Can style and safety really meet in the world of infant car seats?
Making the right decision on which infant car seat will work for your family is a tough call. It’s helps to break down your requirement into a list like convenience, comfort, safety, design to see what checks off. Baby Jogger City GO™ infant car seat took notes and pretty much aced a lot of such lists. The design is what caught my attention but it’s really the listed features that won my seal of approval!
The City GO™ is recommended for newborns 4lbs till up to 35lb and 32″ height. Age wise they recommend 2 years. In fact the American Association of Pediatrics all infants and toddlers should be kept in a rear-facing seat until they are 2 years or more. Or in some cases until they reach the height and weight requirement of the car seat manufacturer.
Why this infant seat tugs at so many hearts
Urban, hip design
You know when you’re pregnant and you have these visions of being an uber chic mom who will be perfect all the time? The kind that seems stepped right out of a magazine? That’s the kind of feeling the City Go™ gave me. It’s got this stylish with a downtown kind of an urban vibe going on.
At first glance, it gives the look and feel of a high end luxury car seat. When you look again it’s still ultra sleek, modern and beautifully designed.
(Bonus: Our Best Infant Car Seat article has more car seats with gorgeous infant car seat covers!)
The only issue I see is the placement of the warning labels. It’s right by the headrest. Smack in front. It would have been nicer to have it further down or even on the side of the seat. Anywhere but where it is right now really.
So if you’re planning on taking pictures of your little cutie in the car seat, I suggest putting a blanket under the baby. Just for the picture of course, after that remove the blanket and strap the baby in. Otherwise make use of those photoshop skills if you can!
Dimension wise it’s closer to the Graco Snug Ride and roughly along the lines of the industry average. With an added infant weight, it tends to get heavy in any case.
Headrest with a snug fit
The other feature that made me do a double take was the headrest. A total OMG moment. It’s amazing! It would have saved the floppy head problem my newborn had. Which was the main reason I sat in the back seat for so many months, unless I was driving.
It’s soft and ‘cushiony’ with just the right amount of support for your little one whose head is still unsupported by that cute little neck. It helps get a snug enough fit from a new born to a toddler. You can easily adjust the headrest. Once your child is older you can snap it off to allow for more head room.
My daughter is on the petite side so the snug fit headrest would have lasted a while. Taller babies may outgrow this fairly quickly. Best to take a look at how the removable headrest adjustment works before making your decision to get this.
No re-thread harness
It also has a no re-thread harness which is a fantastic addition for the 5-point harness. As a parent you will most certainly be adjusting the harness as your baby grows. Most car seats make you remove the harness belt and loop it in the the required level for adjustment. It’s not as easy as it sounds and tends to get incredibly frustrating.
I’ve gone through the pain of adjusting my daughter’s harness multiple times and it’s not fun. Nope. A typical scenario with that was: You take out the belt, hope the loop you chose will work out fine. Insert it in the wrong loop a couple times and 2 hours later you’ve adjusted the harness.
Not many car seats offer this yet so it’s a huge savior in my opinion. Just for this specific benefit, I would have spent the extra money.
Watch: CityGo Features
Build your own travel system (BYOTS)
The notion is that you purchase the car seat and then choose from the variety of compatible strollers that you like. That way you are not stuck with just the one type of stroller that comes as part of the travel system.
Currently the City GO™ is compatible with Graco Click Connect and all Baby Jogger strollers. So that means if you already own one of those strollers you just add on the City GO™ and built your very own travel system.
There is a catch though, you will need to purchase a separate car seat adapter that will allow the car seat to get “attached” to the stroller. I’m not so sure if I love this concept in its entirety, unless they come up with adapters for other popular strollers. Then it’s a game changer.
Taxi safe belt path
Also known as the European belt path routing. Essentially this means you can travel around without carrying the base since it’s quick and easy to install in any car. The more I’ve researched this, the more I’m loving this feature.
It uses the lap/shoulder belt to wrap around the car seat. In case there is a crash, this method will help in distributing the impact towards the backside of the seat (note this is only for rear-facing car seats).
In addition, it may also help reduce the chances of the car seat hitting the back of the front seats. Do remember, if you’re using the base then you don’t need to use the taxi-safe belt path.
For city dwellers this will certainly be a bonus. More so if you travel often; this makes getting in and out of the taxi (or any other such service) easier and effortless.
If you plan on using the base around town or in a rental car while traveling, then that works too as it has 6 adjustable positions. Which essentially means it can help fit the seat better in any car. (The bubble indicator shows if it’s installed correctly or not)
Standard safety features
Safety wise City GO™ is pretty run of the mill. It passed the required US standard FMVSS 213 (child restraint test) and has been side impact tested. It’s also equipped with a 5-point harness system.
Everything is within the industry standard. Having the taxi belt path is a bonus but not a long term safety measure, since in your own car you would be using the base. Overall a safe car seat, nothing distinctive though.City GO™ received a 4 star rating (above average) from National Highway Traffic Safety Administration(NHTSA) for its overall ease of use.
Sun protection throughout the ride
The UV 50+ canopy protection is awesome, especially if you’re living in a warmer climate. Knowing you can’t start using a sun block right away for younger children, any barrier against the sun is a score in my book.
The other cool thing about the canopy is that it even has space to hang stroller toys so your little once can stay entertained. And size wise it’s on the larger side of canopies. Yes!
However while opening and closing the canopy, it tends to make some rustling sounds which isn’t helpful if the baby is about to fall asleep. Also, the canopy is not as breathable as intended so there’s a chance the little one will be sweating inside.
It’s certainly one of the up and coming car seats in the market. Here’s what other people think of the Baby Jogger City GO™. These are some of the highest ratings out there for any car seat:
4.9 Stars, 67 Reviews – Kohls.com
4.8 Stars, 67 Reviews – Target.com
4.7 Stars, 80 Reviews – Buybuybaby.com
Great fit on the headrest
No re-thread harness
Taxi belt path
Large UV 50+ canopy
Ability to adapt to any Baby Jogger stroller
Restrictive stroller brands adapters
Headrest label position
In all honesty, I find the City GO™ to be a slightly fancier more expensive version of a Graco Snug Ride. Safety-wise there is no breakthrough from Baby Jogger either. Nor am I a fan of the CYOTS but it’ll work for those who already have a compatible stroller.
Having said that, the extras (upgrades, attributes whatever you may call it) they are way up there in my list of decision making. Especially the the newborn fit headrest, the no re-thread harness and the easy to use taxi belt path. They will make your life easier for certain. If you’ve gone through the pain then you know what I’m talking about.
To sum it up, if you decide to get the Baby Jogger City GO™, you’re definitely only going to be paying for the extra convenience features. And I say these parent-friendly benefits are definitely worth the investment.