How to Put a Carseat in an Airplane Seat

Are you considering flying with a little one? Traveling on an airplane can be a bit of an intimidating experience, especially when you’re bringing along your car seat too! This task may seem like a difficult undertaking, but it doesn’t have to be. 

We’ve all been there before: you’re trying to get your family ready for a big vacation, and you realize that one of the most important considerations has been forgotten — how are you going to fit an infant car seat in an airplane seat? This can be daunting if you don’t know what steps to take. But don’t worry – with a little bit of preparation and

How to Put a Carseat in an Airplane Seat

planning, fitting a car seat into an airline seat doesn’t have to be stressful or difficult.

In this blog post, we’ll show you exactly how to put a carseat in an airplane seat to make your next family flight easier.”

Is It Safe?

Before you attempt to put a car seat in an airplane seat, it’s important to make sure that it is safe. Airline regulations state that the use of infant car seats on airplanes is only allowed if they are approved by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

You can check this easily enough with the FAA website, which lists all of the approved infant and child car seats for air travel. Once you have checked that your model is FAA-approved, you can fit it into an airplane seat.

Overall, it is not recommended to travel with an infant in a car seat on an airplane, as the seat belts provided are often not designed for use with car seats. If you decide to travel with a car seat, ensure that it is FAA-approved and that you have taken all necessary safety precautions.

What Will You Need?

Before you can get started, a few items will come in very handy when fitting your car seat into the airplane seat.

1. A CARES Harness: This is a strap that attaches to the back of an airplane seat and provides extra support for the car seat. It’s important to note that not all airlines provide these straps, so you’ll need to check with the airline beforehand.

2. A Car Seat Bag: This can help protect your car seat during the flight and also make it easier to carry through the airport.

3. An Adjustable Seat Belt Extension: If you find that the airplane seat belt is too short, you can use an adjustable seat belt extension to help make sure that the car seat fits securely in place.

Now that we’ve gone over what items you’ll need for this task let’s go over how to do it.

10 Easy Steps on How to Put a Carseat in an Airplane Seat

Place the Carseat Bag Onto the Airplane Seat

Step 1. Place the Carseat Bag:

Place the carseat bag onto the airplane seat. This will help protect the seat from any damage as you secure the carseat. Additionally, it can also help make carrying the carseat easier.

Step 2. Secure the CARES Harness:

If your airline provides a CARES harness, make sure to attach it to the back of the airplane seat. Secure it firmly so that it won’t move or come undone during the flight. You can skip this step if your airline does not provide a CARES harness.

Step 3. Place the Carseat:

Place your carseat into the seat and ensure that it fits securely within the bag and is properly positioned on the CARES harness (if applicable). Be careful not to put too much pressure on the seat cushion itself. As a general rule of thumb, you should be able to fit two fingers underneath the car seat when it is properly secured.

Step 4. Unbuckle Seatbelt Extension:

If you have an adjustable seat belt extension, unbuckle it from its holder and begin threading through your car seat’s safety belt straps. Practicing this step before you get to the airport will be a good idea, as it can be tricky to do in a confined space. As you thread the belt through, make sure that it is taut and properly secured.

Step 5. Insert Seatbelt Extension:

Once you’ve threaded both straps through, insert them into their respective holders in the airline seatbelt extension buckle. Make sure to double-check that the straps are properly secured and that they don’t move around when you pull on them. Additionally, be sure to check that the carseat is properly positioned within the airplane seat.

Step 6. Fasten Seatbelt Extension:

Insert Holders in the Airline Seatbelt Extension Buckle

Lastly, fasten the seatbelt extension back into its holder. Ensure that it is firmly in place so your carseat won’t move or come loose during the flight. You can also double-check that the seatbelt extension is securely fastened by pulling on it gently.

Step 7. Test It Out:

At this point, it’s a good idea to test out your setup before you get on the airplane. Ask someone nearby to give it a tug to ensure everything is securely in place. If it moves, you’ll need to go back and double-check the straps and seatbelt extension.

Step 8. Lock The Carseat:

Once you’ve tested out your setup, be sure to lock the carseat into place. This will ensure that your carseat won’t move or come undone during the flight. Use the carseat’s locking straps, if applicable.

Step 9. Stow Carseat Bag:

Now that the car seat is securely in place, you can stow the car seat bag away in an overhead bin or a seatback pocket (if available). Check with the airline regarding their policies for storing carseat bags during the flight. Ensure that the bag is properly secured and won’t cause any disruption during the flight.

Step 10. Board The Plane:

You’re all set! Now you can board the plane with confidence, knowing that your carseat is safely secured in its seat and ready for takeoff! Always double-check your setup before taking off and ensure your carseat is securely in place.

We hope this guide was helpful when it comes to an understanding how to put a carseat in an airplane seat. With the right preparation and planning, fitting a car seat into an airline seat doesn’t have to be daunting.

 You Can Stow the Car Seat Bag

5 Additional Tips and Tricks

1. Don’t forget to bring the LATCH belt. The LATCH belt is essential for securing a carseat in an airplane seat, so ensure you have one before boarding.

2. Make sure your carseat is FAA approved. It’s important that your car seat has been tested and approved by the Federal Aviation Administration for air travel.

3. Double check the seat belt installation. Before you board the plane, take a minute to double-check check your carseat is securely installed with the airplane seatbelt and that it’s properly tightened.

4. Check with the airline beforehand. Different airlines may have different policies on how to install a car seat in an airplane, so it’s important to call ahead and confirm their exact procedures before boarding.

5. Pack light when traveling with kids. When flying with kids already strapped in their car seats, try to keep your luggage light by packing only essential items into one bag – this will help make your flight smoother and less stressful.

By following these tips and tricks, you can easily and safely install a carseat in an airplane seat. With the proper precautions, traveling with kids can be a breeze!

 Don’t Forget to Bring the Latch Belt

5 Things You Should Avoid

1. Don’t try to use the carseat as a booster seat. The car seat is designed for safety and should not be used as a booster seat or in any other way than intended.

2. Avoid using an expired or outdated carseat. Always check the expiration date on your car seat before flying, and make sure that it’s up-to-date and still safe to use.

3. Don’t let children unassisted in their seats during takeoff and landing. It’s important to keep all passengers securely fastened in their seats and their seatbelts fastened during takeoff and landing, including children, strapped into car seats.

4. Don’t ignore airline rules and regulations when installing car seats. It’s important that you follow the specific instructions of your airline when installing a carseat in an airplane seat.

5. Don’t ignore signs of discomfort from kids in their car seats. If your child seems uncomfortable in their car seat, take them out and try to make them more comfortable before continuing on with the flight.

By avoiding these mistakes, you can ensure a safe and peaceful journey for both yourself and 

your kids!

What Are the Difficulties You Can Face When Putting a Carseat in an Airplane Seat?

1. Finding the Right Type of Car Seat for Airplane Travel: Not all car seats are approved for airplane travel, so it’s important to research and find the right type of car seat that meets the criteria for air travel.

2. Securing the Car Seat Securely in Its Seat: Installing a car seat securely in an airplane seat can be tricky, so make sure you double check your setup before taking off.

3. Fitting Large Carseats Into Small Airline Seats: Large carseats may not fit properly into the smaller airline seats, making it difficult to secure them properly.

4. Not Enough Space in Overhead Compartments or Seatback Pockets: Depending on the size of your car seat bag and the number of passengers flying, there may not be enough room to store your car seat bag in the overhead compartments or seatback pockets.

5. Dealing With Airline Policies and Regulations When Traveling With Kids: Different airlines have different policies on how to install car seats, so make sure to check with them beforehand to ensure you’re following their specific instructions.

Don't Try to Use the Car Seat as a Booster Seat

By familiarizing yourself with these difficulties and understanding your challenges, you can be better prepared for installing a car seat in an airplane seat!


To conclude, flying with a car seat can be daunting but can be made less stressful by following the tips provided in this article. Before you plan your next flight, double-check the policies of the FAA and your chosen airline. Then purchase any needed equipment, practice buckling your car seat down at home if possible, and make sure to arrive early at the airport. If you follow all these steps, you can have peace of mind knowing that you’ll arrive safely and securely at your destination.

Furthermore, with extra patience and understanding from yourself and others around you, traveling with a car seat shouldn’t be a stressful experience. After all, our children deserve the best when it comes to safety and comfort!

Hopefully, the article on how to put a carseat in an airplane seat has provided you with the information to make your next flight safe and enjoyable. Thanks for taking the time to learn about how to safely transport an infant or child onboard an airplane using a car seat.

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Loren Jones

Hi, my name is Loren. I live with my husband and 4 lovely kiddos in the Eastern part of San-fransisco. I have a smart beautiful,curious 6 year old daughter, a handsome 11-year-old son, an intelligent and tech geek 15 years old son and a creative, artistic 12-year-old stepson. With each of my kids being five years apart, I feel that I’m now continually phasing in and out of each stage of parenting! I’ve learned a lot about the way children learn and behave, especially in a school setting with regards to curriculum. I enjoy sharing that insight through my writing and hope that it can help others.

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