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  1. #1
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    Gate checking vs convertible waiting at destination

    Hello,

    I am flying for the first time with my 18 month old from Southern California to Northern California next week on Southwest (so a little over an hour flight) and we unfortunately did not purchase a seat for him. I realize the safety concerns now and wish I knew it earlier.

    That being said, I am not sure what to do about a convertible car seat for him. My son is RF and 35 inches and probably about 26-28 lbs now. We use a Chicco NextFit in our car but I'd rather buy a new less expensive seat that I can use as a spare in my Hyundai accent later on.

    My question is, do I buy a new convertible seat and gate check it (our flight is sold out) OR do I buy a new seat and have it shipped to my MIL & ask her to bring it when she picks us up??

    I originally thought MIL would be letting us use our nephew's Evenflo Symphony since it's in her SUV up there but she will be driving her sedan which does not have a car seat in it & doesn't want to lug it back and forth between cars since she works in San Jose during the week (sedan stays there and she takes the train home Thursday evenings) but lives near Tahoe during the weekend.

    Also, options for an inexpensive car seat that is easy to install?? We've only installed the NextFit using the seatbelt in our Rav4. Was looking at the EvenFlo Sureride, Cosco APT 40 and an S1 Easy Fit. Graco MyRide might be too much, not sure. I have a small car (Hyundai Accent 2004) that would end up getting the travel car seat later on to use as a spare/in emergencies.

    Sigh. Any help would be appreciated!
    Last edited by ocmama; 04-04-2014 at 04:27 PM.

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  3. #2
    Forum Ambassador TechnoGranola's Avatar
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    Any chance you have an infant bucket around that he still fits in? For example, Graco SnugRide 35 or any other higher weight seat with a greater than 30" height limit?
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  4. #3
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    Re: Gate checking vs convertible waiting at destination

    Quote Originally Posted by TechnoGranola View Post
    Any chance you have an infant bucket around that he still fits in? For example, Graco SnugRide 35 or any other higher weight seat with a greater than 30" height limit?
    No, we have his Chicco KeyFit 30 in storage but he has a long torso. I imagine he'd be too tall for his but I can try & check.

  5. #4
    CPST and ketchup snob ketchupqueen's Avatar
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    Re: Gate checking vs convertible waiting at destination

    What is mil's car?

    I'd choose shipping thereover risking the seat being damaged or lost in transit.
    CPST and Mom to Emma, 15, Bridget, 13, Maggie, 11, Katie Sue, 6, Jimmy, born May 2019,
    and Becky, waiting for us as part of our eternal family.
    Our '02 Odyssey, car seats, and seatbelts saved our lives. Now riding in a '13 Odyssey!

  6. #5
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    Re: Gate checking vs convertible waiting at destination

    Quote Originally Posted by ketchupqueen View Post
    What is mil's car?

    I'd choose shipping thereover risking the seat being damaged or lost in transit.
    That...ship it to MIL's. And when you have to gate check the new seat on your flight back home package it up in the box and packaging it came in.

    Edit: Make sure to tell your MIL to keep that box and packaging.
    Mom to Mischief 1/DD (10.5), Mischief 2/DS1 (8), Mischief 3/DS2 (6.5), and now baby 4/DS3 (21 months), already in training to be Mischief 4 soon, since he is learning from the best!

  7. #6
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    Re: Gate checking vs convertible waiting at destination

    I also would ship seat to MIL rather than gate checking, especially since you know the flight is full and there's no chance of using it on board. If your flight home has room you can always try to use it on board on the way home, or as suggested above put it back in the original box to bring it with you.

    I'd go for a SureRide for a spare/travel seat but not sure how it will fit in an Accent, perhaps a Scenera would be better there even though it won't last as long RFing? I would say the SureRide is likely an easier install though which might be something to consider since it sounds like you'd be putting it into your MIL's car at the airport.

  8. #7
    CPS Technician Brigala's Avatar
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    Re: Gate checking vs convertible waiting at destination

    My vote out of those options would be the S1 Easy Fit. It will be the best bet for fitting well on the airplane both rear facing and forward facing. The other seats suggested will fit, but perhaps not as comfortably and maybe not RF. It is also sold at Walmart under the name Safety 1st Guide 65 Sport. Which one is cheaper just depends on which one's on sale. Usually, the Walmart version is the cheapest.

    You would need to be aware that, being a budget seat, it wouldn't be as super easy to install as your Nextfit. You may need a rolled towel or a bundle of pool noodles to get it installed at the correct angle. However, this video will give you some tips for how to install the Guide 65 / Easy Fit if you don't have those available. The technique in this video will work in most vehicles. [ame="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LUtVrtt4X1A"]Noodle-less Install - YouTube[/ame]
    Mom to 2 adults and 2 little kids.
    Tall 8 year old in Incognito; Petite 3 year old RF in CA65

  9. #8
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    Re: Gate checking vs convertible waiting at destination

    Quote Originally Posted by Brigala View Post
    My vote out of those options would be the S1 Easy Fit. It will be the best bet for fitting well on the airplane both rear facing and forward facing. The other seats suggested will fit, but perhaps not as comfortably and maybe not RF. It is also sold at Walmart under the name Safety 1st Guide 65 Sport. Which one is cheaper just depends on which one's on sale. Usually, the Walmart version is the cheapest.

    You would need to be aware that, being a budget seat, it wouldn't be as super easy to install as your Nextfit. You may need a rolled towel or a bundle of pool noodles to get it installed at the correct angle. However, this video will give you some tips for how to install the Guide 65 / Easy Fit if you don't have those available. The technique in this video will work in most vehicles. Noodle-less Install - YouTube
    This is great, thank you!

  10. #9
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    Re: Gate checking vs convertible waiting at destination

    Quote Originally Posted by ketchupqueen View Post
    What is mil's car?

    I'd choose shipping thereover risking the seat being damaged or lost in transit.
    She drives a Sonata and I drive an Accent at home.

    MIL might not cooperate with having a car seat shipped to her office and keeping it there or handing it off to my BIL who will be driving down to visit next month after all. I'm not sure what to do now. Is it even worth paying for it to be shipped back to us by say FedEx??

  11. #10
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    Re: Gate checking vs convertible waiting at destination

    Quote Originally Posted by Olga View Post
    I also would ship seat to MIL rather than gate checking, especially since you know the flight is full and there's no chance of using it on board. If your flight home has room you can always try to use it on board on the way home, or as suggested above put it back in the original box to bring it with you.

    I'd go for a SureRide for a spare/travel seat but not sure how it will fit in an Accent, perhaps a Scenera would be better there even though it won't last as long RFing? I would say the SureRide is likely an easier install though which might be something to consider since it sounds like you'd be putting it into your MIL's car at the airport.
    That was my concern about the Scenera. Is the Apt 40 any better? And yes, we'll be installing the new spare car seat at the airport in MIL's car so it should be GREAAAAAT.

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