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  1. #1
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    Jul 2014
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    KLM and Air France car seat policies - what's written vs. reality?

    I've been having a look at KLM, Air France's, and Air Europa policies with regards to car seats, since those are our preferred airlines when we go back at least once a year to our native country, but I'm unclear on some of their restrictions - on whether those would be sticking points or if they're even realistic.

    KLM:
    - You need to notify them in advance that you will be using a car seat
    - Max width 16.5"

    Delta operates one of our usual flights, but since it's an American carrier that seems to be more straighforward as to what is allowed and what isn't.

    Air France:
    - Max width 16"

    Air Europa:
    - Can only be used between 6 months and 3 years (exceptions for children who cannot sit on their own past 3 years)

    My question is with regards to the width limits, which I'm very surprised at (especially because the KLM seats on our European flights had always felt wider than the Delta ones on the first leg, whcih doesn't have a width restriction). Are these restrictions real? Are there any of the common chairs this narrow (I'd always heard of 17" as the cut off)? Is it more of an if it fits it fits or you might need to raise the arm rest thing?

    It's not a deal breaker for us, since we will have a good car seat waiting at out destination, and we've done the whole lap child thing before (yes, I'm aware it's not as safe, we're okay with this risk). But I'm starting to think of this Christmas - when baby will still be under 2 years old, but very much a toddler.

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  3. #2
    Carseat Crazy
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    409

    Re: KLM and Air France car seat policies - what's written vs. reality?

    We took Air France in 2012 and were allowed to use our Britax Roundabout (approx. width 17"). On the outbound flight we had to argue with the flight attendant for a little bit and refer her to a copy of the airline's own policy. (She seemed unaware of the entire concept of using carseats onboard.) On the way home, we had no trouble at all.

    In both cases, the width of the carseat itself was not checked and was never an issue. Unless someone has a tape measure, it would be difficult to verify, especially as they are bustling around getting ready for departure. I think the intent is just to make sure that it will fit in the seat.

    I personally think you'd be fine with almost any carseat. Also, when I checked AF's website for the USA it gives a limit of 44 cm/17" which is more realistic (except 42 cm/16.5" for the bulkhead row).

  4. #3
    Carseat Crazy newyorkDOC's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    619
    I'd just avoid bulkhead as the arm rests don't move. Any other row and you can just raise the armrest to install then lower it again.
    Mom to Caterina born January 12, 2009 and FF in a TWE and Julian born September 6, 2012 and RF in a Varioguard

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