CARES – Child Aviation Restraint System

CARES is an acronym for Child Aviation Restraint System. Invented for the purpose of safe flying, CARES is a PTPA award-winning harness-type safety device made by the company Kids Fly Safe. It can be used for toddlers over the age of 1 and between 22-44 lbs. Instead of lugging a bulky, heavy car seat onto the plane, CARES replaces that need while still providing the safety of a car seat as approved and certified by the FAA. CARES weighs about 1 lb and fits into its own 6 inch carry bag – perfect for travelling light! It is easy to install (comes with a DVD for instructions to install) – only takes a few minutes and can be installed onto any airplane seat, utilizing the existing lap belt and a red strap that goes around the back of the seat. CARES is made of the same material as a seat belt and the straps are all adjustable to fit your child. Your child can easily come out of the harness without uninstalling the harness all together. Simply unbuckle the lap belt and the chest buckle and they come out and do the opposite to strap them in again.

The few downsides of CARES is the sticker price – $74.99  – if you travel often then it may be worth your money and effort to keep your child in their seat. In addition, if you do not pre-board then you have to interact with the person sitting behind you to properly to install CARES onto the seat.

Watch the video on the Kids Fly Safe website for instructions on installation and step-by-step instructions.

When travelling if the flight attendant is not familiar with CARES, they may not approve of you using it. Simply show the the FAA approved tag on the restraint system or take the papers that come with the system which are printed copies from the FAA website and show those papers to the flight attendants.