As seen in:
Britax
Frontier Clicktight Combination
Graco
TurboBooster, Backless
RECARO
Performance SPORT
Evenflo
Amp Performance, No Back
Cosco
Juvenile Top Side
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Good

Packed with every safety feature imaginable. Easy to install and very durable. Made by a company with a history of quality.

Stylish and comfortable. Low price. Easy installation.

Twist-resistant, five-point harness.

Five-point harness system. Little need for bothersome strap re-threading.

Easily fits into cars of different makes and models.

Bad

On the more expensive side, but the safety features make it well worth the investment.

Seat can "slide' a bit and can be a narrow fit for larger children.

Seat is on the narrow side and not a good fit for all riders. Cup holders are not user-friendly.

Fits in some cars better than others. Narrow seats fit some children better than others.

No LATCH system for extra security. Might not fit larger children as well as smaller children.

Bottom Line

By far the best booster car seat on the market. If safety is your number one priority, this seat is a no-brainer.

Highly affordable with terrific safety ratings. Available in both a "Cars" and a Disney "princess" theme.

An expensive model that focuses on safety, but also has a few "impractical" flaws.

An affordable option that has passed safety tests, but does not "fit" every child.

An affordable, portable, low-cost solution for those who desire a simple booster seat.

How we decide
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Products received from manufacturers
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Models Considered
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Hours Spent
3
Experts Interviewed
173
Consumers Consulted

Best Booster Car Seats

The best car booster seats on the market fit children well and offer plenty of desirable features -- with safety features being the most important of all. The top car booster seats on today's market include the following:

Products we Considered

Britax
Frontier Clicktight Combination
Graco
TurboBooster, Backless
RECARO
Performance SPORT
Evenflo
Amp Performance, No Back
Cosco
Juvenile Top Side

Considerations

Type

There are two main types of car booster seats: high-back and backless. High-backs offer a comfortable resting place for a child's head, especially in cars without a backseat headrest. They also provide great shoulder-belt positioning with convenient shoulder-belt routing guides. Backless boosters offer a better lap-belt placement and often cost less. A vehicle's rear seats often dictate the best type of booster for a child. Cars with ample support and deep contours are better suited for backless models, whereas rear seats with a low back are more conducive to high-back boosters.

Fit

A booster seat places the child higher up, ensuring that the adult seat belt fits correctly and offers full restraint protection. For this reason, the lap belt should sit across the upper thigh rather than the abdomen. The shoulder belt should fit securely across the middle of a child's shoulder. The belt should not be too close to the neck, and it should not slide off the shoulder. Some boosters offer a wide or adjustable base and higher shoulder strap slots to accommodate growing children.

Features

Safety is the most important feature any booster car seat can offer. Consumers should avoid backless boosters with a shield-style closure, as this type of seat is considered unsafe for children. A good way to determine a seat's safety is to research test results from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, or IIHS. The IIHS examines whether car seats offer proper belt positioning for children. Other features you may find desirable in a booster seat include side clips to accommodate various heights, a smooth-flowing belt retracter, and a reclining angle of 20-30 degrees (seats that recline more than this could lead to injury in a crash).

Price

More expensive seats don't always offer better protection. In fact, some of the top-rated seats are also some of the most affordable. Backless booster seats often cost less than high-back seats, due in large part to their simpler design.

Considerations

Type

Britax Frontier G1.1 Clicktight Harness-2-Booster Car Seat

The high-back Britax Frontier Booster Car Seat provides a forward-facing, five-point harness system with a weight capacity of up to 90 pounds along with a 20.5'' shoulder harness height. When your child grows, the seat also can convert into Booster mode, supporting up to 120 pounds.

Graco Backless TurboBooster Car Seat

The Graco Backless TurboBooster Car Seat is a forward-facing, backless seat that works best for children who weight between 40 and 100 pounds (roughly ages 4-10). A generous mix of style and comfort ensures satisfied customers and happy kids who look forward to riding in their Disney-themed booster seat.

RECARO Performance SPORT Combination Harness to Booster

Security and comfort are the name of the game with the RECARO, another high-back booster seat. Twist-resistant harness technology gives children a high level of protection in this seat. Passengers between 30 and 120 pounds can safely ride in this seat; in harness mode, a five-point harness system protects children between 20-65 pounds.

Evenflo Amp Performance No Back Booster Car Seat

The Evenflo Amp Performance No Back Booster Car Seat is a forward-facing, backless seat. Comfortable, contoured padding makes this seat a great choice for longer car rides. The Evenflo works best for children ages four and up. The manufacturer tells us that consumers can count on this booster to maintain proper seat belt positioning -- even during naps. However, some owners caution that the width of this seat keeps it from sitting tightly against cars with curved seats.

Cosco Juvenile Top Side Booster Car Seat

The Cosco Juvenile Top Side Booster Car Seat is a backless booster with an extra-plush pad for added comfort. This seat fits children between 40 and 100 pounds with heights that range from 43 to 57 inches. Cosco's unique "seat-safe" design leaves vehicle seats unmarked by the presence and use of the booster. Many customers tell us this product's narrow seat makes it a great choice for smaller cars, comfortably fitting children without tipping over.

The Britax is packed with every safety feature imaginable.
Considerations

Fit and Adjustability

Finding a good "fit" for the Britax inside your car is fairly easy. Lower LATCH connectors are included, making it easy to secure this seat. The booster's Clicktight Installation System allows you to securely install the vehicle's belt in harness mode. Two buckle positions ensure a snug and secure fit for passengers of various sizes. Color-coded vehicle belt guides give a clear indication of how to use your vehicle's seat belt in both harness and booster mode. If you have any doubts about how well you've installed the seat, simply listen for the audible "click" that confirms correct LATCH installation.

It's easy for riders to find optimal posture and comfort in the Graco. Simple installation (just place the booster where you want your child to sit) and height-adjustable padded arm rests make traveling convenient and easy for adults and children alike. Some users told us that older kids may find the cushion to be a bit narrow. It's important to note that this type of seat may cause the child to "slide around" a bit, as the structure is shorter and smaller than a high-back model like the Britax.

Finding a good fit is helped along by the RECARO's Easy Adjust, five-point harness system (for passengers who are 65 pounds and under). The RECARO's twist-resistant HERO harness and ergonomic shell offer plenty of support for children of various ages and sizes. The unique harness system maintains proper chest clip positioning and secures the shoulder pads just right to properly fit the child's head, neck, and shoulders without twisting. A convenient level lift ensures proper alignment and head adjustment without the need for strap re-threading.

The Evenflo is a simple, backless seat that fits some children better than others. Comfortable, contoured padding supports riders during both shorter and longer trips, but some owners caution that the seat cushion runs a bit narrow and can be an uncomfortable fit for taller or larger children.

Cosco Juvenile Top Side Booster Car Seat

Cosco booster owners appreciate how easily this seat fits into cars of all sizes. It does not require a "Lower Anchor and Tether for Children," or LATCH. (Most manufacturers limit LATCH use starting at 40-48 pounds, at which point proper seat installation requires that the vehicle's seat belt be used.) An extra-plush pad gives Cosco riders a superior level of comfort. We like this product's lightweight design, which makes for easier transfers from one car to the next.

Britax has an incredible reputation, and with the Frontier, it is obvious that they have thought of everything.
Dr. Tiffany
Expert Consultant
Dr. Tiffany
Medical Doctor

Tiffany is a practicing OB/GYN. She’s extremely well-versed in the diagnosis and treatment of developmental and medical issues concerning infants and babies. In her spare time, you might find Tiffany kayaking or rock climbing.

Considerations

Features

Britax Frontier G1.1 Clicktight Harness-2-Booster Car Seat

The Britax features energy-absorbing foam with deep walls and a technology called "True Side Impact Protection," which helps distribute crash forces more evenly in the event of a crash. What's more, the base of this seat comes with SafeCell technology that compresses and greatly lowers the center of gravity, reducing the seat's forward movement during an accident. Other notable features include a removable cover for easy cleaning, integrated cup holders, and storage for supplies, toys, and snacks.

Graco Backless TurboBooster Car Seat

The Graco Backless TurboBooster's safety ratings are definitely impressive. The IIHS awarded this seat the coveted "Best Bet Booster" designation for its outstanding ability to protect riders in the event of an accident. Aesthetically speaking, this booster's Disney "Cars" pattern appeals to children of all ages. The colorful seat, with solid black accents and white piping, brightens up a car's interior while supplying dual, hideaway cup holders and removable, padded seat cushions. NOTE: A pink Disney princess seat is available for those children who would prefer a different design.

RECARO Performance SPORT Combination Harness to Booster

The RECARO's energy-absorbing EPS foam provides support and protection in the event of a crash. We particularly like this seat's side-impact protection feature which includes visible "safety stripes" on the edge of the harness. Other important safety features include the RECARO's enhanced head wings (to shield the head/face) and reinforcements at the hips, thighs, and sides (to help stabilize the torso and pelvis). Other significant features include the RECARO's temperature-balancing fabrics, quick-flip recline mechanism, and cup holders. However, it should be noted that some owners find the cup holders to be too small and "impractical" for little fingers to manipulate.

Evenflo Amp Performance No Back Booster Car Seat

Safety is a priority with the Evenflo; this booster seat was designed and tested at roughly two times the federal crash standard. In the event of an accident, research suggests that this seat maintains its structural integrity -- a plus for safety-minded parents. The seat also comes with a removable, 100-percent polyester pad for easy washing and dual cup holders that are accessible to most children.

Cosco Juvenile Top Side Booster Car Seat

Customers give high ratings to the Cosco for its lightweight construction and portability. This seat's extra-plush pad removes easily for effective cleanup and can be stored in most trunks when not in use. If you and your child are "on the go" a lot, this portable seat is very handy to have in the car.

If you're looking for a safe booster at an affordable price, consider the Graco Backless TurboBooster. This product earned the "Best Bet Booster" award from the IIHS for its safety ratings.
Considerations

Price

Britax Frontier G1.1 Clicktight Harness-2-Booster Car Seat

A price tag of $255 makes the Britax Frontier Booster Car Seat one of the more expensive options on our shortlist. For the money, you get a lot of reassuring safety features in the Britax package, including True Side Impact Protection and SafeCell technology. In exchange for its plethora of safety features, however, this seat is bulky and quite heavy for on-the-go families to carry around. That being said, if the safety of your child is your number one priority, there is no better pick than the Britax.

Graco Backless TurboBooster Car Seat

The Graco Backless TurboBooster Car Seat costs $26, making it one of the more affordable options on our shortlist. For this modest price, you get a booster that has been highly rated for safety by the IIHS. We really like this booster's height-adjustable arm rests, comfortable (and removable) seat pad, and dual hideaway cup holders. Most owners find that the Graco seat, with its snug, secure belt, easy to set up inside their car. Kids of a certain age love the Disney design, too -- both "Cars" and a princess theme are available.

RECARO Performance SPORT Combination Harness to Booster

A price tag of $195 puts the RECARO Performance SPORT Combination Harness/Booster near the top of our price range. For the money, consumers get a safety-focused, full-back booster seat. Side-impact protection and a twist-resistant harness are two of this models' strongest features. However, it should be noted that a few impractical characteristics, such as difficult-to-use cup holders and a difficult-to-install LATCH system, have disappointed some consumers who paid full price for this model.

Evenflo Amp Performance No Back Booster Car Seat

The Evenflo Amp Performance No Back Booster Car Seat costs $25, making it quite an affordable option. This seat's safety measures impress us; the Evenflo was both designed and tested for structural integrity at energy levels that are twice that of the federal crash-test standard. This is a comfortable, contoured seat that is cushioned with 100-percent polyester -- great for quick and easy cleanup when you're on the go. Easy-to-use, dual cup holders offer enough space for most drinks. If you have a larger or older child, you may want to test his or her "fit" before purchasing this item, as some owners note that the Evenflo's seat cushion is a bit on the narrow side.

Cosco Juvenile Top Side Booster Car Seat

You can get the Cosco Juvenile booster for just a few dollars -- $19, to be exact. We think this seat is a real bargain! For the money, you get an extra-plush pad with ample comfort and a 100-pound weight limit. A special "seat friendly" design leaves vehicle seats unmarked after use. This seat is great for smaller cars and also smaller children. If you have a larger child, you may want to test the Cosco for "fit" before purchasing.

The Britax's Clicktight Installation System allows you to securely install the vehicle's belt in harness mode

Best of the Best

The Britax is the best booster car seat on the market, and it's not even close. Packed with every safety feature imaginable, this seat was designed to minimize injury in the worst possible scenarios while at the same time offering comfort and flexibility day to day.

Britax is one of the leading manufacturer of baby products, and with the Frontier, it is obvious that they have thought of everything. An incredibly easy installation system. Cushion and padding from top to bottom. Two buckle positions that fasten your child safely and securely. Flexibility between Harness and Booster mode so that the seat grows along with your child. And, of course, a plethora of industry-leading safety technologies engineered to minimize crash forces in the case of an accident. All in all, the Frontier is the best booster car seat on the market, and it earns our highest recommendation.
Best of the Best
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Packed with every safety feature imaginable, this seat was designed to minimize injury in the worst possible scenarios.

Best Bang for your Buck

You might think twice when first you see the Graco Backless Turbo Booster's astoundingly low price tag, but think again: this seat has made a name for itself as a solid contender, and it will definitely give you a huge bang for your buck. It has also won the coveted "Best Bet Booster" rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) -- an immense honor among backless booster seats.

Despite not having a head rest, the Graco provides plenty of support for children of all heights and ages. It also offers height-adjustable padded arm rests and dual hideaway cup holders. A removable padded seat cushion cleans easily in the washing machine -- an invaluable feature for parents of young children.

The Graco's price tag may be low, but quality is not. This cleverly designed, Disney-themed seat earns plenty of praise, and for good reason. Customers trust the Graco name, but if this isn't enough for you, the "Best Bet Booster" rating from the IIHS should convince you. This seat's overall mix of quality, safety, and attractive features make it the best car booster seat on the market today.
Best Bang for your Buck
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The Graco's price tag may be low, but quality is not. Customers trust the Graco name, and for good reason.
The team that worked on this review
  • Jennifer
    Jennifer
    Writer
  • Melissa
    Melissa
    Editor
  • Ann
    Ann
    Operations
  • Jimi
    Jimi
    Product Analyst
  • Kriti
    Kriti
    Data Scientist