Web site: OnyaBaby.com
Weight Range: 15 lbs. to 45 lbs; with Baby Booster ($29) weight starts at 7 lbs.
Comments: Onya Baby’s soft structured baby carriers come in three different fabrics: 100% cotton, water-resistant rip-stop nylon and 100% recycled twill. Called the Cruiser, Outback and NexStep respectively, the include most of the same features: sleep hood (with pocket), wide waist belt, sternum strap, double entry side zippered koala pouch, leg padding (for baby), and seat darts to keep baby in the proper position. The Outback and NexStep also include an air-mesh lining for breathability.
Onya offers a bundle of their Outback carrier plus Baby Booster for $159. This extends the use of the Outback to infants as small as seven lbs. at a slight discount (about $5) over buying the two items separately.
All three versions allow for front carry (facing in), hip carry and back carry. Helpful videos on the web site show how to use the car- riers too. To accommodate infants under 7 lbs. you’ll need to pur- chase the Baby Booster for an additional $29. On some websites we noticed packages that included the Baby Booster. Make sure you’re not paying more than the cost to purchase them separately.
New this year, Onya adds the Pure, a lighter weight carrier with breathable mesh. Oddly, we couldn’t find the weight of the carrier, so you have to take Onya’s word for it. It’s priced at only $129 and comes in one color (silver) with a couple accent colors. Reviews are scarce, so we’ll wait and see what parents think of the Pure.
But don’t think the Onya carriers are just plain carriers. They can be used to attach your baby to a chair at a restaurant or grandma’s house.
Parent feedback on the Onya carriers is mostly positive. The air-mesh panel on the Outback and NexStep really seems to work keeping parent and baby cooler. We’ve seen quite a few compliments on how easy the carrier is to put on by yourself–that’s a huge plus. On the other hand, some complained that the straps could use more padding and the nylon Outback fabric was scratchy. While the price is a bit high (especially if you have to buy the insert to use with an infant), the quality and ease of use are impressive. Rating: A-