When Do Toddlers Stop Using High Chairs (5 Signs To Look Out For)

Have you ever stared at your toddler and asked when do toddlers stop using high chairs? It comes through your mind.

As you may know, every child develops at their pace. Your baby is unique, and yours will never be an exception.

Some children’s development could be classified as slow and steady, while some of their peers could fall under the category of people who charge ahead at full speed.

So when you are tempted to ask the question, when do toddlers stop using high chairs? Before switching to booster seats, a toddler is ready to stop using a high chair between 18 months and three years of age.

However, always look for signs in your little one before making the transition.

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When Do Toddlers Stop Using High Chairs?

Research has shown no specified age when a toddler will typically be ready to stop using a high chair.

Typically, a toddler is ready to stop using a high chair between 18 months and three years of age before switching to booster seats.

The reason is that at this age, they should be steady enough to keep themselves upright for quite a long period, though the chances of being wiggly might be there.

Though it shouldn’t be cause for alarm, booster seats can make the transition quite easier if your toddler isn’t stable enough or tall enough to reach the table.

Signs That Your Toddler Is Ready For Transition: 5 Signs To Look Out For

For a transition from a high chair to be effective, it has to be done when your toddler is ready, and as a result, you have to be on the watch to notice when your toddler is ready so that the transition does not affect your toddler adversely.

The High Chair Usage Creates Chaos

Watch out for the period or phase in your toddler’s life when trying to put him in a high chair gets hysterical. This is usually a result of that feeling of independence.

Once you notice this, it is a pointer and an indicator that it is time to kiss your highchair goodbye.

They Can Follow the Rules

Once you notice that your toddler can keep to rules and follow basic rules like remaining seated during mealtime, knowing that all plates, bowls, and utensils are meant to remain on the tabletop and that chairs are not meant for standing on, rocking, lying on or playing, then transitioning should be considered.

When You’ve Got A Little Houdini

Once your toddler can unbuckle that five-point harness, enabling them to climb in or out of a high chair or crib, facilitating escape, it is time you stop using a high chair.

They Want To Be Like You

Once you notice your child imitating you, wanting to be like daddy or mama, it is also a sign that your child is ready to stop using a high chair and consider an infant car seat.

When You Have Got A Little Climber

Once your child starts trying out all the different home seats, know that they want to start sitting like the big kid, and you must try it during meals.

Once they can safely get in and out of the different seats in the house, you should transition them into the infant car seats.

Read Also: How To Stop Baby Rocking In High Chair

4 Practical Tips When Transitioning Toddler Out Of High Chair

Having discovered your child’s readiness and willingness to stop using a high chair, the next question will be, how do you make such a transition?

Remember, every child is unique in their way, and there is no need for unhealthy competition or comparison transition tips should be dependent on your child’s nature and your preferences. Still, you can consider these five practical tips.

1. Make It Gradual

If your child shows all the signs, that is a sure way of knowing that they are fully prepared, but if the escape artist, the little Houdini, is missing, then the transitioning needs to be gradual.

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You could start with snacks in the big kid’s chair and still use a high chair until you are sure they have developed the full capability of sitting still through an entire meal.

2. Consider A Booster:

You can aid the transitioning process by using a strap booster, with straps for the child, and the chair will be of immense help.

3. Make It Child-Sized

Try using a child-size set of tables and chairs to enable transitioning; sure, you would feel comfortable with your child sitting on a chair without the worry of falling a few feet to the ground.

4. Make It A Family Fun Event

Try turning off the television and sitting at the table as a family; turn the mealtime into a social family event rather than just scarfing down food.

Spending quality time with your child will surely serve as a distraction and prevent them from getting in and out of their new unrestrictive chair and hence help them eat better.

Things To Consider Before Choosing a Booster Seat

There are different types of booster seats available online and the stores. You can purchase ones that are merely cushions. Other alternatives include:

  • Seats with a feeding table. 
  • Portable booster seats (ideal for family time).
  • seat harness (not ideally a seat, but it can allow your little one to sit in a big person chair)
  • floor booster seat

Choose the one that meets your and your toddlers’ needs when deciding the best seat to get. Here are important factors to consider before buying your booster seat:

1. Height adjustment

Booster seats that allow you to adjust the height can help compensate for these growth spurts. 

2. Safety straps 

Keep your child safe by buckling them into their seats. Look for a 3-way safety harness system that provides the best security while allowing your child to move freely. 

It is also important to pay attention to how the booster seat is attached to the kitchen chair. If your child lands too far forward, the seat may fall over.

3. Storing away the seat

Do you want to make the booster seat a permanent fixture at your dining table? Or do you want to tuck it away somewhere after meals?

If you choose the latter, a foldable seat is worth considering because you can store it in a closet without taking up much space. 

4. Detachable table

When your child becomes more accustomed to sitting at the dining table, booster seats with detachable tables can act as temporary high chairs. 

5. Ease of cleaning the seat

It’s common for toddlers to make a mess while eating. Spills and dropped food can cause a booster seat to look like it’s been fighting, and more nooks and crannies mean more hiding places for food scraps. 

Do you want to spend a lot of time cleaning the seat? Maintenance can be more difficult with fabric lining than with plastic.

Some booster seats allow parts (like the food tray) to be placed in the dishwasher.

6. Size

It can be frustrating to buy a booster seat only to find it too big for your chair or the size of your child.

Furniture experts will tell you to measure twice and cut once. In this case, measure your kitchen chair twice and buy it once.

When you have the right size, you can have your little one try out the potential seat and choose one they like. 

7. Budget

You can spend a little when buying a booster seat. Use these factors to inform your buying decision, then choose a booster seat within your budget. 

Read Also: Six creative ideas to repurpose old high chairs

5 Best Booster Seats For Toddlers

We will explain in detail each one of them the features, pros, and cons to help guide you when shopping for a booster seat.

1. Best Overall Booster Seat – Diono Monterey XT Latch

Why do we recommend it

The Diono Monterey XT’s heavily padded headrest makes it ideal for long road trips. It allows your child’s headrest to rest comfortably instead of sliding down at an awkward angle.

See also  When Do Toddlers Stop Using Sippy Cups? (Tips For Transitioning)

Another added advantage is the two recline positions. We also like how this convertible car seat has two different adjustment options. The seat also has an 11-position headrest with a 6.5-inch height adjustment.

The dial on the back allows you to adjust the width up to 20 inches.


  • Its height is adjustable
  • The width is adjustable too
  • It has well-cushioned headrests


  • The cupholders cannot be removed
  • Three seats across are tight
  • The seat weighs more than the others

2. Best Booster Seat for Multiple Cars – Graco TurboBooster LX

Why do we recommend it

This is a great option if you don’t want multiple booster seats for different cars. Unlike some booster seats, the Graco infant car seat has its back and base firmly attached when picked up.

Instead of needing two hands to hold the seat together, you can grab the entire seat with one.

It has side-impact bolsters for additional protection, washable seat fabrics, two cupholders, and seven adjustable height positions to accommodate your growing child.


  • It is straightforward to move
  • Easy for kids to buckle in
  • It has extra side impact protection


  • The cupholders cannot be removed
  • It has limited height adjustment

3. Best Booster Seat for Comfort – Chicco KidFit 2-in-1

Why do we recommend it

This is a great booster seat with useful features and a lower price. It has ten head and shoulder protection positions allowing you to adjust for comfort and safety as your child grows.

There’s also a one-pull tab to ensure the seat is properly seated in your vehicle. Because this is a two-in-one design, the seatback can be removed.

It has two dishwasher-safe cup holders and removable and machine-washable fabric covers.


  • It is straightforward to adjust
  • Very easy to clean
  • Affordable price


  • The back comes off when moved
  • Kids find it difficult to buckle in
  • The cupholders pop loose easily

4. Best All-in-One Booster Seat – Graco 4Ever DLX 4 in 1

Why do we recommend it

If you prefer a one-and-done approach, this four-in-one car seat is excellent. It switches from rear-facing to forward-facing to high-back booster to booster.

As a result, your child can use this convertible car seat from infancy to ten years old. It has washable seat pads to keep it clean over time and is highly adjustable.

It has a 10-position headrest as well as a six-position recline. Finally, two cup holders are provided for snacks and drinks.


  • It is very versatile
  • It has a range of seat adjustments
  • The cushions are easy to remove


  • It is expensive
  • It’s quite bulky
  • The Cushion clips sometimes snap

5. Best Affordable Booster Seat – Evenflo Big Kid Highback

Why do we recommend it

Parents on a budget would love the pricing of this booster seat. Despite its low price, it has six adjustable height positions and a belt clip to ensure your child’s seatbelt is properly secured at his or her shoulder.

There are two cupholders as well as a machine-washable seat pad. This booster seat’s smaller dimensions and lighter weight make it easy to transfer between vehicles and come in various colors and patterns.


  • Affordable
  • Lightweight
  • Its height is adjustable


  • Features are limited
  • Minimal padding
  • Flimsy cupholders

Related Post:

Kissing Goodbye To High Chair

If you’re convinced that your toddler is ready to kiss bye to the usage of the high chair as a result of seasoned observation since your child has developed the necessary signs required.

And you have made up your mind to help them work through the room’s exit door of high chair usage. I’m confident your baby is ready for the switch and is prepared to stop using a high chair.

We hope this article has given an in-depth discussion to answer the question, when do toddlers stop using high chairs?

Bear in mind that there is no set time for the transition; it all depends mostly on your child’s readiness which you can solve with the tips stated above and move into action even if it takes longer.

Remember, as a parent, the most important thing is the safety of your child and the mealtime being made enjoyable for all the involved parties.