On most airlines, children can travel in their guardian’s or parent’s lap up to age 2. This means that no separate seat is purchased for that child. However, the caretaker has to meet an age requirement and can only take care of one child at a time. Seats would have to be secured for any additional infants. That second infant would then have to be secured in the seat.
airlines do offer the choice of purchasing a seat for your infant as long as
you have the proper child restraint device.
This could be either a car seat or a CARES harness.
you already have your hands full with one in your lap, do you really want the
hassle of dealing with a full car seat for your other child? CARES harnesses fit neatly in a small bag,
are light, and take a lot of the stress out of taking a trip, especially when
dealing with multiple kids.
the CARES over the back of the seat and securing requires lowering the tray
table on the back of the seat. As such,
this is more easily and quickly accomplished if you board early. Take advantage of the opportunity for
priority boarding because you are traveling with young children. It will not only make getting the CARES
installed easier, it will also allow your young one to get acclimated to the
surroundings and the feel of the CARES over the shoulders and around the lap.
is suggested that once the passenger behind your child arrives and takes their
seat, you let them know that you have installed the CARES and assure them that
it will have no impact on their ability to use their tray table. This will likely avoid any issues with these
passengers getting concerned and alerting a steward or stewardess, which would
then require additional discussions and explanations. Should this nevertheless happen, please be
reminded that the CARES is equipped with labels clearly identifying the product
as FAA approved, which should defuse any such situations. Additionally, a short explanation and
demonstration of how the product works and how it really has no impact on the
usability of the tray table of the passengers behind should also go a long way
in bringing such an exchange to a swift end.
use of the CARES harness should be limited to window and center seats, much as
the use of a car seat. However, unlike a
car seat, the CARES harness fits neatly into a small bag until you need to take
it out to install it on one of these window or center seats. No bruises to the shins, no pulled muscles
wrestling the car seat into position. A
quick loop and tighten and the CARES is ready for use.
is an easy over-the-seat solution that takes just seconds to install, which
converts the standard lap belt to a harness.
According to the company website, “CARES is certified by the FAA for use on all U.S. registered airlines. Occasionally, we come across airline personnel who are not familiar with it so it is helpful to point out the “FAA APPROVED” printed on the label. You may also want to carry a copy of “Child Safety on Airplanes” printed off the FAA website or downloaded from the Kids Fly Safe website under In-Flight Documents http://kidsflysafe.com/instructions/in-flight-documents/.
Many countries follow the same or adapt regulations based on the FAA regulations. However, the FAA regulations only apply to those airlines under it’s jurisdiction, i.e. U.S. based air carriers. In the U.S., no air carrier is permitted to deny the use of an approved CRS if a parent has purchased a separate seat for the child. In other countries it’s a little different. Regulatory authorities around the world have approved the use of AmSafe CARES restraint. However, CARES is considered “carry-on” equipment (same as car seats) and is not really regulated by aviation authorities. Each airline may set their own rules based on staff training and aircraft type. Most airlines specify that if a parent wishes to use a child restraint system (CRS) they may do so, provided the CRS meets certain standards. Usually standards approved are based on Motor Vehicle safety standards (for car seats) AND/OR standards approved for Aviation use by a regulatory agency such as FAA, TC (Transport Canada) or CAA (UK Civil Aviation Authority). In some cases the airlines specify, by name, which CRS’ are approved for use. We always recommend that travelers check the website or contact the airline regarding the use of a CRS on a particular aircraft.”
to the FAA, CARES harnesses are intended for children between 22 and 44 pounds
(10 and 20 kilograms) in a forward-facing seat.
This would generally be children between one and four years old.