Looking for a lightweight, affordable car seat to travel with? Then look no further!

When my son graduated from his infant car seat on the early side (he was a pretty big baby), I knew we wanted a car seat for both my husband's car and my car. I ended up getting the Graco Extend2Fit Convertible Car Seat for my car, but I wanted something cheaper for my husband's car, which we don't use as much. Thankfully, I stumbled upon the Cosco Scenera NEXT Convertible Car Seat. 

Boy, am I glad I did! This little puppy only costs $40-$50 at Walmart depending on the color you choose, and it only weighs 10 pounds once assembled. For comparison, our Graco is in the $120-$200 range and weighs 24 pounds. Granted, our Graco has a 65-pound weight limit, while the Cosco only has a 40-pound limit, but for the price and our purposes, that didn't really matter.

car seat

Courtesy of Cosco's Facebook

Not only is the Cosco perfect for a second car (or for parents/in-laws), it's also ideal for travel! We fly down to Florida often to visit family, and it's a breeze to carry through the airport. We bought a bag that allows us to carry it on our backs, which really makes it even more convenient. If your toddler is old enough to sit on the airplane without a car seat, you can easily check it at the gate. 

Another added benefit is that it's easy to clean. We ended up cleaning both car seats for the first time a few weeks ago (gross, I know), and the Cosco was much easier to take apart. You simply throw the cover into the washer and dryer, and it looks (almost) as good as new. 

Now, it does have some negatives. As I mentioned earlier, the weight limit is only 40 pounds, and the height limit is 40 inches. Our son who just turned 2 is already 30 pounds and 35 inches, so I know he'll outgrow it pretty soon, but we've gotten a lot of use out of it. 

convertible car seat

Courtesy of Cosco's Facebook 

Compared to other brands, it doesn't have all the bells and whistles you might be accustomed to—although, it does have a removable cup holder, which is a nice perk in my opinion. While it seems light on padding, it still meets all of the Federal Safety Standards produced by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

While I'm sure my son might be more comfortable in our Graco and he definitely has more room to grow, he's never complained when we take my husband's car. I think if you're looking for an affordable second car seat that you can travel with, the Cosco Scenera NEXT Convertible Car Seat is a wonderful option.

What are your thoughts? Do you have a favorite car seat that you travel with? Let's compare notes in the comments!