My nine-month-old is about to graduate his Joie I Gemm, what are the portable restraints available?
In this week’s Car Seat Chronicles, Elise discusses Briar’s car seat options and personalises a plan for her nine-month-old son, William (full details of child’s metrics are at the end of the post).
At nine months old, ten kilos, and 73cm tall, Briar feels that William is about to outgrow his Joie I Gemm infant capsule. Briar finds the Joie I Gemm lightweight and easy to use, and thus is on a lookout for something similar, as she relies on taxis, Grab or Gojek to get around in Singapore. Her lifestyle also requires a car seat that is airplane-approved and legal in New Zealand.
If you, like Briar, are looking to transit your bambino to a portable, airplane-approved, next stage car seat, read away! Alternatively, you may give the podcast above a listen. xx
Hi Briar! Firstly, many parents tend to graduate their child to the next stage car seat six to 12 months before they really have to, and therefore I’ll like to double check if William is really close to outgrowing the Gemm capsule. I reckon that he might be outgrowing the car seat by comfort, but I’ll need a picture of him in his car seat in order to let you know approximately how much longer you can keep him secured in the Gemm, from a safety perspective. If William’s head is shorter than his car seat, I suggest that you keep William in the Gemm capsule — these infant car seats tend to be the most convenient solution for taxis/Grab/Gojek. Although William may find it more comfortable as you move to a second stage car seat, there’s likely to be a noticeable step down in terms of convenience for you.
Alternatively, if you choose to graduate William from his infant car seat, your options will narrow significantly in terms of having a taxi-friendly car seat, to two main ones: the Cosco Scenera NEXT and the Urban Kanga, both lightweight at only three kilos.
Now, let’s look at the Cosco Scenera NEXT further in detail. This car seat ticks all the right boxes for your lifestyle needs. It’s rear-facing, which is more than five times safer than turning William forward-facing at this point. The Cosco is also airline-approved, meaning you’ll be able to take it in William’s seat on the plane! This is fantastic because, if you noticed, he’s more likely to settle in his seat and it’s much safer as well! Not only can you keep him in his seat even if he doesn’t want to be there, you’ll be hands-free (how nice would it be!). Last but not least, it’s legal to use it in New Zealand.
The next option you’ve got is a folding car seat called the Urban Kanga, which is definitely not as suitable as the Cosco. It’s not airline-approved (but you can take it as hand luggage) and it is legal to use in New Zealand like the Cosco, the downside is that it’s more expensive and it’s a forward-facing car seat, which is five times less safe compared to a rear-facing car seat like his Gemm or the Cosco.
I figured you’ll find the Cosco suits your needs a lot more, but even still, I recommend that you try to stick with the Gemm if it’s still going to be safe to do so. The Cosco is compatible with a lot of Joie strollers — not officially, but it sort of hacks on quite nicely. You can look at the list of Joie strollers + Cosco hacks at our Strollerhacks database, to check out the images our lovely customers have shared and see if you share the same stroller. Have a look at the Cosco and the Strollerhacks online, and if you have a chance, send me a picture of William in his Gemm so that I can let you know how close he is to outgrowing it. I’ll be in touch after that. Bye! xx Elise
Following up, Briar sent over some pictures of William in his Joie Gemm car seat. After reviewing the picture, here’s what Elise has to say:
William in the Joie Gemm, with infant insert.
Hi Briar, I reckon that there’s at least five centimeters between the top of his head and the top of his seat, which is a fair bit of time he’s got left. This should last him six months at least in this seat and he will outgrow it when his head is taller than the top of the shell of the seat, or when he’s heavier than 13 kilos — whichever happens first. On a side note, I feel that William will be more comfortable without the infant insert, perhaps you could refer to the manual for the maximum size and weight limit for it. Cheers! Xx Elise
Briar removed the infant insert and voila!
Her reply: "Without the insert. Seems much better! I was never sure if it should come out or not as the seat part feels quite hard without it. Thank you. I’ll check back in with you when I think he might be out growing it."
Update (18 June 2020): Briar has decided to purchase the Cosco now that William has fully outgrown his Joie Gemm (image below).
William in his car seat, sans infant insert.
- Age: 9 months
- Height: 73cm
- Weight: 10kg
- Seated height: 42cm
- Seated shoulder height: 28cm
- Torso length: 23cm
Below is a guide to the above measurements: