The search for a booster seat with a tall shoulder belt guide is often a challenging quest. There aren’t too many models that go past the 21 or 22 inch top guide position so when one comes along that has an unusually tall top position, we’re all ears. The Safety 1st Store ‘N Go is a lightweight, budget-friendly long-lasting booster seat option.
CSFTL Quick Stats
- High back booster weight range: 40-100 pounds
- High back booster height range: 43-57 inches
- Backless booster weight range: 40-100 pounds
- Backless booster height range: 43-57 inches
- Highest belt guide position: 23 inches
- Expiration: 10 years
- Requires head support behind it at all times
- 2014 IIHS Best Bet when used in highback mode
The seat was easy to put together. It comes out of the box in two pieces, they snap together and off you go. The biggest draw for this seat is the awesome drawer on the front of the seat. It’s also going to be the thing that makes most children forget to sit correctly. Many a child will want to dig through their drawer and leaning over and out of position while the vehicle is in motion. The Store ‘N Go also has a cup holder built-in and storage spots as well that are perfect size for snacks and hand-held game devices. The drawer has a grey handle that must be depressed to open the drawer, so no worries of random drawer opening when stopping too fast. This seat is Fruit Punch print, but it comes in other more muted patterns, as well as backless versions in Disney prints.
The lowest belt guide position on this seat is 14 inches with the top being about 23 inches. The 11 year old decided to model the shoulder belt height for us. He’s over the weight limit, but at 56.5 inches he’s at the max height of the seat and you can see he still fits by torso height, making it one of the tallest boosters on the market. Other tall boosters from Dorel include the Cosco Pronto and Safety 1st Boost Air Protect. This would be a good choice for that tall child in your life. This seat does require a head restraint behind the seat at all times so keep that in mind when choosing this booster. This seat has the same hole and peg adjustment as other Dorel boosters. Slightly different from other boosters that have an adjuster handle at the top of the head restraint, but still fairly easy. Just not quite as convenient.
Fit to Child
This is Ilana; she’s 7.5, 65 pounds, and 48 inches tall. The fit is great, shoulder belt is properly positioned when using the seat with the back on and lap belt is low on the hips and off the abdomen. She’s on the sixth adjustment of eight so she has plenty of growing room. As a backless booster though the fit could have been better, but that’s not uncommon in our van unfortunately. The shoulder belt was just slightly too far forward of her shoulder. This seat, while it can become a backless booster, does not come with a seat belt adjuster for use in backless mode. This is why it was given a Check Fit rating for the 2014 IIHS booster evaluations. You can order a belt adjuster though from Safety 1st, or if you buy the backless version of this seat, it comes with one then making it a Best Bet. She was very comfortable in this seat and liked it a lot. She did need a reminder to stay out of the drawer while we were driving.
This is Olivia, she’s 5, 46 pounds, and 44 inches. She’s on the fourth of the eight adjustments. Just like her big sister, the fit with the back on is great. The Store ‘N Go offers proper fit proper fit with the shoulder belt positioned across her collar bone and lap belt is low on her hips and off her abdomen. She is just in the very beginning stages of booster training so she has a good year before this would be her everyday seat but she loves it. The fit without the back is worse on her though since she is even smaller than Ilana. At five, a backless booster would not be a good recommendation for her anyways.
This seat however has a fatal flaw, at least in the third row of the Town and Country. It, like many other seats in that third row, has belt retraction problems. This one is one of the worst that has been seen though. This means if a child were to lean forward in their seat for some reason, the belt does not retract back fully through the belt guide. This leaves the shoulder belt very loose and unable to protect the child in a crash. The choices are different booster, different position, or to teach the child to reach back and thread the shoulder belt back into the retractor.
Here is Ilana trying the booster in our 2002 Cavalier. The belt fit is great and there are no retraction issues like above. However, because the seat requires head support behind it to the tops of the child’s ears, she cannot use this booster in this seat as she is too tall. She would need to use a high back booster that doesn’t require head support or a backless booster like the Safety 1st Incognito to bring her down closer to the seat and give her more room above her ears.
It’s not a best bet for three across, but it’s not horrible either. With it only having the cup holder on one side, it may only work in one spot in a three across though.
- High 23 inch top shoulder belt guide
- Storage drawer
- Shoulder belt can get caught in the belt guide
- Requires vehicle head support
I love this booster for tall kids, assuming you have head rests in your vehicle. It is one of the tallest high back boosters on the market and under $60. The main problem is because the booster is so tall, it will not fit fully extended in the third row of some vehicles. Seven is about as high as it could get out of the eight adjustments when using it in a three across in the Town and Country. If using it in a Chrysler van, it’s a “try cautiously knowing it might not work for you.” This is the biggest concern with this seat in certain vehicles.
The Store ‘N Go is available for purchase at Amazon.com.
Safety 1st did not provide this seat for review, nor did I receive compensation from them in any way. As always, thoughts expressed here are completely my own.