Our review of BubbleBum, the inflatable booster seat designed for safety and portability. In this BubbleBum review we look a the BubbleBum booster seat comfort, safety and ease of use.
If you are on a quest for the perfect car booster seat, you have probably come across Bubblebum, the portable booster seat designed to come with you on your travels.
I first heard about this booster seat from the web, while researching the safest and best booster seats for our upcoming trip, and it immediately piqued my attentions.
This booster seats boasts a high safety standard, has been deemed comfortable by many kids and packs up really small, which means we could easily carry it with us even on a plane.
Too good to be true? Well, the only way to know was to put it to the test! This is our BubbleBum review.
Please note: this post contains affiliate links and if you make a purchase through them, we might make a small commission at no extra cost to you.
If you are looking for ways to keep your kids safe and comfortable on car journeys, also check out out guide to car seat compatible travel pillows for kids.
What is BubbleBum booster seat
The BubbleBum booster seat is an inflatable booster seat designed for children between 15 and 36Kg. It operates like a booster seat and seat belt adjusting device and works with the standard 3 point adult seat-belt cars are equipped with.
It is a brilliant object. When in use, it is pretty unobtrusive, so much so that you can fit up to three on the backseat of the car. This means you can give a lift to your children friends knowing that they will be safe.
When deflated, it is very easy to store: we keep ours in the car, for unexpected needs, but it folds pretty small so it can easily be kept in a drawer in the house of even in a rucksack, ready for the next trip.
The BubbleBum booster seat currently retails at about 30 Euro and is a great investment if you consider how long the kids can use it for.
The seat is designed for children from 15kg up and current regulations recommend that children stay in a booster seat until they are 11 years of age or 4.9 feet. Even if you only use it for the occasional trip in the taxi or lift, this is a pretty long lifespan!
You can get hold of the Bubblebum on Amazon.co.uk following this link.
What is in the BubbleBum booster seat box
When you buy a BubbleBum booster seat it comes in a box,equipped with the following:
- The seat istelf, deflated and flattened
- A soft bag with drawstring, for storage, in a colour that matches the seat
- A seatbelt adjusting string. This is an extra piece that you might need in case the seatbelt is not positioned correctly across your child shoulder and ensures the belt is in the best and safest position
- An instruction booklet in several languages (don’t worry, it is actually easier to use the bubblebum than to expain how it works)
How to inflate, install and deflate the BubbleBum booster seat
The Bubblebum is very easy to both set up and put away.
The seat has one inflating valve to one side and can be blown up in a matter of seconds by an adult. The valve cap is fixed, so you don’t run the risk of losing it while you set the seat up and can be easily closed by twisting it, trapping the air in.
How to install the BubbleBum booster seat
- Blow up the BubbleBum and turn the safety valve shut
- Put the BubbleBum in the back seat and have your child sit on top.
- Buckle the seat belt as you normally would
- Thread the lap belt portion of the belt through the two red buckles on either side of the BubbleBum seat
- Check that the seat-belt sit properly across your child body. If your child is little and the belt scratched their neck, get the child out of the seat and use the seat belt positioning clip to keep the belt in a more comfortable and safe position
To uninstall the booster seat
All you need to do to uninstall the BubbleBum is to slide the seat-belt out of the red side clips and and unbuckle the seat belt. Then, simply open the valve and press all the air out, until the seat is fully deflated and no pocket of air are inside.
To do this fully, you may find yourself having to do it a couple of times and pressing against a hard surface helps. Overall, the whole process won’t take more than a few seconds, making the whole procedure super efficient!
BubbleBum for travel: BubbleBum booster seat in taxis and uber
A big reason why I wanted to get a BubbleBum booster seat is to use them in taxis. A short anecdote from last summer will explain why….
On a sunny afternoon, in the middle of the Californian summer, we got ready to move from our home exchange home to our next destination. We booked our taxi, we closed the door behind us, returned the keys in the letterbox and waited at the side of the road.
The taxi arrived as planned but surprise! As they saw the kids, they refused to get them on board without car seats! We were in shock: I am all in favour of cars seats, of course I am, but we had told them we had kids – how come they didn’t specify we needed our own seats?
A few minutes of stress later and much higher roaming charges we were happy with, we finally got hold of a private car service that did cater for kids and we were on the go but I can tell you this: there is no way I am going to be this unprepared again!
As well as being prepared in the case of an uncooperative taxi driver (I was later told car seats are not compulsory in California taxis?!), having your own booster seat also means you can make use of shared car services such as Uber or Lyft.
They are private cars and therefore the same rules as for private cars apply for car seat safety so unless you have your own booster seat, you may find yourself unable to use them. Once again, this shows how good an investment the Bubblebum can be.
Riding on Uber saves you a fortune compared with standard taxis and you will make your booster seat money back in no time.
Colours and safety specs of the BubbleBum
The BubbleBum comes in several colours. The ‘original’ one is a black and silver booster seat, which is the one my son chose, but now they have produces a full range of colours that go from country inspired (there is one with the Irish shamrock, a USA themed one one with the Union jack) to a stripey pink one which my daughter claimed for herself.
In terms of safety (specs from manufactures booklet and website)
BubbleBum is the world’s first inflatable car booster seat and meets and exceeds both EU and US regulatory requirements. BubbleBum is crash test approved and meets and exceeds the EU ECE R44.04 and the US FMVSS 213 safety regulations.
These entail both crash testing and materials testing. BubbleBum has been awarded the Best BET Booster Award by the Insurance institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) for four consecutive years.
The BubbleBum is made out of similar components to that of airbags, life rafts and life vests. It contains memory foam technology and has super tough, rigid side clips to ensure perfect belt fit. This designs replaces the more comon arm rests, often used to position the seatbelts, and keeps the seat sleek and narrow, saving space in your back seat.
Bubblebum review: final considerations
We are in love with our BubbleBum seats. The children declared them super comfortable, they are very jealous of their own and cherish the carrier bags that keep the seats clean.
Looking at their posture in the car, I can see that the combination BubbleBum / seat belt keep their back straight and doesn’t put a strain on their neck nor spine.
On longer car journeys they are not quite as comfortable to sleep for children who are used to high back seats but this is the case with all backless seats.
I believe the advantages of the BubbleBum and the comfort of the seat itself makes abundantly up for it. I highly recommend this product and cannot wait to have it with us while on the road in the US this summer!
Please note: we received the Bubblebum free of charge in exchange for an unbiased review. Opinions are, as always our own.
We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites