Children are amazing. They bring so much joy and meaning to life. Children also bring extra baggage, literally. When they’re little they have diaper bags, toys, and car seats. It’s important to make sure children have everything they need, and a car seat tops the list of children’s needs because it is a safety item. Traveling with a car seat can be a hassle, but it shouldn’t stop you from your next family adventure.
When you’re traveling, it’s hard not to use Uber or Lyft. These platforms make getting around so much easier and cost-efficient than many other transportation alternatives. People often wonder if they can take their children in a rideshare, and if they can, how?
Uber and Lyft are child friendly. However, both platforms require children to be secured into an age appropriate car seat for all rides in order to use the service when children are in the car. For the most part, you have to provide the car seat. This can be a huge pain when traveling because who wants to carry around a car seat all day? Uber has begun to offer a car seat included service (Uber Family or Uber Car Seat) in select cities. There is a $10 surcharge when using Uber Family or Uber Car Seat. This has proven to be incredibly helpful for families. Lyft also offers their own variation in New York City for a surcharge of $8.98. For both rideshare platform’s car seat service, you have to request it specifically within the app when you are ordering your ride. Taxis are drastically different than their rideshare counterparts. Car seat regulations within taxis are region specific. In New York City, you do not need a car seat to travel with children. In other locations, taxis require car seats for children.
Car seats can be confusing. Every transportation company has different rules, but what will keep your child the safest on a car trip? One of the most beneficial car seats for child safety is a rear facing car seat. The longer you can keep your child in a rear facing car seat the better. Make sure to tether the car seat! This takes a little time, but it has a huge impact on how safe your child is in a car seat. Take the extra two minutes. Keep bulk out of the car seat (big jackets, sweaters, etc) when you buckle your child to ensure they are secure. Make sure all the straps are snug but not too tight. Snug straps keep your babies in place. Finally, ensure the chest clip is placed in line with your child's armpits.
Making sure your child is safe is the most important part, but convenience should also be high on the priority list. Traveling with a car seat can be hectic, so it is important to find the right one. RideGuru has compiled a list of great travel car seats. You can find them all here. These have been proven to keep children safe and are the most convenient for family trips because they are fairly portable and lightweight.
Another option is to use a rideshare service that specifically caters to families traveling with young children. There are a number of these services around, see if there is one in your city or travel destination.
The most important thing is to keep your children safe!