“What’s a good cab-friendly car seat for toddlers?” That’s what one of my friends in New York recently asked me to look into.
While there are plenty of infant car seats that easily can be used in cabs, it turns out that there aren’t that many convertible (i.e. good for rear-facing infants and toddlers) styles that can easily be transported in and out of taxis and around town.
In fact, the authors of Baby Bargains, my go-to book for baby gear recommendations, note in a section of their book called “The NYC Taxi Dilemma” that “there aren’t many good options” for urban taxi-hopping babies and toddlers who have outgrown the infant seat. So they suggest “using public transportation” unless you’re traveling via a car service that provides a car seat.
Today’s hint is her advice on which convertible seat to get if you’re going to be cabbing around a city.
Her current suggestion for such folks: the Combi Coccoro. She likes this model because it’s lightweight (only 11 lbs); it can be installed with the child in the seat (so you don’t have to worry about junior running into the street while you install the car seat); it’s rear facing for kids weighing up to 33 lbs (most kids are too tall for rear-facing in the Coccoro around age 2); it will last forward facing for most kids until age 3, and it’s easy to install with a seat belt.
But the biggest advantage of the Coccoro, Dr. Baer says, is that it fits onto a stroller (the Baby Trend Snap n Go EX stroller). For those walking around the city and hopping in and out of taxis, “you need to have a car seat that fits onto a stroller,” she says. “Otherwise, what are going to do with the seat once you get to where you want to go? Currently, the Combi Coccoro is the only lightweight* convertible seat that fits onto a stroller.”
Meanwhile, for those who are taking taxis simply from point A to point B and will not be walking around with the car seat in between the taxi rides, it may be possible to use a larger convertible seat that does not fit on a stroller. You can either carry the car seat when not in the taxi, or place it on a rolling cart that you pull behind you (a great product for airports, & getting through an apartment lobby up to your friend’s place, but not walking around a city).
Dr. Baer suggests checking out the Britax Roundabout 55 which weighs 16 pounds, installs and uninstalls quickly and relatively easily with LATCH. The Roundabout 55 will fit on various rolling carts including the GoGoBabyz Travelmate and Brica Roll N Go.
What are your favorite urban-friendly car seat models and why?
*(The Orbit Toddler Car Seat fits onto the Orbit stroller but since it weighs 22 pounds, Dr. Baer says it’s not lightweight enough to be practical for taxi use).