the stroller up the stairs and continue on.

Many places sidewalk aren't great and you'd be walking in the streets. Stroller would help keep the kid from running out into traffic.
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Old Aug 30, 16, 6:06 pm
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We were in Taipei with a 3 month old in Jan, and didn't miss NOT having a stroller and would avoid it if you feel you can (which you'll need to decide based on your kids; obviously mine wasn't running away ;D). It seems almost nobody in Taipei and I can see why - the metro stops are very nice, and I believe every station is wheelchair accessible so you're good there, but the trains and stations get PACKED, and the sidewalks in many parts of the city aren't particularly wheel friendly ((new taipei city; taipei proper is much better) my dad requires a wheelchair so we saw that first hand).

Our backup plan, if we decided that we needed a stroller, was simply to purchase a cheap one while there, but we didn't end up doing that.
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Old Aug 31, 16, 2:55 pm
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How willing will the four year old be to sit in the stroller when the child isn't tired?

Strollers not boxed for trips like this do get damaged during transport from time to time. Just something to consider before making plans to transport a stroller by air.
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Old Aug 31, 16, 3:40 pm
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You mentioned your boys so perhaps you're thinking about taking a double stroller? Unfortunately, my experience with the larger strollers in areas like this one has not been a good one.
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Old Aug 31, 16, 9:11 pm
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Originally Posted by GUWonder View Post
How willing will the four year old be to sit in the stroller when the child isn't tired?

Strollers not boxed for trips like this do get damaged during transport from time to time. Just something to consider before making plans to transport a stroller by air.
He doesn't resist being in a stroller when not tired. He's fine with it.

We've gate checked this stroller more times than I can count, and it has held up well. We'll be passing it along soon, though, so if it were to get damaged in transit, we wouldn't be upset about it. Our kid can hoof it if he needs to, and we've gotten tremendous value out of it over about 5.5 years.
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Old Aug 31, 16, 9:16 pm
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Originally Posted by MommyHighFive View Post
You mentioned your boys so perhaps you're thinking about taking a double stroller? Unfortunately, my experience with the larger strollers in areas like this one has not been a good one.
Oh, no way I'd take a double to Asia. My older boy is 6. He'll be fine walking. It's the boy who will have just turned 4 that I'm wanting to put in the stroller. The Uppababy is similar to a Maclaren stroller but lighter at about 8 lbs. Compact and light and easy to collapse. It stands up on its own when collapsed, too, and it has a shoulder strap. So it's about as good as it gets for mass transit/crowded venues. The other advantage to the stroller is that my older kid can hang onto a tether while walking with us (he likes to do this), so it helps me to keep track of him, too.
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Old Aug 31, 16, 9:22 pm
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Originally Posted by Ice Machine View Post
I would bring a stroller, but bring one that can easily fold up and moved out of the way. I have 3 kids, youngest is 6 and we've been going to Taiwan almost yearly for 15 years. We no longer need a stroller but had one or two on all our trips when they were younger. They do take up space and can be a bit of a nuisance in the crowds so sometimes the smaller umbrella strollers are best rather than the larger ones, we've used both.

Elevators are available at most (but not all) Metro stops. At some of the transfer stations it can take longer to find and take the elevators and there were many times, elevators weren't available, out of service or inconvenient. However, if that was the case I'd just carry the stroller up the stairs and continue on.

Many places sidewalk aren't great and you'd be walking in the streets. Stroller would help keep the kid from running out into traffic.
Thank you! This is nearly our exact situation. My in-laws just moved back to Taiwan after 60 years away. So we'll be making trips there every 1-2 years.

We're looking forward to our kids getting some good exposure to Mandarin!
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Old Sep 2, 16, 11:14 am
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Originally Posted by swise View Post
Thank you! This is nearly our exact situation. My in-laws just moved back to Taiwan after 60 years away. So we'll be making trips there every 1-2 years.

We're looking forward to our kids getting some good exposure to Mandarin!
Exposure to Mandarin (as well as visiting relatives) is one of the main reasons we try to go as often as we can but every year wreaks havoc on my wallet with a family of 5 that's now relegated to school breaks only, so sometimes its a 2 year stretch. Spent a few weeks this summer and we're actually sending our oldest (12) there this weekend to go to school for a year.

Note there is some good points above about crowds on the metro which is why I suggested an easily foldable one if it's taking up too much space. It is certainly much nicer now not to need a stroller or car seats.
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Old Sep 9, 16, 12:51 am
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Strollers are a godsend and hell in Asia. I've lived here for the past 4 years and my kids (currently 2 and 5) are usually in the stroller when we travel. I have a Graco Sit and Stand so the older one is in the back. It's still quite big, bigger than a single, but smaller than a typical double, so it is more like a 1.5 Handles pretty well, and is a god send in the airports. However, most Asian roads and even many places such as shops do not handle strollers well, especially a 1.5, because they are small and cramped. Many sidewalks are treated as extensions of places of business, so you will be forced onto the street. This makes a stroller both a hassle and a blessing because while it is inconvenient to navigate around all of these obstacles, keeping them in the stroller often keeps them far safer than letting them run around (and possibly into traffic).

The kids usually sit in the stroller on the subway. Many places are difficult due to a lack of elevators or even escalators. I think bringing a stroller will ultimately depend on how well you can handle your children in hectic and possibly dangerous environments. My little one is too small to understand well enough so its worth the extra hassle to ensure her safety. However, at 4 years old it will depend a lot more on the child. If he tends to be more rambunctious then I would probably bring an ultralight umbrella stroller just in case.
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