The Harmony Youth Booster is a lightweight, budget-friendly backless booster seat. If your kiddo is ready for a backless booster seat or maybe you need to have spare booster seats on hand for friends, or a great option for travel, the Youth Booster may be just the thing. The Harmony Youth Booster‘s reasonable price and compact size make it a great option for everyday use, for carpools, and for travel. Let’s check it out!
CSFTL Quick Stats
- Weight range, United States: 30-100 pounds
- Weight range, Canada: 40-100 pounds
- Height range: 34-57 inches tall
- Expiration: 6 years
- IIHS Best Bet for booster fit
- Width at widest point (armrests): 17 inches
- Seat pan depth: 14 inches
- Width at narrowest portion of the seating area: 9.5 inches
- Weight: approximately 1 pound
First, is your Little Ready for a Backless Booster?
The most important part of using a booster seat is that the child is mature enough to sit properly for the entire ride, and that the vehicle seat belt fits properly. A good booster fit positions the shoulder belt even across the torso – not sliding off the shoulder or cutting into the face. The lap belt should be lying low on the hips, touching the tops of the thighs. The Harmony Youth Booster was awarded a Best Bet rating from the IIHS for 2013.
We generally recommend using a high back booster until the back has been outgrown because the high back can often position the vehicle seat belt better on small children. A high back booster also helps younger booster riders remain in the correct seating position because the back serves as a good reminder. As booster riders mature in their booster use, a backless booster like the Harmony Youth Booster becomes a great option.
This seat is very narrow and can work well in 3 across situations. A couple of things may make using the Harmony Youth Booster in tight spaces a challenge: because it is so narrow, it can be hard for bigger kids to thread the vehicle seat belts under the short armrests. You can see here how the belt is peeking out from under the armrest. The Youth Booster’s widest point is at the armrests — it flares out just a bit. That flared shape could mean that it doesn’t always fit next to another flared seat. Like all 3 across situations, we suggest that caregivers try every available combination to see what works for their children in their vehicle.
The bottom of the Youth Booster’s base is fairly narrow while the seating area is a bit wider. The booster does not have LATCH so can be a bit wobbly when kids are getting themselves buckled in because of this flared shape. This flared base can also make the Harmony Youth Booster a good option for contoured seating positions.
Shoulder Belt Adjuster
The Youth does come with a seat belt adjuster to help the shoulder belt fit. This can be helpful when petite kids need to use this seat or odd belt geometry requires the guide to perfect belt fit. Like all backless boosters, the Youth requires head support up to the top of the child’s ears.
Fit to Child
Six Years Old
This model is 6.5 years old, weighs 55 pounds, and 48 inches tall. She doesn’t use a backless booster full-time, but does well in one as a spare when traveling with other people. The Youth provides a proper belt fit on her and is light enough for her to carry to school or a friend’s house if needed. It’s also very narrow so helpful when riding with other children next to her. She fit well without the belt adjuster but using it makes it better still.
Eight Years Old
This kiddo is almost 9, 54 inches tall, and wears a 12/14. She fits great in the Youth Booster even though it’s a bit narrow. It does make it a little harder to get the lap belt under the armrests though. She is still just a few inches short of being able to safely pass the five step test and her bones are too immature to withstand crash forces alone. Even though it does come with a belt adjuster, she’s plenty tall enough to not need one to keep the seat belt properly positioned across her collar bone.
Nine Years Old
This model is 9 years old. She’s 53 inches tall and wears a size 10 in clothing. The Youth Booster fits her very well and she’s got some room to grow in it yet. Since it’s so lightweight, this booster was a mainstay in her family’s travel supplies for many years!
Important Information: Where to Find
Expiration The Youth has a 6 year expiration. The date of manufacture label is easily seen on the back of the seat. For example, this particular seat was manufactured in 2010, so it will expire in 2016 on that date.
Manual Storage The manual can be stored under the cover for easy access and safekeeping.
FAA approval Like all booster seats, the Harmony Youth Booster requires a lap and shoulder belt so is not approved for use on aircraft. However, it’s small and light enough that carrying it on an airplane to use at your destination would be very easy.
- Short, narrow armrests can be difficult to thread belt under
- Not much padding
- No lower anchors
Booster seats have one job — to boost the child into the proper position for the vehicle seat belt to fit them properly. We’re pleased to assert that the Harmony Youth Booster seat does that job well, giving a proper vehicle seat belt fit for all of our models, especially when using the shoulder belt adjuster.
The Youth Booster’s low price and size make it a top choice for three across and having extra boosters on hand and the variety of fun covers mean that there’s a Youth Booster for everyone!
Neither Harmony nor Amazon sponsored this review; as always, the opinions expressed are all mine!