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  1. #1
    Registered User
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    Mar 2012
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    3

    Options for VERY tall 3 y/o less than 40 lbs

    Hi all,

    First the facts:
    • 3 year old (born 10/2011)
    • 42 inches tall
    • 38 lbs
    • Flying United Airlines


    We're flying with our son in about a month to Disneyland. I've been trying to do as much research as possible and I think I'm more confused now than ever! I was going to get a CARES harness, but he's over 40 inches tall. I read somewhere than any child over 40 inches tall can't use a child safety seat due to the way the seats crumple in the event of a crash, but haven't seen this restriction posted anywhere on the United website. Is this true for all airlines?

    Initially I was going to bring our Diono Radian R100 (because lugging a 27 lb carseat through the airport just sounds awesome -- not!) but I thought I'd have to check it since my son is so tall. I thought about renting a car seat from Budget at our destination but I'm afraid we'd end up with a booster with no harness, and due to his weight that makes me nervous. Likewise I'm afraid he'll be too tall for a toddler combination seat.

    Just want to be sure I know ALL of the rules. Did I mention I'd like to gate check an umbrella stroller, too?

    Any and all advice is appreciated!! Thank you in advance!!

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  3. #2
    Senior Community Member Dillipop's Avatar
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    As long as your child fits in his restraint according to manufacturers instructions, he can use an FAA approved seat on the plane if he has a paid ticket, which at 3 is required. The radian you have, while heavy, is awesome on airplanes- it installs super easily with the plane belts and is low profile, so you child can still use the tray table.

    If you are bringing a stroller to the gate, you can try to figure out a way to rig the seat to the stroller. Or you can get a $15 luggage cart and bungy the seat to the cart. The luggage cart will fold up and fit in the overhead bin. Most airlines allow a stroller to be checked at the gate for free.

    Since you need a car seat at your destination, I highly recommend bringing the seat on the plane and using it. Negates the chance the seat is lost or broken while out of your sight. I would never rent a seat from a car rental agency- you never know what they'll give you or if it's been in an accident or recently puked on, etc.


    CCO 4/15

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  5. #3
    Senior Community Member aeormsby's Avatar
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    Mar 2008
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    Colorado
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    Re: Options for VERY tall 3 y/o less than 40 lbs

    I'd bring the Radian. You already have it and it's the only harnessed seat that kids can use the tray table with (because it's such a low profile). Like PP mentioned strapping it into the stroller or on a luggage cart are both great ways to get through the airport (I've had kids ride in the carseat both ways, on top of the stroller or on the luggage cart).

    Definitely use the seat on the plane and in the rental car. I would never trust a rental seat, I've even heard of rental companies not having them available even if they were reserved.

    We had and used the Cares harness for our kids even over the 40" limit (probably up to about 42"-44"). But we had the harness because we had a Safeguard Go which folds up and isn't FAA approved. Since you'll be taking a seat with to use at your destination you might as use it on the plane (Cares harness is also nice if you already have a carseat to use at your destination).

    If you want to look at a lighter weight seat to use the Evenflo Sureride (a convertible) or the Evenflo Maestro/Securekid are good options. You'll still want to use them on the plane though.
    Ann

    DD - 1/06 - 5-stepping
    DS - 12/07 - Incognito, Recaro Performance Booster & Harmony Literiders
    And a Bubble Bum for backup/travel

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  7. #4
    Ambassador jess71903's Avatar
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    Re: Options for VERY tall 3 y/o less than 40 lbs

    Mmkay- yep. Dillipop just about covered it! I'll just say welcome to car-seat.org!

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  9. #5
    Carseat Crazy
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
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    USA
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    147

    Re: Options for VERY tall 3 y/o less than 40 lbs

    In all my flight and airline training, I never heard anything about not using a carseat for children over 40 inches. If your child fits safely in the seat and it is FAA approved for air travel (find the airplane symbol on your seat if there is one -- I think Radians have a sticker -- or flag the page in your manual before you go so you can find it easily if the flight attendant asks to see it), then you are set!

    Here is the FAA information on safely traveling with children: http://www.faa.gov/passengers/fly_children/

    The Radian should work great for your trip! And gate checking an umbrella stroller should be no problem. If you want to have your child sit in the Radian on top of the stroller, though, check the stroller's weight limit first -- most don't go up to 67 lbs, and you don't want the stroller to fail in the airport.

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  11. #6
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
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    3

    Re: Options for VERY tall 3 y/o less than 40 lbs

    You are all awesome, thank you very much!! I was thinking we'd use the Radian on the plane and gate check our cheapy First Years umbrella stroller. Doesn't the Radian have a shoulder strap for carrying, too? I'm honestly not sure because it was our grandma/grandpa seat and I didn't use it much. Grandma and grandpa have moved on to a Frontier 90 due to ease of installation and the Radian is in storage. We are getting a full size rental car so hopefully it will install nicely!

    Now I'm off to read the forums for installation tips!! Thank you all, again!

  12. #7
    Carseat Crazy
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
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    409

    Re: Options for VERY tall 3 y/o less than 40 lbs

    Quote Originally Posted by Kiki228 View Post
    Doesn't the Radian have a shoulder strap for carrying, too?
    Yes, it comes with one strap. If you buy a second strap (I think they are around $10) you can wear the Radian like a backpack, which is much easier than trying to sling it over one shoulder. Radians also fold up for carrying.

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  14. #8
    Carseat Crazy
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Posts
    307

    Re: Options for VERY tall 3 y/o less than 40 lbs

    Quote Originally Posted by cantabdad View Post
    Yes, it comes with one strap. If you buy a second strap (I think they are around $10) you can wear the Radian like a backpack, which is much easier than trying to sling it over one shoulder. Radians also fold up for carrying.

    You might want to check on that. When we got our first RXT 3 years ago it came with a strap. When we got our second one 2-2.5 years ago they didn't anymore.


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  15. #9
    Carseat Crazy
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    USA
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    147

    Re: Options for VERY tall 3 y/o less than 40 lbs

    If you have straps for the Radian, make sure you try wearing it first before planning on that as your method for carrying it. I can't wear it for more than a very few minutes, and my husband will wear it if he has to but doesn't like it much. Both top straps hook into one spot on one side -- so it doesn't ride evenly, it's on a slant. And depending on your build, it may swing while you're walking and whack you. It may fit better if you're tall, though.

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