Need advice? Our experts are on hand at RAA’s Safety Centre.

Choose the right restraint to suit your child’s size

To provide the best protection for your child, it’s important to choose the right restraint to suit their size. A child should only be moved to the next type of restraint once they’ve outgrown their current one.

Check out RAA’s recommendations for each age/size range below.

Our number one tip

Visit our Safety Centre at 101 Richmond Road, Mile End

Each car is made differently, so not all restraints will fit your vehicle properly. So, while you can see our recommended restraints below, the most important thing you can do to keep your child safe is to make a booking with RAA’s Safety Centre. 

Our team of experts will help you pick the safest option for your child, and you can even try a range of different restraints in your car. Plus we'll make sure it's fitted properly too.

We can help you make the right decision, and we stock a range of recommended restraints and accessories with discounts for members.

Can’t make it into the centre? Just call us on 8202 4592 and, for a small cost, we can post your purchase to any address in South Australia and Broken Hill.

RAA's recommended child restraints for each age/weight range

  • Birth to 6 months

    Rearward-facing child restraints

    What the law says

    • Infants up to 6-months-old must use an approved rearward-facing child restraint and mustn't travel in the front seat of a vehicle that has two or more rows of seats.
    • If you have a single-row vehicle – such as a ute or van – a rearward-facing child restraint can be used in the front seat, as long as there are no airbags in that position and an anchorage point is available. Using a rearward-facing restraint in a front seat where there’s an airbag is illegal and extremely dangerous.
    • Your restraint must be:
      • used and fitted in accordance with manufacturer’s specifications
      • securely attached to an anchorage point and seatbelt as specified
      • maintained in sound condition and working order

    All child restraints must comply with the Australian Standard (AS/NZS1754) in order to gain approved status. Every compliant child restraint will feature a Standards Approved Certification sticker.

    Our advice

    RAA recommends using a baby safety capsule for the first 6 months and then moving your child into a convertible safety seat that'll allow them to stay rearward until at least 12 months of age.

    For more information, download our 'Right child, right restraint, right time' and 'Shoulder height markers' fact sheets.

    Note: It's strongly recommended you test rearward-facing restraints in your vehicle before purchasing to ensure that they fit correctly. RAA offers this service to members for free, so book a fitting today.

    Dedicated infant restraints

    Birth to approximately 6 months
     
    Safe-n-Sound Baby Safety Capsule – RAA’s top pick

    Available to hire from the Australian Red Cross at a discounted price for members.

    Independent testing over a number of years has shown the Baby Safety Capsule to be the safest restraint for newborn babies. In the event of a crash, the bassinet drops into the base, providing extra protection for the child. The restraint features a narrow, angled harness that caters for the small shoulders of newborns, particularly low birth weight babies.

    It’s easy to use and allows the baby to lie in a more natural position, whereas travel system carriers (the type that click into prams) and convertible seats are more upright particularly in vehicles with heavily contoured seats. For convenience, the baby can be removed from the vehicle in the carry basket.

    RAA recommends using this restraint until the child is about 6 months of age, and then moving them into a rearward-facing convertible seat.

     
    Infa Secure Arlo Infant Carrier non-ISOFIX model

    Members' price: $320
    RRP: $360

    This travel system carrier is easy to install and compatible in vehicles even with deep contouring. The handle acts as a stabiliser bar against heavily contoured seat backs. When the handle is adjusted toward the seat back, where the baby's feet are, it takes up less room than other travel systems. The portable carrier can be removed from the unit and clicked into a compatible stroller. 

    Birth to approximately 12 months
     
    Safe-n-Sound Unity ISOFIX model

    Members' price: $429
    RRP: $479

    This travel system is currently the only child restraint that’s been tested and designed for low birth weight and premature infants who don’t have restrictive medical conditions. It’s also the only infant carrier rated to 12 months of age (as opposed to 6 months for others).

    The portable carrier can be removed from the base and clicked into a compatible pram.

  • 6 months to 4 years

    Rearward or forward-facing child restraints

    What the law says

    • Children aged between 6 months and 4 years old must use either an approved rearward-facing restraint or forward-facing child safety seat with an inbuilt harness, and mustn't travel in the front seat of a vehicle that has two or more rows of seats.
    • If you have a single-row vehicle – such as a ute or van – a forward-facing child restraint can legally be used in the front seat, as long as there’s an anchorage point available. In vehicles with airbags in the front seat, always follow the vehicle manufacturer's instructions. Most vehicle manufacturers will warn against placing children under the age of 12 in a position fitted with an airbag, and these warnings should be adhered to.
    • The restraint must be:
      • used and fitted in accordance with manufacturer’s specifications
      • securely attached to an anchorage point and seatbelt as specified
      • maintained in sound condition and working order

    All child restraints must comply with the Australian Standard (AS/NZS1754) in order to gain approved status. Every compliant child restraint will feature a Standards Approved Certification sticker.

    Our advice

    Just because a child has reached 6 months, it doesn't mean that child is ready to travel facing forward. As children are far more vulnerable to neck and spinal injuries than adults, RAA recommends keeping a child in a rearward-facing restraint until at least 12 months of age, as this gives greater support and protection to the child’s head and neck in a crash.

    Most convertible restraints are now a minimum of 12 months rearward facing and feature shoulder height markers to show this. Shoulder height markers must be followed in all restraints.

    For more information, download our 'Rearward vs forward facing' and 'Shoulder height markers' fact sheets.

    While the convertible safety seats listed below are all approved to use from birth, we recommend using a dedicated infant restraint such as the Baby Safety Capsule for the first 6 months, as they're specifically designed for this age bracket.

    If you’re not sure a child is the right size for a restraint, or don’t know when to convert the seat to the next mode, check the restraint manual for guidance or book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

    Watch our videos

    Rearward facing installation video

    Forward facing installation video

    Rearward/Forward facing child restraints

    Birth to approximately 12 months: rearward facing; up to approximately 4 years: forward facing:
     
    Infa Secure Cosi Compact

    Members' price: $199
    RRP: $249

    The Infa Secure Cosi Compact is great for smaller vehicles, but is still tall enough to use until the child is 4 years old. Due to its smaller base, it’s handy when you need to fit other restraints in beside it.

    The seat is easy to fit, with a large opening, no rebound bar, and only one seatbelt path for both rearward and forward-facing modes. The Cosi Compact is only available in a black cover, but colour inserts are available for purchase.

    Before buying, book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

    Birth to approximately 30 months: rearward facing; up to approximately 4 years: forward facing:
     
    Safe-n-Sound Compaq

    Members' price: $385
    RRP: $429

    The Compaq features a narrow shell and, true to its name, is compact when rearward facing. It also takes up less room than some other seats with headrests and its small base makes it easier to fit next to other restraints.

    The harness can be adjusted easily from the front without removing the seat from the car; plus, it allows small incremental adjustments for a better fit.

    The Compaq features recline and upright positions, and is airline compatible.

    Before buying, book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

     
    Safe-n-Sound Graphene

    Members' price: $519
    RRP: $579

    The Graphene features a narrow shell and is compact when rearward facing. It takes up less room than some other seats with headrests, and its small base makes it easy to fit next to other restraints.

    The harness can be adjusted easily from the front without removing the seat from the car, plus it allows small incremental adjustments for a better fit.

    The Graphene also features recline and upright positions, seatbelt lock-off for forward facing, and a generous size active head restraint. It's ISOFIX and airline compatible.

    Before buying, book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

       
    InfaSecure Quattro

    Members's price: $540
    RRP: $599

    With its single seatbelt path, the Quattro is easy to fit and features multiple recline positions. It has a narrow shell and a small base, which is handy when fitting multiple restraints in a car.

    This seat is compact when rearward facing, and takes up less room than some other seats with headrests.

    The twist and lift harness allows for adjustments without removing the seat from the car, plus small incremental adjustments means a better fit. The headrest provides additional side impact protection.

    Before buying, book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

    Note: It's strongly recommended you try rearward-facing restraints in your vehicle before purchasing to ensure that they fit correctly. RAA offers this service for free, so book a fitting today.

    Extended harness seats (known as G-type seats)

    Approximately 6 months to 8 years

    These seats are forward facing only and, although rated from 6 months, children rarely meet the minimum height markers at this age. Children should be kept rearward-facing until at least 12 months of age, so we don't recommend using one of these seats until your child is at least a year old, at which time they should then meet the minimum height marker.

    For more information, download our 'Shoulder height markers' fact sheet.

     
    InfaSecure Emerge

    Members' price: $399
    RRP: $450

    Its five-point internal, twist and lift harness easily adjusts from the front, and allows small incremental adjustments for better harness fit.

    The Emerge features a gradual recline to align with the angle of the vehicle. The blow-moulded shell with deep seating area caters for larger children’s long legs. The cover can be removed for cleaning without removing the seat from car and it's a great option for those that have to transport a range of different-sized children.

    Before buying, book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

     
    Safe-n-Sound Maxiguard

    Members' price: $386
    RRP: $429

    The Maxiguard is easy to fit and the five-point internal harness and headrest are adjustable from the front without having to remove the seat from the vehicle. Its AHR (active head restraint) provides significant energy absorption in the event of a crash.

    We recommend the Maxiguard for parents/carers who need to transport children of varying sizes, or for the oldest child when a second child comes along and needs the original seat. In most cars, it will see a child through to an adult seatbelt, removing the need to buy a booster seat.

    Before buying, book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

  • 4 to 7 years

    Forward-facing child restraints or booster seats

    What the law says

    • From 4 to 7-years-old, children must use either an approved child safety seat with inbuilt harness or a booster seat with a seatbelt. If the seat is used in a position that only has a lap seatbelt, then an approved child safety harness must be used. It’s important to check your booster seat is compatible with a harness.
    • They mustn't travel in the front seat of a vehicle that has two or more rows of seats, unless all the other seats are occupied by children who are under 7 years old, or if it’s impossible to fit a third restraint.
    • In vehicles with airbags in the front seat, always follow the vehicle manufacturer's instructions. Most vehicle manufacturers will warn against placing children under the age of 12 in a position fitted with an airbag, and these warnings should be adhered to.
    • The restraint must be:
      • used and fitted in accordance with manufacturer’s specifications
      • securely attached to an anchorage point and seatbelt as specified
      • maintained in sound condition and working order

    All child restraints must comply with the Australian Standard (AS/NZS1754) in order to gain approved status. Every compliant child restraint will feature a Standards Approved Certification sticker.

    Our advice

    As children grow and develop, their height and weight changes considerably. For many 4-year-olds, a forward-facing safety seat will still be the right size restraint for them. A booster seat should only be used once the child has outgrown their safety seat by reaching the maximum height for the seat.

    A booster is a restraint designed to elevate a child so they can wear a seatbelt correctly while providing side protection from both the vehicle and other passengers. Children travelling in a booster seat should continue using it until they’ve outgrown it, and once they have and can’t fit the adult seatbelt correctly, then you'll need to use a larger booster seat.

    When choosing a booster seat ensure that the booster guides the sash part of the seatbelt onto the shoulder and not across the face or neck, and the lap part of the seatbelt sits low across the hips.

    If you need to use a position that features a lap-only seatbelt, then a harness must be used. If this is the case, then only a booster with an anti-submarining buckle should be used, as this will ensure the lap part of the seatbelt is held down low on the child’s hips. Check to ensure the booster seat you’re using is compatible with a harness.

    If you must use a child safety harness, ensure the shoulder straps are not over-tightened and that the lap part of the seatbelt is very low and firm across the hips, otherwise it may ride up onto the child’s stomach area. The harness should be checked for correct fit every time it is used, as misuse may result in serious injury in a crash.

    For more information, download our Harness or not to harness and 'Shoulder height markers' fact sheets.

    If you’re not sure a child is the right size for a restraint or booster seat, or don’t know when to convert the seat to the next mode, check the restraint manual for guidance or with RAA’s experts (free for members).

    Watch our video:
    Child restraint 4 to 7 years video

    Booster seats

    Approximately 4 to 8 years

    If your child outgrows any of these boosters and can’t wear an adult seatbelt correctly, please contact us to see if there’s a larger one available.

     
    Safe-n-Sound Hi-Liner SG

    Members' price: $199
    RRP: $219

    The Hi-Liner is a tall, moulded plastic booster with an adjustable head rest, and is attached to the vehicle by an upper tether strap. The Hi-Liner does an excellent job of guiding the seatbelt into the correct position. The high side-wings can be adjusted upwards as the child grows, to ensure maximum side impact protection.

    This booster is one of the tallest on the market and, in most vehicles, will see a child through to the height required to wear an adult seatbelt correctly.

    It features a slide guard clip, which helps prevent a child from sliding off the seat and guides the lap part of the belt across the hips. The Hi-Liner is compatible with a Protecta Plus Harness, when only a lap belt is available.

    Note:  Before buying a booster with an extendable headrest, test it in your car to ensure it fits.

     
    InfaSecure Vario Booster Seat

    Members' price: $149
    RRP: $170

    The Vario Booster Seat is tall and narrow with an adjustable headrest that can be extended as the child grows. The headrest has integrated seatbelt guides, so when it’s adjusted to just above the child’s shoulders, it provides an excellent seatbelt fit. The seat is attached to the vehicle with an upper tether strap.

    The Vario blow-moulded design results in enhanced side impact protection. The headrest side wings act like airbags, greatly reducing the force on your child’s head in a side-impact crash. 

    Before buying, book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members). 

    Note:  Before buying a booster with an extendable headrest, test it in your car to ensure it fits.

     
    Safe-n-Sound Tourer Booster Seat

    Members' price: $79
    RRP: $89

    This is a lightweight, untethered booster that’s great for utes and vans, the third row of SUVs where there are no anchor points, and for moving from car to car.

    Rear impact bars provide structural support and protection for the neck and a switchable sash guide helps correctly position the seat belt. 

    It also features a slide guard clip, which helps prevent a child from sliding off the seat and guides the lap part of the belt across the hips. If only a lap belt is available, the Tourer can be used with a Protecta Harness.

    RAA recommends this booster for positions without anchor points and where the booster needs to be moved from car to car.

    Before buying, book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

     
    InfaSecure Versatile Folding Booster

    Members' price: $70
    RRP: $80

    True to name, this booster is very versatile – particularly when travelling – due to its lightness and ease of folding for storage.

    Because it’s untethered, it can be used in vehicles that don’t have an anchor point fitted, like the third row of an SUV, a van or ute, or when travelling overseas in vehicles that aren’t fitted with anchor points.

    It’s also handy when you need a spare booster for an unexpected passenger.

    Before buying, book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

    Approximately  4 years to 10 years

     
    Safe-n-Sound Kid Guard 

    Member's price: $269
    RRP: $299

    The Kid Guard is a very tall booster that provides continued safety from 4 years to around 10 years of age.

    It has expandable lower side wings, an extendable seat base and a 9-point adjustable headrest.

    Its slim base helps when accessing the seatbelt buckle, plus it features a SLIDEGUARD clip to prevent the child sliding under the seatbelt in a crash.

    Before buying, book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

    Extended harness seats (known as G-type seats) 

    Approximately 6 months to 8 years

    These seats are forward facing only and, although rated from 6 months, children rarely meet the minimum height markers at this age. Children should be kept rearward facing until at least 12 months of age. As such, we do not recommend using one of these seats until your child is at least a year old at which time they should then meet the minimum height marker.

    For more information, download our 'Shoulder height markers' fact sheet.

     
    InfaSecure Emerge

    Members' price: $399
    RRP: $450

    Its five-point internal, twist and lift harness easily adjusts from the front, and allows small incremental adjustments for better harness fit.

    The Emerge features a gradual recline to align with the angle of the vehicle. The blow-moulded shell with deep seating area caters for larger children’s long legs. The cover can be removed for cleaning without removing seat from car. It's a great option for those that have to transport a range of different sized children.

    Before buying, book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

     
    Safe-n-Sound Maxiguard 

    Members' price: $386
    RRP: $429

    The Maxiguard is easy to fit and the five-point internal harness and headrest are adjustable from the front without having to remove the seat from the vehicle. Its active head restraint provides significant energy absorption in the event of a crash too.

    We recommend the Maxiguard for parents/carers who need to transport children of varying sizes or for the oldest child when a second child comes along and needs the original seat. In most cars, it will see a child through to an adult seatbelt, removing the need to buy a booster seat.

    Before buying, book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

  • 7 years and over

    Booster seat or adult seatbelt

    What the law says

    • Children 7 years and over are required to be secured in an approved child restraint (e.g. extended harnessed seat or booster seat) or a properly fitted and adjusted seatbelt.
    • Note: A properly adjusted seatbelt is where the sash part sits on the shoulder and the lap part sits low across the hips or upper thighs.
    • In vehicles with airbags in the front seat, always follow the vehicle manufacturer's instructions. Most vehicle manufacturers will warn against placing children under the age of 12 in a position fitted with an airbag, and these warnings should be adhered to.
    • The restraint must be:
      • used and fitted in accordance with manufacturer’s specifications
      • securely attached to an anchorage point and seatbelt as specified
      • maintained in sound condition and working order.

    All child restraints must comply with the Australian Standard (AS/NZS1754) in order to gain approved status. Every compliant child restraint will feature a Standards Approved Certification sticker.

    Booster seat/extended harnessed seat or correctly fitted seatbelt

    When your child turns 7, they’re not necessarily ready to move out of their booster and into an adult seatbelt.

    The law says the adult seatbelt must fit them correctly. If it doesn’t, they’ll need to stay in an approved booster or child restraint until it does. Seatbelt fit varies from car to car and even from position to position in the same car, but most kids aren’t big enough to fit properly into an adult seatbelt until they’re about 10 to 12 years of age (approximately 145cm).

    There’s a pretty important safety reason for this... vehicle seats and seatbelts are designed for adult bodies so it’s highly unlikely your child will fit an adult seatbelt when they reach their 7th birthday. A child that moves into an adult seatbelt too early is twice as likely to suffer devastating injuries in a crash.

    View our range of booster seats and extended harnessed seats covered in the previous tab (4 to 7 years).

    Lap-sash seatbelts offer greater protection to passengers than lap-only seatbelts, so try to always use a lap sash belt.

    If your front seat has airbags, you should also check the manufactures recommendations. Most car makers will warn against placing children under the age of 12 years in a position fitted with an airbag, and these warning should be adhered to.

    Watch our video:

    Child restraint 7 years + video

    How do I know when the seatbelt fits them correctly?

    Try this simple 3-point test:

    1. Does the sash part of the seatbelt sit on the middle of the shoulder and not touch the neck or face?
    2. Does the lap part of the seatbelt sit low down on the hips and not on the abdomen?
    3. When you sit the child on the seat with their bottom all the way back, are their thighs long enough for their knees to bend, allowing the legs to hang over the front of the seat?

    If you answered 'no' to any of these questions, your child needs to be in a booster seat to make both the sash and the lap part of the seatbelt fit right and to ensure maximum crash protection.

    If you’re unsure, you can book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

    If your child has outgrown their booster seat, but can’t wear an adult seatbelt correctly, please contact RAA’s Safety Centre on 8202 4592 to see if there’s a larger one available.

    For more information, download our 'What happens after 7 years of age' and 'Shoulder height markers' fact sheets.

Rearward-facing child restraints

What the law says

  • Infants up to 6-months-old must use an approved rearward-facing child restraint and mustn't travel in the front seat of a vehicle that has two or more rows of seats.
  • If you have a single-row vehicle – such as a ute or van – a rearward-facing child restraint can be used in the front seat, as long as there are no airbags in that position and an anchorage point is available. Using a rearward-facing restraint in a front seat where there’s an airbag is illegal and extremely dangerous.
  • Your restraint must be:
    • used and fitted in accordance with manufacturer’s specifications
    • securely attached to an anchorage point and seatbelt as specified
    • maintained in sound condition and working order

All child restraints must comply with the Australian Standard (AS/NZS1754) in order to gain approved status. Every compliant child restraint will feature a Standards Approved Certification sticker.

Our advice

RAA recommends using a baby safety capsule for the first 6 months and then moving your child into a convertible safety seat that'll allow them to stay rearward until at least 12 months of age.

For more information, download our 'Right child, right restraint, right time' and 'Shoulder height markers' fact sheets.

Note: It's strongly recommended you test rearward-facing restraints in your vehicle before purchasing to ensure that they fit correctly. RAA offers this service to members for free, so book a fitting today.

Dedicated infant restraints

Birth to approximately 6 months
 
Safe-n-Sound Baby Safety Capsule – RAA’s top pick

Available to hire from the Australian Red Cross at a discounted price for members.

Independent testing over a number of years has shown the Baby Safety Capsule to be the safest restraint for newborn babies. In the event of a crash, the bassinet drops into the base, providing extra protection for the child. The restraint features a narrow, angled harness that caters for the small shoulders of newborns, particularly low birth weight babies.

It’s easy to use and allows the baby to lie in a more natural position, whereas travel system carriers (the type that click into prams) and convertible seats are more upright particularly in vehicles with heavily contoured seats. For convenience, the baby can be removed from the vehicle in the carry basket.

RAA recommends using this restraint until the child is about 6 months of age, and then moving them into a rearward-facing convertible seat.

 
Infa Secure Arlo Infant Carrier non-ISOFIX model

Members' price: $320
RRP: $360

This travel system carrier is easy to install and compatible in vehicles even with deep contouring. The handle acts as a stabiliser bar against heavily contoured seat backs. When the handle is adjusted toward the seat back, where the baby's feet are, it takes up less room than other travel systems. The portable carrier can be removed from the unit and clicked into a compatible stroller. 

Birth to approximately 12 months
 
Safe-n-Sound Unity ISOFIX model

Members' price: $429
RRP: $479

This travel system is currently the only child restraint that’s been tested and designed for low birth weight and premature infants who don’t have restrictive medical conditions. It’s also the only infant carrier rated to 12 months of age (as opposed to 6 months for others).

The portable carrier can be removed from the base and clicked into a compatible pram.

Rearward or forward-facing child restraints

What the law says

  • Children aged between 6 months and 4 years old must use either an approved rearward-facing restraint or forward-facing child safety seat with an inbuilt harness, and mustn't travel in the front seat of a vehicle that has two or more rows of seats.
  • If you have a single-row vehicle – such as a ute or van – a forward-facing child restraint can legally be used in the front seat, as long as there’s an anchorage point available. In vehicles with airbags in the front seat, always follow the vehicle manufacturer's instructions. Most vehicle manufacturers will warn against placing children under the age of 12 in a position fitted with an airbag, and these warnings should be adhered to.
  • The restraint must be:
    • used and fitted in accordance with manufacturer’s specifications
    • securely attached to an anchorage point and seatbelt as specified
    • maintained in sound condition and working order

All child restraints must comply with the Australian Standard (AS/NZS1754) in order to gain approved status. Every compliant child restraint will feature a Standards Approved Certification sticker.

Our advice

Just because a child has reached 6 months, it doesn't mean that child is ready to travel facing forward. As children are far more vulnerable to neck and spinal injuries than adults, RAA recommends keeping a child in a rearward-facing restraint until at least 12 months of age, as this gives greater support and protection to the child’s head and neck in a crash.

Most convertible restraints are now a minimum of 12 months rearward facing and feature shoulder height markers to show this. Shoulder height markers must be followed in all restraints.

For more information, download our 'Rearward vs forward facing' and 'Shoulder height markers' fact sheets.

While the convertible safety seats listed below are all approved to use from birth, we recommend using a dedicated infant restraint such as the Baby Safety Capsule for the first 6 months, as they're specifically designed for this age bracket.

If you’re not sure a child is the right size for a restraint, or don’t know when to convert the seat to the next mode, check the restraint manual for guidance or book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

Watch our videos

Rearward facing installation video

Forward facing installation video

Rearward/Forward facing child restraints

Birth to approximately 12 months: rearward facing; up to approximately 4 years: forward facing:
 
Infa Secure Cosi Compact

Members' price: $199
RRP: $249

The Infa Secure Cosi Compact is great for smaller vehicles, but is still tall enough to use until the child is 4 years old. Due to its smaller base, it’s handy when you need to fit other restraints in beside it.

The seat is easy to fit, with a large opening, no rebound bar, and only one seatbelt path for both rearward and forward-facing modes. The Cosi Compact is only available in a black cover, but colour inserts are available for purchase.

Before buying, book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

Birth to approximately 30 months: rearward facing; up to approximately 4 years: forward facing:
 
Safe-n-Sound Compaq

Members' price: $385
RRP: $429

The Compaq features a narrow shell and, true to its name, is compact when rearward facing. It also takes up less room than some other seats with headrests and its small base makes it easier to fit next to other restraints.

The harness can be adjusted easily from the front without removing the seat from the car; plus, it allows small incremental adjustments for a better fit.

The Compaq features recline and upright positions, and is airline compatible.

Before buying, book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

 
Safe-n-Sound Graphene

Members' price: $519
RRP: $579

The Graphene features a narrow shell and is compact when rearward facing. It takes up less room than some other seats with headrests, and its small base makes it easy to fit next to other restraints.

The harness can be adjusted easily from the front without removing the seat from the car, plus it allows small incremental adjustments for a better fit.

The Graphene also features recline and upright positions, seatbelt lock-off for forward facing, and a generous size active head restraint. It's ISOFIX and airline compatible.

Before buying, book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

   
InfaSecure Quattro

Members's price: $540
RRP: $599

With its single seatbelt path, the Quattro is easy to fit and features multiple recline positions. It has a narrow shell and a small base, which is handy when fitting multiple restraints in a car.

This seat is compact when rearward facing, and takes up less room than some other seats with headrests.

The twist and lift harness allows for adjustments without removing the seat from the car, plus small incremental adjustments means a better fit. The headrest provides additional side impact protection.

Before buying, book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

Note: It's strongly recommended you try rearward-facing restraints in your vehicle before purchasing to ensure that they fit correctly. RAA offers this service for free, so book a fitting today.

Extended harness seats (known as G-type seats)

Approximately 6 months to 8 years

These seats are forward facing only and, although rated from 6 months, children rarely meet the minimum height markers at this age. Children should be kept rearward-facing until at least 12 months of age, so we don't recommend using one of these seats until your child is at least a year old, at which time they should then meet the minimum height marker.

For more information, download our 'Shoulder height markers' fact sheet.

 
InfaSecure Emerge

Members' price: $399
RRP: $450

Its five-point internal, twist and lift harness easily adjusts from the front, and allows small incremental adjustments for better harness fit.

The Emerge features a gradual recline to align with the angle of the vehicle. The blow-moulded shell with deep seating area caters for larger children’s long legs. The cover can be removed for cleaning without removing the seat from car and it's a great option for those that have to transport a range of different-sized children.

Before buying, book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

 
Safe-n-Sound Maxiguard

Members' price: $386
RRP: $429

The Maxiguard is easy to fit and the five-point internal harness and headrest are adjustable from the front without having to remove the seat from the vehicle. Its AHR (active head restraint) provides significant energy absorption in the event of a crash.

We recommend the Maxiguard for parents/carers who need to transport children of varying sizes, or for the oldest child when a second child comes along and needs the original seat. In most cars, it will see a child through to an adult seatbelt, removing the need to buy a booster seat.

Before buying, book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

Forward-facing child restraints or booster seats

What the law says

  • From 4 to 7-years-old, children must use either an approved child safety seat with inbuilt harness or a booster seat with a seatbelt. If the seat is used in a position that only has a lap seatbelt, then an approved child safety harness must be used. It’s important to check your booster seat is compatible with a harness.
  • They mustn't travel in the front seat of a vehicle that has two or more rows of seats, unless all the other seats are occupied by children who are under 7 years old, or if it’s impossible to fit a third restraint.
  • In vehicles with airbags in the front seat, always follow the vehicle manufacturer's instructions. Most vehicle manufacturers will warn against placing children under the age of 12 in a position fitted with an airbag, and these warnings should be adhered to.
  • The restraint must be:
    • used and fitted in accordance with manufacturer’s specifications
    • securely attached to an anchorage point and seatbelt as specified
    • maintained in sound condition and working order

All child restraints must comply with the Australian Standard (AS/NZS1754) in order to gain approved status. Every compliant child restraint will feature a Standards Approved Certification sticker.

Our advice

As children grow and develop, their height and weight changes considerably. For many 4-year-olds, a forward-facing safety seat will still be the right size restraint for them. A booster seat should only be used once the child has outgrown their safety seat by reaching the maximum height for the seat.

A booster is a restraint designed to elevate a child so they can wear a seatbelt correctly while providing side protection from both the vehicle and other passengers. Children travelling in a booster seat should continue using it until they’ve outgrown it, and once they have and can’t fit the adult seatbelt correctly, then you'll need to use a larger booster seat.

When choosing a booster seat ensure that the booster guides the sash part of the seatbelt onto the shoulder and not across the face or neck, and the lap part of the seatbelt sits low across the hips.

If you need to use a position that features a lap-only seatbelt, then a harness must be used. If this is the case, then only a booster with an anti-submarining buckle should be used, as this will ensure the lap part of the seatbelt is held down low on the child’s hips. Check to ensure the booster seat you’re using is compatible with a harness.

If you must use a child safety harness, ensure the shoulder straps are not over-tightened and that the lap part of the seatbelt is very low and firm across the hips, otherwise it may ride up onto the child’s stomach area. The harness should be checked for correct fit every time it is used, as misuse may result in serious injury in a crash.

For more information, download our Harness or not to harness and 'Shoulder height markers' fact sheets.

If you’re not sure a child is the right size for a restraint or booster seat, or don’t know when to convert the seat to the next mode, check the restraint manual for guidance or with RAA’s experts (free for members).

Watch our video:
Child restraint 4 to 7 years video

Booster seats

Approximately 4 to 8 years

If your child outgrows any of these boosters and can’t wear an adult seatbelt correctly, please contact us to see if there’s a larger one available.

 
Safe-n-Sound Hi-Liner SG

Members' price: $199
RRP: $219

The Hi-Liner is a tall, moulded plastic booster with an adjustable head rest, and is attached to the vehicle by an upper tether strap. The Hi-Liner does an excellent job of guiding the seatbelt into the correct position. The high side-wings can be adjusted upwards as the child grows, to ensure maximum side impact protection.

This booster is one of the tallest on the market and, in most vehicles, will see a child through to the height required to wear an adult seatbelt correctly.

It features a slide guard clip, which helps prevent a child from sliding off the seat and guides the lap part of the belt across the hips. The Hi-Liner is compatible with a Protecta Plus Harness, when only a lap belt is available.

Note:  Before buying a booster with an extendable headrest, test it in your car to ensure it fits.

 
InfaSecure Vario Booster Seat

Members' price: $149
RRP: $170

The Vario Booster Seat is tall and narrow with an adjustable headrest that can be extended as the child grows. The headrest has integrated seatbelt guides, so when it’s adjusted to just above the child’s shoulders, it provides an excellent seatbelt fit. The seat is attached to the vehicle with an upper tether strap.

The Vario blow-moulded design results in enhanced side impact protection. The headrest side wings act like airbags, greatly reducing the force on your child’s head in a side-impact crash. 

Before buying, book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members). 

Note:  Before buying a booster with an extendable headrest, test it in your car to ensure it fits.

 
Safe-n-Sound Tourer Booster Seat

Members' price: $79
RRP: $89

This is a lightweight, untethered booster that’s great for utes and vans, the third row of SUVs where there are no anchor points, and for moving from car to car.

Rear impact bars provide structural support and protection for the neck and a switchable sash guide helps correctly position the seat belt. 

It also features a slide guard clip, which helps prevent a child from sliding off the seat and guides the lap part of the belt across the hips. If only a lap belt is available, the Tourer can be used with a Protecta Harness.

RAA recommends this booster for positions without anchor points and where the booster needs to be moved from car to car.

Before buying, book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

 
InfaSecure Versatile Folding Booster

Members' price: $70
RRP: $80

True to name, this booster is very versatile – particularly when travelling – due to its lightness and ease of folding for storage.

Because it’s untethered, it can be used in vehicles that don’t have an anchor point fitted, like the third row of an SUV, a van or ute, or when travelling overseas in vehicles that aren’t fitted with anchor points.

It’s also handy when you need a spare booster for an unexpected passenger.

Before buying, book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

Approximately  4 years to 10 years

 
Safe-n-Sound Kid Guard 

Member's price: $269
RRP: $299

The Kid Guard is a very tall booster that provides continued safety from 4 years to around 10 years of age.

It has expandable lower side wings, an extendable seat base and a 9-point adjustable headrest.

Its slim base helps when accessing the seatbelt buckle, plus it features a SLIDEGUARD clip to prevent the child sliding under the seatbelt in a crash.

Before buying, book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

Extended harness seats (known as G-type seats) 

Approximately 6 months to 8 years

These seats are forward facing only and, although rated from 6 months, children rarely meet the minimum height markers at this age. Children should be kept rearward facing until at least 12 months of age. As such, we do not recommend using one of these seats until your child is at least a year old at which time they should then meet the minimum height marker.

For more information, download our 'Shoulder height markers' fact sheet.

 
InfaSecure Emerge

Members' price: $399
RRP: $450

Its five-point internal, twist and lift harness easily adjusts from the front, and allows small incremental adjustments for better harness fit.

The Emerge features a gradual recline to align with the angle of the vehicle. The blow-moulded shell with deep seating area caters for larger children’s long legs. The cover can be removed for cleaning without removing seat from car. It's a great option for those that have to transport a range of different sized children.

Before buying, book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

 
Safe-n-Sound Maxiguard 

Members' price: $386
RRP: $429

The Maxiguard is easy to fit and the five-point internal harness and headrest are adjustable from the front without having to remove the seat from the vehicle. Its active head restraint provides significant energy absorption in the event of a crash too.

We recommend the Maxiguard for parents/carers who need to transport children of varying sizes or for the oldest child when a second child comes along and needs the original seat. In most cars, it will see a child through to an adult seatbelt, removing the need to buy a booster seat.

Before buying, book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

Booster seat or adult seatbelt

What the law says

  • Children 7 years and over are required to be secured in an approved child restraint (e.g. extended harnessed seat or booster seat) or a properly fitted and adjusted seatbelt.
  • Note: A properly adjusted seatbelt is where the sash part sits on the shoulder and the lap part sits low across the hips or upper thighs.
  • In vehicles with airbags in the front seat, always follow the vehicle manufacturer's instructions. Most vehicle manufacturers will warn against placing children under the age of 12 in a position fitted with an airbag, and these warnings should be adhered to.
  • The restraint must be:
    • used and fitted in accordance with manufacturer’s specifications
    • securely attached to an anchorage point and seatbelt as specified
    • maintained in sound condition and working order.

All child restraints must comply with the Australian Standard (AS/NZS1754) in order to gain approved status. Every compliant child restraint will feature a Standards Approved Certification sticker.

Booster seat/extended harnessed seat or correctly fitted seatbelt

When your child turns 7, they’re not necessarily ready to move out of their booster and into an adult seatbelt.

The law says the adult seatbelt must fit them correctly. If it doesn’t, they’ll need to stay in an approved booster or child restraint until it does. Seatbelt fit varies from car to car and even from position to position in the same car, but most kids aren’t big enough to fit properly into an adult seatbelt until they’re about 10 to 12 years of age (approximately 145cm).

There’s a pretty important safety reason for this... vehicle seats and seatbelts are designed for adult bodies so it’s highly unlikely your child will fit an adult seatbelt when they reach their 7th birthday. A child that moves into an adult seatbelt too early is twice as likely to suffer devastating injuries in a crash.

View our range of booster seats and extended harnessed seats covered in the previous tab (4 to 7 years).

Lap-sash seatbelts offer greater protection to passengers than lap-only seatbelts, so try to always use a lap sash belt.

If your front seat has airbags, you should also check the manufactures recommendations. Most car makers will warn against placing children under the age of 12 years in a position fitted with an airbag, and these warning should be adhered to.

Watch our video:

Child restraint 7 years + video

How do I know when the seatbelt fits them correctly?

Try this simple 3-point test:

  1. Does the sash part of the seatbelt sit on the middle of the shoulder and not touch the neck or face?
  2. Does the lap part of the seatbelt sit low down on the hips and not on the abdomen?
  3. When you sit the child on the seat with their bottom all the way back, are their thighs long enough for their knees to bend, allowing the legs to hang over the front of the seat?

If you answered 'no' to any of these questions, your child needs to be in a booster seat to make both the sash and the lap part of the seatbelt fit right and to ensure maximum crash protection.

If you’re unsure, you can book a fitting with RAA’s experts (free for members).

If your child has outgrown their booster seat, but can’t wear an adult seatbelt correctly, please contact RAA’s Safety Centre on 8202 4592 to see if there’s a larger one available.

For more information, download our 'What happens after 7 years of age' and 'Shoulder height markers' fact sheets.

Our experts are here to help

Expert advice

Our team of experts are here to offer you independent advice on everything, from legal requirements to when your child is ready for an adult seatbelt.

Australian Standard

The law requires parents to only use child restraints that meet the Australian Standard. These restraints display an Australian Standard approved sticker.

Book a child restraint fitting

A correctly fitted restraint will make a massive difference to what happens to a child in a crash. That’s why RAA offers free child restraint fittings and checks for members.

Non-members can have a seat fitted for $30 or checked for $15.

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  • Help centre

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