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  1. #1
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    Which seat for air travel

    We're flying from North Idaho to New Orleans for Thanksgiving and have purchased a seat for my daughter who will be 19 months at that time. We're flying Delta.

    We have the choice to bring either our Radian RXT or Graco 4ever with us for the trip. Does anyone have experience with both of these seats on planes?

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  3. #2
    Car-Seat.org Ambassador Patriot201's Avatar
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    Re: Which seat for air travel

    I would absolutely bring the Radian.

    • While it is heavy, it can be strapped to a luggage cart, folded to be carried over the shoulder, or folded to be carried as a backpack.
    • It fits fantastically on the plane (FF), and even allows the child to use the tray table.


    If you pack the RF boot in your carry-on, you can still easily use the Radian RF at your destination.


    “Nearly all the best things that came to me in life have been unexpected, unplanned by me.” ~Carl Sandburg
    Learning to cope with the unexpected...

  4. #3
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    Re: Which seat for air travel

    We were planning to use a GogoBabies our similar device to push her through the airport in the seat, rather than carrying it. Would that work better with one over the other?

    I'm not sure about rear vs forward facing her on the flight. At her last appointment she was not yet 20 lbs, though I am going she'll have crossed that line before our trip. She's never forward faced in the car and I'm partly hoping that making the plane be as much like the car as possible will help keep her happy during the flight. Other than using the tray table during the flight if she faces forward is there a reason to do one over the other? Which seat would fit better if we did opt to rear face?

  5. #4
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    Re: Which seat for air travel

    It's tough to fit the Radian RF on a plane due to the tall shell and tight seating arrangements. With the Angle Adjuster it might work in a bulkhead row, or on airlines that give you a bit more space (JetBlue, Southwest). You will also need to request a seatbelt extender from the flight attendant. Working with the tiny belt path on the RF boot is also a pain for me, but I have larger hands. I don't have experience with the Graco.

  6. #5
    Car-Seat.org Ambassador Patriot201's Avatar
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    Re: Which seat for air travel

    Both the Graco 4Ever and the Radian are very large seats, so I'm not sure one would work better on the plane (RF) than the other. The 4Ever is *relatively* compact for RF, so that might work better. Maybe (see below).

    Because you have the GoGoBaby device, and because the Graco doesn't have a separate boot for RF, that might work better, but the 4Ever is so new, that I'm not sure all that many people have used it on a plane (yet), so I don't know how well it fits.

    One of the reviews here, on the Graco website, says the 4Ever is a pain to use on the plane, and that it was also not easy to cart through the airport.




    Could you consider purchasing a "travel seat" that might be able to later be used as a "back-up" seat? Perhaps a Guide 65, Scenera, or other lightweight, but fairly compact, convertible would work? Here are some recommended models for air travel: http://carseatblog.com/25408/recomme...rplane-travel/ (this list is pushing a year old, but is still a good one).


    “Nearly all the best things that came to me in life have been unexpected, unplanned by me.” ~Carl Sandburg
    Learning to cope with the unexpected...

  7. #6
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    Re: Which seat for air travel

    We own a travel seat (Cosco Scenara) but it's already in Florida because she flew as a lap baby last time (I know, I know) and we were expecting her to this time as well. I don't think I can convince my husband we should get a second one.

    She weighed in at 21lbs yesterday at the doctor finally, so I'm feeling a bit better about potentially forward facing her. We may still opt for the 4ever, though I definitely understand the pros for the Radian. I like that the 4ever can stand up on it's own when removed from the GoGoBabyz and that we wouldn't need to bring the rear facing boot and angle adjuster with us in our luggage. If we do end up using it I'll report back on how it went!

  8. #7
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    Re: Which seat for air travel

    Not following the rules to a "T" is not popular here.

    However, I've forward faced my babes quite a few times on planes before they technically conformed to forward facing criteria:

    - Much easier to fit the seat in and won't hinder the person in front of you from reclining
    - To me the seat is for turbulence; I'm highly skeptical of a head on while driving on a taxiway (I guess they can happen, but it won't); I'm guessing the rate of on ground collisions is incalculably small compared to car crashes.
    - To me the seat is also as much about transporting it in MY control and allowing the babe a higher seating level to maybe see out the window.
    - To me the seat is also just to strap the kid down - no kicking, no getting up, etc.
    - Do what you can WITHIN reason. Rear face if you want, forward face if you want.

    If you forward face and don't have an enclosed seatbelt pathway, the buckle WILL end up in your child's back. I found a resolution, however.

    - Lift the cushion slightly on the male buckle side
    - Wrap the male belt side down and around the metal seat frame; this shortens it enough to have the buckle sit off the side of hte seat vs. in the middle of the back. I don't know that all seats are made the same, however.
    - Use a seatbelt extender and position one buckle on one side of the seat and the second on the other side, keeping the child's back lump free and comfortable; the extender is required as the main buckle may not extend fully to the now shortened male end.

  9. #8
    CPS Fanatic bubbaray's Avatar
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    I've travelled with the RN a bunch of times. It works well FFg on planes.
    Melissa

    DD#1, April 2004, FFg in a Pink Harmony Literider & Onyx Parkway SG
    DD#2, January 2007, FFg in a Pink Monterey & Purple with Pink Hearts HBTB

    Riding in my 2010 Toyota RAV4 and DH's 2011 Ford 150 Crew Cab

  10. #9
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    Re: Which seat for air travel

    An update:
    We opted to bring the 4ever on the flights with us. My daughter was almost 19 months, 22lbs, and 32" tall at the time of the flights. Both flights we had to have the arm rest up to fit the seat but it was only about an inch too wide, so it didn't encroach into the neighboring seat with the arm rest up.

    On the first flight (smaller plane) I was able to fit the 4ever RF. I installed before the person in front of us sat down and the seat was not touching, but once he arrived there was a bit of bracing going on when he shifted. I decided to go ahead and leave that alone though. He didn't complain about the lack of recline and it was nice not worrying about the baby kicking his seat.

    On the second flight there was less front to back space (despite that being the larger plane) and no way a RF install would work (even with bracing). I installed FF in recline 4 (since she's under 40lbs). Loved that it was much simpler to switch to FF mode than the Radian would have been (no need to rethread straps, no AA and RF boot to deal with storing). I just had to remove the infant padding that we use while she's RF and move the harness up a click so the straps were above her shoulders. Didn't love being stuck with only recline 4. I think one of the more upright options would have kept her from kicking the seat in front of her.

    I think in the future we would likely opt for the 4ever again as long as she's in this "prefer RF but will FF in a pinch on the plane" range. It was easier to get on and off the GoGo Babyz than the Radian if being used RF, easier to convert from RF to FF, and I find it easier to pick up and carry when needed than the Radian. For a FF only child I might opt for the Radian in the future since we won't need to carry extra stuff to make it work and it would allow use of the tray table and would be more likely to be able to be wheeled down the aisle on the plane (the 4ever could be wheeled onto the larger plane, but not the small one).

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