Best Cheap Car Seats [$50-$200] for Baby Toddlers and Big Kids

With a database of 50+ child car seats, 25 budget modles, and days of comparisons, we’ve hand-selected the 8 best cheap car seats

Because we put all child car seats through our thorough review process, we can clearly distinguish where a baby car seat is better or worse than its competitors. This allows us to show you alternatives, explain which are the best for certain uses, and ultimately, identify key decision-making factors that’ll allow you to get the best bang for your buck.

Under $100

Least Expensive Car Seats under $100

$100 ~ $150

Cheap Car Seats between $100 and $150

$150 ~ $200

Cheap Car Seats between $150 and $200

Cheap Car Seats under $200

Cheap Car Seats under $200


Diono Radian 3R 3-in-1 Car Seat
Diono Radian 3R



Chicco MyFit Harness Booster
Chicco MyFit Harness Booster



Century Boost On Pink
Century Boost On


There are some other narrow car seats for 3 across between 16 to 18 inches wide. We have reviewed and compared them so that you don’t need to. 

By Performance

See Our Top Picks Organized by Performance (Width and Size Limits)

By Price

See Car Seats Organized by Price (Prices Start at $69.99)

By Bonus

See Car Seats by Bonus features (e.g. foldable etc)

Cheap Car Seats under $100

In this price range under $100, there are a few budget convertible car seats, but most of the cheap choices should be the booster seats, including harnessed booster (or called combination car seat), high back booster, and backless booster.

If you’re finding a cheap car seat under $100 for newborns, the convertible car seats are good choices. They can be used both rear-facing and forward-facing and last for a few years. 

Harness 2 boosters are suitable for toddlers and preschoolers between 2-5 years old, and can last a few good years until your child grows to 7 or 8 years old.

The boosters, including the high back and backless, are good for big kids at least 4 years old

Let’s dive into detailed reviews for all recommended cheap car seats under $100.

Safety 1st Jive - Cheap Convertible Car Seat

Safety 1st Jive Convertible Car Seat

Safety 1st Jive

Key Features
The Good
The Bad


If you want a cheap convertible car seat, the Safety 1st Jive should be the best choice. It’s listed under $100, with a few basic safety features for a safe ride to your kiddie. 

Priced under $100, the Jive is just half priced compared to some affordable convertible car seats like the Graco Extend2Fit ($219.99, cheaper when on sale). But it lacks premium features from its competitor. It is manufactured with only the very entry-level features a car seat must have to protect a child. 

It passed the crash tests based on federal safety standards. So it will provide protection from frontal, rear, and side in case of incidents. It has head and body support to deliver a safe space for small babies and infants, along with limited padding. That’s all!

However, the head support of this cheap car seat is not adjustable to top position for big toddlers and can’t provide assistance if they fall asleep in the car seat during the trips.

As a cheap convertible car seat, the Safety 1st Jive works well to fit a child both rear-facing and forward-facing. The 40lbs/40″ size seems good for extending rear-facing for 2-year-old toddlers. But it’s not!

When placed rear-facing, the seat belt guide does not work well with the harness straps, resulting in a not-tight installation and potential risk and injury. That’s not okay for a car seat. After all, we parents purchase a car seat to protect the precious littles.

This problem disappears when you use this cheap car seat to face the front. In this position, the Safety 1st Jive will last several years. It performs as well as other more expensive convertible car seats with the same size limit: 65lbs/49″. Good for big kids around five years or older. That’s why we strongly recommended you to use it for big kids or as a backup car seat in a grandparent’s or babysitter’s vehicle.

The Safety 1st boasted that the Jive is good to fit three across in most vehicles. It looks slim. But the real width is up to 18.1 inches, making the Safety 1st Jive one of the best narrow car seats. And if you have large-size cars, like SUVs, this cheap car seat will fit 3 across. But it’s better to use it forward-facing for big kids. It has a compact seat pad, with 16.25-inch width.

The good point for Safety 1st Jive is the included two cup holders. They can be attached to the front of this cheap car seat, with no addition to its width. Even though they are smaller than other car seats, it is good to keep your child comfortable in the car seat with drinks, snacks, or toys.

The Safety 1st Jive is a lightweight and cheap car seat. Weighing just 14.25 pounds – it’s even a bit lighter than the Doono (16.5 pounds), the Jive is friendly for families on the go. Parents can effortlessly lug it through airports and use it even in a narrow window seat.

Cosco Finale Dx 2-In-1 Booster Car Seat

Cosco Finale DX - Pink Car Seat

Cosco Finale DX - Sweet Berry

Key Features
The Good
The Bad


If you’re looking for a budget harness booster car seat that is made in the USA at a low-price, try the Cosco Finale DX (with a changeable listing price of $69.99 on Amazon). It’s the cheapest booster with a 5-point harness. But the price does not compromise for the great features. 

It performs as well as other boosters with average weight limits: 100lbs for booster and 65lbs for 5-point harness. The booster height limit is a bit lower than the average of a booster or an all-in-one car seat, only 52 inches, the same as the Maxi Cosi Pria and Safety 1st Grow and Go. All these three brands come from the same company -Dorel Julivenience Group.

If you’re living in a state where local car seat laws require a child to stay in a safety seat before 57 inches tall, you need to purchase another backless booster after your boy or girl outgrows the 52-inch booster height limit. From this point, it’s not as good as another harness booster seat in this cheap car seats list – Evenflo Maestro Sport ($69.99 vs $89.99 with 57″ booster height limit and no need to buy an extra backless booster seat).

Even low-priced, the Cocso Finale DX has a few impressive features and earns its own reputation among thousands of parents like you and me.

It’s slim designed. You can know this at the first sight of its picture or when receiving it. The widest part is the backrest and it’s 18.25 inches wide; the seat pad is only 16 inches wide with no cup holder.

There is only one cup holder on the right side. It undoubtedly increases the car seat width after attaching it. Luckily, it can still fit 3 across in most medium and large-sized vehicles, making it still the best option for growing families with two or three children in a car seat.

It’s a lightweight cheap car seat. Weighing only 11.5 pounds, the Cosco Finale DX is portable and friendly for families on the go. Navigating it through airports is not a big problem, especially if you have a carry bag to store and move it. We don’t think it’s good for long-time road trips, even though it’s lightweight and easy to move from car to car. 

The Cosco Finale DX comes with limited padding. It’s not as comfortable as those more expensive models with good padding. Long-time rides in the car seat will make your child feel uncomfortable if they move a lot.

Like other cheap car seats, the Cosco Finale DX would be a great choice for travel or a backup in the second or third car. It’s better to get a more affordable car seat as a significant device for a safe and comfortable ride.

Evenflo Maestro Sport 2-in-1 Harness Booster

Evenflo Maestro Sport

Evenflo Maestro Sport - Whitney Pink

Key Features
The Good
The Bad


If you need a cheap car seat for big toddlers 2 years or older, the Evenflo Maestro Sport harness booster is worth consideration. It’s low-priced under $100, along with a few excellent features that you can find on more expensive models.

It has a great size: 110lbs/57″. The booster weight limit is high up to 110 pounds, beating most booster seats or booster mode of all-in-one car seats. Few car seats are designed with this limit. Among all the car seats we reviewed, only Graco Grows4Me has the same booster limitation.

But you don’t need to worry about fitting big kids in booster mode in this inexpensive car seat. The Evenflo Maestro Sport provides spacious room for growing kids. The only problem is that there is only limited padding in the shoulder position, not as comfortable as its cheaper sibling – Evenflo Chase. The distance between two harness slots on the shoulder is narrow and may be too tight for big kids.

The harness weight limit is not as good as other car seats with a 5-point harness for forward-facing, only 50 pounds (vs 65 pounds). This is a good upgrade from the Chase that accommodates only 40-pounds kids in the 5-point harness. The height limit remains 50 inches tall, making this inexpensive car seat good for kids around 5 years old under the 5-point harness protection. 

The Maestro Sport is a lightweight inexpensive car seat, only 9.6 pounds. That’s as lightweight as infant car seats. You won’t have much difficulty carrying it to navigate through the airports. The Evenflo Maestro Sport is FAA approved for air travel in the 5-point harness mode.

The Evenflo Maestro Sport is slightly heavier and bulkier than the Chase. With a width of 19 inches, it’s not as narrow as its sibling ( 19″ vs 18.5″), which is possible to fit 3 across in those large-sized vehicles. The upfront harness adjustment allows you to easily install this inexpensive car seat, only front facing of course.

The Evenflo Maestro Sport is one of the US-made car seats. If you prefer a car seat manufactured in the domestic country over overseas, it should be more appealing than the KidsEmbrace Spider-Man. But the latter provides more fun for your kids to stay with a comic-themed seat cover and all parts.

Diono Cambria 2 XL

Diono Cambria 2 XL

Diono Cambria 2 XL

Key Features
The Good
The Bad


If you want a roomy booster seat for tall and heavy kids, you should not skip the Diono Cambria 2 XL. At a price under $100, it’s an inexpensive car seat, especially when it combines a high back booster and a backless booster into one.

The size limit for both high back and backless booster is the same: 120lbs/63″. This beats the majority of car seats on the market and definitely lasts long enough until your child is ready to get out of a car seat. It’s up to you and your kid to decide which is preferable. If your kids prefer a backless booster (most bigger children would prefer this mode), a smooth transition from high back to backless can be effortlessly achieved in minutes. 

However, we insist parents stick to the high-back booster for toddlers when they start sitting in this car seat. The Cambria 2 XL is suitable for kids at least 40 pounds, but toddlers at this weight range won’t keep them in the right position in this roomy inexpensive car seat. The backrest may help a bit to keep them stay stable and upright. 

Unlike Diono’s classic slim Radian series, the Cambria 2 XL is as bulky as those all-in-one convertible car seats. It’s understandable! It’s wide and has a high-strength steel frame, along with plenty of padding. It’s a cheap car seat with a solid build to last a few years. The heavy body makes it less portable and you won’t want to switch it from car to car. But it’s good for road trips anyway, delivering protection and comfort.

The same bonus remains. You can extend the Diono Cambria 2 XL warranty from standard 12 months to 36 months after registration. So I strongly suggest you register the car seat after getting and deciding to keep it for use. In this way, you get not only a 36-month warranty but also the latest news if the recall for this inexpensive car seat happens.

More Cheap Car Seats under $100

There are a few cheap car seats under $100 not reviewed in this post, but we do have them ranked in the table below from highest price of $99.99 to low price . You may pick up a perfect one based on your needs and budget. 

You may have found that no infant car seats under $100. The cheapest infant car seat is priced over $100 at a price range between $150-$200 in the next part.

Rank Price Weight Limit Car Seat Height Limit
1 $99.99 Baby Trend Troop 65 pounds 49 in.
2 $99.99 Safety 1st Jive 65 pounds 49 in.
3 $89.99 Cosco Mighty Fit 65 DX 65 pounds 49 in.
4 $79.99 Evenflo Tribute 5 65 pounds 49 in.
5 $74.99 Cosco Onlook 40 pounds 43 in.
6 $79.99 Evenflo Chase 110 pounds 57 in.
7 $79.99 Safety 1st Grand 120 pounds 57 in.
8 $59.99 Chicco GoFit Plus 110 pounds 57 in.
9 $54.99 Century Boost On 120 pounds 57 in.

Cheap Car Seats between $100 and $150

Graco Tranzitions 3 in 1 Harness Booster Seat

Graco Tranzitions 2-in-1 Harness Booster

Graco Tranzitions 3-in-1

Key Features
The Good
The Bad


Graco Tranzitions is the best budget car seat priced between $100 and $150. In my opinion, it’s even better than that cheap harnessed booster or booster car seats in the $100 price range.

Let me explain why the Graco Tranzitions car seat is the best recommendation. 

It has a wide size range, from 22 pounds to 100 pounds. That means the Graco Tranzitions would be suitable for toddlers 1 year or older (only forward-facing) and last a few good years when your child grows to 7 or 8 years old until he or she reaches 100 pounds heavy or 57 inches tall. 

Plus, it supports a smooth transition from a high back booster to a backless booster, saving money to purchase another backless booster if your child insists on having one. From our experience, your child would like a backless more than a high back on their fifth or sixth birthday

The range might not be as good as the Evenflo Maestro (22-100 pounds), but it provides a third mode to turn into a backless booster for big kids. For us, we prefer multiple modes over the higher size limits. Of course, better if both meet, like the Graco 4Ever DLX 4 in 1 car seat (which is more expensive, even tripled the price of anyone between Evenflo Maestro and Graco Tranzitions).

But we are impressed with the Graco Tranzitions for its premium safety features. As an inexpensive car seat, it is equipped with Graco’s exclusive advanced ProtectPlus technique that is used only in premium models like the Extend2Fit, SlimFit3 LX, and 4Ever DLX 4 in 1. If you see that the ProtectPlus is applied in a car seat, it means that the car seat will deliver optimal protection from all round, frontal, side, and rear, even in any incidents of rollover crashes. This ProtectPlus technique passed the European crash tests and proved to be protective in any rollover collisions.

It’s well padded and ergonomically designed to provide best support and protection for your child’s head and torso. It’s good for long-time road trips (better no more than 2 hours ride at a time), at least better than the Cosco Finale DX. But the latter is more lightweight and portable for families on the go. 

Graco Tranzitions is a bit heavy (20 pounds weight), even though it’s not as bulky as those convertible and all-in-one car seats. The 19-inch width is mediocre, narrow compared to most all-in-one car seats – not including the Graco SlimFit3 LX (16.7″) and Diono Radian 3R (17″), but not good to fit 3 across in small cars.

If you have a few bucks more budget, Graco Tranzitions would be the best recommended cheap car seat.

More Cheap Car Seats between $100 and $150

Rank Price Weight Limit Car Seat Height Limit
1 $109.99 Chicco KidFit 2-in-1 100 pounds 57 in.
2 $119.99 Evenflo Sonus 65 65 pounds 49 in.
3 $139.99 Graco Atlas 65 100 pounds 57 in.

Cheap Car Seats between $150 and $200

Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 - Cheap Infant Car Seat

Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 Infant Car Seat

Graco SnugRide SnugLock

Key Features
The Good
The Bad


It seems the smaller your kid is, the more expensive a car seat he or she will need. No infant car seat is under $100 or $150. You probably get the Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 with a budget price under $150 on sale promotion.

But the normal listing price for this cheap infant car seat is still above $150. Among the $150-$200 price range, Graco SnugRide SnugLock is the cheapest one, cheaper than the $199 Chicco KeyFit 30.

As the cheapest infant car seat, the Graco SnugRide SnugLock performs well, not compromising the features for protecting a baby in the car seat.

It has the greatest size limit that is good for an infant car seat: 35lbs/32″. This makes it suitable for infants at 1 year old or even older at 18 months of age for small babies. The lowest 4-pound weight requirement is friendly for preemies, with the included head and body support to keep your infant feeling cradled and comfortable.

The extra support additionals are removable when your baby grows bigger and doesn’t need them. This is very nice for growing babies, providing more room for their growth. 

Graco SnugRide SnugLock is a lightweight cheap car seat. The car seat (only carrier, without the base) weighs only 7.5 pounds, far less than the Doona’s 16.5 pounds. But if you have a 20+ pound baby in it, it’s not a good idea to carry it in the park or visit a museum.

Luckily, with the Click Connect technology, this cheap infant car seat will be able to connect to a few Graco strollers with the same Click Connect. Then you can stroller your baby in the car seat, rather than carrying it by hand.

Safety 1st Grow and Go All-in-One Car Seat

Safety 1st Grow and Go All-in-One Car Seat

Safety 1st Grow and Go

Key Features
The Good
The Bad


The Safety 1st Grow and Go is really a money saver. It’s the cheapest all-in-one car seat, low-priced under $200, and very affordable for most families who want a car seat to grow with the little one from birth to tween.

As an all-in-one car seat, the Grow and Go does its job: lasting three car seat stages from rear-facing and forward-facing to the booster. The 40lbs/40″ size seems good for toddlers 2 years or older, making this cheap car seat one of the best car seats for extended rear-facing. Luckily, it does not have the rear-facing installation problem as Jive, which is also a cheap car seat from Safety 1st.  

The 100-pound weight limit is also as excellent as most all-in-one car seats and suitable for big kids around 7 or 8 years old. Only the 52-inch booster height limit is not as high as those with 57-inch. Don’t underestimate the 5-inch gap. That means you may need to purchase another backless booster if you’re living in a state where kids are required to use a child safety seat until they’re 57 inches tall. Luckily, most backless booster seats are cheap under the $50 price range. 

As a cheap car seat, the Safety 1st Grow and Go is equipped with very basic safety and comfort features. 

It has passed the crash tests meeting federal safety standards, including the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 213. It also provides side impact protection with the 5-point harness.

With the reinforced steel frame along with plenty of energy-absorbing foam, the Safety 1st Grow and Go has a solid build for the best protection it can provide.  Well-padded backrest, seat pad, and included inserts deliver a comfortable space for growing children.

Like most all-in-one car seats, the Safety 1st Grow and Go is a bit heavy and bulky, but not as narrow as Jive. You can’t expect a cheap car seat to satisfy all your needs.

The Grow and Go car seat provide multiple color options. Some are good for girls, like the Carbon Rose, Everest Pink, and more. It’s one of our best recommended pink car seats for toddler girls.

Diono Radian 3R - Best Cheap All In One

Diono Radian 3R 3-in-1 Car Seat

Diono Radian 3R

Key Features
The Good
The Bad


If you want a cheap car seat that will last a few years and fit 3 across, the Diono Radian 3R is the best option. The Radian 3R the entry-level model from the Diono Radian series, low-priced under $200. But it inherits some great features the company built into this series. 

It’s slim designed. The 17-inch width makes it one of the best car seats to fit 3 across. The company launched the Radian series to satisfy the needs of growing families. 

All car seats in this series have the same width – 17 inches, making them the best option to fit 3 across in most vehicles. If you’re planning to have the second or third baby,  use a 3 across car seat to ride them all in the back row and try the Diono Radian. 

It’s foldable and portable. Yes. All Radian car seats feature a folding design, making them one of the best portable car seats. You can fold the car seat up and carry it with the straps, like a backpack. 

Weighing up to 25.9 pounds, the Diono Radian 3R is certainly not a lightweight car seat, but as bulky as other all-in-one car seats. Its great portability makes up for the drawback of its heavy-duty body.

It has a very high 50-pound rear-facing limit. That means you can use it to extend the rear-facing ride for toddlers up to 4 years old. What needs your notice is that the Diono Radian 3R may take up much space when installed rear-facing. It’s up to 28.5-inch high while lacking multiple reclines to adjust for a perfect angle to balance the rear-facing distance from the front seat. 

But the Radian 3R is still a good budget car seat for budget-tight families that don’t have much budget for the premium models.

Evenflo EveryFit 4-in-1 Convertible Car Seat

Evenflo EveryFit 4-in-1 Car Seat for Girls

Evenflo EveryFit 4 in 1

Key Features
The Good
The Bad


If you prefer a US-made cheap car seat under $200, the Evenflo EveryFit is a good choice.  Its listing price is over $200, but it’s on sale right now and you can get it at a very budget price. It’s the only 4 in 1 car seat under $200

It’s a real 4-in-1 car seat, with an additional backless booster available for big kids between 40 and 120 pounds. As it can be used as a high-back booster, we do recommend you to use it as long as possible before transitioning to the backless mode.

It’s one of the best car seats with a 5-point harness for up to 120 pounds. The 120-pound weight limit is the highest of all car seats and beats the majority of the car seats on the market. It can be found in some all-in-one car seats and booster seats, like the Graco 4Ever DLX 4 in 1 car seat, Britax One4Llife, and Britax Grow with You ClickTight

The Evenflo EveryFit is one of the best car seats for extending rear-facing. The 40lbs/40″ size limit allows your kids to stay rear-facing at 2 years or older. It provides 3 rear-facing reclines for you to find a perfect fit for fast-growing babies.

At a budget price, the EveryFit has everything a car seat will provide, featuring very basic safety and comfort functions.

As a US-made car seat, you don’t need to worry about its ability to protect your child. It definitely passed the crash tests under federal safety standards (FMVSS 213) and provides side impact protection with the 5-point harness. The reinforced steel frame and sufficient padding enhance its protection performance. 

That’s all, no more positive or additional safety features. Luckily, it has a rigid LATCH for easy installation. 

Two cup holders remain there all the time, no matter if you’re using it rear-facing for infants, forward-facing for toddlers and preschoolers, or a high-back booster or backless booster for big kids.

Small babies may not have any conscience about using the cup holders, but large toddlers and kids would be very happy to have their snacks and toys stored in cup holders, especially during long-time road trips. They are removable and dishwasher-safe when you remove the machine washable fabric for cleaning.

Cheap Car Seats Buyer’s Guide

It’s not easy to find the perfect car seat that completely meets your needs. There are hundreds of them flooding the market. So we made this guide to share our experience and help you pick up the one you may need most. So that you don’t need to go through what I have been through. 

Before starting the guide, you may want to know the two pro tips: 

Pro tip #1

Before you buy a car seat, it’s best to figure out where you’ll install it and know your vehicles. The rear middle seat is considered the safest place. But not everyone can do that easily. Then you can choose whichever side is behind the driver or passenger.

Some vehicles may not be equipped with a lap-shoulder belt that is required to install a booster. 

Pro tip #2

Proper installation is paramount. Make sure to follow the user manual to install the car seat. Check for a third time before starting to put your child in it and confirm that the car seat is tight enough with no wiggle of more than 1 inch.


It’s the #1 on the list when you’re finding the right car seat. This is not a secret that all car seats sold in the US should pass a few basic crash tests. Only car seats that meet the safety standards would be sticked with the label to approve their qualifications. 

Side impact protection is also mandatory for all car seats with a 5-point harness (all car seats on the market now have this type of harness, no 3-point harness is used.). But the layers of side impact protection are not fixed. 

99% of car seats have two layers of side impact protection. Some only have one layer, like the Britax Marathon. Some may have more; Britax Advocate has three layers, and Diono Radian 3RXT Safe+ has 8 layers. We can’t figure out this by eye. Just learn from the manufacturer’s description. Hope they’re honest about this.

However, the more layers and safety features a car seat has, the more expensive it is. All these cheap car seats on this list do not have additional functions. They ensure very elemental protection.

Size Limits

This might be the best place to save money. Even if you’re hunting for a cheap car seat, you can save money. The best way to do that is to get the most use of it. None would like to buy a car seat that will be outgrown in a year or less (except infant car seats that have the lowest size limits but are specially designed for newborns).

Not only is the overall size limit important, but the rear-facing limit also needs your attention. You must have known that the longer you can keep your little one in the rear-facing direction, the safer and better they will be. 

The bigger the size limit a car seat has, the better. We do like the Diono Radian 3R. It has a 50-pound weight limit for rear-facing, good for toddlers up to 4 years old (Graco Extend2Fit has the same 50-pound limit with more reclines for adjustment, but it’s a few bucks more expensive). 


It’s true that proper installation is a deciding factor for the child’s safety in the car seat. The easier and tighter an install is, the safer. The inaccurate or loose installation will result in injury or even death if incidents happen.

More expensive car seats perform better in this aspect. For example, the Britax car seats with the ClickTight technique are pricey because the ClickTight ensures an easier installation with the seat belt.

The affordable car seats may have rigid LATCH connectors for easy installation. Some cheap car seats may have this as well, like the Evenflo EveryFit with the SuperSense LATCH connectors.


Fabric is the last but not least important. It’s inevitable that mess happens during the years of use. So finding a car seat with fabrics that are easy to clean is more convenient and friendly for busy parents (trust me, you’re always busy when having one or more kids). 

Luckily, 99% of car seats on the market are made of machine washable fabrics. Some may not and need a spot clean. If you find any car seat saying it’s not machine washable, don’t buy it. As far as I know, the Britax Grow with You (Not the ClickTight version we have reviewed) is the only car seat not supporting machine washing.

It would be better if the car seat cover can be taken off with ease.

FAQs on Cheap Car Seats under $200

What is the best inexpensive car seat?

The best inexpensive car seat should be the Safety 1st Grow and Go. It’s an all-in-one car seat that will last a few years, with a few safety and comfort features. The price is super affordable under $200, making it one of the most popular car seats on Amazon and receiving more than ten thousand reviews from parents.

What is the cheapest convertible car seat?

The cheapest convertible car seat is the Cosco Onlook, with a price of around $74.99 (the price may change depending on the sale promotion). We didn’t list it with a detailed review, it has a very low size limit (40lbs/43 inches). 

Very few parents choose this one but prefer a more expensive convertible car seat that lasts longer.

What is the best affordable convertible car seat?

The Graco Extend2Fit is the best affordable car seat. It’s priced over $200, but sometimes you can get it at a cheaper price under $200, during sale activities on Amazon. We got one at $178.49.

It has premium features and the most appealing part is the 50-lb rear-facing limit, making it a good rear-facing extendable car seat for toddlers around 3 years old.

What is the safest car seat on the market?

The safest car seat on the market should be those with extra advanced safety features

For example, the Britax car seats with ClickTight techniques and Graco car seats with ProtectPlus engineering. 

Some premium models may have more layers of side impact protection. The Britax Advocate is equipped with 3 layers, and the Diono Radian 3RXT Safe+ with 6 layers and 3QXT with 8 layers.

However, they are more expensive, priced at around $350 or more. That’s triple or more of these cheap car seats in this post.

Which would be good competitors for a budget convertible car seat?

For a budget convertible car seat the Safety 1st would be a good option. As you know safety 1st makes some super cheap car seats. Next to it, there’s the: Graco infant seat, Evenflo Maestro Sport harness booster, Diono Radian 3R, Evenflo EveryFit 4-in-1 convertible seat, Cosco Finale DX harness booster seat. If you’re interested in the best convertible car seats article, the Evenflo EveryFit 4-in-1 convertible car seats made the list there.

Which is the best convertible car seat on the market?

The best convertible car seat is the Graco Extend2Fit. It’s an affordable car seat (around $200) with premium features and receives most reviews on Amazon from more than six-ten thousand of parents.

What kind of safety standards do these budget car seats have?

You can expect all of these budget car seats. Most of them have the basic level for protection. 

For example, they pass the crash test meeting federal mandatory safety standards and provide protection from front and rear. They also have side impact protection with the 5-point harness. All are padded with energy-absorbing foam for reducing the shock and risk. 

But that’s all. No more advanced safety features. But they are still reliable to deliver the basic-level protection.

What other features do these cheap car seats have?

Cup holders. Only infant seats don’t come with cup holders. Most include dual cup holders; One for drinks and one for snacks or toys. The seat cover is easy to remove and machine washable. The seat cushion is comfy. 

Some may have adequate head and body support and multiple recline positions that are good to adjust the car seat for the leg rest for growing kids.  

A quick list of features worth looking at harness straps, harness holders, shoulder strap positions, buckle pockets, harness clip.

How long can you use the infant insert with these budget convertible car seats?

The Safety 1st Grow and Go has an infant insert that can be used for up to 11 pounds. After that you have to remove it. Typically the infant insert comes with the package. But some may not have one, like the Diono Radian 3R.