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Best Bike Seats for Toddlers and Preschoolers

Updated April 2018

One of my favorite cheap thrills in life is to ride my kids around on my bike. Bike riding is a great way to get exercise, not to mention a wonderful diversion for infants and toddlers. It’s also an exciting way of getting from A to B, especially if your babes hate being in their car seats as much as mine do.

Best Bike Seats for Toddlers and Preschoolers

“Front of the Bike” Seats:

WeeRide Kangaroo LTD ~ $71: Comfortable, affordable padded “front bike seat” with 5-point harness that works up to 33 lbs.

iBert Safe-T-Seat ~ $107: Easy-to-install, holds kids up to 38 lbs; but not very tall or supportive, lacks a 5-point harness.

Yepp Mini ~ $159: Top of the line front bike seat that’s comfy, lightweight, and easy to clean; has 5-point harness.

 

Rear Mounted Seats:

Hamax Caress Child Bike Seat ~ $159/$169: Easily installed rear mounted seat with recline, adjustable footrest, a non-rethread harness, and suspension for a smooth ride. Padding is very firm.

Topeak BabySeat II ~ $179: Comfy seat with padding, rear reflectors, and a roll bar (aka carrying handle) for added safety; not as easy to switch between bikes as the Hamax; for bikes without a rear rack.

Yepp Maxi Easyfit (Rack-Mounted) ~ $199, and Yepp Maxi (Frame-Mounted) ~ $229 ($199 on sale): Highly rated, easily installed seat with shock absorption, 5-point harness, and adjustable foot rest; easy to clean (because it has no padding), but lacks a non-rethread harness.

The Thule RideAlong Child Bike Seat ~ $229: Super highly rated seat loaded with parent/kid-friendly features, including a recline, padding, extra protective arm rests, and padded non-rethread harness. Note: not recommended for use on bikes with wires on the seat tube.

Best Bike Seats for Toddlers and Preschoolers: ibert - alice

Alice in the iBert

“Front of the Bike” Seats

Made specially for the smallest of humans (10 months to 3 or 4 years, give or take), “front” bike seats allow a closer interaction between rider and child, as opposed to having your little one behind you where you can’t see her without turning around (turning around while biking = bad idea).

With a front seat, your arms are wrapped around your child in a very protective position. As an added bonus, they get to ding your bell. 😎

Front of the bike seats mount to the stem of your bike and are generally very easy to take on and off. However, because your baby’s center of gravity is over the front wheel, you’ll notice that steering becomes a little more tricky/cumbersome when you first start out, as you are now steering with your baby’s added weight. You may also need to spread your legs a little wider when you’re pedaling (frog-legged) to prevent your knees from knocking the bottom of the seat; however, this too becomes second nature after some practice.

Infant & Toddler Bike Seats

Best Bike Seats for Toddlers and Preschoolers: iBert T-Safe Child Carrier1. iBert Safe-T-Seat ~ $107 – Editor’s Pick

Age range: 1 – 4 years (up to 38 lbs, or until their legs are too long to fit)

We used the iBert when Lucie was a baby and continue to enjoy it for Alice. iBert recommends babies are at least 12 months of age, but many feel this is overly conservative (i.e., most 9 and 10-month-olds are well able to hold their heads up and support the weight of a helmet, etc.).

With a simple cotter pin that holds the bracket in place, this seat is super easy to install and/or switch from bike to bike and doesn’t require any other special parts.

On the downside, the back on this seat is not particularly tall or supportive, and it only has a 3-point shoulder harness (as opposed to 5).

On sale on Amazon for $99.

2. WeeRide Kangaroo LTD ~ $71

Best Bike Seats for Toddlers and Preschoolers: weerideAge range: 1 – 4 years (up to 33 lbs)

Arguably the most comfortable/padded front bike seat on the market, the WeeRide Kangaroo LTD is another favorite. Parents love the padded 5-point harness and the adjustable foot holders that grow with your toddler, although many report that 3 years is the max you can use this seat in reality, especially if your kiddo is on the tall side.

While not the sexiest option, this affordable seat gets the job done safely and comfortably.

Can be found on Amazon as well.

3. Yepp Mini ~ $159

Age range: 9 months to 3 years (up to 33 lbs)

Leave it to the bike-loving Dutch to engineer another favorite front seat, the Yepp Mini. This good-looking, lightweight bike seat is the grand poo-bah of front seats.

This seat features a water-resistant, flexible rubber foam seat that is comfy, shock-absorbing, and easy to clean. It has adjustable footrests that can be lowered as your child grows and unlike other bike seats, you can lock this one to your bike to prevent theft (yeah, cuz I live in Oakland, ya’ll). I’ve had every component you can imagine stolen off my bike while parked at the BART station, even my own seat!

With a 5-point safety harness and a selection of six lovely colors, the Yepp Mini is another top pick.

Best Bike Seats for Toddlers and Preschoolers: yepp mini

If your bike has a thicker “neck” or stem, as many American mountain bikes do, you’ll need to buy special bolts in order to install it on your bike. Read the Amazon and REI reviews for specifics.

Available on sale on Amazon for $119 (MSRP $150) or at REI.

Rear Mounted Bike Seats

For those with older kiddos who have outgrown (or are about to outgrow) the front position – or if you simply prefer a longer-lived bike seat, there are a couple of rear position bike seats that top the lists.

1. Hamax Caress Child Bike Seat ~ $159 for Frame Mount/$169 for Rack Mount

Best Bike Seats for Toddlers and Preschoolers

Hamax is a Norwegian company that’s been popular in Europe for years and has recently begun distributing its highly-rated bike seats in the U.S.

The Hamax Caress seat can hold children from 9 months up to 48.5 pounds. It comes with either a Frame Mount (which fits bike frames from 28-40mm) or a Rack Mount (which fits cargo racks from 120-180mm); both styles include an anti-theft lock.

Best Bike Seats for Toddlers and PreschoolersBest Bike Seats for Toddlers and Preschoolers

You can recline this seat up to 20 degrees with the simple twist of a dial. The upper back part of the seat is slightly recessed so as to to fit a child’s helmet comfortably. It also includes armrests and foot pedals with 10 different height options.

Best Bike Seats for Toddlers and Preschoolers

The seat feels durable, is fairly easy to install without any tools (for both the Frame and Rack Mounts), and has secure shoulder straps that adjust by the handle on the back of the seat— which means you don’t need to rethread the straps to adjust their height (see below).

Best Bike Seats for Toddlers and Preschoolers

The Hamax seat comes with two removable pieces of padding (which are on the firm side).

The childproof safety buckle, recline, backrest, footrest, and straps are all designed for single-hand use so you don’t have to let go of the bike to make adjustments. Both the Frame Mount and the Rack Mount styles have suspensions for a nice smooth ride.

*Note: the Frame Mounted Hamax seat will not work with most e-bikes or carbon frames. The Rack Mount with the carrier adapter secures to a carrier rack and can accommodate e-bikes, carbon, and non-standard frames (as long as they have a cargo or carrier rack already installed).

Best Bike Seats for Toddlers and Preschoolers

Best Bike Seats for Toddlers and Preschoolers: Topeak baby seat

2. Topeak BabySeat II ~ $179

Age range: 9 months and up (seat weight limit: 48 lbs/rack weight limit: 55 lbs)

Made for bikes without a rear rack, this well-liked seat has a wrap-around body, a rear reflector, a nice suspension system to isolate your kiddo from bumps, and a roll bar handle for better head security, which can also be used as a carrying handle.

I will say the installation of this seat took me the better part of an hour, and it’s not a seat you can easily switch from bike-to-bike. However, once installed, the mount rack allows for smooth mounting and removal via a slide lock, so I can easily remove the seat from my bike if I need to throw it into the car or onto my car’s bike rack.

Both Lucie and Alice like riding in this seat and fight over it constantly. Lucie is four years old and will probably fit in it for another year or so (not much more). Alice is two and fits perfectly and I can easily adjust the footrest height depending on which child is using it. (Ages at time of publishing)

This used to be a top pick, but since we first published this article, the Hamax and the Thule have come out and are definitely more highly rated. 

Best Bike Seats for Toddlers and Preschoolers: Four y/o Lucie in her Topeak II

 

Get the version for your bike: For wheels with disc brakes or for wheels with non disc brakes.

*Also available at local bike stores. Please support your local mom and pop stores!!

3. Yepp Maxi Easyfit (Rack-Mounted) ~ $199

Best Bike Seats for Toddlers and Preschoolers

Age range: 9 months to 6 years (or up to 48 lbs)

Yepp offers the Maxi Easyfit seat to mount on your rear rack, provided you already have one that is sturdy. This is a quality seat with a 5-point safety harness, a safety lock and soft shoulder pads, with easy installation and on/off.

Note that the seat can be mounted directly onto these bikes that come with the Easyfit “window.”

If you don’t have an Easyfit window on your bike (most do not), you can purchase the Easyfit carrier (for an additional ~$39, $30 on sale).

Several bright colors to choose from.

Buy for $199 on Amazon 

4. Yepp Maxi (Frame-Mounted) ~ $229 ($199 on sale)

Best Bike Seats for Toddlers and Preschoolers: Yepp Maxi seat post
Age range: 9 months to 6 years (or up to 48 lbs)

Don’t have a rear rack? No problem. The Yepp Maxi is similar to the Yepp Maxi Easyfit, but meant for mounting on seat posts between 28-45 mm in diameter. The Yepp Maxi comes with a seat post adapter and, like the Easyfit, you can choose from many different colors.

Do make sure to check that your bike has 4.5” of seat tube to mount the seat on before buying!

This is a favorite among serious bikers.

Buy for $199 on Amazon (MSRP $229). Also available at REI.

5. The Thule RideAlong Child Bike Seat ~ $229

Age range: 9 months to 6 years (or up to 48.5 lbs)

Best Bike Seats for Toddlers and Preschoolers

The Thule RideAlong is a very highly rated bike seat known for its ease of installation; though on the expensive side, parents who are serious about biking with their kids say it’s worth every penny.

You can mount/dismount the RideAlong seat in seconds using its quick-release bracket, which fits most bike frames (27.2-40mm diameter for round frames, max. of 40 x 55 mm for oval frames).

The RideAlong has an easy to use, 5-point harness with a childproof buckle, padded shoulder straps that stay in place and adjust with a sliding handle (see below), a suspension system for a smoother ride, and a built-in reflector and attachment point for a safety light (not included).

Best Bike Seats for Toddlers and Preschoolers

The seat has armrests and “wings” to protect your child’s arms and hands if the bike is leaning against a wall or fence, and you can adjust the foot rests and straps with one hand. It has 5 reclining options (up to 20 degrees), so your kiddo can even nap in their seat. Another nice feature is the padding on the seat, which can be removed and machine washed.

The Thule RideAlong works for kids up to 48.5 lbs (so about 6 years old), so this one will last you a good long time. Note: this sturdy seat is on the heavier side.

Check out the video for more on the Thule RideAlong Bike Seat:

Buy on Amazon for $229 (MSRP $249)


Don’t forget about helmets?

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This article has 46 comments

  1. We have the Topeak II and we love it. We actually love it for the ease of switching between bikes. We just got an extra back rack that fits with the seat and the seat easily switches back and forth. The rack itself was a pain but the seat is easy peasy! It’s reminiscent of the infant car seat with multiple bases. Love it!

  2. Are these or any seats compatible with the beach cruiser bikes?

    • you mean a bike with a thick neck/stem? I would think most of them would fit, minus the Yepp.

    • Hi, I love my Yepp mini on my Electra cruiser… lots of space for me and the baby in front. The Yepp Maxi attached to the frame will work too, once she’s outgrown the mini. Have it at the grandparents house… Baby loves both!

    • I have a beautiful beach cruiser that I love. We’ve tried both the iBert and the WeeRide kangaroo. From experience The front mounted ones are harder on cruisers because the neck is shorter and thicker than most bikes therefore harder to mount. We’ve really enjoyed the Topeak seat and it’s ease of switching bikes.

  3. What about the trailer on the ground? Are those safer? Will you be reviewing those as well?

  4. I would love to hear your thoughts on bike trailers as well!

  5. I tried the WeeRide Kangaroo LTD , it wasn’t the best.. it didn’t fit my hybrid bike at all. My legs didn’t have room to move, I had to spread my legs far apart so I don’t hit the seat. My daughter did have fun when we had it, but we ended up returning because it didn’t fit my bike and then the seat is really small, won’t fit a kid older than 2yrs. Look for other options.

  6. I, too, would love to hear your reviews on bike trailers. What is the earliest age those are safe to use?

  7. Regarding bike trailers, i have a two year old and would never use one of these around significant vehicle traffic- maybe neighborhoods and trails but thats it. People are asking about the safety of these- I would say it is common sense that you are putting your child in the most vulnerable place possible (near car tires) if riding near traffic. I see people riding on busy streets with these and cringe.

  8. We had the Kangaroo for our son from ages 1 1/2 to almost 3 or about 30 lbs and it was PERFECT. Easy on and off and it’s not cumbersome on your legs. Our son would often fall asleep on its headrest.
    Now he’s bigger amd needs a back seat and I found this site and am about to grab a BabySeat new off CL.
    Thanks for the reviews.

  9. This is a great list, Meg, a wide variety of products in different prices, thanks for that!

  10. Before I took my young sister behind me, then she fail on the road. I had many blame from my family. Nice to see this website.

  11. Yepp maxi easyfit is very durable, safe and comfortable for my kids, thumbs up 🙂

  12. Trailers are great if you have two kids that are close in age. The bike east worked fine when I only have my first son to carry.

  13. We would love to give you a Hamax bike seat so you can add it to your review. Hamax can offer your readers some additional features that are critical to safety and comfort – like all adjustments requiring only one-hand, allowing the other to steady the bike. Plus sliding back adjustments, a notch in the seat for the helmet to prevent pushing the head forward, a recline option, and exceptional shock absorption.
    Boasting Scandinavian quality, Hamax has been a pioneer of kids bike seats for 35 years and has long been considered the top brand in Europe and is now available in USA via HamaxUSA.com. Also check out USA based Two Wheeling Tots review – http://www.twowheelingtots.com/child-bike-seat-comparison-guide/

  14. I have to disagree with the first choice to be ibert ,I had the seat for a little over a year my son is 2 ,common wear but one day as my husband rode him up a drive way to the sidewalk the bar that held my son snapped and he went flying 10feet on the cement thank God he had his helmet on scrapped his chin face ,knees .other then that no serious injuries. Ibert did feel bad and sent us a bunch of bells baskets for our bikes but they are using the same kind of metal on the newer seats so no I would never recommend those seats to anyone

  15. Thanks for your post. My baby is 2 years old, this post is very useful for me now. Thanks again.

  16. thoughts on the Tyke Toter. Am really concerned about my daughter getting thrown off this seat. No way to secure her to seat. Would love to see a back rest with at least a 3 point harness, either from Tyke Toter or another manufacturer. By the way, on the iBert, you should criss-cross the harness to keep the child in place.

  17. What about those trailers? Would they be safer? I ‘m so afraid of falling off my bike and taking my 2 year old with me.

    • Hi Andrea! We just got back from the ABC Baby show where we checked out the Thule bike trailers, and we LOVED them! If you’re afraid of falling with baby on bike, you might feel more secure with a trailer. Just know that a trailer makes your whole load much longer, so depending on what you use it for (traveling down to the local cafe), you might have to consider parking, etc. Also, older kids really get a kick out of trailers…not really made for babies or younger children who might be scared of being alone.

    • The trailers are great and they can convert to a double stroller as well. I am always afraid of falling off my bike as well so that is the option we went with. We use the trailer more as a stroller nowadays as we don’t get out biking very often.

  18. Thanks for this post. Did you have any opinions on the Thule? They have a front bike seat and a rearmounted bike seat, and both seem pretty similar to the Yepp (except the thule reclines). Wondering if you didn’t review it, or it didn’t make your list because you didn’t like it!!

    • We like Thule! In fact we’re hoping to visit them at the ABC baby show in October to test out some of their products. We just haven’t reviewed their bike seats yet…

      • Also wondering about Thule and their reclining rear seat! Your guides are my baby buying bible so I’m hesitant to do anything besides Topeak though Thule sounds better in theory! Help?! 🙂

  19. Melissa,
    Your article is very helpful! Do you have any suggestions for bike helmets for 10 a month old. It seems like many are too big for her. Any advice?

    • The unfortunate thing about helmets is that every child’s head is different. I highly suggest trying on before purchasing if possible. Or buy from a store with a good return policy. Have you tried the Lazer helmets recommended in this article? They are known to fit 9 months+. You can even size your child’s head online using their tool to get the right fit. Check it out here.

  20. I love this bike. It beautiful, Thank for sharing !!!

  21. Adorable ! Extremely helpful and very informative information , it’s too easy for me to make decision after I see your review ,
    really appreciate thanks for your sharing !

  22. I got the Kangaroo from a local consignment fair for a whopping $10.00. It was the best $10.00 I have ever spent. We used it the summer before my son turned 1 (in August) and again the following 2 years. This year, I thought that he was going to be too big since he’s turning 4, but he still fits perfectly, and is on the tall side. He’s well under the weight limit of 40 pounds. Because he sits over the frame, his movements aren’t very noticeable so I find this seat to be very safe. I use it on my beach cruiser and it works great.

  23. what about if you are only five foot tall? any issues using a front mount bike seat?

  24. I was more than happy to uncover this great site. I need to to thank you for your time due to this fantastic read!! I definitely enjoyed every bit of it and I have you bookmarked to see new information on your blog.

  25. Can I recommend to look also at the Bobike bike seats? They are awesome and very safe! It’s a Dutch company but you can find them inn the U.S.. We had the front mounted one for our son between 9 months and 2 years and then got the rear seat for him. We travel every day to his daycare and he loves it and I felt always very safe!

  26. […] Not every seat is going to work with every bike. You should make sure that the seat you pick out is a good match for the kind of bike that you have. No matter what you wind up choosing, you should make sure that it is compatible with your child’s bike. […]

  27. We got a cheap ($85 at Walmart.com) trailer and it seems pretty good for our 2 kiddos age 1 and 3 1/2. Started using it when youngest was 11 months. I am nervous with it around traffic so avoid a lot of roads, but it does have a tall flag on it and I added extra reflectors and a safety light. The downside with ours is that it could use more ventilation. It has front and back screens but the sides and top are plastic. Can fit a diaper bag and snacks in the back.

  28. I was difficult to rike bicycle cause have a problem with my bicycle seat and thank for sharing this information.

  29. Thank you very much for your nice article, this is really awesome.

  30. Love that the Hamax brand got included in your update!

  31. My kids like to ride my bike. I am searching best child bike seat to bring my kids along with me when traveling. Thanks for sharing best to choose the right one for my little one. It’s import for baby comfort and safety.

  32. I have used the iBert for over a year now and have been really happy with it.
    The bracket is nice and simple and my toddler loves the steering wheel.
    Although the back is quite low it still gives enough support , and it gives the rider extra space.

  33. Awesome bike seats indeed. Thanks for the helpful review.

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