Airtots, car seat hire guide

 
 

The UK has strict regulations regarding using the correct car/booster seat for your child and that you fit it correctly. Please read this guide carefully. 

The below Legal Requirements are provided by www.gov.uk. For more details please see additional resources at:

 
 

    Choosing The Seat

Overview:

  • Children must normally use a child car seat until they’re 12 years old or 135 centimetres tall, whichever comes first.
  • Children over 12 or more than 135cm tall must wear a seat belt.
  • You can choose a child car seat based on your child’s height or weight.

Height-based seats:

  • Height-based seats are known as ‘i-Size’ seats. They must be rear-facing until your child is over 15 months old. Your child can use a forward-facing child car seat when they’re over 15 months old.
  • You must check the seat to make sure it’s suitable for the height of your child.
  • Only EU-approved height-based child car seats can be used in the UK. These have a label showing a capital ‘E’ in a circle and ‘R129’.
Weight-based seats:
  • The seat your child can use (and the way they must be restrained in it) depends on their weight.
  • Only EU-approved weight-based child car seats can be used in the UK. These have a label showing a capital ‘E’ in a circle and ‘ECE R44’.

You may be able to choose from more than one type of seat in the group for your child’s weight:

Child’s weight Group Seats
0kg to 10kg 0 Lie-flat or ‘lateral’ baby carrier, rear-facing baby carrier, or rear-facing baby seat using a harness
0kg to 13kg 0+ Rear-facing baby carrier or rear-facing baby seat using a harness
9kg to 18kg 1 Rear- or forward-facing baby seat using a harness or safety shield
15kg to 25kg 2 Rear- or forward-facing child car seat (high-backed booster seat or booster cushion) using a seat belt, harness or safety shield
22kg to 36kg 3 Rear- or forward-facing child car seat (high-backed booster seat or booster cushion) using a seat belt, harness or safety shield

    Fitting The Seat

Fitting a child car seat

  • You must only use a child car seat if your car’s seat belt has a diagonal strap, unless the seat is either:
    • specifically designed for use with a lap seat belt
    • fitted using ISOFIX anchor points
  • You must also:
    • deactivate any front airbags before fitting a rear-facing baby seat in a front seat
    • not fit a child car seat in side-facing seats

The Child Car Seats website has information on how to choose a seat and travel safely with children in cars.

    Special Circumstances

Children with disabilities or medical conditions

  • The same rules apply for children with disabilities or medical conditions, but they can use a disabled person’s seat belt or a child restraint designed for their needs.
  • A doctor can issue an exemption certificate if a child is unable to use a restraint or seat belt because of their condition.

When a child can travel without a car seat:

A child can travel without a child car seat in some circumstances.

  • Taxis and minicabs (private hire vehicles)
    • If the driver doesn’t provide the correct child car seat, children can travel without one - but only if they travel on a rear seat:
      • and wear an adult seat belt if they’re 3 or older
      • without a seat belt if they’re under 3

  • Minibuses, coaches and vans
    • Minibus or coach drivers and companies don’t have to provide child car seats.
    • You must provide your own if you want to make sure a child has one.
      • Coaches
        • Children can travel without a child car seat or seat belt, if they’re not available.
      • Minibuses
        • All children must travel in rear seats (any seats behind the driver) if a child car seat or an adult seat belt isn’t fitted.
        • Children aged 3 or older must:
          • use a child car seat if there’s one available in a minibus
          • use an adult seat belt if child car seats are not fitted or are unsuitable
      • Vans
        • The rules for vans are the same as for cars.

  • Unexpected journeys
    • If the correct child car seat isn’t available, a child aged 3 or older can use an adult seat belt if the journey is all of the following:
      • unexpected
      • necessary
      • over a short distance
    • You can’t take children under 3 on an unexpected journey in a vehicle without the correct child car seat, unless both of the following apply:
      • it’s a licensed taxi or minicab
      • the child travels on a rear seat without a seat belt

  • No room for a third child car seat
    • Children under 3 must be in a child car seat. If there’s no room for a third child car seat in the back of the vehicle, the child must travel in the front seat with the correct child car seat.
    • Children aged 3 or older can sit in the back using an adult belt.

  • Vehicles without seat belts
    • Children under 3 must be in a child car seat. If there’s no seat belt, they can’t travel.
    • A child aged 3 or older can travel in a back seat without a child car seat and without a seatbelt if the vehicle doesn’t have one.

    Caring For The Seat

What we do:

All of our products should feel like new, and are covered by our good as new promise. For peace of mind we wanted to spell out what our car seat checks involve.

  • Our car seats are replaced regularly (within 1 year of active use) and after each use all seat materials are thoroughly cleaned using child friendly cleaning products.
  • The following elements are checked after each use:
    • Visually inspect the outer casing for any cracks or damage
    • Visually inspect all harnesses and buckles for damage and wear and tear, checking the locking mechanism is still secure when locked and functioning to lock and unlock
    • Visually inspect any element that attaches the car seat to the car for damage (such as the Isofix attachments)
    • Where possible remove any fabric covers and check for visual damage to the foam on the seat
    • Check all height/weight adjustable elements are moving freely where needed and locking into position where needed
    • Check that no supporting items are missing (e.g. additional head supports in smaller car seats)

Whilst we make these checks on the return of the items it is still your responsibility to check the car seat is safe and in the proper condition to use during your hire, in line with the manufacturer's guidelines.

Any car seat that we know to have been involved in any collision or that we know to have had any damage (or involved in an event where there was clear potential for damage) is taken out of use and replaced.

We will replace a car seat during the term of your rental if your car has been involved involved in any collision or sudden braking or maneuvering that could have led to damage or where any other action could have led to it being damaged. There will be a replacement fee (usually £50 based on your location) and you will be liable for the full cost of replacing the damaged car seat.

What we ask of you:

  • Take due care of your car seat and inform us if there is any damage (or potential damage) done to the car seat. This includes but is not limited to:
    • Your car being in an accident where there is any impact whatsoever to the car, or sudden braking/maneuvering is required.
    • The car seat being dropped, knocked or having any considerable weight or pressure applied to it, other than that of the correct sized child sitting in it (as established by the manufacturer).

  • Do not store anything on the car seat.
  • When not installed in the car, keep the car seat stored in the upright position on its base.
  • Keep the car seat clean and tidy.

    Disclaimer

In consideration and as a condition of being allowed to hire a car seat through our website: Airtots.com, you hereby agree to the following:

  1. I have read, understand and will follow the Airtots car seat guide which is based on information provided by the UK Government in relation to the safe use of car seats. I further acknowledge that there is other supplementary information provided by Which? and the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents which I may read if necessary.

  2. I take full responsibility for choosing the correct car seat for my child.

  3. I will read, ensure that I understand and will follow the relevant car seat manufacturer’s user or instruction manual as made available to me on the relevant product description page of the Airtots website.

  4. I take full responsibility for using the car seat in the correct manner and in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions.

  5. I take full responsibility for the installation of the car seat and will ensure this is done in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions. In the event that I choose to seek advice from an Airtots representative as to how to fit or use a car seat, I acknowledge that you can only provide general guidance on the installation process and continued use of the car seat and that anything you say is not to be relied upon as professional advice. I accept that you are not responsible in any way for the installation of the car seat or for the continued use by me of the car seat.

  6. I agree to maintain the car seat whilst it is in my possession and to inform Airtots of any damage or potential for damage that could have occurred to the car seat during my rental period – this includes any and all collisions no matter how minor, any instances where the car seat was dropped, etc.

  7. I accept full responsibility for the car seat once it is delivered to the address specified in my order form, whether it is received at such address by myself or a host/concierge or any other person.

  8. I agree, to the fullest extent permissible by law, to waive, release and discharge you from any and all liability for my death, disability, personal injury, property damage, property theft or actions of any kind which may hereafter accrue to me as a result of my use, or misuse, of the car seat and any such harm or damage that may be caused to any user of the car seat who is under my control or supervision.

    1. In the event that you are not able to locate the relevant user manual for your car seat on our website, please contact us on hello@airtots.com or +44 (0) 20 3290 2952 and we will send you a copy of the document.