In a nutshell

A great child carrier with lots of good features, but it has quite a high-price point.

What we tested

  • Comfort for baby
    A star rating of 4.0 out of 5.
  • Comfort for you
    A star rating of 4.0 out of 5.
  • Ease of use
    A star rating of 3.0 out of 5.
  • Design
    A star rating of 3.0 out of 5.
  • Sturdiness
    A star rating of 4.5 out of 5.
  • Worth the money
    A star rating of 4.0 out of 5.
Overall Rating
A star rating of 3.8 out of 5.


  • Long lifespan, sturdy, lots of storage, useful tags fitted on different features to show you what's what, comfortable


  • Expensive, really needs two people when putting it on, fiddly to set up for first use, not very quick to adjust when swapping between adults, not freestanding

The Bushbaby Elite back carrier was updated in 2010. The new model boasts a pack-down frame for easier storage, and an eye-watering £200 price tag, but the endless features are worth it.


Bushbaby is an award-winning baby carrier company that has 15 years of experience in designing and making carriers that are safe, comfortable, light and let you get about with your baby or toddler hands-free.

Bushbaby won a gold award for the Elite back in 2009, but felt that it could still improve on the design, so launched a new-look Elite in 2010. This design includes a pack-down frame, so the carrier doesn't take up too much room in your car or home, and is hydration tube system compatible.

What we love

Just reading through the list of features that comes with the instructions, it's not hard to see where your money’s been spent. Storage pockets, foot loops, toy loops, UV and rain canopy protector, safety harness, lumbar support…the list just goes on. One buyer commented that even though she’s a perfectionist, she couldn't think of anything that Bushbaby had missed off the Elite's design.

I like that when you take the Bushbaby Elite out of the box, there are useful cut-off tags to point out where the sun canopy is and the viewing mirror etc. There are so many useful parts to this back carrier, you'd probably miss something without these attention grabbers. I do like the embroidery stitched onto the sleep cushion, too.

The Bushbaby Elite back carrier can be used from 6 months until your child is 4 years old - while your toddler may be walking by 1, if you like to get out and about, a carrier can still be essential.

I'm not really a lover of carriers, as I can never adjust them to fit me correctly and my back or shoulders end up aching after about 2 minutes. However, the Elite is so comfy and light I could walk for ages in it.

Nathaniel was a little hesitant at first and when we put him in the Elite indoors he started to cry. However, as soon as we went outside (remembering to duck at the doorway), he loved it. He does his 'Meerkat' nosy parker impression the whole time he’s in the carrier.

The foot loops are a great idea and I can see Nathaniel feels more comfortable when his feet are resting in them.

What to watch out for

The Bushbaby Elite back carrier can take quite a long time to set up, as you have to get the harness straps at the correct length for both your child and yourself. One thing to note, although there’s colour-coding on the adult strap adjustment to help you, if you need to adjust the child's straps, you'll have to take the mini pack off, as this bag is designed to clip over where the child's straps are hidden.

While there’s a load stabiliser to help when putting your child in, when you pick the carrier up off the floor, you really need two people to prevent it from swinging around.

My husband and I find it a bit fiddly to re-adjust the straps when it comes to switching over the carrier for his turn, but this should become easier if the same couple of people are using it again and again, thanks to the colour-coded adjustment system.

Who is the Bushbaby Elite back carrier best for?

Families who enjoy walking holidays and sightseeing.


MadeForMums verdict

The Bushbaby Elite back carrier could well be one of the best back carrier on the market, but you pay for the many features it includes.

Product Specifications

ModelElite back carrier (2010 model)
Suitable for
Child age (approx)6 months to 4 years
Child weightUp to 20kg
Washing instructionsMachine washable
FasteningClick fit
  • Secret pocket to keep your valuables safe
  • Organiser pocket to keep all your essentials together in one place
  • Foot loops included for a more comfortable ride for older children
  • UV protective folding canopy that packs flat into the carrier to protect child from sun or showers
  • Two different shoulder widths to accommodate older children
  • Safety harness
  • Lumbar support
  • Toy loops
  • Pack-down frame
  • Loading stabiliser
  • Bigeye MAX back system
  • Phone pocket
  • Hydration tube compatible
Head huggerNo