S.J. asks from Green Bay, WI on January 13, 2009
Chicco KeyFit 30 vs Graco SafeSeat or SnugRide32
I am exhausted from researching travel systems! any input on these 2 systems would be appreciated! I am really having a tough time making a decision. They seem quite similar, although there is about a $70 price diff. (chicco more expensive). I like one of the KeyFit patterns better than the available Graco patterns, but what really makes up the price diff? Also, I can't find the specs on the Chicco as to how much the car seat & stroller weigh. Any other things to consider? Sorry, I know there's so much info. out there - I've waded through most of the car seat-related posts in Mamasource, and did many online searches/reviews, and still no decision. Thank you!!
C.B. answers from Madison on January 15, 2009
I did a ton of research as well before my daughter was born, and I ended up going with the Chicco Keyfit travel system. I absolutely LOVED it! She is almost 7 months old now and I just had to switch her over to a convertible seat. It was too bad that she couldn't use it longer, but oh well, the seat is still in perfect condition for our next baby! :) The Chicco was so easy to use, very safe, worked perfectly with the stroller, and she was always very comfortable in it. The only downside is it does not sit on top of a shopping cart, but it didn't bother me because it's safer for them to be in the basket anyway. In my opinion, car seats are one thing I would never ever make a decision based on price. I would agree the best thing to do is for you to go into a store and play with each model you're considering. Take them in and out of the stroller, practice carrying them, snap them in and out of the base, etc. That will give you the best idea.
B.W. answers from Minneapolis on January 14, 2009
Hi! The Chicco is a GREAT seat for smaller kids. A friend has the Safeseat and its wonderful. I've never touched the Snugride 32.
If I had to choose an infant seat today, I would choose the Safeseat because I know I have bigger babies.. (8.5lbs and 9lbs) and I know that both my boys were out of a conventional (max wt 20lbs) by 5mos old, so I know their growth curve.
HOWEVER when your child starts sitting up, you could easily use the basket at stores for them to sit in instead of the car seat. I never brought the infant seat into stores, I used a sling... but just going to Target I see that 99.99% of all moms use that infant seat all.the.time.
So it just depends on what is important to you. Do you really want to use an infant seat until your child is 30lbs? Most kids make it to 5-8mos in the conventional (22lb) infant seat, then you purchase a convertible to keep your child rear facing to 33lbs/2yrs old (AAP recommended) and then it becomes a forward facing seat to 40, 50, 55, 65lbs (depending on model you purchase).
If you want to us the infant seat until 30lbs, then purchase the safe seat or keyfit. If you think you child would be in a regular infant seat to 6mos, then switch to a convertible car seat... then do that.
go to Babies R Us or USA Baby and try them out, play with the buckles, lift them, push the stroller. We had both an Evenflo and a Graco stroller and both were junk.... they didn't push well in anything but firm flat concrete, and they didn' turn well, the wheels were shaky.... but I know they've made improvements. Check the ease of folding, the harness in teh stroller, etc too.
But go play with them, one will be easier for you and you will know.
D.P. answers from Minneapolis on January 14, 2009
I agree. I would go play with some of the seats at Babies R Us and see what you like and don't like. I did not like the way you tighten the Graco so I went with the Chicco and absolutely loved it. I had a bigger baby but no matter what you will have to eventually switch to a convertible anyway, whether it's sooner or later, so I wouldn't let that make your decision. You may come across obstacles no matter where you go and what kind of carts they have, but you find ways to make it work. I admit, I also wasn't fond of the Graco patterns either so that probably pushed me also. I think you should go with what you like and feels comfortable to you. Good luck and congratulations! Motherhood is even more amazing and rewarding than you can ever imagine!
B.H. answers from Minneapolis on January 14, 2009
I was in the same boat this summer with these two travel systems. What finally made my mind up was I was having a girl, and I didn't think at the time Chicco's fabric was the least bit girlie.
We got a Babies R Us exclusive (nobody else sells it)of the Graco Safeseat travel system. I love it and I hate it. The carseat is wide, big and heavy. I had a hard time finding a winter cover to fit on it like a bundle me, I finally just went up a size and got the toddler size, I have a hard time fitting the carseat in a shopping cart-even in the basket part at certain stores, and it doesn't fit in a booth at a restaurant. Other than those complaints I do love the carseat and can really see it lasting a really long time. Ny dd is almost 4mos.old and has tons of room to grow.
I know the Chicco goes to 30lbs but to me it just doesn't look like a big baby would fit in there. I think the Chicco is great for smaller babies but I'm leary about big babies. And with Chicco it will not snap onto a shopping cart at all so you will HAVE To put it in the basket part of the cart.
I would go to babies r us and just play with both of them. Take your time. Carry both around and see which get's heavier and uncomfortable faster.
E.C. answers from Minneapolis on January 15, 2009
We had the Graco SafeSeat and I loved it. My son used it well after his first birthday and would have actually fit into it still on his second birthday! With any other he would have out grown it at about 4 months. We went from the infant seat to the Booster with 5 point harness that will work till he is 100lbs. The seat is a bit wide and bulky and it doesn't fit on the top parts of a shopping cart(which I didn't mind...its so unsafe) I loved that it locked into the stroller and I didn't have to wake up my baby to run into a store, even when he was older it was still so nice...heavy, but nice.
I would also recomend going to Babies R Us and playing with the carseats and strollers. Your on the right track going for a seat that you'll be able to use till the baby is older. Not only is it safer, but it will save your growing family money. Hope you find the right seat. Congrats on the new baby coming soon!
E.M. answers from Des Moines on January 15, 2009
We went with Graco for price but i liked it. i didnt have the travel system we just got the seat and bought a seperate graco stroller luggage rack looking thing. i loved it. i thought it was easier then having the whole stroller and i had a hand me down stroller for when my little one was older. My son was out of the infant seat by 6 months and we are planning to use it again with future children.