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Best Child (& Baby) Bike Seats

Jeff Balton

Best Bike Child Seats

Being a parent does not mean you have to stop cycling. If you get the right child bike seat that fits you, your bike, and your child, you can continue having fun, exercising, or running errands. Before we show you our favorite 11 child and baby bike seats, let’s take a look at the four main types we sorted them into:

Front Mounted — This type mounts at the front of the bike, near the handlebars and is suitable for smaller kids, up to 2 years of age. The benefit is that you can see your child at all times, but these seats are usually smaller than other types.

Front Mounted – Saddle — This is basically an additional saddle that mounts on the top tube. It’s suitable for younger or shorter kids that are sufficiently strong to hold themselves by the handlebar.

Rear Mounted — This type turns kids into passengers instead of riders. Rear-mounted seats are suitable for older and taller kids, but parents cannot keep an eye on them.

Rear Mounted – Rack — Mounts to the rear rack of the bike and is suitable for older and taller kids. Similar to frame rear-mounted seats.

 

How to choose? Read here: How To Choose Child (And Baby) Bike Seats


BEST FRONT MOUNTED BIKE SEATS


#1: Thule Yepp Mini

Best in Class! Kids’ Bicycle Seat with Best Accessories

Thule Yepp Mini

 

MSRP $199.95

AGE / WEIGHT: 9 months – 3 years | Up to 33 lbs

INCHES TO MOUNT: 0.8 to 1.1 inches

FEATURES: Adjustable foot straps, comfortable soft handle, lockable quick-release adapter

ACCESSORIES: Sleeping roll, windscreen, handlebar padding, additional shoulder pads and foot straps

 

Thule Yepp Mini is one of the best child bike seats on the market. It’s suitable for most bikes out there because it attaches directly to your bike’s headset. It’s compatible with both threaded and threadless headsets.

This toddler seat is suitable for kids between 9 months and 3 years of age thanks to adjustable foot rests and straps. The foot rests can be lowered or raised to accommodate the child’s leg length.

Yepp Mini will keep your child 100% safe thanks to a padded 5-point harness system that’s adjustable and easy to attach. The foot rests also feature straps that keep the feets safe as well.

This seat has its own handlebar that the kid can use to hold and rest their hands on. Additional handlebar padding can be bought as an accessory to make the handlebar more comfortable and more appealing.

The seat is soft, absorbs vibrations, and repels water, so you can ride on different types of terrains and in all types of weather.

 

Our verdict: Doesn’t fit on MTBs with front suspension but has most legroom compared to the other types.

 

#2: iBert

Best Toddler Seat

iBert Child Seat

 

MSRP $120

AGE / WEIGHT: 1 – 3 years old | Up to 38 lbs

INCHES TO MOUNT: 3/4″

FEATURES: Center-mounted, rust-resistant materials, easy to install, three colors, two years warranty

ACCESSORIES: Seat belt, steering wheel, leg support

 

iBert is one of the cheapest child bike saddles around! However, for around $120, you’re getting a lot in terms of safety, comfort, and overall durability.

This bike saddle is recommended for children aged between 1 and 3, weighing up to 38 lbs. The footrests are not adjustable, but they are comfy and provide excellent support.

A heavy-duty strap system is easy to lock and will keep your child firmly in place. The backrest is not too tall, but it’s tall enough to lean back comfortably and support the spine.

One of the fun features on the iBert child saddle is that it comes with its own steering wheel. As you ride, your child can participate in the ride by turning the padded wheel.

This child bike seat is available in three colors — green, pink, and red — and is super-easy to install. You’ll be ready to go for a ride minutes after receiving it.

 

Our verdict: The iBert toddler seat is affordable and easy to install, but its lack of adjustability might not make it a good fit for very tall children.

 

#3: Innolife Baby Bicycle Seat

Kids’ Bicycle Seat w/ Highest Weight Limit

Innolife Baby Bike Seat

 

MSRP $105

AGE / WEIGHT: 8 months to 4 years | Up to 110 lbs

INCHES TO MOUNT: N/A

FEATURES: Front-mounted, adjustable footrests, great comfort and safety features

ACCESSORIES: Handlebar, additional padding, safety straps

 

Innolife is a small and compact toddler seat that gets the job done. It mounts to both normal and ahead stems thanks to a universal clamp mount that’s ridiculously easy to install.

You can mount this baby carrier seat on most types of bicycles, including folding bicycles, city shared bikes, mountain bikes, road bikes and electric bikes with front beam.

Like other best child seats, Innolife has adjustable footrests as well. They go up and down quite a bit, so you can ride very short or very tall kids.

A padded 3-point harness system is comfortable and safe and can easily be adjusted by pulling its straps. The safety buckle is childproof, so children will not be able to open it on purpose or accidentally.

Even though Innolife is not very big, it offers a premium experience for everyone.

 

Our verdict: Innolife toddler seat has a sturdy build and comfortable seat, but offers less room compared to competitors.

 


BEST SADDLE BIKE SEATS


#1: Mac Ride

Best in Class! Best Mountain Bike Seat

Mac Ride Child Bike Seat

MSRP $229

AGE / WEIGHT: 2 – 5 years

INCHES TO MOUNT: 0″ (Threadless)

FEATURES: Quick installation, comfortable saddle shape, adjustable foot rests, can be used with dropper posts and full-suspension bikes

ACCESSORIES: None

 

If you’re riding a mountain bike, the Mac Ride child bike saddle is what you’re looking for. This mountain bike seat can be mounted on most bikes out there thanks to a special adapter that attaches to the stem and the seat post.

You can use Mac Ride even if you have a dropper post or a full-suspension bike and take your kid on an adventure. The installation takes a minute at most, so anyone can do it.

A good thing to note is that Mac Ride is a toddler seat that can be used for a long time because it grows with your kids. The seat and the foot rests can both be adjusted, so you can easily find the perfect fit for your kid.

This mini bike seat is pretty comfortable and offers lots of support, but kids will have to hold firmly by the handlebar because there are no straps that would offer them additional support.

 

Our verdict: Mac Ride is easy to mount and dismount on most types of mountain bikes, but does not have any safety straps.

 

#2: Shotgun Kids Bike Seat

Mini Bike Seat w/ Versatile Design

Shotgun Kids bike seat

MSRP $150

AGE / WEIGHT: 2 – 5 years | Up to 48 lbs

INCHES TO MOUNT: Top tubes: 35mm to 68mm; Downtubes: 35mm to 100mm

FEATURES: Adjustable angle, quick release levers, grippy foot rests, rubber protection

ACCESSORIES: Kids’ handlebar

 

The Shotgun Kids’ Mini Bike Seat is one of the simplest and cheapest, yet most versatile models on our list. This is one of the best front mounted child bike seat that allows you to take your kid along, no matter what type of bicycle you’re riding.

The Shotgun bike seat is extremely easy to install, thanks to quick-release levers. All points where the saddle comes in contact with the frame are coated in rubber, so you can mount it on steel, aluminum, and even carbon bikes. They won’t get damaged.

This kids’ bicycle seat works for bikes with top tubes between 35 mm and 68 mm in width and downtubes between 35 mm and 100 mm in width. Thus, it can be used as a mountain bike seat as it can even fit on full-suspension bikes.

The seat itself is very comfortable, and the foot rests are grippy, so your kid’s feet will not slide around.

 

Our verdict: The Shotgun Kids Bike Seat is easy to install and compatible with different types of bikes, but a lack of straps make it suitable for older children who can firmly grip the handlebar.

 


REAR (FRAME & POST) BIKE SEATS


#1: Thule RideAlong

Best in Class! Best Kids’ Bicycle Seat for Longer Rides

Thule RideAlong bike seat

MSRP $249.95 – $279.95

AGE / WEIGHT: 9 months – 6 years | Up to 48.5 lbs

INCHES TO MOUNT: Round frames: 27.2-40mm; Oval frames: 40x55mm

FEATURES: Three-point safety harness, suspension system, reclining seats, built-in reflector, foot rests

ACCESSORIES: Rear light

 

Thule RideAlong is a premium rear child bike seat that mounts to a large variety of bikes and comes with numerous handy features. This toddler seat is suitable for mountain bikes, city bikes, and even road bikes thanks to a special Thule adapter.

If you want your child to have the most comfort possible on bike rides, Thule RideAlong will provide it. The seat is covered in soft padding that is removable and can be easily washed.

A three-point safety harness is adjustable in length and will keep you child safe on every ride. This baby bicycle seat also reclines in five positions (up to 20 degrees), which makes on-the-go naps possible, and comes with a suspension system.

Thule RideAlong is suitable for kids between 9 months and 6 years thanks to adjustable foot rests that you can modify with just one hand.

So if you want the best in terms of comfort and ride compatibility, this Thule baby bike seat is a worthy investment.

 

Our verdict: Thule RideAlong is made of durable and quality materials, it offers the most comfort out there, and kids can easily pull their feet out of the foot straps. It’s a great mountain bike seat suitable for other types of bikes as well.

 

#2: Burley Dash X FM

Best High-end Bike Seat

Burley Dash X FM

 

MSRP $190

AGE / WEIGHT: From 12 months up to 40 lbs.

INCHES TO MOUNT: Mounts on frame tubing range from 28mm to 40mm in diameter

FEATURES: Very lightweight, 5-point safety buckle, shoulder and neck support, secure mounting

ACCESSORIES: Reclining seat, adjustable position, rear storage, armrests, footrests w/ foot straps

 

Burley Dash X FM is one of the most expensive toddler bike seats on this list, but don’t dismiss it yet. It will meet and exceed your expectations if you’re looking for a feature-packed baby carrier seat that’s easy to mount and use.

It is made of high-quality and durable materials that absorb shocks and provide decent support for the body. Both the seat and the padding can easily be washed. The saddle is reclinable and adjustable in three positions.

Burley Dash X FM provides great ventilation and has high armrests that will contain your child snuggly during long or bumpy rides. A five-point harness will help here as well. It also comes with adjustable footrests with foot straps and an easy-to-use mounting system.

All of these features definitely make this Burley child seat a good investment.

 

Our verdict: Burley Dash X FM offers excellent quality and durability for the money. It’s easy to mount and use, and it is packed with features. However, the padding could be slightly thicker to provide better support.

 

#3: Thule Yepp Maxi

Best Bike Seat for Short Rides

Thule Yepp Maxi baby bike seat

MSRP $279.95

AGE / WEIGHT: 9 months to 6 years | Up to 48.5 lbs

INCHES TO MOUNT: 4.5″ on the seat tube

FEATURES: 5-point harness, excellent ventilation, adjustable foot rests

ACCESSORIES: Rear light

 

Thule Yepp Maxi is a simple, yet incredibly practical bicycle child seat. It’s made of durable and soft plastic that will last for a long time and ensure a comfy ride. 

This toddler seat does not come with any padding, so it’s most suitable for summer rides and very warm and humid climates. If your child gets too hot on rides, this is a good solution.

Yepp Maxi has some safety features as well, such as a heavy-duty 5-point strap system and a built-in reflector. You can purchase a rear light as well, to improve the visibility even more.

However, the straps do not have any padding, so they might slide down more easily than on some other baby carrier seats. Make sure to adjust them properly.

Thule Yepp Maxi easily attaches to your bike’s frame and has a maximum weight capacity of 48.5 lbs. 

 

Our verdict: Thule Yepp Maxi is practical, lightweight, and very well ventilated. However, it does not come with any padding, so it leaves something to be desired in terms of comfort.

 


BEST REAR RACK BIKE SEATS


#1: Hamax Caress

Best in Class! Kids’ Bike Seat w/ Best Features

Hamax Caress child bike seat

MSRP $179

AGE / WEIGHT: 9 months and older | Up to 48.5 lbs

INCHES TO MOUNT: Fits cargo/rack carriers 120-180mm

FEATURES: Anti-theft locks, dual-spring suspension, reclining seat, quick-release levers

ACCESSORIES: None

 

Hamax Caress is absolutely packed to the brim with advanced features that can not be found on many other kids’ bike seats.

If you want to get the best in terms of comfort and adjustability that a baby bike seat can offer, then Hamax Caress will surprise you.

Some of its biggest selling-points include a built-in dual-spring suspension system that absorbs vibrations and shocks, reclining seats, and height-adjustable backrest padding.

Hamax Caress has safety straps lined in soft foam that prevents them from sliding or falling off kids’ shoulders. The foot rests are adjustable as well and have foot straps that add to the safety.

Hamax also equipped the Caress bike child carrier with anti-theft locks, so nobody will be able to take it off your bike without the keys.

If comfort, practicality, and adaptability are big requirements for you, Hamax Caress is an investment you’ll be happy with.

 

Our verdict: Hamax Caress offers fantastic comfort and safety features, but can prove to be slightly challenging to fit on certain bikes.

 

#2: Thule Yepp Maxi

Best Rack-Mounted for Summer

Thule Yepp Maxi rack-mounted bike seat

MSRP $249.95

AGE / WEIGHT: 9 months to 6 years | Up to 48.5 lbs

INCHES TO MOUNT: N/A

FEATURES: Easy mounting on the rack, 5-point harness, superior visibility, adjustable foot rests and foot straps

ACCESSORIES: Rear light

 

Thule Yepp Maxi rack-mounted is the same baby carrier seat as the rear frame-mounted version we’ve already written above. It has all of the same comfort and safety features but costs $30 less.

If the dimensions of your bike frame do not allow you to attach the Yepp Maxi frame directly to the seat tube, you can easily mount it on your rear rack.

You can switch it between bikes in a matter of minutes and take your kids on short or long rides.

If you want to provide both yourself and your kid with a premium experience when it comes to using a child bike seat, Thule Yepp Maxi will not disappoint you.

 

Our verdict: Thule Yepp Maxi can be mounted on a large variety of rear racks and features plenty of safety properties. Its lack of side supports makes it less suitable for long rides.

 

#3: Bellelli Pepe Rack

Best Budget Mini Bike Seat

Bellelli Pepe rack mounted

MSRP $80

AGE / WEIGHT: 1 to 7 years | Up to 50 lbs

INCHES TO MOUNT: N/A

FEATURES: Lightweight design and materials, three-point safety straps, secure mounting mechanism, shoulder and neck support

ACCESSORIES: None

 

Bellelli Pepe rack-mounted toddler bike seat is one of the cheapest and the best you can find in this price range. We’ve already written in detail about its features above, in the Rear Frame section.

This baby carrier seat boasts excellent side and back support, a three-point harness system, comfortable padding, and adjustable footrests and foot straps.

If you cannot install a frame-mounted version on your bike, then this rack-mounted variation is an excellent solution. It’s a breeze to mount it and dismount it, so you will not struggle even if it is your first time.

For just $80, it’s hard to find another seat that gives you the same amount of customizations and comfort.

 

Our verdict: Bellelli Pepe easily mounts on all types and sizes of rear racks. It is pretty lightweight, so it will not affect the balance of your bike. We love all the customizable features, but its padding can be a bit thicker.

Didn’t find what you were looking for? Take a look at our top bike trailer picks.

 


FAQ

Frequently asked questionsAt what age can children use bike seats?

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, children younger than 12 months should not be transported in a bike seat. That’s because their muscles and bones are still not sufficiently developed before that age and they could easily sustain serious injury from road vibrations or in a crash.

What is the safest bike seat for a toddler?

The safest bike seat for a toddle is one that has the most safety features, mounts securely, and provides good support for the kid’s head and body. Some manufacturers that we recommend include Thule, Hamax, and Burley. However, there are many others that you can choose from on our list.

Are child bike seats safe?

Well-made child bike seats are safe to use. There are some inherent risks that come with this type of transportation, but they are not caused by the bike seat itself. High-quality child seats have numerous safety features, such as 5-point harnesses, foot straps, body and neck support, and so on.

What should I look for in a bike seat for a child?

When choosing which bike seat to buy for your child, you need to consider the type of bike you have and where you plan to mount the seat. Next, consider how big your child is and make sure they can fit in the saddle. After that, determine your budget and try to get the best features for the money.

Does a child in a carrier seat have to wear a bike helmet?

Yes, the child should always wear a helmet when being transported in a bike seat. If the bike crashes for whatever reason, the child can potentially sustain serious head injuries, which can easily be prevented with a bike helmet. Children can wear bike helmets as soon as they are 1 year old.

 

Where to Shop?

If you’re thinking about buying a bike seat to take your kids along on your rides, these are the best online retailers:

 

Bottom Line

As you can see, becoming a parent does not mean that you have to cut down on your cycling. Child bike seats are not an expensive investment, but they allow you to spend more time in the saddle and take your kid along on adventures.

All of the baby bike seats we reviewed in this article are of high quality and will last you a long time. However, make sure to choose the one that suits your bike and meets any other requirements.

And lastly, don’t forget to wear a helmet!

4 Comments

  • Daniel Norton says:

    I just bought & installed a Yepp Mini on my Fuji cross bike with drop-set bars. My fork is carbon (frame is Alu) but there is an inner lug in the area where the Thule adapter is fastened, so I feel better about the stress on this part.

    After one test ride I can say that my two year old son loves it. Absolutely loves it. I got used to having him there pretty quickly and was happy with how reachable the brakes/gears remain. Mounting & dismounting is also pretty smooth (I use basic MTB pedals). Overall a really cool experience for us both.

    I will keep our speed pretty low and won‘t go off road / rough gravel with him riding along. For paved bike trail rides and daycare pickup and drop-offs it looks to be a great product.

    • Jeff Balton says:

      Hi Daniel,
      That is good to know. Also keep your tire pressure on the low side for a smoother ride 😉

  • Caitlin Walsh Miller says:

    Hi Jeff,

    Thanks for the excellent post. I have a 2000ish Devinci road bike with an aluminum frame, and I would desperately like to find a front-mounted baby seat that’s suitable for my bike, if such a thing exists. The photo at the top of this article seems to show the Thule Yepp Mini on a road bike. Does that seat work for a road bike? If not, do you know of any front-mounted seats that do?

    • Jeff Balton says:

      Hi Caitlin,

      Yes that one on top is a front-mounted baby seat. They work for both mountain bike and road bike.

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