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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We are going to be travelling to visit family for the holidays and will have to fly and then rent a vehicle and drive for a couple of hours to get to our destination. We have an almost 7 year old ds, a four year old ds and a 9 month old dd. What to do about car seats? I definitely plan to bring the baby's seat, but don't know whether to check it to save hassle (as my dh wants to do) or gate check it to reduce risk of damage (like I want to do). Also, should we bring boosters for the boys? The four year old weighs the same as his older brother and is big enough to be in a booster, although he still rides in a car seat. His car seat is way to heavy to lug along. My dh thinks we could bring ds1's booster for ds2 to sit in and let ds1 ride with a seat belt. I don't want to do this, but also can't see lugging an infant seat and two boosters to the airport with everything else we'll have to bring (plus we'd have to buy another booster). I've looked into renting car seats and it seems pretty iffy. What would you do?
 

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Well, if it's in the budget, what about two RideSafer Travel Vests? And gate check the baby's seat, in a protective bag if at all possible.
 

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Definitely don't rent carseats, it is iffy. Best case would be gate checking the bucket, having a seat for the 4y and the booster for 7y. Folding luggage carts work well for getting carseats through the airport. I always use a stroller, wear the baby, and I load a stroller full of the seats.<br><br><br><br>
Now other workable options would be a no back booster for the 7y which would be easier to carry through the airport and use the high backed booster for the 4y for the trip. If the 4y has never rode in a booster and especially if you are driving for a couple hours then he really should be booster trained before this trip.<br><br><br>
The big problem with checking seats or boosters of many kind, besides the fact that they can be damaged, is there are no guarantees that they will turn up at your destination. Especially this time of year when so many people are traveling. BTDT, last time I traveled with all the kids by myself, plus an extra, I checked a booster, it got lost along with all our luggage. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/eyesroll.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="roll">
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the replies. The four year old has ridden in his brother's booster before and has done fine. I was debating about the stroller, too. Do you gate check the stroller? I'll have to look into how many things you can gate check. I'm leaning toward buying another booster, since we would be getting another one eventually anyway.
 

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Strollers usually don't count against your baggage rules and I don't know of any restrictions on the number of <i>gate-checked</i> items anyway.<br><br>
The politics going on right now; many people are gate-checking items to avoid baggage charges but even if this problem is brewing with your airline, the fact that it's a stroller will mean it's outside the debate. Obviously, you need to bring the stroller to the gate.<br><br>
Convince your dh that you're going to try to get an extra seat to use for your 9 month old so you need to take the seat to the gate. Put the stroller on a separate metal luggage cart and even the 7 year old can help pull it (mine does because I'm usually alone with my three).<br><br>
I know some may not be happy with my mentioning this but if you must rent, then I would ONLY rent the booster for the oldest. Why? because car seats are more delicate and the fit is more important than with a booster. It might be really nasty and then you could, in theory, buy a cheap backless one when you get there. You can also see if a booster is in bad shape.<br><br>
Yes, renting the booster is less good than bringing your own. I wont lie to you or contradict anyone who says not to.
 

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I've never had issues gate checking a car seat for each of my kids and a stdroller in addition.<br><br>
I would buy a turbobooster for your 4yo IF he will sit in it properly. Then I would pack the back in your suitcase and carry the bottom with you. Your 7yo is probably fine with a backless if he'll sit properly and stay awake. Then you only have to lug one car seat and two backless boosters through the airport. Easy to do with a stroller, luggage cart, or even put the seat and one of the nbb in a rolling car seat bag.
 
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