What age do kids have to be to use a child seat?
It's recommended that you wait until your little one is able to hold themselves up. So somewhere around 9 months. If you have very young children, a front seat can be more reassuring. This type of seat sits on your bike's head tube and means that you can see your child at all times. It makes communication easier. With this set-up, you'll have no trouble chatting to them and comforting them if necessary. Plus, with you sitting just behind them, you form a protective cocoon with your arms, giving them a feeling of security.
With a front child seat, your child also gets a much better view of what's going on around them. You'll enjoy a cosier shared experience together.
So what are the downsides of this type of seat? When sitting in front of you, your young passenger is very exposed to the wind (unless you install a windshield). Another limiting factor is that these types of seat only take children weighing up to 15 kg (around the age of 3). After that, you'll need to opt for a rear seat, otherwise you'll really struggle to ride your bike (hard to balance, hard to control the handlebar). Rear child seats can be used by kids weighing up to 22 kg – around the age of 5 or 6.
Generally, both front and rear seats come with a padded seat and a shell that's shaped to fit their body, keeping kids nice and comfy. If your child gets drowsy, they'll be properly supported, which means they can always travel under the best conditions, even if your ride lasts a little longer than expected.