Childseats – does my child need one?

Child Seating

 

Traveling with children?

Check through our guidelines for the child seating regulations in place according to Costa Rican law—you may be surprised!
 
Make sure that your car rental agency is aware of the children in your party that require seating. Car rental agencies provide child and booster seats, usually at a daily fee, but these should be reserved at the time of rental confirmation, especially if arriving in high season.

Child seating regulations based on age, weight and height
Type of Seat Group Age Weight Height
Baby seat 0* 0 months to one year Less than 10 kg/22 lbs. Up to 75 cm/2.5 feet.
0+ Less than 13 kg/29 lbs.
Child seat I 1-4 years Between 9 and 18 kg/20 and 40 lbs. Between 75 and 110 cm/2.5 and 3.6 feet.
Booster seat (with back) II 4-6 years Between 15 and 25 kg/33 and 55 lbs. Between 110 and 145 cm/3.6 feet and 4.8 feet.
Booster III 6-12 years Between 22 and 36 kg/49 and 79 lbs.

*0 is the smallest size but isn’t frequently used, as the 0+ is also rear-facing but can be used until the infant is older and heavier.

Calculating the correct child seat is based on three factors: age, height and weight of the child. This may appear confusing but the Ministry of Transport and Public Works confirms that the most important of these is the height of the child. Regulations stipulate that to travel without any type of seating, the child must be tall enough for their feet to touch the floor of the vehicle and for the seat belt to secure across the chest.

 

The following examples should clarify how to use the chart above:

Age Weight Height Type of seating
13 months 29 lbs 2.3 feet Baby seat
10 years 63 lbs 5 feet No child seating required
5 years 45 lbs 4 feet Booster with back
3 years 36 lbs 3.4 feet Child seat

 

Note that child seating cannot be used in the front seat of a vehicle. A child may only sit in the front passenger seat at the age of 12 or older.

 

Seat placement

There are clear legal guidelines for the organization of child seating. The baby seat should be fitted into the center of the back seat. A child seat should be fitted behind the passenger seat, and in the case of three children, the biggest child should have their seating fitted behind the driver.

 

Bring your own child seating

Airlines permit that customers travel with child seating, although this is obviously bulky. Check that the child seating used by your children in your home country conforms to Costa Rican regulations.