Travel with Children - ISO feedback on Lilly Gold 5n1 combination carseat/stroller
Jun 3, 11, 3:52 pm
Hi, I'm in search of feedback about the Lilly Gold 5 n 1 combination carseat/stroller. I'm thinking of buying one for the occasional trip, but the amazon reviews are mixed.
Anybody here used one before? Thoughts?
Jun 4, 11, 2:55 pm
I had one. While I loved it, there are definite downsides to it.
First, this is a luxury travel product. Do NOT depend on it for your primary car seat or stroller.
Don't even consider it if you don't usually buy a seat for your under-2 child on the plane. It says in the instructions to never check it as luggage and even gate-checking it is not the best idea (especially if the airport uses a chute for these items). There are so many moving parts and it's expensive enough that you don't want to take the risk.
Having said this, it will fit in the overhead bins of some of the bigger aircraft. Especially good if you usually fly in the premium cabins and travel with a "lap baby".
Car seat techs are not thrilled with the install. You can anchor it rear-facing, which is a plus. What irks most parents is that yes, it goes to 40lbs but if you've read up on car seat safety, you'll know that children usually outgrow their seats by height, long before they reach the weight limits (unless you have a serious Chunky Monkey!) The top slots are very low on the S&S. My youngest outgrew the S&S more than 6 months before she outgrew it on the Scenera, which is a budget seat that also goes to 30lbs. Those few inches can make a big difference to how long you'll use the seat!
We fly a lot and mostly me, by myself with the kids so this was a g-dsend as far as convenience. If the mom usually flies alone with the child, it's helpful to have this seat. With two adults and only one child, it's easy enough to bring the car seat yourselves if you need it at your destination.
This is also a good product for those who use taxis a lot. It folds down great and you can install it quickly. The only issue is that a couple of cab drivers thought that the wheels would touch the upholstery but even if there's a language barrier, you can show them the flaps which protect the wheels. If that's unclear, it wont be if you see this product.
I got this as a second-baby gift from my family. If you have enough onsies, asking for this item is a good idea.
So consider your style of travel when deciding whether to get this or not.
I don't have experience but I'm hearing good things about the Combi Corocco for travel.
By contrast, you CAN use this as a primary seat. It only goes to 40lbs. For a forward facing child (and please keep your child riding backwards as long as possible-it's 5 times safer!) you can go with a Sunshine Kids Radian. My 7 year old still rides in her Radian and you can wheel it down the aisle on a luggage cart, it's so skinny.
Check out Carseat.org for more specific information about car seats.
Jun 5, 11, 12:57 am
Thanks for the very detailed response. I knew I could count on Flyertalk! ;)
This would not be our primary carseat. It would be for the occasional transcon trip with a child who is now almost 2 years old. When visiting one set of parents, we have a car (with carseat installed) waiting for us when we arrive. We thought this might be nice when visiting the other set of parents, where we'd have to bring a carseat and maybe rent a car. Or if we fly somewhere on vacation.
It would be a hand-me-down/gift, so the cost is not really relevant.
I am used to carseats that either LATCH or where the carseat attaches to the car with the seatbelt going under the base of the carseat. The design of this carseat (with the seatbelt over the child) seems very strange to me, and perhaps unsafe. What are your thoughts on this? I know you are very safety conscious!
The other option we are thinking about is bringing our own carseat, and using a CARES harness on the plane. We fly economy, and I assume it will mostly be my husband and I, rarely just one of us.
Jun 5, 11, 1:40 am
Since my daughter outgrew it at 2 1/2, and your son is almost 2, you wont get much use out of it, unless your child is unusually small. My daughter was slightly above average (sorry, can't remember the exact stats) and kind of long.
Skip the CARES harness and just use the car seat on the plane. It's safer for both the child and the car seat.
I think a Maestro or a Radian would be a better purchase for you.
At 2, I skipped the stroller and just wheeled the car seat behind me. My toddler could ride in it if too tired. That will work if it's just one parent with him most of the time.
I wont comment on the safety aspect because I'm not a car seat tech. It has to pass the usual tests though.
I would reconsider this item if, like me, you have more children in the next few years and continue to travel. Then, it might make more sense.