Kids gear is expensive. This is why it’s crucial to know what to look for and which items are worth your money. Every parent goes through this phase where they just don’t know what’s best, but don’t worry about it; it won’t be long before you figure it out.
All that aside, we narrowed it down to 6 extremely valuable tips that’ll help you make better decisions when it comes to choosing outdoor gear for your little ones. So, keep on reading for some real surprises.
6 Tips for Parents When Buying Outdoor Gear for Kids
1. Make Use of Seasonal Discounts
We understand how expensive outdoor gear can get, especially high-end ones, and we don’t only mean playhouses, but also bikes, skates, snowboards, climbing gear, and even carriers if that’s what you’re looking for!
The good news is, you can usually get excellent seasonal discounts, particularly around springtime, because that’s the best time for kids to play outside. Of course, you don’t have to wait for such discounts to buy everything; just save them for the expensive gear whenever you’re on a tight budget.
2. Choose the Right Playset Material
Outdoor playgrounds and playsets are either wood, plastic, or metal. As expected, each of these has its unique features, making it a better option according to the circumstances.
As for wood, we think it’s the best of all three because it’s natural, relatively soft, and the least affected by the sun and temperature. Therefore, there’s no chance that your child will burn their hands if they touch equipment made of wood on a sunny day.
The problem with wood is that it’s susceptible to environmental factors, though, so you have to maintain it all the time. Otherwise, it won’t live for too long.
Plastic, on the other hand, is the cheapest of all three materials, and it usually has bright colors that children tend to like. However, it usually contains harmful chemicals that possibly endanger the health of your children. Moreover, it’s the most affected by the sun, so the colors start fading too soon, and it needs frequent replacement.
Metal is the most durable out of the three. Nonetheless, metal becomes burning hot on a sunny summer day and freezing cold during winter. Also, it tends to rust with time, which is something you don’t have to deal with if you choose another material.
That being said, we recommend getting treated metal play equipment to extend longevity and avoid rust for as long as possible.
3. Check for Safety
Safety comes first. This is why you should consider it before the price, durability, or anything else. Whether you’re buying a new swing set, a carrier, or something else, you should make sure you won’t be putting your children’s health on the line, so make sure to follow these tips:
- Always choose premium material.
- Look for holes, thinned-out parts, unscrewed nails, etc.
- Make sure all the accessories are attached.
- Check safety regulations.
- With playsets, ensure there’s proper spacing and a safe room to play.
4. Pick an Appropriate Gear
There are some essentials that might slip your mind when choosing anything new for a kid; however, taking them into consideration makes a huge difference.
The first thing to think about is the age of your kids. You might think to yourself, “oh, this swing is great for my toddler”, but wouldn’t your older child want to swing too? Is there any chance you can get a swing with two different seat sizes? Or maybe it’d be better to just choose a different playset that they can both enjoy!
Another thing to keep in mind in such a scenario is the children who visit. Do your kids enjoy playing with the neighbors’ children? Do their friends come over too often? In such cases, you need a bigger playset, or else the children might end up not using it because they’d rather hang out with their little buddies.
5. Think About Replacement
As we mentioned earlier, kids outgrow their playsets as well as their clothes. Accordingly, you’ll find yourself looking for a replacement after a while.
However, if you have this in mind while picking a new outfit or new play equipment, things might take a different turn. For instance, a slightly bigger bag is better than a tiny one that’ll soon become too small for your child’s needs.
Also, instead of choosing slides with the exact right length, it’s smarter to pick slides that are a bit more appropriate for the future but would also work for the time being. The same thing applies to swings, ladders, bridges, and so on.
In fact, this is also one of the reasons we recommended getting a wooden playset at the beginning of the article; they’re more flexible than other options. Actually, you can replace or add some parts to make them more challenging and thus more suited for an older age group.
6. Consider What Your Kids Like
Kids like bright colors with cartoon figures and distinct shapes. Although it’s not always practical, try to give them what they want. We all want our kids to have a peaceful childhood and simply be happy. We’re not saying to get them anything unworthy in any means, but always consider their taste and pick the items you know they’re more comfortable with.
We know that taking care of your kids is a huge responsibility, but when it comes to outdoor gear, there’s a bit of fun to it, especially that we’re talking about swing sets and playhouses for the most part. We’re sure you won’t have any trouble with it, having gone through our article, so catch your breath and enjoy their company!