It's a bit of a general question, but to narrow things down, what is the cheapest strategy for renting cars if you have two little children:

  1. carry baby seats with yourself


  2. rent car with two baby seats, although I didn't manage to find car with a single baby seat yet.

I'm considering Greece if it matters. I don't know yet what car rental company I would use, although cheaper is better and it depends on answers. If, for example, baby seats are rented only by expensive megacompanies like Hertz, then it would be cheaper to carry seats.

  • Welcome to travel.SE. First please review the FAQ on the subject of asking good questions on this forum. Second we need more information: 1. Are you flying to the place where you rent a car. 2. What rental company are you using?
    – Karlson
    Mar 26, 2013 at 13:00
  • I just checked some rental companies and the prices are about 3 EUR per seat and child. So for a short period it's better to rent it, and if you want to rent a car for a month then it's better to bring your own
    – Dirty-flow
    Mar 26, 2013 at 14:41

4 Answers 4


Generally speaking depending on the age of Children you are allowed to bring child safety seats on flights. See question asked here on the subject. So if you're allowed to carry and use the child seat on the flight just bring your own.

Car Rental companies will provide a child seat(s) for you irrespective of whether it's someone large as Hertz or someone smaller.


Give kids ages the rules in the US which are in most cases similar to the EU you will need to have a car seat similar this one, so if your seats are similar you more then likely be fine.

As far as ISOFIX is concerned I am yet to encounter a seat that was ISOFIX only, so you should not have an issue using it in any car.

One more note. We personally always opted for our own seat because one time that we had to rent our son couldn't get comfortable in the seat for a somewhat prolonged journey.

  • I need two child seats.
    – nikita
    Mar 26, 2013 at 14:24
  • 1
    @nikita There is no issue with renting 2 just double the price. :)
    – Karlson
    Mar 26, 2013 at 15:51

Pros of bringing your own seat:

  • no extra cost, permissions, waiting while they find the seats at the rental agency
  • you know how to work the seats
  • your kids are familiar with the seats
  • you can also use them on the airplane

Pros of renting a seat:

  • the car will be sure to have tethers
  • the seats are sure to fit the car and be right for the country you're in
  • the seats might already be correctly installed in the car, possibly saving time
  • you will have less to carry in the airport

If I was landing late at night somewhere that I didn't speak the language, or if my children were creatures of habit who didn't sleep well in unfamiliar situations, I'd bring the seats and control my own destiny. If I wanted to use the seats on the plane (having paid for kids tickets), I'd bring the seats. If I had complicated stroller/car seat adapty combos, and wanted to use those strollers at my destination, I'd bring the seats that worked with the strollers. If I hadn't bought plane tickets for the kids, had lots of time on landing and knew that my kids accepted unfamiliar things without much complaint, I'd rent the seats for maximum convenience and bring some soft flannel blankets to make random seats more appealing to them.

I don't know how long you're renting for, but in the overall budget of a flying vacation for four people, I wouldn't let 20 or 30 Euros factor into the decision at all. I would just be trying to make the day of flying and arriving, and the day of leaving, as easy as can be, and to keep my kids content.

  • 1
    "Waiting while they find the seats." Oh the happy memories! On one occasion that actually had to go and borrow them off another company. So much for ordering in advance...
    – Benjol
    Mar 27, 2013 at 14:18

It depends where you are traveling from. The US and the EU use different institutes to test for road safety. If you would be bringing your EU child seat to the US or vice versa, you are legally not compliant to local rules.
I am pretty sure both type of child seat will be similar in providing a level of safety. I have heard that some renting agencies do require to use a seat that is compliant with local laws, so in that case you can end up renting a child seat, even if your brought your own.

  • I have one brand certified isofix seat and one cheap universal seat(maid in China )). Who and how would examine them? Police do such kind of things as examining child seats so closely? Anyway I go from Russia to Greece.
    – nikita
    Mar 26, 2013 at 14:30
  • @nikita How old are your kids?
    – Karlson
    Mar 26, 2013 at 15:53
  • 1 and 3 years old
    – nikita
    Mar 26, 2013 at 16:06

As I currently work in a car rental agency and I have been doing so for ages, I have seen the following:
Clients child seats might not be able to be installed in all models (isofix)
If you have isofix child seats make sure that the selected vehicle has isofix bases.
Sometimes it costs quit a lot to carry your own seats on the plane, even compared to what car rental companies charge.
Big companies count on extra charges like child seats and extra driver, to increase the daily rate even 100%!
Smaller companies often provide child seats for free. So if I were you, if there is no charge for getting them on the plane and if carrying them together with all the family luggage is not an issue, I would bring my own and book the car accordingly. If I had to pay extra for the tickets, or if I had already enough luggage to worry about, I would try and find a company that offers free child seats, (ideally in very good condition and bio cleaned before the rental starts). If you choose a small you might get them for free (and installed as well).

  • Welcome filoo. We appreciate your knowledge but please do not put a link to your own company (or the one you work) in the answer unless it is very important in the answer. If you do you will find that your answers are reported as spam and you are blocked from the site. In this answer a link to your company is not useful at all. I remove it for now.
    – Willeke
    Nov 30, 2020 at 17:38

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