In a nutshell

An impressive budget booster seat that is lightweight and incredibly easy to fit using a car seatbelt, making it ideal for moving between vehicles or taking on holiday, although some children may prefer more padding

What we tested

  • Ease of installing
    A star rating of 4.5 out of 5.
  • Comfort
    A star rating of 3.0 out of 5.
  • Safety features
    A star rating of 4.5 out of 5.
  • Style
    A star rating of 4.0 out of 5.
  • Durability
    A star rating of 3.5 out of 5.
  • Worth the money
    A star rating of 5.0 out of 5.
Overall Rating
A star rating of 4.1 out of 5.


  • Budget friendly, very lightweight, easy to install, machine washable covers, 10-position headrest, 2 retractable cupholders, enhanced side impact protection, seatbelt guides


  • Minimal padding, cupholders too shallow for some cups, basic design

Graco is known for making great value car seats and pushchairs, with the Junior Maxi i-Size R129 being no exception. The brand's popular high-backed booster has been redesigned to meet the latest R129 safety standards, including extensive side impact testing, and is now i-Size. It is the most budget-friendly option in Graco’s highback booster range, but still has all the useful features you need, including an adjustable headrest, seatbelt guide and cupholders. It’s also the lightest in their range, at just 3.4kg, making it a great option for people who frequently need to move a booster seat between vehicles, or for taking on holiday.


Tested by

Hannah, a mum of twins, tested this with her 4-year-old children who have just passed 100cm in height and are ready to move onto a booster seat. She tested out the Graco Junior Maxi i-Size R129 car seat on short trips around town and on a longer journey to visit grandparents. Journalist Hannah has worked mainly in radio for the last 20 years, but has also written articles on lifestyle subjects ranging from weddings, to IVF and her cockapoo, Leo.

See more car seats suitable for age 4+ years

What were your first impressions of the Graco Junior Maxi i-Size R129 car seat?

My first impression of the booster seat was just how light it was – at only 3.4kg even my twins could carry the box. Knowing the low price tag, I was pleasantly surprised at how smart the fabric was, it certainly looks more expensive than it is. The seat arrives as 3 pieces that have to be clicked together. The instructions were easy to follow, but attaching the back to the seat was a little tricky – you have to use quite a bit of force, and I was worried I was breaking the plastic. However, once clicked together in place the seat feels stable.

2 pictures of Graco Junior Maxi i-Size car seat installed in car

What age is the Graco Junior Maxi i-Size R129 car seat suitable for?

It is a high-back booster seat suitable from 100-150cm (approximately 3.5 to 12 years).

How do you install the Graco Junior Maxi i-Size R129 car seat?

I was very impressed with how straightforward it was to install the seat in my car – it took me less than 5 minutes. It's installed using your car seatbelt rather than Isofix, which makes it incredibly quick. It’s simply a case of placing the booster seat in your car, which is particularly easy because of how lightweight it is, then just do up the seatbelt.

To ensure the Graco Junior Maxi i-Size R129 is fitted properly, you need to thread the top of the belt through a guide on the side of the booster seat, which is easy to find (it's bright green), and intuitive to use. I was happy that once my child was buckled in, the seat felt secure, and didn’t move around.

2 pictures of close-ups of seatbelt on Graco Junior Maxi i-Size car seat

What are the key safety features of the Graco Junior Maxi i-Size R129 car seat?

This Graco booster seat meets the EU's latest R129 safety standards, which is instantly reassuring. It also has enhanced side impact protection to protect your child's head and neck, and clear seatbelt guides so you know if you've installed the seat correctly.

Does the booster seat have any unique features?

My little boy was very excited about the Graco Junior Maxi i-Size's 2 retractable cupholders, which you can pull out from both sides of the seat. This is such a great idea and it made him feel very grown up. Unfortunately the holders are too shallow to hold any of the cups and bottles that we have, but they are still useful for snacks and treasures. It's useful to note that many other reviews really rate the cupholders and have no issues fitting their bottles in, so it's not a universal problem.

Close-up of cup holder on Graco Junior Maxi i-Size car seat

How comfortable did your child find the Graco Junior Maxi i-Size R129 car seat?

While it's not on the level of some of the more premium models, this booster seat is padded, and on both short and longer trips my twins seemed to be comfortable. They were eager to jump in and buckle themselves in which says it all. I would prefer more padding if I was going on frequent long journeys, especially on the arms and headrest, but for short journeys it was fine. For the price you can't really expect the plush levels of padding you see on £150+ booster seats.

2 pictures of child sitting in Graco Junior Maxi i-Size car seat

Does the Graco Junior Maxi i-Size R129 car seat have an adjustable headrest?

Yes, there is an adjustable headrest, with 10 settings, meaning the seat is suitable from 100-150cm. At the moment we only need it on the lowest setting, but it was very easy to move up and down, and I appreciated the clear diagram that showed where the child’s shoulders should sit, just below the headrest.

How robust does the car seat feel?

Compared to other car seats I have seen, the fabric on the Graco Junior Maxi i-Size R129 does not seem particularly hard wearing. It will be interesting to see how well it holds up to frequent use, including moving between vehicles. However, I think this is a fair enough compromise for how lightweight and affordable the seat is.

How easy is it to clean?

The fabric on the seat is machine washable on a delicate cycle at 30°C, which is always a relief with small kids. Thankfully I haven’t had to try this yet, but I did test taking the cover off, and it was easy to do. You can also easily wipe down the metal and plastic parts with cold soapy water if needed.

Is the Graco Junior Maxi i-Size R129 car seat easy to carry around?

Very! I was amazed at how light the car seat is – just 3.4kg, which is less than half the weight of other high-backed booster seats like the BeSafe iZi Fix iSize, 7kg, and the Silver Cross Discover i-Size, 7.1kg. This makes the Graco Junior Maxi i-Size R129 an excellent choice if you plan on swapping the seat between cars regularly.

Is the Graco Junior Maxi i-Size R129 car seat big enough for a growing child?

I'd say so. The seat is advertised as being suitable for children roughly 3.5-12 years (100-150cm in height) and, while my twins are at the bottom of the range, there seems to be plenty of room for them. With the extendable head rest I can certainly see it lasting for many years.

2 pictures of child sitting in Graco Junior Maxi i-Size car seat 2

What’s in the box?

  • Graco Junior Maxi i-Size R129 car seat (in 3 pieces to be assembled)
  • Instructions

What did you think of the packaging?

I was happy with the packaging of the Graco Junior Maxi i-Size R129 car seat – a cardboard box with the sections of the seat wrapped individually in plastic. The plastic may not have been necessary, but it did protect the fabric on the seat.

Can the Graco Junior Maxi i-Size R129 car seat be repaired?

The seat has a 2-year warranty and the Graco website also offers replacement parts if needed.

Now you’ve tested it, what would you have wanted to know before purchasing the Graco Junior Maxi i-Size R129 car seat?

I would have liked to know that it's OK to be firm when clicking the car seat together in the first place. It would have been helpful for Graco to have a short video on their website showing how to assemble the product, as it was a little tricky to understand and I was concerned I was breaking it because of the amount of gusto needed to click it into place.

Who would this booster seat be most useful for?

I think the Graco Junior Maxi i-Size R129 booster seat would be really useful for people who need to move a seat between cars frequently, or for grandparents who only need to carry a child in their car occasionally. Because it is so lightweight it could also be useful if people are looking to take a car seat abroad. As well as this, it's ideal for families on a budget who want a safe and comfortable booster seat without spending too much money.

Child sitting in Graco Junior Maxi i-Size car seat view from the door

Is the Graco Junior Maxi i-Size R129 car seat worth the money?

The seat is definitely worth the money! It is a budget option, and the padding and fabric are at the more basic end, which is to be expected. However, my children were safe and comfortable, which are the most important things to me.

Where can I buy the Graco Junior Maxi i-Size R129 car seat?

It is available from Halfords, Amazon and Graco.


How does the Graco Junior Maxi i-Size R129 car seat compare to similar high-backed booster seats?

Product nameSuitable forWeightInstallationRRP (£)
Graco Junior Maxi i-Size R129100-150cm in height3.4kgSeatbelt£39.99
Joie i-Trillo100-150cm in height4.43kgSeatbelt£75
CozyNSafe Augusta i-Size Booster100-150cm in height7.4kgIsofix and seatbelt£79.99
Maxi-Cosi Rodifix S i-Size100-150cm in height6.1kgIsofix and seatbelt£149.99

MadeForMums verdict:

I think the Graco Junior Maxi i-Size R129 car seat is amazing value, and ideal for short trips, or infrequent use such as leaving at the grandparents. The lightweight design means it would also be a great option if you wanted to take a car seat abroad. While it, understandably, doesn't offer the same level of padding or premium fabrics as high-end boosters, this Graco offering is still a comfortable option (no complaints from my children!), with enhanced side impact protection, adjustable headrest and retractable cupholders, at a minimal cost.

Product Specifications

ModelJunior Maxi i-Size
Dimensions & Weight
Suitable for
Child Height100cm to 150cm
iSize compliantYes
Car seat installationSeat belt
Travel system compatibleNo
Removeable cover for washingYes
Side crash protectionYes
Height adjustible headrestYes
  • 10 position headrest
  • Padded seat
  • Lightweight
  • Enhanced side impact protection
  • Open-loop belt guides
  • 2 retractable cup holders