Car Seats / Taxis / Car Rentals
Posted 16 February 2012 - 08:24 AM
We are debating about how to get around the island - taxi vs car rental. We rented a house so we wouldn't have to leave every day, but we will obviously head into town for a couple of days. And I'm sure some other needs will come up. Based on our anticipated travel on the island being sporadic, we didn't think it would be necessary to rent a car and thought it would be better / more cost effective to rely on taxis.
But then we thought about car seats, which will be necessary for at least the two babies. Researching the issue on the Internet, it appears we cannot rely upon taxis to have car seats. We would either have to bring our own or rent them along with a car.
I didn't see much feedback on this when I searched prior posts but I find this community to be very informative (I have been browsing for a while). Thought I would see if anyone here has advice / strong opinion.
Posted 16 February 2012 - 09:35 AM
I've never seen a car seat in a taxi on the island.
I really don't know if car rental places have car seats available or not. I'd check with Margarita at ISiS Rentadora. She speaks good English and is very helpful and honest. We rent cars from her whenever needed.
This may not be as big a problem as it seems, though. Even if your children will be "lap babies" on the plane, you can gate-check car seats for free (they don't count as luggage), so you'll have them when you get the taxi to your rental house. Even if you do rent a car, the taxi cartel on the island pretty much ensures that you'll need to take a taxi to leave the airport. If the babies will have their own seats, you'll want them in their car seats on the plane anyway.
As of yesterday, new rules say the agent for your house can't meet you at the airport to help get you to the house. Just another helpful benefit of the island taxi collective.
Incidentally, don't count on taxis necessarily having seat belts that are functional and findable. The same will often be true of a rental car, but there at least you can swap cars if there's an issue with the belts. I have had to do this in the past.
Posted 16 February 2012 - 11:53 AM
Have a GREAT trip!
Posted 16 February 2012 - 02:17 PM
Posted 16 February 2012 - 09:23 PM
regarding babies, i also have a pack n play if you need it.
cheaper than buying new... 1 piece 200pesos for the week. if more than 1 piece, additional piece is 100 pesos more, so 300 for both for a week.
pretty tough to find new car seats here for under $100usd. however, if you want a booster seat, they are not much more than in the states. but like one comment, don't count too much on seatbelts. newer car rental WILL have them though.
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Posted 17 February 2012 - 01:15 AM
Seat belts are not commonly used by passengers, but I would anticipate no problem, especially if you phone for service of getting taxis with the belts in position. Many taxis are new and or are maintained in new condition. I couldn't believe the comfort in one the other night coming from the clinic. God I wish I had this seat in my living room I said. It was two years old, but looked show room condition. Its front seat belt was buckled behind the seat. They have to wash and clean the taxis daily, inside and out and most often the belts are tucked out of the way so people don't sit on them.
The union takes special pride in being able to accommodate any people with different capabilities so there are 6-8 wheel chair lift vans available. Asking for seat belts for a child seat should not be a problem. Kids are considered pretty special, but a tip would be appreciated if extra effort is involved to get the seat just right. Child seats are certainly becoming more common in private cars and I have seen them in use in taxis. As mentioned, I'd bring my own or rent from Nauticab as I am not real confident in rentals with an unknown history.
Posted 17 February 2012 - 01:46 AM
As far as carseats, I have always brought my own and tried to rent a newer car with seatbelts. (We've lately rented the automatic Chevy Aveo from Margarita at ISIS - she only has one automatic still). BTW, there is no guarantee that the car you get will have LATCH connectors so don't count on that. When our babies were smaller and in carseats we used the rolling carseat adapter to make carrying the carseat through the airport a lot easier (http://www.gogobabyz.com/). Now that my kids are booster-sized we use the belt positioning travel vests in place of carseats (http://www.safetrafficsystem.com/). And on the plane we use the CARES belt restraints (http://www.kidsflysafe.com/). Don't know what size your babies are, but the vests and CARES are easier to carry for sure (and still safe for the kids). And the vests are portable enough you can take them in taxis if you're not renting a vehicle.
Posted 17 February 2012 - 03:21 PM
Posted 17 February 2012 - 04:05 PM
At this point, I think we are going to look into bringing our own car seats. It seems as if we can hopefully use them for the [required] taxi trip from airport to house, and then I think we might look into just renting a car. Now onto researching that issue...
Posted 18 February 2012 - 06:52 AM
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