Traveling with your little one can be a nerve-wracking experience. Knowing your baby is both safe and comfortable is key to finding a reliable car seat. For first-time parents, finding the right model can be a challenge with the multitude of features, options and stages available. We know it can make your head spin, and you already have enough to worry about. That’s why buybuy BABY is here to help you de-stress your already hectic life with a selection of car seats for every age from infant to toddler and beyond. You’ll be ready to roll with infant car seats, toddler car seats, convertible car seats, booster seats, and even compact car seats with wheels so you don’t need a separate stroller. Identifying your ideal budget is a great first step to understanding what’s available - this may be surprising but more expensive doesn’t make it safer for baby. When you begin to feel overwhelmed, remember, they all pass the same safety tests, some just have extra bells and whistles.
There are three main stages your little one will grow through before transitioning into a standard seat belt. First are rear-facing baby car seats (suitable from birth to age 2 years), which are placed in the rear seat with your baby facing the back of the car. Next are forward-facing toddler car seats (ages 2 to 4 years, and no more than 40 lb.), which are similar to rear-facing seats, except positioned facing the front of the car. Finally, belt-positioning boosters are available in high-back or backless (ages 4 to 8 years, or up to 4’9”), which elevate your child on a higher seat while using the standard seat belt. This slow, but secure progression helps your baby gradually grow into a seatbelt safely. For meeting all these stages, try a car seat that transitions from one step to another, such as a convertible car seat. This allows the car seat to grow with your little one, which creates a smoother transition and is more cost effective. If you are traveling or switch cars often, an on-the-go option is handy and some can also transform into a stroller to make the switch from car to ground seamless.
Before selecting a model best suited for your needs, make sure to acknowledge the safety features and measurements to find the right fit for your family. For the car seat to properly install, measure the back seat of the car you will be using to determine how much room is available. If you are choosing one stage models, check the weight capacity to prevent incorrect usage and avoid issues between stages (for example if one is up to 30 lbs., but the next starts at 40 lbs.). The ‘Pinch Test’ is helpful in determining if you have properly secured your baby into the car seat. Pinch the webbing strap at the child’s collarbone; if you are unable to grasp the material and your fingers slide off, your child is harnessed properly. Additional car seat accessories, such as car seat protectors and baby window shades are available to ensure a comfortable (and tidy) trip. No matter newborn or big kid, buybuy BABY is here to help keep your little ones safe and comfy through every step of their journey.