It’s hard to find fault with the Graco SnugRide. This car seat ranks high in just about any category that might apply.
It’s very safe, lightweight (7.5 pounds without the base), easy to use, relatively easy to install (although, personally, I don’t enjoy installing any type of car seat), versatile and available in a wide range of colors and patterns. This is the original SnugRide, which fits infants up to 22 pounds or 29 inches; the SnugRide 32 and 35 accommodate larger babies, but I liked the compact size and lighter weight of the original for my mid-size Hyundai.
The SnugRide was a no-brainer registry pick for me. I used a SnugRide with my first baby and found that it fulfilled my needs without throwing in unnecessary bells and whistles (keeping the price tag nice and reasonable). It’s such an easy car seat choice, in fact, that I wouldn’t be surprised to hear that it’s the most popular infant seat in the U.S. (Is it really? I don’t know.)
I bought my first SnugRide as part of the Graco MetroLite travel system—which served me well that first year—but now I’ve grown accustomed to smaller-sized umbrella strollers, and I just can’t go back to a bigger baby vehicle. As I searched for the perfect car seat-stroller combination, I was surprised to find that the SnugRide is compatible with plenty of strollers, not just those made by Graco. After much contemplation, I decided to team the SnugRide with Maclaren’s Techno XLR (watch for it—the review will be coming later this week!).
These are some of the details that I think make the SnugRide worth checking out:
Safety—Any list of safe infant seats is sure to include Graco. Rigorous testing ensures the seat’s safety, and I appreciate the 5-point harness and EPS foam.
Installation—A level indicator lets you know if the seat is installed correctly. It’s LATCH-equipped, of course, and the stay-in-car base means installation only has to happen once.
Usability—Again, the stay-in-car base is a lifesaver, making it easy to move the bucket from car to stroller and back again. Additional bases are sold separately for simple car-to-car relocation, and the seat can be buckled in without the base as well.
Comfort—The seat is nicely padded and the fabric cover is made from material that seems appropriate for any season (plus, it’s machine washable).
Extras—This particular model features a cold-weather boot, removable infant head head support, strap pads and an adjustable canopy with a peek-a-boo window.