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I need to buy a baby car-seat for when we visit family from abroad - it will live at grandparents house and will mainly be used to pick us up/drop us off at the airport.
I have found a v cheap one on Kiddicare for under £30. Don't want to spend much, as it won't be used much (we only visit about twice a year, and we have another forward facing seat waiting in the wings once the baby one is outgrown next summer).
I was wondering whether:
(a) A seat that is so cheap could possibly be any good - does anyone have one? I don't want to buy something that isn't really safe
(b) if anyone could recommend any other similarly priced seats?
(c)whether second hand more expensive seat would be better - and if so if there is any reputable dealer or way of buying second hand so that you are more assured that it is safe and never been in an accident etc.
Definitely do not buy a second hand seat unless it is from a family member who can guarantee it has not been in an accident or dropped. You also need to be sure it hasn't been stored in extreme temperatures.
I would look at spending as much as you can afford as opposed to what you want to pay as a car seat can safe your child's life.
Mothercare are doing a deal on carseats at the moment - i got an Oyster car seat (to fit on to an Oyster chassis, though it can be used separately) for £66.
As far as i understand it - i bought it online yesterday and im waiting for it to be delivered - you can strap it into a three point harness seatbelt in a car without the need for the isofix type base.
So is it the case that the more you spend the safer the seat is? Or are you sometimes paying for padding/style etc? I just want something that is "entry level", no frills - but of course I want it to be safe. I just can't see how you find out what is safer.
My advice would be to go on a website - Britax is one - and put in the make and model of the car you will be using. They will advise you which is the best sit to fit your cat and for your child to be driven in. You will need your child's weight.
The mothercare own brand one is manufactured by Dorel/Maxi Cosi. It's about £45 I think. They score well on which tests as well. I had one for DS and found it great, slightly less padded than other seats, but it was nice and sturdy, felt safe, and had good deep side impact protection. Some of the cheaper seats seem very flimsy.
Or if you can get hold of a second hand one from a trusted source that would be a good bet too. I think it's madness to pay £100+ for a seat which will be used so infrequently, especially if you have nobody to pass it onto when it's finished with. Such a waste of resources.
Just had a look on kiddicare and the "mini" car seat (is that the one you mean) looks very shallow and the fabrics look like they might be quite sweaty and uncomfortable. Of course this is just from a picture, but the difference in side impact protection to the mothercare one is huge.
Thanks! They are all so expensive considering it will be used for about 4 hours max, ever And then I can't even sell it afterwards! I don't want to compromise on safety though...Will have to start saving.
(Actually on closer inspection they don't look to be the exact same seat, but the side impact protection looks okay on both - still it's an unknown brand, so for the £40 I'd go for the mothercare one.)