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Logistical qn - Buy car seat + car rental

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NY
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Logistical qn - Buy car seat + car rental

Hello,

After consulting the forums, we have found a good price for a car rental on priceline (bidding). We will be buying a car seat, picking it up from Walmart (it has decent reviews - Cosco Scenera is the one - its cheap so we ay pay the same price to rent a car seat for 8 days and I have read really bad things online about renting car seats from the car rental company).

We were thinking of going to the car rental place (husband, myself and 21 month old toddler), husband would go pick up the car seat from walmart, come back and we would drive on to Vancouver. Is this recommeneded? We will be arriving at 10.15am on saturday.

The pick up location is:

3150 South 160th Street, Seattle WA 98188

The walmart location is:

743 Rainier Avenue South, Renton, WA 98057

Any other ideas on how this can work? Anything I may be overlooking?

Thanks a lot,

Vancouver, Canada
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1. Re: Logistical qn - Buy car seat + car rental

Curious as to why you wouldn't just bring a car seat with you? Its often useful on the flight, people will use them in the airplane seats....

The WalMart isn't that far away, so provided everything goes smoothly, your husband should be back in about an hour, so you should be able to entertain your toddler for that time.

Which Vancouver are you heading to? WA or BC? If BC, then from SeaTac you need to allow about 4 hours + border crossing time, which can vary, but Saturday is a popular shopping day and you can hit some pretty good lines of Canadians coming home with their spoils.

If your flight is on time, you can probably expect to be at the border by 4 or 5 pm. You can get into downtown Vancouver from the border in about an hour, so you'll have to decide if you are going to just get across the line and then eat dinner (little community of White Rock just north of the border crossing would be a good choice for that) or try to kill time on the south side and see if you can wait out the lines if they are long.

Either way, I think its reasonable to expect you will be in Vancouver between 6 and 9 pm.

NY
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2. Re: Logistical qn - Buy car seat + car rental

Vancouverite67 - thanks for the advice. Vancouver BC it is. Its nice to have an idea of when we will get there.

The reason for us travelling without a car seat is that we dont have a reserved seat for my son (he is below 2 years of age) and we may have to check it in if they dont have spare seats on the flight. I have heard horror stories about car seats getting damaged (and then they arent of any use), so instead of runining the primary car seat, we thought its best to arrive there and buy a cheaper one ($40-45), I figured we would pay around that much for renting it for 8 days anyway.

I just had a thought, any idea of taxi service from Seatac to Renton and how much it would cost? THen I could probably take a taxi with my son to Walmart and have my husband pick up the car and join us there.

I am so excited about this trip! THanks for all the tips and if anyone else has any other advice - I'm all ears :)

Best!!

NY
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3. Re: Logistical qn - Buy car seat + car rental

Actually - anyone know how much a taxi or even shutle service from Seatac to Renton would cost?

NY
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4. Re: Logistical qn - Buy car seat + car rental

I just did some more research. THere is a Sears (301 Southcenter Mall Tukwila, WA 98188) which is 6 min drive from Seatac on google maps.

I think that will be better than trekking all the way to Renton.

Seattle
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5. Re: Logistical qn - Buy car seat + car rental

There is also a Target across from Southcenter mall and a Toys/Baby R Us down the road. I have no idea what kind or how much the car seats are but might be more options for you closer than the Renton Walmart.

Sacramento...
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6. Re: Logistical qn - Buy car seat + car rental

I don't have much advice about Seattle, as I'm following this forum to plan a trip this summer as well. But I feel compelled to throw my two cents in about carseats. You mentioned going to get the car seat with your son. While many areas don't require carseats in taxis, one statement I've seen a few places that impacted me is: The laws of physics have no regard for the laws of the state. I also read this from the Carseat Lady: "Studies show that NYC taxi passengers are 2.5 times more likely to be seriously injured or killed than the passengers in the other vehicle involved in the crash. Accidents happen – but you can prevent injuries. Have NO REGRETS; protect your children. Make sure that quick taxi ride to school or a playdate doesn’t send your child to the hospital." (She's based on NYC, but I think her comments are relevant wherever you go.) If you are going to take a taxi without a car seat, you might want to read her tips here:

thecarseatlady.com/traveling-without-a-car-s… but that really should only be a last resort.

I'm also wondering what you will do with your luggage while you're going in and out of a store or the rental agency? If you go to get the carseat, does that mean your husband takes all the luggage to pick up the rental car? I have two kids and I'm sure it's easier with one but I know when I traveled when they were that age there was no way one person could handle luggage for all 4 of us. If it were me I would find a nice waiting area and sit tight with the luggage and the kid and let my husband go pick up the car seat and the car. I think that involves some backtracking but I would think the safety factor would make that worth it.

Washington
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7. Re: Logistical qn - Buy car seat + car rental

Hi Indie Explorer,

I agree with your thoughts about just purchasing a car seat. Truly, when traveling with young children there are no easy answers. For car seats, because of the safety issues with rentals, it does come down to either bringing your own seat and risking damage or buying a new seat. I am sure you have researched bringing your car seat but know, that if you do, I would recommend gate checking it (in a bag) to reduce the chance of damage.

Southcenter has a plethora of stores with children's equipment, as mentioned Toys R US/Baby's R US, Target, Sears. The Renton Walmart is just an exit away from Southcenter, so in terms of distance, it's really a wash. How the freeways intersect and entrances/exits between the airport rental center and Southcenter area are a bit of a muddled mess, but with a good maps/gps program your husband will be able to get there and back.There is also a Kohl's and Costco. For me, I would go with the store that allows you to order the car seat online and have it waiting for you for easy pick-up - and there will be no decision making involved. I can't imagine sending my husband to choose one off the shelves after a long travel day!

Note too, that there is also a children's play area at Seatac, between the main terminal and A gates. You could send your husband to the car rental agency with the luggage (carts are available) and between the play center and restaurants, just chill until he returns. Also note that sometimes, depending on how busy the airport is at your arrival time, it is better to pick up on the departure level than the baggage/arrivals.

Enjoy your trip!

Salt Lake City, Utah
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8. Re: Logistical qn - Buy car seat + car rental

I would recommend getting either the Graco Comfortsport, which is recommended on this site, or the Cosco Scenera, which you mentioned.

Site : …hubpages.com/hub/top-rated-carseats

Washington State
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9. Re: Logistical qn - Buy car seat + car rental

Hi Will Y, and welcome to TripAdvisor forums.

The Original Poster has come & gone. Her trip occurred last June.

10. Re: Logistical qn - Buy car seat + car rental

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