“For as long as possible”: extended rear-facing car seat recommendations

Leading consumer organisations, health organisations and relevant government departments recommend using extended rear-facing car seats. But you may wonder what organisations are these exactly? We have compiled a list of major organisations by country as well as a list of car seat manufacturers who also emphasise the importance of extended rear-facing car seats.

Most of these institutions will recommend to use rear-facing car seats for as long as possible. But what does it mean? Why is there no specific cut off point in these recommendations? Well, you can rear face your child until they are 25kgs and there is a handful of car seats which meet this requirement. This is the maximum and preferable limit, however not all cars will be a good fit for these car seats. If you find that you are unable to use a 25kg rear-facing seat look at the ‘up to 18kg’ seats. Simply go to our Car Seat Search and select ‘extended rear-facing’ in the second question. You can also find out more about extended rear-facing car seats in this blog post.

The list below is not finite and is intended to show only reputable and trustworthy institutions. Car Seat Jungle reserves the right to update and modify the list from time to time.

European

  • Child Safety Europe (“Keeping children rearward facing longer has been shown to increase protection by 3-5 times”)
  • European Transport Safety Council (“The use of rearward facing restraints provides the best protection and should be used up to as high an age as possible”)

UK

  • Which? (UK’s leading consumer interest group: “We recommend keeping a child rear-facing for as long as possible”)

Ireland

  • Road Safety Authority (state agency dedicated to the promotion of road safety: “Children should use these rear-facing seats for as long as possible”)

Germany

  • ADAC (Europe’s biggest automobile club)
  • Stiftung Warentest (independent testing institute in Germany)
  • Autobild (Germany’s leading automotive magazine)

Switzerland

  • TCS (Swiss automobile club)

Austria

  • ÖAMTC (Austrian automobile club)

USA and Canada

  • American Academy of Pediatrics released an updated recommendation in November 2018 to use extended rear-facing car seats for as long as possible (previous recommendation was up to 2 years of age)
  • Consumer Reports (independent consumer product testing organisation: “Keep kids rear-facing until they reach the height or weight limit of their seat”)
  • Canadian Government (“Rear-facing is the safest position for your child. Even if your provincial or territorial regulations allow you to move to a forward-facing seat, your child should keep using rear-facing seats as long as possible.”)

All major car seat manufacturers also recommend rear-facing for as long as possible:

Insurance companies:

The whole point of using a car seat is to keep your child safe. Keeping them rear-facing for as long as possible is the safest way for them to travel. If you are worried about where their legs go or their attitude towards driving backwards, take a look at how your child sits at home: children love sitting with their legs crossed! Also, looking out through the side and back window instead of the front makes usually very little difference to children. Your top priority is your child’s safety and these concerns are unfounded and should really be secondary. Thousands of children are using rear-facing car seats in Europe and beyond and are 5 times safer than their forward-facing peers.