Friday, March 18, 2011

Top kid travel gear: Cosco Scenera car seat

Littles snoozing in the Scenera at Flagg Ranch, Yellowstone National Park (15 months old)

This post is part of a series on top kid travel gear.

Funny, we actually did not purchase our Cosco Scenera car seat with the intention of using it while traveling. We bought it when Littles was about 1 year old to leave with her sitter/nanny, so that she could drive Littles during the day while she watched her. We chose it because it is cheap (about $40 at Walmart) and gets great safety ratings.

But as it turns out, it's a perfect travel seat as well. It is lightweight, so it is easy to drag around the airport. It is narrow, so it fits easily in airline seats. It comes with its own handy bag for travel. And since it's cheap, I never worry about it getting lost or damaged while in transit. If that does happen, it will be no big deal to just buy a new one!

The Scenera does rear-facing from 5-35 lbs and forward-facing from 22-40 lbs. Littles still fits easily into the seat at 3.5 years old.

Downsides? There are a few:

  1. The straps get twisted and stuck much more easily than on the more-expensive Britax seats that we use in our own cars. It's a bit of a pain, which is why we don't use the Scenera as our everyday seat.
  2. The Scenera is less padded, although Littles has never complained about it.
  3. We've found that it requires some sort of leveler (such as a rolled-up towel or a pool noodle) when installed rear-facing in most cars. We have yet to get organized enough to carry a pool noodle with us when we travel, so we usually end up rolling up a sweatshirt or coat to get from the airport to the hotel, then borrowing a hotel towel to get the seat at the right level for the rest of the trip.
  4. While it is compatible with our older version of the GoGo Kidz Travelmate, it doesn't attach as securely as the Britax seats do. It's also not at all compatible with the newer Travelmate quick release strap.

Due to that last point, I think we'll end up traveling with the smaller of our two Britax seats (a Roundabout) on our future trips, now that we have the Travelmate quick release strap. But I sure will miss traveling with the Scenera. Having an extra seat for travel is a bit of a luxury, but it's really nice to not have to hassle with reinstalling the car seat when you arrive back home late at night and have two tired kiddos on your hands!

1 comment:

kevin coper said...
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