*Update down below on how we like them.
I have been keeping an eye on a new booster seat for the kids. It’s called the Mifold. Instead of pushing the kids up so that the belts sit on them correctly this pulls the belts down to them. It is still in preproduction and for pre-sale on Indiegogo. I finally pulled the trigger and bought two for my big kids so that I could get the 20% discount.
I’m super excited that it takes up so much less space than a traditional booster seat since fitting 3 kids in the back of a car is a challenge. We are currently car shopping and trying to figure out all these European cars over here. There are some larger cars that easily fit 3 car seats across the back seat but some of those cars are huge and the roads around here are so narrow at times. I really want a car I can park easily and zip around without fear. Also, bigger cars are more expensive so having a smaller car could save some money. We hope to travel a lot since we’re across the Atlantic now and having these will make taking the boosters along with us for rental cars and taxis much easier. We can just fold them up and stick them in the suitcases. Then we’ll only have one car seat to deal with.
I’m laughing at this post cause it sounds like I’m a commercial for them or that I’m affiliated in some way (which I’m totally not!). I’ve never seen one in person so I can’t vouch for them. But I’m hoping they work as well as they say which will be a great help to us in our situation. The only downside so far is that they won’t be shipping until March so we still have a while to wait. But since we’ve gone this long without a car and this long with borrowing booster and car seats we can hopefully hold out a bit longer. I’d been holding off on buying booster seats and a car seat until we got a car so I knew they could fit across but with these I’ll just focus on getting a car seat that isn’t too wide. Oh, I just thought of one more downside and that is the kids will be lower and not able to see out the window as easily. But they’ll grow and it’s probably safer that way anyway.
We didn’t bring any of our boosters or car seat with us since they have to be EU approved and none of the US ones are. Well, probably the simple boosters would have worked but they were really wide. We actually gave them all to Disney when we left (since we flew here straight from Disney World) and they were happy since they said sometimes someone needs a taxi and doesn’t have a seat. We were glad they found some use since we thought they might otherwise get tossed in a dumpster which would be sad.
Anyway, I just thought I’d post about it in case anyone else is in a similar situation and would find it useful and hadn’t heard of them yet. Crossing fingers it works as easily and as well as they say. Here in the UK you have to keep you kids in a booster seat until they are 12 now so I’m sure the kids will appreciate a seat like this more as they get older as well.
This doesn’t apply to us but it mentions carpooling and I can see how having this tucked in your car for when you have an extra child every once in a while would be very helpful. You wouldn’t have to lug around another seat all the time, taking up space in the back seat or trunk. It’d be great for grandparents as well for that reason.
Update: March 6, 2017
We’ve been using 2 Mifold seats for about 7 months now? I forget when we actually got them because we ended up having to wait about a year for them to arrive…which was a bit insane and way past the original date but I guess that is part of buying something from a crowdfunding place where production times can be unpredictable. Anyway, we were really excited to finally get them.
The are tiny and you can easily fit 3 in a row.
They would be nice as a back up for when having extra kids in your car occasionally because they’d be easy to stow away when not in use.
Because of the size they also travel great. We took them to the US with us when we visited family and friends last fall and it was great slipping them in our suitcase without adding a lot of bulk or weight to them.
They are not as simple/fast to put on as advertised.
They are really difficult to take off at times. The two arms on them that extend, lock so that they slide out farther without pressing a button BUT they don’t lock for sliding back in. It looks like this was done for the convenience of putting them away without having to push a button but we feel it is a major design flaw because as the kids are sitting on seats with the belts on the belts end up pulling the arms all the way in. Once the arms are pushed in it is really hard for the kids to get the belt out of the hook that is in the arm. It would work so much better if the arm locked both directions so it would stay the width you need it to. The button to release the arm is under the seat so it is difficult for the child to pull the button while sitting on it to release the arm again. We have had many a time when our two kids (ages 6 and 9) were crying out of frustration or refusing to use the seats correctly because they were a pain to use. We can buckle them and unbuckle them to help but it seems silly to have a seat that makes a 9 year old unable to use himself easily. It is also difficult to reach the child in the middle over the other children to help them.
So, I actually just bought 2 cheap foam booster seats off of amazon the other day that don’t have arms (since that is what makes booster seats so wide usually) and the kids are much happier. We will still keep our Mifold seats to use when travelling or if we have another child join us who needs one. But for everyday use it just got too frustrating and I worried about their safety since they weren’t always buckling correctly to avoid getting stuck in them.