Thule Vs. Burley (Bike Trailers): Which One Should You Choose?

Whether you’re enjoying a bright day on paved community paths or facing rough terrain on a chilly winter day, there’s a bike trailer for you. The sort of bike trailer that is appropriate for you depends on your budget and how you want to use the trailer.

Do you require a trailer that can be converted into a jogging stroller or a jogger? Do you want to ride mostly paved trails or mostly dirt trails? Are you a fan of reclining seats? There are several deciding variables.

So, how do you decide what to choose? This article will contrast thule vs. burley (bike trailers). Continue reading to learn more.

Thule vs. burley (bike trailers)

  1. Weight

You’ve undoubtedly dragged a few bike trailers before, and you presumably push stroller/jogger equivalents daily. Burley bike trailers are meticulously constructed to draw smoothly and without rattling.

It’s the same smooth and simple experience pushing a Burley trailer in stroller mode (like the Burley Encore X). The stroller/jogger features aren’t an afterthought on this trailer, as they are on lesser models.

Burley trailers are built to be used as a trailer, stroller, or jogging stroller. Burley trailers are often lighter than Thule trailers, which might make a significant difference if you’ll be biking or jogging in steep terrain.

  1. User-Friendly

Burley and Thule trailers both perform admirably as strollers and runners. One of the most significant distinctions between the manufacturers is which stroller kits are included as standard and available as an upgrade.

The Thule Coaster XT is a three-wheel trailer stroller. However, to store it on the tow arm, the wheel must be withdrawn and then re-inserted.

The 4-wheel strollers come standard on all Thule Chariot trailers (Cheetah XT, Lite, Cross). They are unable to be converted into three-wheel strollers. Even with practice, inserting these wheels from below the trailer might be a bit tricky.

Whereas all Burley stroller models feature rotating handlebars, this is not the case with Thule. Rotating handlebars are only available on the Thule Chariot Cross and Lite.

Only two handlebar height options are available on the Thule Coaster XT and Thule Chariot Cheetah XT. This is a major gain for Burley trailers and one of the reasons people prefer them to Thule’s basic versions.

  1. Storage Facilities

A side-by-side contrast of the Burley Bee’s spacious storage compartment and the Thule Chariot Cheetah XT’s compact profile mesh pocket on the back. Burley is the perfect way to go if you need to bring a lot of gear along for the journey.

The cargo compartments at the back of all Burley trailers are wide, deep, and flat-bottomed. Thule trailers have significantly less storage, but if you don’t need to bring many accessories, this design makes them more compact and less cumbersome.

  1. Rainproof

Burley and Thule both provide high-quality, well-designed weather coverings that outperform the competition. The added protection from the elements is reason enough to invest in a Burley or a Thule.

Burley’s weather coverings are crinkled when rolled down, giving the trailer an untidy appearance. They’re a touch hefty when rolled up, and they cause the trailer top to sag. Thule’s plastic door covers are tauter (rolled up or down) for a consistently clean, elegant appearance.

The detachable, genuine plastic rain cover that stretches around the sides and over the top of the trailer and connects with elastic for simple removal comes standard on Thule’s higher-end Cross and Lite versions. Because the rain guard protects the zippers, no impervious zippers are required.

  1. Foldable, Transportable, And Switchable Between Activities

Whilst Thule trailers are similarly simple to fold, Burley’s folding procedure is more straightforward. This isn’t a compelling reason to select Burley over Thule, but it is a pleasant bonus if you do.

Thule trailers are also extremely easy to switch from one activity to the next. When not in use, the two front stroller wheels and tow arm are stored on the trailer body, which is a feature that the Thule Chariot excels at. You’d have to keep them in the trailer’s boot (or independently in your garage) with Burley, and you’d risk forgetting about them at home.

  1. Reclining Seats

Burley vs. Thule trailer tilt settings is one of the most noticeable differences between the two trailer brands. If you need the seat to recline for a sleeping kid, Burley may not be able to accommodate you.

The typical seat position on a Burley trailer that reclines is very upright, but the standard seat position on the Thule Chariot Cross is quite reclined back. The most reclined position in a Burley trailer is nearly identical to the most vertical position in a Thule Cross.

Because Burley’s usual posture is excessively upright, you’ll need the reclining option frequently. Because it isn’t as required, you won’t utilize the Cross recline as frequently. It will, however, provide when you need it. The Cross’ naturally leaning back seat makes loading and unloading children considerably simpler.

  1. Sunshades

Sunshades serve as a visor to protect little children’s eyes from the sun, but they may also cover skin from dangerous UV radiation. The top of the trailer door of the Burley Encore X includes a thin, stay-in-place sunshade that folds under when not in use. This shade mostly serves as a visor and may or may not be beneficial depending on the sun’s angle.

The sunscreen on the Burley D’Lite X and the Burley Cub X are all the same size, but the front of the trailer may be moved up or down to accommodate for the sun’s angle. They go down a string track, which can become a little tangled.

A sunshade is included with every Thule trailer model. The sunscreen on the Thule Cadence, Thule Coaster XT, and Thule Chariot Cheetah XT is a stay-in-place short visor, similar to the Burley Encore X.

The sunshade on the Thule Chariot Cross and Thule Chariot Lite is, without a doubt, the nicest you’ve seen. They may be changed not just up and down the front of the trailer but also short or long. When fully extended, these sunshades provide excellent sun protection for the skin.

  1. Baby Snuggler

Burley offers a Baby Snuggler for youngsters aged 3 to 12 months to give support. It doesn’t change the seat’s inclination angle, but it does give side support. It can only be used in stroller mode.

For newborns as early as four weeks! Thule exclusively provides the Thule Infant Sling in stroller mode, creating a smaller, separate seat for newborns at a considerably lower slope. For us, this was a game-changer.

Both companies advise against towing a child under the age of 12 months in their bike trailers. Depending on the manufacturer, using a stroller for 1 or 3 months is OK. It’s advisable to check your physician before using jogging mode until your baby is at least six months old.

  1. Design Of the Tow Arm

Thule’s trailer arm is engineered to center the trailer on the bike, whereas Burley’s trailer arm centers the trailer on the hitch. The form of the trailer arm demonstrates this. The tow arm on a Burley trailer is L-shaped, whereas the tow arm on a Thule Chariot is C-shaped. As a result, all Burley models lean to the left of the bike somewhat.

For most riders, the difference between being centered or slightly to the trailer’s left makes little impact. The adult rider towing a Burley, on the other hand, must be aware of the offset trailer when riding alongside traffic or through tight gate openings.

Comparative Prices for Burley and Thule

In reality, a Burley bike trailer or a Thule Chariot bike trailer are also excellent choices. Both brands are of the highest quality available and outperform lower-end alternatives by a substantial margin. For a quick summary, see the comparative prices below.

  • Basic Trailers, $300 – $450

Both Burley and Thule have two basic bike trailers to choose from. Burley’s Recreation is the name of the line. These trailers lack some of the high-end elements of their other trailers, but they are of higher quality than other trailers.

  • Mid-Range Trailers, $500 – $700

Mid-range trailers are ideal for people who want a little more luxury without paying top cash for a trailer. Compared to basic trailers, mid-range trailers stand out because they are compatible with a four-wheel stroller and jogger systems.

In contrast, Burley and Thule’s mid-range trailers are of higher quality than other companies’ top-of-the-line trailers. These mid-range trailers have a lot to offer, from stronger materials and cushioning to more robust zippers.

  • High-End Trailers, $700 – $1,150

The finest of the best for those who aspire to be the best of the best. These trailers have it all, from luxurious interiors and impervious zippers to comfy chairs and stability.

Parting Shot

This article contrasted and compared thule vs. burley (bike trailers), two of the best bike trailers for families with small children. Both of these bike trailers are successful in providing consumers with several benefits.

You must examine the pricing, features, and other criteria to get the finest one. Each bike trailer has its own set of advantages and disadvantages, so you’ll have to evaluate them all, figure out what you need, and pick one.