Best Baby Car Seat For Long Journeys, international travel & Flying

For those of you who are planning a long journey, international travel or flying(FAA Approved) with a baby, these are the 2 best infant car seats that I have found on the market.

These seats are also great options for large babies and for people who want to use the seat while switching cars and while using a Taxi.

Graco Extend2Fit Convertible Car Seat – Great seat For long drives

One of the issues that bother us is the safety of our children. There are so many questions about safety chairs. What is the best car seat in the world? How we will know what is best for us and endless questions that are asked every day by parents in the world.

One thing is certain, every parent wants to keep his child safe and is looking for the best.

Best Baby Car Seat For Long Journeys/Drives

In this article, I will try to answer any questions and cover most of the questions currently running in the market.

I’m definitely happy about one thing. Over the past four years, this subject has become more popular and today the parents understand that there is a connection between the car seat and the safety level and learn the subject well before choosing the chair.

Before I go deep into the subject, I will explain something very important – there is no such thing as the best chair in the world, just like there is no such thing as the best car in the world, or the best jeans in the world or the best television in the world.

Everyone has requirements, requests, and needs that he wishes to receive a full response to. If there was one chair in the world, probably by the beginning of 2022 there would not be hundreds of different types of chairs that are appropriate for your child, and be sure that each chair has a potential customer.

Read More- Best Sleeping Bag For Travelling, How To Choose One? And More Tips!

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In the first stage we will discuss the standards, there are two types of main standards:

  • European standard.
  • American standard.

European standard

The standard is divided into 2 – old ECE R44 / 04 standard as opposed to the new standard I-Size / R129.

ECE R44 / 04 (Old Standard)I-Size \ R129 (new standard)
Crash tests* Front crush test 50 km / h
* Rear crash test 30 km / h
* Front crush test 50 km / h
* Rear crash test 30 km / h
* Side impact test 24 km / h
A test dollWith 4 sensors that provide tests results. With 32 sensors that provide tests results.
Test directionWith the direction of travel( forward-facing) starting from 9 kgAgainst the direction of travel(Rear-Facing) up to 15 kg as a
InstallationIsofix, belt or bothIsofix only with legs support.
Categories* Group 0: Up to 13 kg until the age of one year.
* Group 0/1: up to 18 kg until age 4.
* Group 1: 9-18 kg 9 months to 4 years.
*Group 2/3: 15-16 kg | 3.5 – 12 years.
There are no groups at all, based on the height of the child.

American standard

  • Standard – Fmvss 213 – tying with safety straps – Checks the following criteria: Children up to 36 kg, car docking with minimum displacement, up to 2.5 cm, instruction booklet, docking points, warning instructions on the chair, limiting the use of safety straps and under-seat anchors (Isofix)
  • Standard – Fmvss 225 – tying with Isofix Connection – Determines all the rules of the connection using Isofix, a must for an upper Isofix (frequency) and another 2 under-seat Isofix.

The big difference between the European standard and the American standard

The big difference between the standards is the approach:

  • European standard – Isofix is a ​​connection of iron directly to the chassis – even if you want, the chair will not move at all.
  • American standard – Isofix is ​​connected to the LATCH strips directly to the chassis of the vehicle and must not move more than 2.5 cm + chest buckle.

What is the difference in perception? The European approach says that if you have an accident, you have to get the child out as quickly as possible and leave the chair in the car.

While the American approach says exactly the opposite, cut the straps of the Isofix, LATCH, and take the child out with the chair.

This is why it has the chest buckle which does not exist in the European.

Most European seats have no validity to the seat (s) while the Americans have, in any case, I recommend using a seat between 7-10 years from the beginning of the use.

Note that in a large number of American chairs A validation date is registered and you have to use it accordingly.

Which one is right? This is your decision, but the difference in approach is very clear and therefore the perception is very different between these two continents.

Learn more- Best Cargo Roof Box For Travelling with Camping Gear.

Testing institutes

In Europe, as we have seen, the standard requires testing by the law, but there is a research institute that publishes its tests. The institute is called ADAC. The institute is a German car club that was founded in 1903 and conducts independent tests for crash tests in German.

The ADAC rating method is:

  • Very good – less than 1.5.
  • Good – 1.6-2.6.
  • Provides – 2.7-3.9.
  • Almost failed 3.9-5.5.
  • Failed 5.5 or higher.

Please note that the lower the number, the higher the score.

In the United States, there is no government inspection institute that does crash tests. The National Road Safety website ranks chairs and seats according to the data that I have listed above.

In addition, there is the Consumer Reports website, a non-profit organization founded in 1936 to examine products in general and safety seats in particular.

Even though it is A non-profit organization, In order to see the rankings on the site you have to pay money and subscribe to the site.

Consumer Reports’s Site Way Of Ranking:

  • Best
  • Better
  • Basic

Note that Consumer Reports does not have the score failed.

It is important to emphasize that there is no overlap between the sites. There are no similar products between ADAC and Consumer Reports. Even if we see a product with the same name, it is confusing and not exactly the same.

For example, Graco Milestone which has got very high ranking in the American website has failed with the Europeans and the reason for this is that the European chair does not have an Isofix connection at all. So it’s important to understand that there is a difference and the products do not overlap.

List of The Best Baby Car Seat For Long Journeys/Drives

When regarding baby car seat for long Journeys, besides comfortable padding and maximum security, a leg extender and different lying/sitting modes are extremely important.

This is why I have picked the following seats

1. Best For Long Journeys And Large Babies – Graco Extend2Fit Convertible Car Seat 

I think it is necessary to speak openly about the problematic nature of the concept of safety versus reality.

There is no doubt that it is always better to sit against the direction of the journey.
For the sake of illustration, I will explain that the adults too are better off against the direction of the trip because it reduces the impact in the event of a head-on accident at 73%.

The law obliges in many countries to place children up to one year of age against the direction of travel and during this time the child does not speak, complains or asks us to turn him over since he’s too young for that.

The problems start when the complaints arrive and the parents give in to the pressures of the children.

The child wants to see the direction of the trip and his interest is to be facing forward as early as possible while our interest is to guard him and place him against the direction of travel for as long as possible.

In fact, most children do not reach late ages when they sit against the direction of the journey and most of them, until the age of two are already sitting in the direction of the trip, but when I look at safety I try to look at the state of “utopia” in which the child agrees and understands that his safety is above all and here enters the Extend2Fit baby seat.

The chair is suitable from birth to 65 pounds but up to here there is probably nothing new under the sun, the seat itself has a leg extender (from this seat the Graco 4ever Extend2Fit, has developed) allowing older children with a weight of up to 50 pounds to sit against the direction of travel.

Talking about the Graco 4ever Extend2Fit – If you want a baby car seat chair that will accompany your child throughout his adolescence up to a weight of 120 lb(by converting into a booster) than you have to check it out.

The Graco 4Ever Extend2Fit All-in-One Convertible Car Seat is also available on Amazon, Check it out here.

Pay attention that you can choose different models, the Extand2Fit version that I have linked here will come with A leg extender.

It’s not that I think that a child of this age will sit against the direction of the journey, but if we pass the age of two years we have already taken a giant step In safety.

In addition, the chair with an American standard includes Isofix and passed Consumer Reports crash tests with a Better score.

According to the Babygearlab blog, The chair actually got the highest score in the crash tests. So who you should believe? It’s a good question. It’s important to know that no one is publishing his criterions to us for examination.
There is no doubt that in the end, it is an excellent baby car seat.

Cons of the Graco Extend2Fit Convertible Car Seat

  • When securing the safety straps, a Locking Clip is required.
  • Angles cannot be changed when the chair is anchored.
  • It is a bit difficult to install the chair against the direction of travel by means of straps.
  • It is hard to tighten the internal safety straps.
  • Not recommended for preterm infants.
  • Foot extension cannot be used in the forward-facing mode.
  • Without side protections.

Pros of the Graco Extend2Fit Convertible Car Seat

  • Suitable up to a weight of 4-50 lb against the direction of travel.
  • 4-position extension panel adjusts to provide 5″ additional legroom allowing your child to ride safely rear-facing longer.
  • Level for proper installation.
  • Looks big but relatively narrow.
  • Easy installation using Isofix.
  • 10 head modes for maximum protection.
  • 6 lying/sitting modes.

The Graco Extend2Fit Convertible Car Seat is not FAA Aproved which means that it is not suitable for flying.
This leads me to the next baby car seat on this list.

2. Best Infant Car Seat For Flying(FAA Approved)And to Use In A Taxi – Evenflo Tribute LX Convertible Car Seat – Best Seat Under $100

In case you are looking for a car seat that you can use on a plane or to carry with you to a taxi then the next seat on the list is for you!

Evenflo was founded in 1920 in the USA and towards the end of 2014, the company was acquired by the Hong Kong conglomerate GB, which manufactures its products, Cybex products, and other leading companies and is considered one of the largest companies in the infant industry.

Evenflo Triumph baby seat chair is a very popular chair that has been in existence for over 15 years, getting better and better over the years, each time with more and more small improvements.

The Evenflo Tribute LX Convertible Car Seat also comes with a very attractive price tag and is being sold on Amazon, Check out its current price.

The company itself today passes all its tests twice as much as the standard requirements, its chairs are all approved for flying, come with breathable fabrics, and their safety tests include also side impact and Car overturning tests and not just crushing.

The seat itself regularly receives the highest score in the Consumer Reports crash tests with the BEST score. The seat is suitable from birth to 40 lbs and you will find many features that will make your life easier.

This seat is the best Infant car seat for flying and to carry with you to a taxi or to switch between cars due to its light weight(12 pounds) and easy installation.

Things that I Like In The Evenflo Tribute LX Convertible Car Seat

  • Gets the highest scores in crash tests.
  • Meets the strictest standards of safety.
  • Certified for flight – FAA – prestigious safety label.
  • Comfortable and particularly luxurious padding – breathing.
  • A place to grasp the inner straps for easy insertion and protection from heat.
  • No weight limit for inner straps.
  • Light Weight.
  • 2 built-in cup holders.
  • Great Price Tag

Things that I didn’t Like in the In The Evenflo Tribute LX Convertible Car Seat

  • Not so suitable for very small infants due to its lying position( an infant bucket seat might be helpful)
  • Tough tying with Isofix.
  • It would be hard to get 3 seats in a car.
  • When securing the safety straps, a Locking Clip is required.
  • Angles cannot be changed when the chair is anchored.
  • There are no headrest adjusts options.
  • There are no side protections.

I hope that I helped you with finding the best baby car seat for long journeys, international travel and flying and I wish you a safe trip.

One thought on “Best Baby Car Seat For Long Journeys, international travel & Flying

  1. Hi, I have a question.
    Is the Graco 4ever Extend2fit platinum certified to be used in Europe/France?
    I have looked everywhere, but can’t find this info anywhere. The email address given on the Graco website for French customer service is not found and there isn’t one at all for the US.
    I have a 4 months old daughter who weighs more than 18lbs and this seat would be ideal.
    Please help.

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