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Shopping around for a backless boost seat is hard.
Not because of the variety of options available at different price ranges. But isn’t it hard seeing your baby graduate to a harness-free booster seat? After all, yesterday you brought your baby home from the hospital. Time is a thief!
As someone who is crazily passionate about car seat safety and loves to geek out about all of the cool bells and whistles that are constantly getting added to car seats nowadays, I’m the person all of my mom’s friends come to when they’re ready to make a switch or upgrade.
I will probably sob a bit (okay, a lot) when my little bean is ready to switch to a backless booster seat. But I’m so thankful to be able to help other parents looking around for a backless boost seat for their kiddo.
Choosing the right backless booster seat is intimidating, too, because of how scary they seem because there isn’t a harness. But which are the best on the market? Which backless booster seat available is the best for you and your family? That’s what I’m here to share with you!
Table of Contents
- 1 Bottom Line Up Front:
- 2 What Is a Backless Booster Seat?
- 3 The Importance of Choosing the Right Booster Seat
- 4 Tips for Choosing the Right Backless Booster Seat: How I’ve Made the Selections I’ve Listed
- 5 Best Backless Booster Seats on the Market
- 6 Graco Affix
- 7 Graco TurbBooster LX Backless Booster with LATCH
- 8 Graco TurboBooster 2.0 Backless Booster
- 9 Evenflo Go Time No Back Booster
- 10 Diono Solana 2 XL Space Booster
- 11 Chicco GoFit Plus
- 12 Chicco GoFit Cleartex Backless
- 13 Britax Skyline Belt-Positioning Booster
- 14 FAQs
- 15 Finding the Best Backless Booster for Your Little One
Bottom Line Up Front:
My favorite Diono Solana 2 XL Space Booster is my favorite selection because of the cup holders and the max height restriction!
What Is a Backless Booster Seat?
A backless booster seat is another type of car seat designed for older children who can’t safely fit inside of forward-facing car seat with a harness. The reason why it’s called a backless booster seat is that it doesn’t have a backrest, unlike highback booster seats.
Backless booster seats work to lift your child to the appropriate height to have a seatbelt properly fit across their shoulder and their lap, saving their life if they are in a car accident.
Specific weight and height restrictions exist for children ready to graduate to a backless booster seat. However, each car seat manufacturer has specific guidelines on the weight and height restrictions for each backless booster seat.
Highback vs. Backless
If you need clarification on the difference between a highback and a backless booster seat, only one thing separates them: the back.
Highback boost seats provide extra neck and head support for little kiddos who need that additional support in case of an accident. Backless booster seats are used for older children who don’t need extra neck/back support.
Highback booster seats may also have additional features such as adjustable headrests, built-in cup holders, and side-impact protection. In contrast, backless booster seats tend to be more compact and portable, making them easier to transport between cars or airplanes.
The Importance of Choosing the Right Booster Seat
Choosing the right booster seat for your little one is vital for maintaining your child’s safety while you’re out on the road. Booster seats are designed to elevate your child so that the seat belt fits properly across their lap and shoulder, providing the necessary protection in case of a crash.
As you’re looking through all of the different booster seat options, you need to keep your kid’s height, weight, and age in the back of your head.
I would also highly recommend you get measurements of the inside of your vehicle so you know how much space you have to work with. If you don’t get the correct sizes for your vehicle or your car, it can increase the risk of injury or even death in the event of an accident.
Tips for Choosing the Right Backless Booster Seat: How I’ve Made the Selections I’ve Listed
Choosing the right backless boost seat doesn’t have to be overwhelming and confusing. Here’s a closer look at how to select the right backless booster seat:
This is for both your car and our child. Backless booster seats are designed for children who weigh between 40 to 110 pounds and are between 40 to 57 inches tall. Before you purchase a new backless booster seat, look at the specs listed by the manufacturer. This will ensure that the booster seat is appropriate for your child’s age, weight, and height.
You should also look at the compatibility with your car. This is where I recommend taking measurements; looking at the specs of the booster seat and having your car’s sizes easily available will let you know if a booster seat is too big or too small for your space.
I made sure the booster seats listed in this article are compatible with the majority of vehicles.
I kept safety features in the forefront of my mind as I was shopping around. I kept an eye out for things like adjustable armrests, seat belt positioners, and side-impact protection, which can enhance your child’s safety in the event of a crash.
I made sure all of the booster seats I listed in this article came with a warranty. I believe a contract can provide added peace of mind and protection for your investment. Any warranty put in place will cover defects in materials or workmanship.
LATCH systems are so crucial for backless booster seats because these systems help to ensure parents can install the backless booster seat properly. In addition, LATCH systems are an excellent way to ensure your child stays safe in the event of a car accident, as they make sure your child won’t be projected during impact.
Best Backless Booster Seats on the Market
- 11 pounds
- 27-inches long
- Supports 40-100 pounds and is up to 57-inches tall
The Graco Affix Has a high back and backless booster mode. And gray goes recommendations; they suggest that you wait until your child is the age of four to go to the backless way. This booster seat comes with a LATCH system. While the LATCH system isn’t necessary to use when installing, I love that it is an option!
This is a great backless booster seat because it’s lightweight and easy to move around, thanks to the LATCH system. I like how there’s one cupholder installed into the base of the seat, and the other one is attached to the seat.
The fit of this car seat base is wider, so I wouldn’t recommend this if you’re only looking for a narrow backless booster seat. There’s even a pull-out drawer installed into the booster seat, giving you extra storage if you’re desperate for options!
- 4 pounds
- Supports 40-100 pounds and is 43-57-inches tall
This is another great backless booster seat that comes with a LATCH system for extra safety. I don’t think the actual seat of this backless booster is as wide as some of the other backless boosters I have listed here, so if you have a child that has wider hips, I would recommend a different model.
If you have older children, this may report that this booster seat isn’t super comfortable and plush. However, if you have a lighter child or one who isn’t as picky, I think that this backless booster is a pretty affordable option.
The overall setup for this backless booster is pretty easy. It’s easy to transfer between cars without any struggle.
Graco TurboBooster 2.0 Backless Booster
- 3 pounds
- Safe for 40-120 pounds and 44-57-inches tall
Evenflo is another big name in the car seat industry, and for a good reason, they’re another affordable brand and make high-quality seats!
This is one comfortable booster seat, thanks to the extra cushy padding and contouring in the seat to make sure your little one’s bum doesn’t go numb. Of course, Evenflo added two cupholders built into the seat (yay, no projectiles).
I also love that the cover for this backless booster is machine washable and super easy to remove. Long gone are those days when I’m struggling to remove the cover of my son’s car rear-facing car seat to try to wash it.
- 6 pounds
- 16-inches long
- Safe for 40-120 pounds and 38-63 inches tall
Diono isn’t as big of a name in the car seat industry as Graco and Evenflo, but that doesn’t mean that they don’t make high-quality products!
This is a great booster seat if you’ve got a tall child on your hands (but not tall enough to ride without a booster seat). It’s really hard to find any backless booster on the market that has a max height above 57 inches, so that’s one of the main reasons why I included the Diono Solana 2 XL!
I also love how wide this seat is (18.5 inches across), giving extra room for any kiddos with wider hips! I also love the cupholders that come with this backless booster; you can push them in and out of the booster seat, helping to save on space and make it easier to get in and out of the car.
- 6 pounds
- 17-inches long
- Safe for 40-110 pounds and 38-57 inches tall
The Chicco GoFit Plus offers a wonderful combo of safety and portability. I love the adjustable armrests on this backless booster, as it makes it easy to adjust this booster seat to make your little one comfy. The GoFit Plus is the “older” sibling of the GoFit, so you’re getting the full setup with cupholders and a big carrying handle.
This booster seat also comes with lightweight anchor connectors and a release system that makes getting this car seat out from a seat super easy. All you have to do is press the release handle and you can completely pull the booster seat out of the vehicle!
- 6 pounds
- 17-inches long
- Safe for 40-110 pounds and 38-57-inches
Compared to the Chicco GOFit Plus, you’ll find that the Cleartex comes with double-foam padding to provide ergonomic contouring to ensure this car seat is as comfortable as ever.
Plus, the design is slim enough you’ll be able to fit three of these booster seats in the back seat of your vehicle with no trouble! This offers all of the same features as the GoFit Plus, but with more padding, so if you’ve got a kiddo that wants some extra cushion, this is it!
- 12 pounds
- 19-inches long
- Safe for 48-120 pounds and 44-63-inches
I wanted to include a 2-in-1 option for those parents who aren’t sure if their kiddo is ready for a backless booster. This is a highback and backless booster option from Britax. Right now, it’s the tallest highback/backless booster on the market, so if you’ve got a tall kiddo, this would be great for you.
This car seat is lined with EPP foam and comes with LATCH connectors, making installation a breeze. There aren’t a whole lot of features on this booster seat that make it impressive, but it does come with two cup holders. I think this is a great option for families looking for an affordable booster seat that can be easily found in the store!
Question: How do I know if my child is ready for a backless booster seat?
Answer: Your little one Is ready for a backless booster seat when they have completely outgrown their forward-facing car seat by using a harness.
At the very minimum, your little one should be at least 40 pounds and can sit properly in a booster seat with the seat belt sitting across their lap and their shoulder. The seat belt shouldn’t touch their necks and should go across their hips, not their stomach!
Question: Can I use a backless boost seat in the front seat of my car?
Answer: I wouldn’t recommend using a backless booster seat in front of your car. Chances are, if you have to use a backless booster seat, your child still isn’t at the legal age that they should be to ride in front of the car. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends your child ride in the back of your car until they turn 13 years old.
Question: Can I use a backless booster seat on an airplane?
Answer: This boils down to the airline you’re flying with, as some airlines don’t allow backless booster seats. I would also highly recommend You look into the specifications of the specific backless booster seat you’re flying with, as some car seat manufacturers don’t make all of their car seats to be safe for air travel.
Finding the Best Backless Booster for Your Little One
There aren’t a ton of super high-quality backless boosters out there, but these backless booster seats are ones you can trust! Keep in mind that all of these booster seats have been tested for safety and meet or exceed federal safety standards.
If you’re still not sure which booster to go with, I highly recommend the Diono Solana 2 XL Space Booster. It’s a great option because of its affordability, the cup holders, and because of the max height restriction available.