Getting around with an infant can be stressful, especially if you don’t know how to do it safely. Keeping this dilemma of yours in mind, I have crafted this blog about how to travel with a baby in a taxi.
Most taxi companies allow children to ride in the back seat. However, the safest way to travel with your baby in a taxi is to have the baby sit on your lap while wearing a car seat.
Because taxis are more likely to get into accidents than larger vehicles, it’s important that your child’s car seat, and you, are secured as much as possible during travel.
Table of Contents
Find a taxi that is nice and spacious
Some taxis can get cramped and uncomfortable, especially if you have an infant. There’s no need to get anxious about traveling by taxi with your child. You can just call ahead and ask for one that’s comfortable enough for you.
The more comfortable you are, the easier it will be for your child! Also, don’t forget a small blanket or swaddle if you have a young baby. The baby might like to sleep on your lap during the ride.
If not, at least then you won’t have to worry about trying to fit a car seat into some crazy tight-seated cab!
Call the taxi before you leave home
If you’re taking a long cab ride with your baby, don’t get into a cab that already has passengers. Tell the driver you need extra room and ask him if he can take you first. You may need to wait longer for another cab to arrive, but it will be worth it.
An empty back seat means more room, especially when a car seat needs to go on one of those seats. Also, request an infant-seat base so that you don’t have to install it yourself; some taxis are equipped with them and others aren’t.
If you run into a taxi without seat bases, opt for your regular stroller instead. Or skip public transportation altogether and drive yourself.
Does a baby have to be in a car seat in a taxi?
Yes, as with all vehicles, it’s required that babies are strapped into an appropriate car seat/baby carrier.
A cab driver can refuse to carry a passenger who doesn’t have their infant safely secured. If there is no car seat or appropriate carrier available in your taxi, do not be afraid to ask if they can stop at a shop, so you can purchase one before continuing your journey.
It will save you time and heartache later on down the line. You may want to consider going online and buying one in advance of traveling, many hotels provide sales for this very purpose.
You should also ensure that you request a rear-facing seat for younger babies, it provides more protection against injury than forward-facing.
The back of a taxi cab could present some danger to children left alone. So, you need to make sure you keep them in sight at all times.
Check whether your taxi has a seat
Cab companies are under no obligation to provide you with a special seat for your baby, which is why it’s essential to make sure that yours does before you go into it.
Some do offer infant car seats, but not all drivers have received proper training on how to use them properly.
In New York City, for example, there is no citywide requirement mandating training or even licensing for drivers who operate vehicles containing car seats. But the New York City requires child restraint systems for kids under the age of two years.
In New York, the appropriate child restraint system needs to fit with the child according to the manufacturer’s specifications regarding weight and height.
There are some standards by the Federal Motors Vehicles that need to be followed.
Buy your child some toys
It might sound silly, but it’s important to make sure your child is comfortable on their trip.
Bring along some toys that can distract them during certain parts of their journey, such as during a long taxi ride or when they’re waiting at an airport terminal.
Be sure these toys are age-appropriate and easy for your child to carry around. You don’t want them getting lost at an airport or choking on something small.
You can also bring small, portable snacks for your child so that he has something to munch on if he gets hungry.
Keeping him full will help ensure his good behavior throughout your travels. This can mean a less stressful experience for both of you.
Prepare your child for the car ride
The easiest way to make your trip pleasant for you and your little one is by preparing them for what’s about to happen.
Just like you would prepare yourself for anything else, start getting your baby ready for car rides once they’re six months old.
You don’t want that first experience to be a negative one, so taking time beforehand will help things go smoothly.
Then take some practice trips! Plan to take short drives around town over several days, until your child gets used to being in a car and understands that it doesn’t mean an immediate change of scenery.
When you get in, give him lots of praise or playtime as a reward for staying calm during the ride. This can really work wonders.
Trust me on this!
Your goal is to build up positive associations with car rides. It makes trips easier for everyone involved down the road.
How To Properly Use A Seatbelt On A Small Child
Securing your child into his or her car seat is just one way you can keep him or her safe while traveling by car.
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children under 12 months should always ride in a rear-facing car seat.
A child’s neck and spine are not fully developed, so they are at risk for injuries if they’re facing forward. Many times parents will buy a convertible car seat only to find out that it’s not suitable for their infant due to weight and height limits.
This may lead them to choose between putting their child in a rear-facing seat even though he or she has hit those weight/height limits. This is definitely not what you want to do.
When you have an older child then an adult belt will fit correctly when the shoulder belt will correctly fit in the middle of the chest and shoulder, not in the neck or the throat to be precise.
So, when you see that the seat belt properly fits your adult child, then you can for sure use the seat belt for security.
Should You Have Your Baby Sit On Your Lap In A Taxi
Yes and no. Some would argue that you should always buckle your child into the car seat if he’s riding in a taxi. But others insist that it’s much safer and less stressful for both mom and baby if he sits on her lap.
The best way to choose is to weigh each of these factors,like distance traveled; weather conditions; the speed of trip; the age of the child; comfort levels for both parents/infant.
If anyone factors weighs too heavily against keeping your child in his car seat, then having him sit on your lap makes sense.
Otherwise, if all safety concerns are accounted for, feel free to place him in his own car seat. There is really no one-size-fits-all answer here because there are simply too many variables to consider!
Allowing an infant under 6 months old out of their seated position can make them more likely to slip down while traveling.
Arrive 10 minutes earlier than usual
Arriving early might feel like you’re making an unnecessary extra trip, but it can spare you from feeling rushed and allow you more time to organize your child.
Make sure that your child is awake before arriving at his or her destination so as not to disrupt other passengers. If possible, have your ride scheduled for off-peak hours, when it’s less likely that traffic will be heavy and fares will be higher.
Have your child sit on your lap rather than placing him or her into a car seat. This will give you direct control over how much space he or she has in relation to others.
If possible, try not to get into a cab alone, if another parent is available, let them make arrangements. If they aren’t, split up responsibilities between multiple adults.
Pack snacks, diapers, wipes etc.
If you’re planning on traveling by cab, make sure you pack all essentials for your baby such as diapers, wipes, and extra clothes. If you are bringing formula or breast milk, make sure it is properly sealed and packed beforehand.
Be prepared for emergencies by keeping important phone numbers handy such as those of family members, doctors, or pharmacies that may be needed if something arises on your trip. Keep some playthings handy in case a long car ride seems daunting for your little one.
Keep an eye out for familiar landmarks along your route, so you can point them out to your child and help them stay calm during their first ride in a car. To make things more fun, sing songs together.
Use social media to help connect other parents
Using social media, such as Facebook or Twitter, can be a great way to connect to other parents. When your family needs some peace and quiet, or you need some extra help around town, ask your friends if they’d be willing to lend a hand, they may have an extra stroller or car seat you can borrow right away!
Many people are also more than happy to babysit their grandchildren while you grab dinner out with your partner. Get creative and use social media to find solutions that work for you.
Enjoy the journey!
When taking a taxi, it’s always best to enjoy your journey. Babies tend to settle into sleep when they’re moving. But it can sometimes be challenging to keep them entertained, especially if you aren’t used to traveling with them.
The most important thing is that you stay calm and enjoy your time together! Although there may be times when you feel rushed or harried, remember to take your mind off of it and look at what’s around you.
After all, even though you might not know how long a taxi ride will take, one thing is for sure: traveling makes memories!
Plus, having adventures like these will give your child good life experiences and broaden their horizons. It means that when it comes time to deal with public transportation as an adult. You never know what lessons are being learned while being on road.
So, buckle up and enjoy yourselves!
Wrapping things up
The key is planning ahead if you are wondering how to travel with a baby in a taxi. Make sure you plan to arrive at your destination before midday, when most cabs start charging extra.
If time permits, consider booking a night-before cab service, these aren’t just for pregnant mothers! Do some research on how much it will cost for a cab, as once you hit ‘book’ there’s no going back! Remember to put top priority on your and your child’s safety.
If you are still confused about travelling with your baby, then you can check out this blog about going on vacation without 3 month old baby. Always remember, it is okay to prioritize yourself sometimes.