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Guest Blog: Is my carseat allowed to go on the airplane?

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A common question among traveling parents is, “Is my carseat allowed to go on the aircraft?”

With very few exceptions, YES, it can!

Booster seats, for instance, are not approved. They require lap and shoulder belts, and aircraft are not yet equipped with more than lap belts. If you have a booster aged child and are traveling with a seat for them, you can break down the back from the bottom and store them in the overhead, put the back in your suitcase and carry on the backless booster, or just take a backless booster with you. Other options are to have a booster waiting at your destination (if possible), or something like a Ride Safer Travel Vest, BubbleBum, or  Safety 1st BoostaPak going with you.

airplaneFor harnessed seats, there are only three US seats that are not aircraft approved. The IMMI/Safety 1st Go Hybrid, Graco Smart Seat, and the Combi Zeus/Zeus 360. You cannot use one of these seats on board. All other carseats carry the sticker which indicate it IS approved for use onboard US-based aircraft.

If your seat is a rear facing only seat, check your manual to see if the base is allowed to be used on board. For most seats a base will simply add length front to back, so it likely won’t ‘be used anyway, but Britax bases, the Canadian Chicco Keyfit, the Peg Perego bases, and a few others are not aircraft approved. If you want to travel with your base, put it in the overhead bin or under the seat in front of the baby. If you can, having a base bought and shipped to your destination is an option as well.

It’s helpful to know your rights as a traveling parent. For information on regulations set by the FAA (governing US carriers), please visit:

http://carseatblog.com/22134/flying-with-a-car-seat-know-your-rights/

Department of Transportation Circular and Department of Transportation Requirements.

Safety 1st onBoard 35 Air Review: More Wows!

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I feel I need to start this review with a disclaimer. I am not a huge infant seat user. I didn’t have one for my older daughter, and I didn’t purchase one with my baby. I was looking forward to the Safety 1st onBoard 35 Air road test as a way to try out something I’m not used to at all.

And if I may echo Darren, WOW.

As Darren stated in his review, the installation is easy. He put it in his Prius and Odyssey, and to that we can add a 2001 Nissan Xterra, 2008 Acura TSX, and 1989 Subaru GL. More on these later. I’m a scant 5’1”, so there would never have been a concern with putting it directly behind me in my Xterra, but what is a concern is the angle of my backseat. To put my convertible in rear facing for a newborn angle I required FIVE pool noodles. My baby is eight and a half months old now, and so does not need a newborn angle, but I installed the onBoard 35 Air as for a newborn in my car to see how easy it would be with the Mt. Fuji of sloped backseats. And wow (is there a wow quota? I may go over it).

No noodles were needed. Nothing. Just put the foot out and install.