There’s been a lot of chatter about a change in car seat law earlier this year which has led to some confusion about what seat’s best to use.

As the leading car seat provider, we wanted to make sure you’re all caught up with what the changes were and how they might have affected you.

To make sure we had all the right answers to the questions you wanted to know, we asked parents what they found most mind-boggling when it comes to child travel.* Here’s what we found:

We found 71% of parents are still baffled by what the rules are

In simple terms, the old law stated that a child could travel on a booster cushion from 15kg upwards. A booster cushion is a simple, backless seat that helps position children safely for a car seat belt to be secured.  Their highback counterparts come with side safety cushioning and shoulder belt guides.

35% of parents surveyed weren’t even aware of the changes and more than 40% didn’t know what the proposed changes were

Let’s clear this one up. As of March this year, the change in law outlined that any existing backless booster cushions already being manufactured and sold would not be affected and are still safe to use. Newly manufactured backless booster cushions on the market from this point on however would have to be type approved for Group 3 only, which is for a child who weighs more than 22kg or is over 125cm in height.

A huge 86% were not confident on what the changes would mean for them

That means if you purchased a booster cushion before March 2017 which complied with with previous Group 3 boundaries, the changes in March would not affect you. If you are looking to purchase a new seat for your child, you will still have the choice between a booster cushion and a high back booster, but any new booster cushions on the market will only be suitable for children from 22kg or 125cm. At Halfords, we will continue to recommend a highback booster for any child who is between 15kg and 22kg. We are also making it much easier for parents to make the jump from booster cushion to highback booster, by running our booster cushion trade in event where you can bring in your old booster cushion (from any retailer) in return for 20% off a high back booster.

47% of parents found it stressful when choosing a new car seat**

So how can we make this a better experience for you? First, let’s round up the facts:

  • As of March 2017, newly manufactured booster cushions are restricted to older children
  • Existing booster cushions won’t be banned and will still be perfectly legal for children 15kg and over
  • With all of this in mind, Halfords continues to recommend highback booster seats for all children between 15kg and 22kg.

Now you’ve got the need-to-knows, it might be that you can sit back and relax knowing your current car seat is safe to use. If you’re looking to change or upgrade your existing model or want to make a new purchase and still feel a little in the dark about the new regulation, here’s where we can help.

  • Free in-store car seat demonstrations from our friendly colleagues to show you what seat is best for your child and your car
  • Trade-in any old cushion booster, from any retailer, and get 20% off a high back booster seat.

*Research collected from Opinion Matters study carried out in September 2017 from a sample size of 2,006 adults.

**Research collected from Halfords Parent Panel survey carried out in August 2016 from a sample size of over 1,600 adults

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