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Do I really need an infant carrier?

(22 Posts)
TwitchyTail Fri 30-Nov-12 20:53:16

Sorry if this has been done before, but I couldn't find anything on it. The (very) few people I know in real life with babies all have the Maxi-Cosi type infant carriers to begin with. It seems like a lot of money to spend on something that will only be used for one year at most, especially if Isofixes etc are added in.

Is there a reason people don't go straight for the Group 0+ to 1 car seats? I was thinking of the Britax First Class Plus. I don't plan to keep my baby in its seat except for when it's in the car, and the seat will stay in one car at all times.

Am I missing something important?

Indith Fri 30-Nov-12 20:58:59

I'd say that no you are not. I leave my seat in the car all the time, I take the baby out and he stays asleep no problem (we have the first class plus). But some people take the car seat in and out of the car all the time and like their travel systems so they can take the seat out and pop it on the chassis and then back in the car nice and easily. I use a sling most of the time so that isn't a priority for me!

I guess it totally depends on what you want from it.

Walkingchloe Fri 30-Nov-12 21:00:44

I don't know a lot about the seat you are talking about but imo the advantages of the maxi cosi are that it fits on my travel system wheels so if ds falls asleep in the car i can get him out and he stays asleep (in theory ha ha!) and on the which report the maxi cosi plus isofix base was the safest way of transporting ds in a car in terms of crash safety etc. It's bloody heavy to carry ds around in it now he's 4mo though!

Toptack Fri 30-Nov-12 21:06:48

We got the first class plus to begin with, but discovered it was distinctly wobbly when fitted rear facing in my car (even when fitted by Mothercare). It's absolutely fine forward facing, but we ended up getting a Maxi Cosi for the early months as well, and it was really handy to be able to take the whole seat in and out of the car, clip it onto the pram base etc.

Indith Fri 30-Nov-12 21:12:04

First Class Plus is fine in my car.

It should of course go without saying that you buy the best seat that fits your car. but as I said before being able to get it in and out with the baby in it is something that some people really want and find useful and others don't so go with what you feel you will need not what anyone else does.

nextphase Fri 30-Nov-12 21:15:22

I hate using the car seat as a travel system, so my infant carrier stayed in the car nearly all the time - its HEAVY once baby is anything other than brand new.

But equally, I'm not convinced by multi tasking seats - its likely to my mind that it won't do anything perfectly. And who knows what advances will come along in those first 12-18 months (DS2 came out of his infant carrier at 16 months).

The one person I know who wanted it didn't have seat belts long enough to go round it when rear facing.

Have you looked into extended rear facing??

TwitchyTail Sat 01-Dec-12 09:50:46

Thanks for input everyone, that's really helpful.

Having carried my sister's young baby in her carrier and almost pulling my shoulder out (weakling here), I really can't see myself doing it on a regular basis. We aren't planning to get a travel system (just a pushchair) and I'm hoping to use a sling where possible.

What bugs me is that those isofix etc bases seem to have become an "essential" and they cost as much as the carrier! If I do get an infant carrier but leave it permanently in the car, do you think it would be ok without forking out for a base? (Because I could get it fitted properly and leave it, so it wouldn't by subject to me grappling with seatbelts each time).

Indith Sat 01-Dec-12 09:53:40

You need to look at what is safest within your price range. You can usually join which for £1 for the first month so join, check and cancel straight away.

Those fitted with seatbelts do need adjusting from time to time as the seatbelt stretches, you've wiggled it a bit leaning on it to the get the baby in and out etc but most are a doddle to fit and easy to tighten up without having to do a complete refit.

mamaCam Sat 01-Dec-12 11:30:37

they will not let you leave the hospital with your baby unless you have a car seat suitable for a newborn.

if your friends babies have out grown their infant seats then maybe offer to buy theirs if you don't want to pay full wack for a new one.

I travel with my baby alot and do lots of walking so a travel system works great for me. when we get out of the car I can just put baby's seat straight onto the pram frame and go

Indith Sat 01-Dec-12 11:33:35

mamaCam she has never said she doens't want a seat suitable for a newborn! She is just looking at those which do both rear facing for babies and then turn to forward facing when they are old enough.

We have a first class plus, Dd is still in forward facing at 2yrs 9months, DS will also fit at 4yrs 5months. grin We had an infant carrier for DS but it stayed in the car. smile

When we left the hospital with both of them I carried them in my arms while DH and DMum carried everything else.blush

I was never questioned by the hospital about having an Infant carrier.

Neither of my cars have had isofix either. DH's car now does but we are going to get another first class plus for DC3 due in April. grin

gastrognome Sat 01-Dec-12 11:58:47

Our infant carrier proved invaluable for the first year or so, for both babies.

It was really handy for us to be able to put the maxi-cosi onto the pushchair base, and was also great to have somewhere convenient I could put baby in to rock her to sleep if out at a friend's house, baby group, etc.

Definitely well worth the money in our case. But we have to park on the street so it was really helpful to be able to transfer sleeping baby straight onto the pushchair without having to take her out of the car seat. Perhaps if we had a garage or parking space by our house it would have been less of an issue.

TwitchyTail Sat 01-Dec-12 15:33:54

Thanks Indith and Knittingnovice, that's great to know. I feel better about it all now!

Good point Gastrognome. We have driveway parking but I guess we could always buy an infant carrier after the baby is born if we're finding it a pain to transfer in and out.

MamaCam, don't worry, I'm not proposing to use a car seat that isn't safe for a newborn! (Although incidentally our hospital doesn't have rules on needing to take babies home in a car seat, maybe because it's in an area where many people don't have cars).

Zipitydooda Sat 01-Dec-12 18:14:07

I know it may be way into the future for you now but if you're considering having another baby you may realise its worth getting an infant carrier for a couple of reasons:
1) nursery drop offs and collection - when I had baby no2 it was Si

Zipitydooda Sat 01-Dec-12 18:25:24

Sorry that sent too soon;
1) when I had no2 it was invaluable to be able to transfer him without getting him out of the carseat so his sleep wasn't so disrupted by taking my eldest to and from nursery twice a day (always at nap time!)
2) due to the age gap, I didn't need to double up on seats the eldest was in the next stage seat when the baby was born so we only needed 1 of each sort of seat.

Quite apart from that, I might not have survived without the sneaky brief naps I had on the sofa while my baby slept in the carseat after a car journey. He would have woken if I'd taken him out and after weeks of not sleeping for more than 3 hours at a stretch, I needed to grab every opportunity to sleep!

Zipitydooda Sat 01-Dec-12 18:28:22

Also you really don't need to get a base. 8 yrs ago when I had my first they didn't exist, the seatbelt was fine then, I don't see why it shouldn't be now?

TwitchyTail Sat 01-Dec-12 21:34:03

Thanks Zipitydooda. If we can do without the base it will make it much easier to buy the infant carrier and separate "older" seat. I was just begrudging paying £200+ total for something that will have to be replaced early on, but my tightfistedness can stretch to £100 grin

Barbeasty Mon 03-Dec-12 09:09:04

The bases are fabulous if you are taking the seat in and out all the time, because you just clip the seat in rather than faffing with the seatbelt every time.

If you aren't planning on taking the seat out frequently then it's fine to fit it directly with the seatbelt and forget about a base.

gastrognome Tue 04-Dec-12 15:16:34

Forgot to mention that we never forked out for the base - quickly got very good at attaching the seat using the seatbelt and it was never really a big deal for us.

5madthings Tue 04-Dec-12 15:20:53

Some of the bases can be used by the next stage carseat¿ i think there us a maxi-cosi one that is used by their i fant carrier and xan then be used by a next stage carseat...the pearl? Ir something?

GalaxyDisaster Tue 04-Dec-12 15:21:39

You can attach with the seatbelt, but you do need to be competent at doing it. You can't have it fitted and just leave it. The seatbelt moves and will need tightening from time to time. Also, as they get bigger, their legs get in the way if you try and load them in without unclipping it.

Worth bearing in mind if you happen to have a three door car that life is much easier with a base.

GalaxyDisaster Tue 04-Dec-12 15:23:08

Yup, the Pearl. Maxi-cosi have a base that can be used with their first and second stage car seat. The issue we would have found is that DD1 was still in the second stage when DD was born, so would have needed a new base anyway. Also, the Pearl is pretty pricey.

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