Child car seat retailers sign Best Practice Charter Retailers sign new charter for child car seats

23 November 2011

Knowing which seats you want helps you take control of the transaction

Four of the six major retail chains signed up

Four of the six major chains Which? judged to have offered poor advice to parents about child car seats have signed up to our new retailer .

In October, Which? published results of our extensive into child car seat fitting advice. The results made for worrying reading. Many of the 43 high street and independent stores visited across the UK failed to give us accurate advice, and half the shops failed to install seats correctly.

Since then Which? has been talking to the retailers concerned, giving them detailed feedback about the findings for their stores and finding out what each plans to do to improve its service to consumers.

Of the six major retailers we investigated and spoke to, four have signed up so far. Babies R Us, John Lewis, Mamas & Papas and Mothercare have all penned the charter.

Our investigation has had a big impact with these retailers, with some already conducting reviews of their car seat fitting services as a direct result. For instance, Mamas & Papas has conducted its own mystery shopping investigations at its stores and promised to make big changes to how the firm trains its staff.

Bira (British Independent Retailers Association) has also endorsed the charter and plans to promote it to its members. 

Halfords and Tesco decline to sign

Halfords has so far declined to sign up, but said it welcomed the concept of a retailer charter and says it’s considering it internally. We're continuing discussions with Halfords on this. 

Tesco has also not signed up, although it lacks a national car seat fitting service. Until it offers this, our advice is not to buy a car seat from a Tesco store unless you have already sought professional fitting advice elsewhere (from a local authority road safety officer, for example).

We intend to contact as many independent retailers as we can to find out their willingness to work to the same promises laid out in our charter.

Give us your feedback

If you have any feedback on any of the retailers we’ve been talking to, let us know about it at

More on this...

  • Find out the results of our  
  • Use our unique Birth Choice tool to help decide where you’d like to give birth.
  • Check out crash test results for more than 130 seats in our child car seat reviews