Combination Seats

Combination seats, sometimes referred to as child/booster seats, are forward-facing harnessed seats that convert to a booster seat later on. Some convert to a high-back booster only, and some convert to a high-back and then a backless booster (see here for information on our favourite dedicated booster seats).

The combinations seats listed here tend to make very good tall harnessed seats, and then provide good belt fit as booster seats, but belt fit is very child-dependent so no guarantees. East of use also varies in booster mode. 

A note about boosters: in order for a child to be properly protected by the adult seat belt, they must be a minimum of 40 lbs AND developmentally mature enough to remain seated properly at ALL times, even when sleeping. Some kids are ready at 5, many by 6, and almost all by 7. Booster seats require a lap/shoulder belt and can never be used with a lap-only belt. Not sure if your child should remain harnessed or might be ready for a booster? This article might help you decide.

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In no particular order…

Chicco MyFit

Features:

  • ~$400 at Amazon.ca, Canadian Tire, 
  • top harnessed height of ~19.5″
  • forward facing harnessed to 65 lbs or 54″; minimum to use is 2 years old AND 25 lbs
  • use as a booster from 4 years old, 40-100 lbs and up to 57″
  • expires 8 years from date of manufacture

Pros:

  • can use UAS (LATCH) and top tether in booster mode to keep it from becoming a projectile when not occupied
  • has a no re-thread harness to adjust harness height without undoing straps
  • lock-off for seat belt installation
  • narrower than many seats in this category

Cons:

  • conversion between modes takes a bit of time 
chicco myfit car seat

Harmony Defender (read a review here)

Features:

  • ~$170 at Walmart, Best Buy, Babies R Us, directly from Harmony, sometimes at Amazon.ca
  • top harness height of ~19″
  • forward facing harnessed to 65 lbs or 57″
  • use as a high back booster from 40-100 lbs and up to 57″
  • expires 10 years from date of manufacture

Pros:

  • narrow
  • lightweight
  • no-rethread harness
  • very smooth harness adjuster
  • cushy, has harness pads for comfort at neck

Cons:

  • requires assembly at purchase
  • may be difficult for children to route lap belt in booster mode due to close spacing of arm rests to seat pan
  • seat belt installation can be challenging
harmony Defender

Graco Nautilus SnugLock

Features:

  • ~$330 at Amazon.ca, Walmart, Babies R Us, Canadian Tire, Best Buy
  • top harness height of ~18.5″
  • forward-facing harnessed to 65 lbs or 49″
  • converts to a high-back booster, a backless booster, and then a slightly narrower backless booster without cupholders
  • use as a booster from 40-100 lbs and up to 57″
  • expires 10 years from date of manufacture

Pros:

  • easy seat belt installation system
  • no-rethread harness, multiple crotch buckle positions, multiple recline positions
  • smooth harness adjuster
  • can use UAS (latch) anchors and top tether in high back booster mode to keep it from becoming a projectile when not occupied

Cons:

  • 49″ standing height limit in harness mode may not be enough for some children
Graco Nautilus SnugLock

Graco Nautilus

Features:

  • ~$300 at Amazon.ca, Walmart, Babies R Us, Canadian Tire, Best Buy
  • top harness height of ~18.5″
  • forward facing harnessed to 65 lbs or 49″
  • converts to a high-back booster, and then a backless booster
  • use as a booster from 40-100 lbs and up to 57″
  • expires 10 years from date of manufacture

Pros:

  • no-rethread harness and three crotch buckle positions
  • smooth harness adjuster
  • can use UAS (latch) anchors and top tether in booster mode to keep it from becoming a projectile when not occupied

Cons:

  • 49″ standing height limit in harness mode may not be enough for some children
  • some children in some vehicles are prone to ‘head slump’ when sleeping – this is hard to predict in advance.

Britax Grow With You ClickTight and Grow With You ClickTight Plus

Formerly known as Frontier CT or Pinnacle

Features:

  • ~$460 (Grow With You CT) and ~$520 (CT Plus) at Babies R Us, Amazon.ca and specialty stores
  • top harnessed height of ~20″ (tallest harnessed seat currently on the market and ideal for tall and/or long-torsoed kids)
  • forward facing harnessed to 65 lbs or 49″; minimum to use is 2 years old AND 25 lbs
  • use as a booster from 40-120 lbs and up to 63″; in booster mode it’s the tallest booster available on the market
  • CT Plus has “airbags” on the outer shell by the child’s head for extra side-impact protection
  • expires 9 years from date of manufacture

Pros:

  • can use UAS (LATCH) and top tether in booster mode to keep it from becoming a projectile when not occupied
  • has a no re-thread harness to adjust harness height without undoing straps
  • exceptionally easy and fast seat belt installation method (“click-tight” technology)

Cons:

  • width can make it harder to fit next to other seats, especially the CT Plus version
  • booster fit is not as reliable as on some child/booster seats, and tends to fit best on larger kids

Evenflo Maestro

Features:

  • ~$130 at Amazon.ca, Walmart, Babies R Us
  • top harness height of ~18″
  • forward facing harnessed to 50 lbs or 50″
  • use as a high-back booster from 40-100 lbs and up to 57″
  • expires 6 years from date of manufacture
  • harness pads available for purchase from Evenflo

Pros:

  • inexpensive tall seat ideal for lighter weight children (note maximum weight of 50 lbs in harness mode)
  • narrow, ideal for tight seating arrangements
  • can use UAS (latch) anchors and top tether in booster mode to keep it from becoming a projectile when not occupied

Cons:

  • tends to be outgrown by height around the same time in both harness and booster modes because the belt guide for the shoulder belt does not adjust any higher
  • closely spaced harness is too narrow for some kids and may bother their neck
Evenflo Maestro

Evenflo Secure Kid (read a review here)

Features:

  • ~$230 at Babies R Us
  • top harnessed height of ~18″
  • forward-facing harnessed to 65 lbs or 50″
  • use as a booster from 40-100 lbs and up to 57″
  • expires 6 years from date of manufacture
  • SureLatch UAS connectors and extra side-impact protection in the head wings
  • harness covers available for purchase from Evenflo

Pros:

  • can use UAS (latch) and top tether in booster mode to keep it from becoming a projectile when not occupied

Cons:

  • closely spaced harness is too narrow for some kids and may bother their neck
  • overall harness length is shorter so a child may run out of harness room before reaching height or weight limits
Evenflo SecureKid

Graco Tranzitions (read a review here)

Features:

  • ~$220 at Amazon.ca, Babies R Us, Costco.ca, Walmart, Canadian Tire
  • top harnessed height of ~18″
  • forward-facing harnessed to 65 lbs or 49″
  • use as a booster from 40-100 lbs and up to 57″
  • expires 7 years from date of manufacture
  • no-rethread harness

Pros:

  • can use UAS (latch) and top tether in booster mode to keep it from becoming a projectile when not occupied
  • narrow
  • lightweight
  • no-rethread harness
  • very smooth harness adjuster
  • has harness pads for comfort at neck

Cons:

  • seat belt installation can be challenging
  • 49″ standing height limit in harness mode may not be enough for some children

Evenflo SureRide/Titan 65* This seat is included on this page even though it does not convert to a booster (it rear-faces and forward-faces and is a favourite in our convertible category). Its extremely tall harness height makes it long lasting, and one of these on sale plus a dedicated booster later on is often a good plan for families. Read a review here.

Features:

  • ~$180 at Babies R Us, BestBuy, Canadian Tire, Amazon.ca, or $150 at Walmart for Titan 65 (name exclusive to Walmart)
  • forward faces to 65 lbs or 54″
  • expires 6 years from the date of manufacture
  • top harness slot:* ~19-19.25″
  • harness covers available for purchase directly from Evenflo

Pros:

  • lightweight and medium-narrow
  • very high top harness slots will fit even very tall children until they’re ready for a booster

Cons:

  • Forward-facing children at the top end of the height or weight limits may find there isn’t enough harness length to comfortably or easily buckle. Smaller forward-facing children may find the lowest harness height uncomfortably high.
  • Relevant to this category only: does not convert to a booster