All stages of restraints are important. However, the very important Infant Carrier takes over where you left off. Your newborn baby has entered the world and at some point needs to travel, all while being safe, secure and comfortable.
The Infant Carrier (or baby carrier) now becomes part of everyday life. The baby will be secured in a 3 or 5-point harness depending on the manufacturer's design. A carrier offers protection, stability, security and comfort for journeys inside and outside of the vehicle. Equipped with a carrying handle this everyday device offers practicality and peace of mind for any parent. Often referred to as the ‘Baby Seat’ it makes journeys inside a vehicle happen. Infant Carriers have multiple uses and can also be used in the home. The simplicity of removing the carrier from a vehicle and taking it into the home is practical and convenient.
Although you will find restraints that are suitable from birth, the Infant Carrier has been designed for a baby’s early development and journey to the next stage car seat.
Manufacturer features all vary by design. Most Infant Carrier designs have an arc shell design and the baby will only travel rearward. The arc means the baby won’t be lying fully flat. In the event of a collision, the baby is in a more optimised position in the rear-facing arc rather than lying flat. Some infant seats have near lie-flat positioning incorporated or lie-flat positioning outside of the vehicle.
**In some cases a lie-flat position may be required for travel if the baby has any special needs**.
When a baby is in the early stages of development it is recommended that they do not travel excessive amounts of time/distance in the infant carrier. Regular breaks are needed however long your journeys are.
Infant Carriers usually have two options for installation. Seat Belt and Isofix Base. Both options allow for a secure installation provided they are fitted correctly. The Isofix Base system offers a more speedy ‘Click & Go’ solution and is considered a practical family solution. Seat Belts can offer exactly the same but without having to purchase an Isofix base. (If you can put a seat belt on yourself in a vehicle, you can put one on an infant carrier).
Maxi-Cosi undoubtedly makes fantastic infant carriers. They also have it right when it comes to pushchair compatibility. One of the worst things we come across is the availability of cheap, low-grade infant carriers. These can often come in the form of a ‘free car seat’ with a pushchair system. A very strange retailer concept when the ‘baby seat’ is the lifesaving safety item, and the pushchair is something you simply push around.
When you bring a newborn baby into the world, they are worthy of something new and something that has been well manufactured. If you are using an existing infant seat from a previous child, simply give the cover a wash and ensure everything is ‘like new’.