Best Budget Car Seat 2021 That Costs Less Than $100

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Best Budget Car Seat | Baby Journey

Wanting only the best for your child is reasonable, especially when it comes to safety. However, when it comes to car seats, there are some great inexpensive options on the market. I picked the best budget car seats for you, analyzing ease of installment, comfort, maintenance, and other important aspects of the affordable car seats.

My top pick is the Evenflo LiteMax 35 Infant Car Seat, but you can find more options in my article for infants, and booster and convertible car seats. Here are my top picks of all time:

Before you get to know my recommendations, let’s prepare you for choosing the best cheap car seat for your baby.

Best Affordable Car Seats for the Year

Are cheap car seats safe?

The low price tag doesn’t mean the seat isn’t safe. In general, all car seats sold by authorized dealers in the USA are safe and comply with federal standards.

Therefore, if you cannot afford a Porsche car seat (yes, Porsche does make its own luxury car seat) or you don’t want to spend a lot of money on a car seat, it doesn’t mean that you are jeopardizing your baby’s safety.

Be careful about used car seats and pay attention to car seat installation. A poorly installed car seat is unsafe, no matter the price tag. - Best Budget Car Seat | Baby Journey
Be careful about used car seats and pay attention to car seat installation. A poorly installed car seat is unsafe, no matter the price tag. Source: Pinterest.com

How much do baby car seats cost?

Car seats for children and babies come within a wide price tag. You can find some that cost as low as $50 and as high as $500 and more. The difference between high-end and cheap safe car seats is the comfort, style, ease of maintenance and installment, and brand name.

Therefore, a high-end seat won’t protect your baby better in a crash, but the baby might get more comfortable in the seat.

Can you put a newborn baby in a car seat?

Yes, and you should put a baby in a car seat. That is why you can purchase the car seat before the baby is born to ensure a safe ride from the hospital to your home. Make sure to choose the appropriate car seat suitable for newborns with an infant insert or pad.

How to Choose the Best Inexpensive Car Seat?

Parents can easily get confused with numerous options for a baby car seat. Let’s go briefly through all considerations that might help you pick the best budget car seat for your little angel.

Car Seat Type

Infants can sit in specialized infant car seats or convertible car seats. Older children who overgrow convertible car seats sit in booster seats.

Determine what is more important to you, accessibility of the infant car seat or prolonged use of convertible car seat. You should switch to the booster car seat when your baby is at least four years old, and when he or she overgrows the requirements for a five-point harness in a convertible car seat.

This video clearly explains the differences between an infant car seat vs a convertible car seat:

Car seat weight & size

As I mentioned before, infant car seats are practical because you can carry your baby in the seat outside of the car. In that case, the weight of the seat plays an important role. Pick the lighter seat and consider the baby’s weight.

Seat Installation

Installation of the car seat is essential during the ride. Some cheap car seats come with an easy-to-follow manual for installation. The ease of installation is important if you plan to buy a convertible seat.

Installment indicators are nifty touch, and commonly found in more expensive models on the market. Still, some models on my list of inexpensive car seats come with this feature.

Expiration date

Car seats are tested for safety and have an expiration date. After some time, usually eight or ten years, the materials deteriorate, and the car seat isn’t considered safe. So, when you find an excellent deal on more expensive car seats, and it looks as if you will save some money, make sure to check the seat expiration date.

It is better to get a newly manufactured cheap car seat than buy a discounted expensive car seat close to the expiration date.

Ease of Cleaning

Car seats require frequent cleaning. Therefore, make sure to get an easy to clean car seat that comes with a removable, machine-washable cover.

Multiple position headrest

A car seat with an adjustable headrest can be comfortable for your baby as he or she grows. That way, as the baby grows, you can adjust the headrest to ensure proper position for breathing and side-impact protection.

The proper head support is important for protection and comfort! - Best Budget Car Seat | Baby Journey
The proper head support is important for protection and comfort! Source: Firstcandle.org

Stroller compatibility

If you decide to buy an infant car seat, make sure to find one compatible with as many strollers as possible. Usually, strollers and car seats of the same brand are compatible. Some cheap car seats have extended compatibility with different strollers via adapters.

Best Affordable Car Seats Reviews

Now, let’s learn more about every model from my list. I divided the seats into three categories and chose the best budget car seat models in each.

Your baby should ride in the rear-facing position until it overgrows the height and weight limit set by the seat manufacturer. - Best Budget Car Seat | Baby Journey
Your baby should ride in the rear-facing position until it overgrows the height and weight limit set by the seat manufacturer. Source: Parenting.com

Best Affordable Infant car seats:

Our Choice
Evenflo LiteMax 35 Infant Car Seat, Easy to Install, Versatile & Convenient, Meets or Exceeds All Federal Safety Standards, Machine-Washable Pads, Full-Coverage Canopy, Bamboo Leaf Green
Graco SnugRide 35 Lite LX Infant Car Seat, Hailey
Baby Trend EZ Flex Loc Infant Car Seat, Carbon
Safety 1st Onboard 35 LT Infant Car Seat
Title

Evenflo LiteMax 35

Graco SnugRide 35 Lite LX

Baby Trend EZ Flex Loc

Safety 1st onBoard 35 LT

Max Weight
35 lbs
35 lbs
30 lbs
35 lbs
Recline Position
4 recline options
None
Limited recline
None
Installation
Seat belt
LATCH, seat belt
LATCH, seat belt
LATCH, seat belt
Safety Feature
5-point harness
5-point harness
5-point harness
5-point harness
Machine Washable Cover
Yes
Yes
No
Yes
Extra Features
Buckle pockets, removable head and body pillows, full canopy
Four adjustable base levels, infant head and body 2-piece support, ProtectPlus safety technology, one-click SnugLock mechanism
4-position adjustable base, impact absorbing foam, one-hand seat release, FlexLoc flexible LATCH straps, comfortable carry handle
Four adjustable harness levels, adjustable base, comfortable breathable fabric
Price
$99.99
$89.99
$87.99
$108.85
Prime Status
-
Our Choice
Evenflo LiteMax 35 Infant Car Seat, Easy to Install, Versatile & Convenient, Meets or Exceeds All Federal Safety Standards, Machine-Washable Pads, Full-Coverage Canopy, Bamboo Leaf Green
Title

Evenflo LiteMax 35

Max Weight
35 lbs
Recline Position
4 recline options
Installation
Seat belt
Safety Feature
5-point harness
Machine Washable Cover
Yes
Extra Features
Buckle pockets, removable head and body pillows, full canopy
Price
$99.99
Prime Status
-
Graco SnugRide 35 Lite LX Infant Car Seat, Hailey
Title

Graco SnugRide 35 Lite LX

Max Weight
35 lbs
Recline Position
None
Installation
LATCH, seat belt
Safety Feature
5-point harness
Machine Washable Cover
Yes
Extra Features
Four adjustable base levels, infant head and body 2-piece support, ProtectPlus safety technology, one-click SnugLock mechanism
Price
$89.99
Prime Status
Baby Trend EZ Flex Loc Infant Car Seat, Carbon
Title

Baby Trend EZ Flex Loc

Max Weight
30 lbs
Recline Position
Limited recline
Installation
LATCH, seat belt
Safety Feature
5-point harness
Machine Washable Cover
No
Extra Features
4-position adjustable base, impact absorbing foam, one-hand seat release, FlexLoc flexible LATCH straps, comfortable carry handle
Price
$87.99
Prime Status
Safety 1st Onboard 35 LT Infant Car Seat
Title

Safety 1st onBoard 35 LT

Max Weight
35 lbs
Recline Position
None
Installation
LATCH, seat belt
Safety Feature
5-point harness
Machine Washable Cover
Yes
Extra Features
Four adjustable harness levels, adjustable base, comfortable breathable fabric
Price
$108.85
Prime Status

Evenflo LiteMax 35 Infant Car Seat – Best Affordable Infant Car Seat

Evenflo LiteMax 35 Infant Car Seat, Easy to Install, Versatile & Convenient, Meets or Exceeds All Federal Safety Standards, Machine-Washable Pads, Full-Coverage Canopy, Bamboo Leaf Green

If you decide to get an infant car seat that doesn’t break the bank, consider the Evenflo LiteMax 35 Infant Car Seat. The Evenflo seat complies with all federal standards and has plenty of parent-friendly features.

Despite its low price, the seat has a recline indicator for precise installation with seat belt. The seat has removable and machine-washable pads, so the maintenance is simple. It is available in three colors, with a weight limit of 35 pounds.

This best budget car seat also has an extra-large canopy that protects your child, from sun and rain. Moreover, the seat is easy to install, which is great because you can carry your baby using it. Once you finish your walk with the baby, you can install the seat within minutes and continue your ride.

Pros:

  • Easy to care for
  • Four recline positions
  • Comfortable handle
  • Lightweight
  • The base can be installed in two steps

Cons:

  • Only compatible with Evenflo Pivot Xpand stroller without adapter
  • Narrow
Evenflo LiteMax 35 Infant Car Seat, Easy to Install, Versatile & Convenient, Meets or Exceeds All Federal Safety Standards, Machine-Washable Pads, Full-Coverage Canopy, Bamboo Leaf Green
  • Versatile and convenient: This Rear-Facing Infant Car Seat fitting newborns and babies from 4-35 pounds includes a stay-in-car convenience base that minimizes overall parent effort
  • Meeting or exceeding all applicable federal safety standards, this car seat also passes Evenflo’s comprehensive Side Impact and industry leading Rollover Test Standards
  • Easy to Install: The LiteMax 35 comes with an easy to install base equipped with a two-step vehicle belt lock-off for a quick and secure installation and provides 4 recline options top optimize your child's comfort

Graco SnugRide 35 Lite LX Infant Car Seat

Graco SnugRide 35 Lite LX Infant Car Seat, Hailey

Graco car seat is engineered to provide maximum protection and maximum comfort. When installed properly, the Graco SnugRide 35 Lite LX Infant Car Seat protects your child from frontal, side, rear, and rollover impacts.

The seat is suitable for babies with a maximum weight of 35 pounds and 32 inches tall. However, smaller babies might be more comfortable in it.

Further, the base has four adjustable levels, and the convenient indicator clearly shows when the base is installed at the proper angle with the vehicle.

What I like about this Graco car seat is the Snug Lock installation. It ensures a click connection, just like other car seats from Graco, the Graco Snugride 35 Elite, to name one. Moreover, the seat is compatible with Graco strollers and you can build your travel system in several minutes.

The seat is of moderate weight.

Pros:

  • The seat can be easily installed in numerous vehicles
  • Maneuvering the seat outside the car is easy
  • The harness system is easy to adjust
  • Easy to read manual
  • Compact design

Cons:

  • The newborn insert is thin
  • The padding is moderate
Sale
Graco SnugRide 35 Lite LX Infant Car Seat, Hailey
  • SNUGRIDE PERFORMANCE: Infant car seat helps protect rear-facing infants 4-35 lb and up to 32"
  • LIGHTWEIGHT CARRIER: Lightweight infant car seat weighs only 7.2 lb, making it easy to carry baby from car to stroller
  • 4-POSITION ADJUSTABLE BASE: Helps ensure an accurate install and helps keep baby comfortable as he or she grows

Baby Trend EZ Flex Loc Infant Car Seat

Baby Trend EZ Flex Loc Infant Car Seat, Carbon

This cheap rear facing car seat by Baby Trend deserves your attention. It might not be as luxuriously padded as some more expensive models, but the safety isn’t compromised at any moment.

It is also suitable for different models of cars and the base is easy to adjust using a push-button system. I like the 5-point harness system at this Baby Trend EZ Flex Loc Infant Car Seat because it ensures customized fit and keeps the baby secured even during rides on uneven terrain.

The handle is comfortable and has a unique design, which ensures better grip when you carry the seat with one hand.

The seat is available in four color combinations, though all are in dark shades and tones. he maximum weight recommendation is 30 pounds for this seat.

Pros:

  • Secure handle
  • 5-point harness system
  • The base is easy to adjust
  • The head support is soft and comfortable
  • Easily accessible

Cons:

  • Limited reclining options
  • Heavy
Baby Trend EZ Flex Loc Infant Car Seat, Carbon
  • Adjustable 5-point safety harness
  • 4-position push-button height adjustable base
  • One-hand easy-access seat release

Safety 1st onBoard 35 LT Infant Car Seat

Safety 1st Onboard 35 LT Infant Car Seat

The Safety 1st onBoard 35 LT Infant Car Seat is another great option for an infant car seat. The seat is lightweight and comes with an easy-to-read manual with simple illustrations.

The fabric is breathable, which is great for keeping your baby cool during rides in hot weather. Besides, the maintenance is simple because the seat pads are removable and washing-machine safe.

Pros:

  • Lightweight
  • Fits small newborns
  • Well-illustrated manual
  • Breathable fabric
  • Simple maintenance

Cons:

  • The bottom buckle is a bit large and can pinch the baby
  • The canopy is challenging to open and close
Sale
Safety 1st Onboard 35 LT Infant Car Seat
  • Rear-facing 4-35 pounds. (Actual fit may vary. Not all children will comfortably fit in the seat for the full weight and height ranges Listed.)
  • Comfort cool technology keeps baby cool, dry and comfortable
  • Side Impact protection with deep sides and energy absorbing materials

Best Affordable Convertible car seats:

Safety 1st Guide 65 Convertible Car Seat, Chambers
Our Choice
Tribute 5 Convertible Car Seat, 2-in-1, Saturn Gray
Safety 1st Jive 2-in-1 Convertible Car Seat, Harvest Moon
Baby Trend Trooper 3 in 1 Convertible Car Seat
Title

Safety 1st Guide 65 Convertible Car Seat

Evenflo Tribute 5 Convertible Car Seat

Safety 1st Jive 2-in-1 Convertible Car Seat

Baby Trend Trooper 3 in 1 Convertible Car Seat

Max Weight
Rear-facing 40 lbs; Forward-facing 65 lbs
Rear-facing 40 lbs; Forward-facing 40 lbs
Rear-facing 40 lbs; Forward-facing 65 lbs
Rear-facing for infants 18 lbs; Rear-facing for toddlers 40 lbs; Forward-facing 65 lbs
Installation
LATCH, seat belt
LATCH, seat belt
LATCH, seat belt
LATCH, seat belt
Safety Features
5-point harness
5-point harness
5-point harness
5-point harness
Machine-Washable Cover
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Extra Features
One removable cup holder, five harness heights, three buckle levels, adjustable headrest
Adjustable head pillow, harness, lightweight
2 detachable cup holders, removable head and body pillows, built-in base
5-position shoulder buckle and 3-position crotch buckle adjustments, recline flip foot for switching to rear position
Price
$80.99
$89.89
Price not available
$99.99
Prime Status
-
-
Safety 1st Guide 65 Convertible Car Seat, Chambers
Title

Safety 1st Guide 65 Convertible Car Seat

Max Weight
Rear-facing 40 lbs; Forward-facing 65 lbs
Installation
LATCH, seat belt
Safety Features
5-point harness
Machine-Washable Cover
Yes
Extra Features
One removable cup holder, five harness heights, three buckle levels, adjustable headrest
Price
$80.99
Prime Status
Our Choice
Tribute 5 Convertible Car Seat, 2-in-1, Saturn Gray
Title

Evenflo Tribute 5 Convertible Car Seat

Max Weight
Rear-facing 40 lbs; Forward-facing 40 lbs
Installation
LATCH, seat belt
Safety Features
5-point harness
Machine-Washable Cover
Yes
Extra Features
Adjustable head pillow, harness, lightweight
Price
$89.89
Prime Status
-
Safety 1st Jive 2-in-1 Convertible Car Seat, Harvest Moon
Title

Safety 1st Jive 2-in-1 Convertible Car Seat

Max Weight
Rear-facing 40 lbs; Forward-facing 65 lbs
Installation
LATCH, seat belt
Safety Features
5-point harness
Machine-Washable Cover
Yes
Extra Features
2 detachable cup holders, removable head and body pillows, built-in base
Price
Price not available
Prime Status
-
Baby Trend Trooper 3 in 1 Convertible Car Seat
Title

Baby Trend Trooper 3 in 1 Convertible Car Seat

Max Weight
Rear-facing for infants 18 lbs; Rear-facing for toddlers 40 lbs; Forward-facing 65 lbs
Installation
LATCH, seat belt
Safety Features
5-point harness
Machine-Washable Cover
Yes
Extra Features
5-position shoulder buckle and 3-position crotch buckle adjustments, recline flip foot for switching to rear position
Price
$99.99
Prime Status

Safety 1st Guide 65 Convertible Car Seat

Safety 1st Guide 65 Convertible Car Seat, Chambers

Convertible car seat by Safety 1st is practical and compact. It can be easily installed in rear-facing and forward-facing orientation, and it fits smaller cars. The Safety 1st Guide 65 Convertible Car Seat comes in two stylish colors and has thick and comfortable paddings.

When used in rear-orientation, it accommodates babies up to 40 pounds of weight. The weight limit for forward-facing is 65 pounds.

Furthermore, the seat features an anti-rebound bolster and a removable cup holder.

However, the seat pads aren’t safe for washing machines, and you need to clean them manually. Overall, this cheap forward facing car seat that can be installed rear facing is durable and great for prolonged use.

Pros:

  • Compact design
  • 5-point harness system for extra security
  • Adjustable headrest
  • Removable cup holder
  • Comfortable fabric

Cons:

  • The pads are suitable only for hand washing
  • It doesn’t come with the head insert
Sale
Safety 1st Guide 65 Convertible Car Seat, Chambers
  • The guide 65 is a perfect fit for smaller cars and helps protect your child longer in both rear and forward facing positions
  • Rear facing 5 to 40 pounds and 19 inches. Multi position head rest for growing children
  • Forward facing 22 to 65 pounds and 34 inches to 52 inches

Evenflo Tribute 5 Convertible Car Seat – Best Affordable Convertible Car Seat

Tribute 5 Convertible Car Seat, 2-in-1, Saturn Gray

This Evenflo Tribute 5 Convertible Car Seat exceeds all federal safety standards and accommodates children from five to 40 pounds.

It is one of the best value car seats you can find, as it is well-built, durable, comfortable, easy to install, and has an affordable price tag.

Similar to the Evenflo Tribute LX car seat, this model works well for newborns and is quite simple to install in both rear and forward-facing orientations.

Moreover, it is a lightweight, but sturdy car seat. My only complaint related to this seat is that children overgrow it soon. However, they sure enjoy it while it fits them!

Pros:

  • Sturdy construction
  • Comfortable
  • The cover is easy to clean
  • Soft material
  • Well-padded

Cons:

  • The cup holder is useless as it fits only the smallest cups
  • Kids overgrow it too soon
Tribute 5 Convertible Car Seat, 2-in-1, Saturn Gray
  • Side Impact Tested, Meets or Exceeds All Applicable Federal Safety Standards and Evenflo's Side Impact Test Standard
  • Designed and Tested for Structural Integrity at Energy Levels Approximately 2x the Federal Crash Test Standard. Rear Facing Fit Tip is Top of Child Head is at Least 1 Inch Below the Top of the Child Restraint Seat Back
  • Multiple Shoulder Harness Positions for Better Fit and Longer Use. Age at Least Two Years of Age

Safety 1st Jive 2-in-1 Convertible Car Seat

Safety 1st Jive 2-in-1 Convertible Car Seat, Harvest Moon

If the maintenance is important to you and your baby gets car sick often, you might enjoy this Safety 1st Jive 2-in-1 Convertible Car Seat. It is safe for use with babies of 5 to 65 pounds and can be installed in both rear and forward-facing orientation.

The seat is available in four design options and has two, removable cup holders on the left and right sides.

The fabric is safe for machine washing and drying in the dryer, and the holders are dishwasher-safe.

Moreover, the seat is certified for use in airplanes, which makes it one of the best budget convertible car seats. Therefore, if you plan a trip, the Jive is your ally!

Pros:

  • Airplane safe
  • Simple maintenance
  • Large weight range
  • Comes with removable head and body pillow
  • The 5-point harness system is easy to adjust

Cons:

  • The rear-facing orientation is challenging to install
  • The plastic frame has a bit sharp edges
Safety 1st Jive 2-in-1 Convertible Car Seat, Harvest Moon
  • An extra-comfortable ride that lasts for years: Rear-facing 5-40 pounds and forward-facing 22-65 pounds
  • Side impact protection
  • Fits 3 across in the back seat of most vehicles

Baby Trend Trooper 3 in 1 Convertible Car Seat

Baby Trend Trooper 3 in 1 Convertible Car Seat

The bright and vivid car seat from Baby Trend has three modes of use. You can use it in rear-orientation for babies from four to 18 pounds, for toddlers from 18 to 40 pounds, and as a forward-facing car seat with a weight range from 22 to 65 pounds.

It is comfortable in all modes, and even easy to install in a rear-facing position. The seat has a flip foot that allows you to adjust the angle. A bubble level indicator is an additional plus!

The Baby Trend Trooper 3 in 1 Convertible Car Seat is comfortable for long rides and all weather conditions. It is the most comfortable, affordable car seat on my list.

Pros:

  • It fits the majority of medium-size and large vehicles
  • Excellent head support
  • Available in bright colors
  • Wide weight range
  • It comes with a bubble indicator

Cons:

  • Heavy
  • Too wide for some cars
Baby Trend Trooper 3 in 1 Convertible Car Seat
  • 3 modes of use: rear facing infant mode (4-18lbs), rear facing toddler mode (18-40lbs), and forward facing toddler mode (22-65lbs)
  • Immediate right installation angle: rear-facing recline flip foot allows for great installation angles with ease; The built-in bubble level indicator helps find the correct angle
  • Fits three across: at its widest, the Trooper is 16.75" Allowing it to fit 3 ACROSS in most vehicles

Best Affordable Booster seats:

Our Choice
Chicco KidFit 2-in-1 Belt Positioning Booster Car Seat - Gravity, Grey
Diono Solana 2 Latch, XL Space Backless Booster Seat, | Lightweight Backless Booster with Room to Grow, 8 Years 1 Booster Seat, Black
Graco Tranzitions 3 in 1 Harness Booster Seat, Basin
Chase Harnessed Booster, Jameson
Title

Chicco KidFit 2-in-1 Belt Positioning Booster Car Seat

Diono Solana 2 Latch Booster

Graco Tranzitions 3 In 1 Harness Booster Seat

Evenflo Chase Harnessed Booster

Max Weight
Rear-facing 40 lbs; Forward-facing 65 lbs
Rear-facing 40 lbs; Forward-facing 40 lbs
Rear-facing 40 lbs; Forward-facing 65 lbs
Rear-facing for infants 18 lbs; Rear-facing for toddlers 40 lbs; Forward-facing 65 lbs
Installation
LATCH, seat belt
LATCH, seat belt
LATCH, seat belt
LATCH, seat belt
Safety Features
5-point harness
5-point harness
5-point harness
5-point harness
Machine-washable Cover
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Extra Features
One removable cup holder, five harness heights, three buckle levels, adjustable headrest
Adjustable head pillow, harness, lightweight
2 detachable cup holders, removable head and body pillows, built-in base
5-position shoulder buckle and 3-position crotch buckle adjustments, recline flip foot for switching to rear position
Price
$99.99
$39.99
$99.99
$64.99
Amazon Prime
Our Choice
Chicco KidFit 2-in-1 Belt Positioning Booster Car Seat - Gravity, Grey
Title

Chicco KidFit 2-in-1 Belt Positioning Booster Car Seat

Max Weight
Rear-facing 40 lbs; Forward-facing 65 lbs
Installation
LATCH, seat belt
Safety Features
5-point harness
Machine-washable Cover
Yes
Extra Features
One removable cup holder, five harness heights, three buckle levels, adjustable headrest
Price
$99.99
Amazon Prime
Diono Solana 2 Latch, XL Space Backless Booster Seat, | Lightweight Backless Booster with Room to Grow, 8 Years 1 Booster Seat, Black
Title

Diono Solana 2 Latch Booster

Max Weight
Rear-facing 40 lbs; Forward-facing 40 lbs
Installation
LATCH, seat belt
Safety Features
5-point harness
Machine-washable Cover
Yes
Extra Features
Adjustable head pillow, harness, lightweight
Price
$39.99
Amazon Prime
Graco Tranzitions 3 in 1 Harness Booster Seat, Basin
Title

Graco Tranzitions 3 In 1 Harness Booster Seat

Max Weight
Rear-facing 40 lbs; Forward-facing 65 lbs
Installation
LATCH, seat belt
Safety Features
5-point harness
Machine-washable Cover
Yes
Extra Features
2 detachable cup holders, removable head and body pillows, built-in base
Price
$99.99
Amazon Prime
Chase Harnessed Booster, Jameson
Title

Evenflo Chase Harnessed Booster

Max Weight
Rear-facing for infants 18 lbs; Rear-facing for toddlers 40 lbs; Forward-facing 65 lbs
Installation
LATCH, seat belt
Safety Features
5-point harness
Machine-washable Cover
Yes
Extra Features
5-position shoulder buckle and 3-position crotch buckle adjustments, recline flip foot for switching to rear position
Price
$64.99
Amazon Prime

Chicco KidFit 2-in-1 Belt Positioning Booster Car Seat – Best Affordable Booster Car Seat

Chicco KidFit 2-in-1 Belt Positioning Booster Car Seat - Gravity, Grey

The Chicco booster seat is a high-back seat that provides excellent side impact protection and head support. The shoulder of your child is also protected and properly secured.

The Chicco KidFit 2-in-1 Belt Positioning Booster Car Seat is easy to install due to premium quality LATCH connectors. Moreover, you can tighten the straps with one pull motion.

Further, the seat is contoured for better comfort and has foam padding. That way, your child will stay cozy even during long rides.

Moreover, it comes with two cup holders for refreshment drinks.

I especially like that this Chicco seat has the option to recline and remove the headrest. It is great because it accommodates older children as well.

Pros:

  • It provides excellent, full-body support
  • Easy to install
  • You can use it with a backrest or without it
  • The cover is easy to remove
  • Trusted brand

Cons:

  • Armrests are a bit challenging to remove
  • Somewhat bulky
Chicco KidFit 2-in-1 Belt Positioning Booster Car Seat - Gravity, Grey
  • Duo's zone head and shoulder side-impact protection with 10 positions
  • Premium LATCH connectors with super Cinch one-pull tightened
  • Ergo Boost contoured seat with double foam padding

Diono Solana 2 Latch Booster

Diono Solana 2 Latch, XL Space Backless Booster Seat, | Lightweight Backless Booster with Room to Grow, 8 Years 1 Booster Seat, Black

If you are planning a trip with your kid, you need to take the booster seat with you. This Diono Solana 2 Latch booster seat is compact and easily packed with your things. That way you go to a distant location with an airplane, and still, have your comfortable booster seat with you. Therefore, it is an excellent seat for family trips.

It is a backless booster seat that comes with a very low price tag. Still, the quality is good and your child will remain safely secure in it. The seat is available in three colors – black, pink and blue.

I like that the seat fits children up to 120 pounds of weight, which means you can use it longer.

Pros:

  • Compact
  • Cheap
  • Portable
  • The comfortable cover is safe for machine-washing
  • Lightweight

Cons:

  • The cup holders only swivel and cannot be removed completely
  • Thin padding
Diono Solana 2 Latch, XL Space Backless Booster Seat, | Lightweight Backless Booster with Room to Grow, 8 Years 1 Booster Seat, Black
  • XL BOOSTER WITH ROOM TO GROW- Keep your child safe and comfortable with the backless booster seat mode now up to 120 lb / 54 kg. Wide booster with ergonomically contoured seat prevents slipping and has extra length for better leg support
  • LIGHTWEIGHT & PORTABLE- This lightweight design makes this backless booster in any mode easy to transfer between vehicles
  • TWO RETRACTABLE CUP HOLDERS- Space saving cup holders keep drinks and snacks within easy reach

Graco Tranzitions 3 In 1 Harness Booster Seat

Graco Tranzitions 3 in 1 Harness Booster Seat, Basin

Another best Graco car seat on my list features versatile usage. It is a practical seat because it can accommodate children for 22 to 100 pounds. Therefore, the Graco Tranzitions 3 In 1 Harness Booster Seat transforms effortlessly from a harness booster via a highback booster to a backless booster. Therefore, the seat grows with your child.

The headrest is adjustable, and there are eight height positions. Moreover, the harness system works seamlessly.

The cup holders are removable, and the seat pad, harness cover, and body insert are machine-washable.

Pros:

  • Wide weight range
  • Versatile use
  • Comfortable for long rides
  • Easy to clean
  • The headrest is easy to adjust
  • Available in bright colors

Cons:

  • Heavier when used as a harness booster
  • The lower buckle can be challenging to set
Graco Tranzitions 3 in 1 Harness Booster Seat, Basin
  • 3 in 1 harness booster helps protect your child, from toddler to youth; harness booster (22 to 65 pounds), high back booster (30 to 100 pounds), backless booster (40 to 100 pounds)
  • Simply Safe Adjust Harness System adjusts the height of your harness and headrest in one motion; one hand, 5 position adjustable headrest easily adapts for your growing child; Buckle may be cleaned with a damp cloth
  • Engineered & rigorously crash tested to meet or exceed US standard FMVSS 213; the Nautilus 65 has been side impact tested for occupant retention solely with the built in 5 point harness system

Evenflo Chase Harnessed Booster

Chase Harnessed Booster, Jameson

The Evenflo Chase Harnessed Booster is one of the cheap booster car seats every child will love and use for a long time. You can start using this 2 in 1 seat once the baby gets 22 pounds, and until he or she gains up to 110 pounds.

The seat converts from a 5-point harness seat to a belt-positioning car seat within minutes.

Moreover, the Evenflo Chase car seat is lightweight and easy to install. It is great because you can quickly remove it from one car and install it in another car.

Further, the seat ensures enhanced side protection and comfort.

It is available in four colors and has a removable head pillow for a cozy fit and potential naps during long trips. It makes the Evenflo cheap travel car seat with ultimate comfort.

Pros:

  • Lightweight
  • Suitable for prolonged use
  • Inexpensive
  • You can wash the seat pad in the washing-machine
  • Comfortable for travel

Cons:

  • It doesn’t come with the shoulder pads
  • Somewhat bulky
Chase Harnessed Booster, Jameson
  • This 2-In-1 combination booster car seat fitting children from 22-110 pounds converts from a 5-point harnessed to belt-positioning car seat allowing for extended use for your child
  • The chase LX combination booster car seat helps protect harnessed children from 22-40 pounds (Height: 28 - 50 Inches) and belt-positioned children from 40-110 pounds (Height: 43.3 - 57 Inches); Age: At least four years of age
  • This lightweight combination booster car seat comes equipped for latch systems allowing for easy installation and transfer between multiple vehicles. Do not use abrasive cleaners or solvents.

FAQs

Let’s answer some of the most frequently asked questions about baby car seats.

What are the must-have features for buying an affordable car seat?

First of all, aim for the car seat with head support, which will keep the baby in the appropriate position so the breathing isn’t compromised. Next, side-impact support and sturdy construction is a must in all children car seats. Moreover, adjustable straps and a 5-point harness system are important features to make the baby more stable and comfortable in the seat.

Other useful but not primary features include removable and machine-washable cover, adjustable headrest for a customized fit, comfortable padding, infant insert for small babies, etc.

Pick a compact car seat if you own a small car or you have more children! - Best Budget Car Seat | Baby Journey
Pick a compact car seat if you own a small car or you have more children!

How long can a budget car seat last?

If the seat hasn’t been in an accident, it can last all the way through its expiration date. However, some cheaper seats can have their covers ripped after years of use and numerous washing cycles.

Is it cheaper to get stage-by-stage car seats or an all-in-one car seat?

The initial costs for an all-in-one car seat might be higher, but the seat will serve you for several years. Overall, it might be a more economical choice than buying at least three car seats as your baby grows.

Conclusion

The Evenflo LiteMax 35 Infant Car Seat is one of the best seats you can find on the market, in all price ranges. The quality construction, comfort, ease of maintenance, and flexible use make this infant seat my top pick.

The most important feature – the seat is safe and durable, and your baby will certainly love it!

How did you like my list? If I missed any good seat, feel free to add it in the comments!

Best Budget Car Seat | Baby Journey

Last update on 2021-03-06 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Author

Schianne

Hi, my name is Schianne, wife to my high school sweetheart and mother of a beautiful and clever little girl. Click here to learn more about us.

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