11 Top Picks for the Best High Back Booster Seat
All children need car seats. As they grow, their particular needs change. An older child, five years or older, requires the best high back booster seat to keep them safe while on the go. Regular seat belts only protect your child if they are situated correctly across their body. The goal of the high back booster seat is to guide the seat belt across your child’s lap and shoulder properly.
There is no single best high back booster seat on the market. Rather, you have to pick the right choice for your family. All car seat manufacturers put through products through rigorous testing, and they are required to meet safety standards set by the federal government.
High back booster seats differ from backless boosters who used for older kids. They have a back and are typically heavier than the backless boosters. Parents should use the high back boosters as a transition car seat into the backless booster. Children are offered more support with these types of boosters.
Unlike the backless varieties, your child’s head and neck are provided support by the headrest. If you happen to be in an accident, a high back booster provides better side impact protection. The safety belt is aligned properly where it should on your child’s body, so you don’t have to worry about your child ejecting out of the car seat in the event of a car crash.
How do you determine which high back booster seat is the best? It is the combination of qualities that matter to your family and child. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that all children 4 feet 9 inches and under should be kept in a belt-positioning booster for safety.
- Integrated Storage: One feature that all children love is to have their own storage options. Older kids like to bring along snacks, drinks, and little toys to keep them busy while traveling. Look for high back booster seats that have integrated cup holders and storage compartments. Kids love when there are special features just for them!
- Price: Luckily, most high back booster seats aren’t nearly as expensive as convertible car seats. Just because one seat is more expensive doesn’t mean it is safer than the other options. Remember, all car seats are required to pass certain safety standards before they are released on the market. If you have a tighter budget, don’t fret; you can still find a seat that is perfect for your child.
- Maximum Weight Recommendation: All high back boosters will have a higher weight capacity than a typical convertible car seat. However, every child is different, and some are larger than others. If you happen to have a child that is tall and weighs more, you will want to select a high back booster with a higher maximum weight recommendation. There are quite a few that hold children up to 120 pounds!
- Protection: The goal of a high back booster is to keep your child safe while traveling. Using the safety belt included in the vehicle is a great first step, but car seat manufacturers typically include other safety features. They may have extra foam added for side impact protection or foam that absorbs energy and directs it away from your child. Check out what each one has to offer for your child.
- Does It Grow with Your Child? The last car seats that your child will need is a high back and backless booster seat. Ideally, you want one where you can remove the back, eliminating the need to purchase the backless variety. Parents also like to see booster seats that feature height adjustments. You can expect to use this seat for up to five years, so your child is likely to grow a great deal in that time frame. Some companies also offer booster seats with width adjustments!
- Easy to Keep Clean: Children are messy, without a doubt. It is almost ingrained in their nature. The high back booster seat that you pick will likely experience spills, accidents, and millions of crumbs from snack explosions. You want a car seat that is easy to keep clean. Ideally, the fabric can be removed and placed in the washing machine.
- Comfort: One of the most important criteria to consider is the comfort level. Your child will spend hours upon hours in their high back booster. It should be as comfortable as possible. Ideally, the seat would feature a foam pad with soft fabric. Some companies make the seat ergonomically correct and contoured to fit a child’s body.
The Top Choices for the Best High Back Booster Seat
Graco Affix Youth Booster Seat with Latch System
Graco is a leading creator of car seats, and their Affix Youth Booster is a fantastic booster seat with an affordable price. The Affix has one of the securest connections that keep the booster in its place inside of your vehicle. A robust and sturdy base prevents the car seat from tipping over when your child is learning how to self-buckle. Here are some of the key features of the Affix Youth Booster.
- Graco put the booster seat through rigorous safety tests, ensuring that it is as safe as possible for your child.
- Parents can opt to use the Affix as a high back or backless booster. This is the last car seat you need to buy for your child because it grows with him.
- The Affix Youth Booster works for children who are between 30 and 10 pounds, from 38 to 57 inches tall.
- To tighten the car seat correctly to your vehicle, there is an important adjustment located in the front of the booster that tightens it against the children.
- Your child will love the integrated storage! There are cup holders that are perfect for storing cups or drinks while on the go. There is a hideaway storage compartment that is ideal for games, toys or special little items.
There is no reason to spend too much money on a high back booster when there are fantastic choices that cost under $75. If your child is ready for some more independence and you want to give them a way to transition to a backless booster gradually, this is an excellent choice. Best of all, there are multiple different colors that you can buy to match your vehicle or to find one that your children love the most.
Peg Perego Viaggio High Back Booster 120
If you have a bit larger of a budget for your child’s high back booster seat, the Peg Perego Viaggio comes with total side impact protection that keeps your child safe during all types of vehicle accidents. Useable for children 40 to 120 pounds, this high-quality booster seat is worth every penny. Here are some of its impressive features and why it receives such high ratings.
- Peg Perego included many safety features to protect your child. The Expanded Poly Styrene (EPS) is located in the headrest and seat cushion. It provides additional protection and comfort for your child.
- To keep the booster stable and secure at all times, LATCH connectors were added. These maintain the booster in place if your child isn’t occupying the seat. No one wants a flying booster in the event of a car crash.
- The Viaggio HBB 120 grows with your child over the years. There are six positions available for the head rest. You can adjust it even if your child is in the seat, which happens during those crazy growth spurts! There is a recline handle at the front, bottom of the seat that lets you adjust it. This feature is perfect for long car rides when your child might have to catch a full night’s rest along the way.
- It is a classy, elegant seat. So many car seats look like a child’s product, and many parents don’t like that. The Viaggio HBB 120 comes in a two-toned fabric with detailed stitching. It looks similar to an automotive seat rather than a child’s booster seat.
Too many parents pass up the Peg Perego because of its price. While it is more expensive than other high back boosters, they spared no expensive in including essential safety features for your child. Parents love the adjustable side impact protection; it passes the most difficult tests.
Children love the fabric used in the booster seat. It is a comfortable, plush padding with microfiber fabric. This material is breathable and easily absorbs moisture. Your child will stay cool and comfortable while on the go. Parents can purchase the seat in eight different colors.
Diono Monterey High Back Booster with Adjustable Headrest
Diono produces fantastic car seats! Their Radian is a best-seller, but their Monterey High Back Booster is a top of the line choice for parents who have a child between 40 and 120 pounds! This imported booster is made of polyester with plastic elements. For additional safety, Diono added an additional, deep aluminum panel with strong sidewalls. Also, EPS foam in the side panels, back and headrest provide maximum protection if you are in a car accident. Let’s look at the other features of the Monterey.
- The bottom of the seat is contoured to prevent submarining. There are reinforcements for extra seat belt safety.
- The Monterey grows with your child. It can expand in both height and width ensuring a comfortable and optimal fit for your developing child. The adjustable seat back can expand to fit shoulders up to 20 inches wide. The adjustable seat height goes up to 6.5 inches; there are 11 positions in all.
- Diono makes installation of the Monterey as easy as possible. Integrated LATCH connectors have front adjusters that ensure a secure and correctly positioned car seat every time.
Children love the Diono Monterey. It is a comfortable choice with an extra-long seat bottom for leg support. Dangling feet are uncomfortable after an extended period of time! The seat features energy absorbing, AirTek foam and tapered sides for comfort while in the seat. Also, they added retractable, dual cup holders that are angled so that the drinks always stay upright!
There are many reasons to opt for the Diono Monterey. Later, you can convert it to a backless booster. Parents love it for traveling because it folds flat for travel and storage. The price is higher than other choices, but Diono knows what they are doing when they make high back booster seats. It offers a high weight limit and ideal comfort for your child.
Graco Highback Turbo Booster Car Seat
The next choice for the best high back booster seat is also by Graco. It isn’t hard to believe that they would make more than one of the options on the list; they are experts at car seat creation! While in high back mode, you are able to use it for children from 30 to 100 pounds, from 38 to 52 inches tall. The backless booster works for children from 40 to 100 pounds, from 40 to 57 inches tall. The Turbo Booster is designed to last from three to ten years old! For the price, you get a lot of years of usage.
Reasons Why the Graco Turbo Booster is so Popular:
- It has been featured in consumer magazines and was given the “Best Bet Booster” award by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.
- Your child will be comfortable in this high back booster. It has multiple layers of fabric and foam on the head rest. There is full coverage back support for comfort as your child grows. Comfort is so important especially for those long car rides.
- Parents can easily convert the Turbo Booster from high back mode to backless mode. Before you change to a backless booster, parents can use the fully adjustable head rest to increase the height of the back.
The Graco Turbo Booster makes an excellent choice for the transition period after using a convertible car seat. There are open loop, belt guides so you child can independently buckle themselves into the car. This milestone is so important for the child and helps them to embrace growing up.
There are other great features loved by kids. They liked the wide, padded armrests that are extra comfortable for children. Graco included integrated cup holders and storage for small toys or snacks. Big kids like to have features that are meant just for them.
You are sure to love all of the impressive features offered by the Turbo Booster. Best of all, it is affordable, priced under $50. If you are on a serious budget, this high back booster seat may be a serious contender!
Britax Parkway SGL G1.1 Belt Positioning Booster
The Britax Parkway SGL is perfect for big kids ranging from 40 to 120 pounds. If your child isn’t large enough or mature enough to handle a backless booster seat, you can start them in the Parkway! It is one of the safest choices on the market because Britax uses their SafeCell Impact Protection. Side impact crashes are one of the deadliest types, and children in high back booster seats were especially vulnerable Britax used technology to keep these kids as safe as possible.
Reasons Why You Should Buy the Britax Parkway
- It was chosen for the NHTSA award in 2015
- The ISOFLEX LATCH connection prevents the seat from being a projectile when not in use. Standard high back boosters only sit on the seat unless occupied by the child. A flying booster seat is a huge safety hazard for other passengers in the vehicle. Britax added special lower LATCH connections that keep the seat firmly secured to the car at all times.
- Britax’s patented SafeCell Impact Protection is an integrated system of safety features. It is unlike anything else on the market today. They added a protective, high back design and a compressable base that absorbs energy during a vehicle crash.
- A Secure Guard Belt Positioning Clip prevents children from sliding under the lap belt during a vehicle collision.
Britax focuses on safety when they design all of their car seats. Their Parkway is no different. Along with the above-mentioned features, the Parkway features a deep, energy absorbing shell and a foam lined headrest. Two layers of foam keep your child’s head safe during side-impact car crashes.
The Parkway will grow with your child over the years. The headrest is easy to adjust. All you have to do is push a button to change the height. After your child reaches the age for a backless booster, you can remove the back from the Parkway. It is the last booster seat your child ever needs. The Britax Parkway is one of the best high back booster seats.
Diono Cambria High Back Booster
Diono makes another choice for the best high back booster seat. The Cambria is a versatile booster that will grow with your child, engineered for safety. Diono used double wall construction for extra strength, and a deep headrest with full body side walls lined with energy-absorbing EPS Foam.
The Cambria will grow with your child over the years. It features six different positions for the headrest, adjusting up to 6.5 inches in height with one hand. You can easily find the right fit for your child. Let’s take a look at other great features of the Diono Cambria.
- Integrated LATCH connectors and a front adjuster let you find the perfect installation in no time at all. The LATCH connectors keep the high back booster secured to the vehicle at all times, even when your child isn’t occupying the seat.
- The Cambria is a comfortable choice for children. Diono used an ergonomically contoured seat bottom that is much better for leg support. Children, at times, find that their legs fall asleep if left to dangle too long. The high back booster is spacious, leaving plenty of room for your child’s shoulder and hips. The sides feature thick foam and extra padding.
- Kids also love the two cup holders, a convenient feature. Your child could also use the holders for snacks or small toys.
- Diono used wipeable fabrics and a removable, washable cover. You can keep it clean with no issues.
The Diono Cambria has many qualities that parents love. It has two recline positions, so you can find the perfect installation for your vehicle. As your child ages, you can convert the seat to a backless booster. If you travel a lot, the Cambria packs flat, making it an excellent choice for portability.
This high back booster seat is more expensive than other options, but it keeps safety as the most important feature of the seat. Parents can purchase it in four different color combinations. Diono is a trustable company, so you can feel confident buying their products.
Evenflo Big Kid AMP Booster Car Seat
If you are on a serious budget, you might feel as if there isn’t anything on the market for your child that is safe and under $50. Lucky for you, Evenflo had parents who have a tight budget in mind when they created the Big Kid AMP. It is a fantastic, highly rated seat, receiving 4.5 out of 5 stars with over 2,000 reviews. It is loved by so many parents. Let’s take a look at why it is such a favorite.
- There are six height positions; the back adjusts as your child grows. The side and head support are kept in the proper position as you change it for your kid.
- You can transition from a high back booster to a backless booster with no problem.
- It is a comfortable seat with extra padding around the head and body.
- Children have their own elastic cup holders, perfect for juice boxes or snacks.
The Evenflo Big Kid is for children between 30 and 110 pounds and 38 to 57 inches tall. When you transition to the backless booster, the weight recommendations are 40 to 110 pounds and 40 to 57 inches tall. Parents love that the Big Kid AMP is easy to use. You only need one hand to make the multiple height adjustments.
Kids love the belt guides that help them understand how to position the seat belt correctly across their body. It is a great learning tool for children transitioning from a convertible car seat. Even though it is a cheaper high back booster seat, parents don’t have to feel as if it isn’t as good as the other choices. The Big Kid AMP is rated the Best Bet Booster by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Made in the USA, you can trust this seat, and you don’t have to break the bank.
Chicco KidFit Booster Car Seat
Chicco is the maker of the best-selling infant car seat, the KeyFit. Their KidFit high back booster seat is a two in one, belt positioning booster that features 10 height positions. It grows with your child over the years, and it features effective side impact protection. Here are some of the other features to consider about the Chicco KidFit.
- For a secure and safe fit for the vehicle, Chicco included their Super Cinch LATCH attachment and tightener. All you have to do is pull on the tightener to keep it securely in place. They also included two different reclining positions that adjust the backrest. Every car has different vehicle seat positions, and this is the best way to get an optimal fit into your vehicle.
- The ErgoBoost, contoured seat features double foam padding. If you take off on a long car ride, your child will be comfortable. There are a foam base layer and a seat cushion with foam lining.
- Children love the two, soft-sided cup holders that fold away when not in use. Cup holders are a crucial feature that kids of all ages love.
- The Chicco KidFit grows with your child. The DuoZone features 10 head and shoulder positions. As your child ages, you can remove the backrest to use the KidFit as a backless booster seat.
Parents can trust the KidFit. Chicco knows how to create impressive car seats, and the KidFit is no exception. It will grow with your child over the years, adjusting to 10 positions and later, into a backless booster usable until your child reaches 110 pounds! It is an excellent choice if you want an adjustable high back booster seat. Best of all, it is affordable, costing less than $100.
Recaro Performance Booster High Back Booster Car Seat
Our next choice for the best high back booster seat is by Recaro. With racing-inspired side impact protection and secure LATCH connectors, it is one of the highest rated options, featuring 4.5 out of 5 stars. Recaro used intelligent design and top quality construction to create a safe, but comfortable, booster seat for your child. Here are some of the important features that make this a fantastic choice.
- There is so many kid approved features like Cool Mesh air ventilation for breathability. During the warm summer months, your child will feel fresh and relaxed. Luxuriously soft fabric covers your child’s new booster seat. It won’t rub or scratch your child’s skin. Recaro also added comfort enhancing memory foam for the seat.
- Recaro used their racing experience to include some of the best safety features on the market. There are side impact protection, foam air cushions. The flexible LATCH connectors keep the seat secured to the vehicle at all times, even when your child isn’t occupying the seat. The car seat and head restraint are lined with EPS foam that absorbs the shock and energy from car crashes.
- Cup holders are included with removable liners. The liners are easy to keep clean and feature stylish trim details.
The Recaro Performance Booster is a fantastic choice for parents. It will grow with your child, featuring 11 head restraint positions and color-coded belt guides. If your child spills their drink, Recaro will use easily to clean fabrics and colors that hide dirt easily. The ergonomic shell supports your child’s body; it is ideal for short errands and long car rides. The memory foam makes the seat even more comfortable for your child.
Parents love the Performance Booster because it is one of the safest choices for their child. Recaro used international standards when testing the safety of the seat. The car seat’s enhanced side wings protect the five most vulnerable areas of your child’s body including his head, neck, face, torso and pelvis. You can use the Performance Booster for children up to 120 pounds, making it a long-lasting, durable choice.
Safety 1st Store N Go with Back Booster Car Seat
Safety 1st makes fantastic baby products. From strollers to car seats, they have an eye towards innovative and unique products that parents and children love. Safety 1st understands that children like to keep their toys and items close by when on the go. They provide a way for kids to have these things close by. It features a pull out storage drawer that keeps your child’s items close at hand. He can reach them later on while on the go, even if he is buckled into the seat.
Here are some of the other reasons why it is one of the best high back booster seats for big kids.
- The drawer has a kid-friendly latch that keeps the storage drawer closed when it has to be. However, it is easily opened when your child wants to access a book or snacks.
- It is designed for children 40 to 100 pounds, making it an option that should last for up to ten years old.
- Not only do children have their own storage drawer, but Safety 1st also included a cup holder and a storage pocket for snacks and drinks.
- The head rest is adjustable and will grow with your child over the years. Later, you can convert the high back booster into a backless booster, so long as your child is ready for this huge step.
The Safety 1st Store N Go is a unique choice for children. There isn’t another option on the market that has an integrated store drawer for your child’s. The colors used by Safety 1st are vibrant and colorful, a child-friendly choice. There are belt-positioning loops that help your child place the safety belt properly across their body. Overall, the Store N Go by Safety 1st is an affordable, child-friendly and colorful high back booster seat.
Evenflo SecureKid DLX Booster Car Seat
Our last choice for the best high back booster seat is a two in one harnessed and belt positioning high back booster seat. The SecureKid DLX seat can be used for children weighing between 22 and 110 pounds. You can start using the SecureKid when you turn your child forward facing. If you prefer to avoid the convertible car seat option, you can jump right into the DLX Booster.
Reasons to Purchase the Evenflo SecureKid DLX Car Seat
- The E3 Side Impact Protection reduces the force associated with a side impact crash by up to 50%. The SecureKid features an expanded zone of protection and three layers of protection.
- Evenflo installed Advanced LATCH technology so you can secure the high back booster seat in a few seconds. The LATCH auto tightens when you push down on the seat.
- Parents can use the five-point harness to secure your child to the car seat. As your child grows, you remove the harness and use your vehicle’s safety seat belt. The booster seat features multiple headrest positions, and you can adjust it with one hand.
The Evenflo SecureKid is an unusual choice for a high back booster seat. However, there are many positives to this choice. The harness is used for children who weigh 22 to 65 pounds. It can grow with your child as well; it features four harness positions. Parents also appreciate the thoughtful qualities such as the soft, machine washable seat pad that makes clean ups a breeze. Kids also love the elastic, integrated cup holders for their drinks and snacks.
Parents can feel confident that they made a fantastic choice with the SecureKid. It receives the Best Bet Booster by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Evenflo tested the structural integrity of the seat by ensuring it withstands two times the energy of the Federal Crash Test Standard. If you want a safe, affordable, and versatile high back booster seat, the Evenflo SureKid is a fantastic choice.
Finding the Right Choice for Your Child
There are so many options on the market for the best high back booster seat. Making a choice can be hard. We went through all of the top rated choices and found 11 options that parents loved for a variety of features and qualities. Before you make a decision, it is important that you think about the features most important for your child.
It is a great idea to check out a few of these seats in person before making a selection. In stores, your child can sit down and make sure it feels comfortable. Ultimately, your child is the person who will sit in the seat, and he needs to love it just as much as you do!