I’ll admit it, I didn’t think we needed a portable highchair for baby. Most restaurants we go to have loaners that they start offering you as soon as you walk in, so I just assumed we would use theirs when we dined. However, hubby was insistent and embarked on a multi-store and website hunt that eventually ended with Phil and Ted’s MeToo.
To be honest, once I saw the MeToo, I didn’t want to admit that I hadn’t thought it necessary. It comes in a compact and shallow box that is inches smaller than I had expected, considering the bulky masses of traditional hook-on high chairs. How it can fit into that shallow box is what sets it apart from all the other travel highchairs on the market, and what makes it so incredibly useful when on the go with baby. The MeToo has a sturdy fabric seat that is sewn onto a thick U shaped metal bar that connects to the table by way of C shaped clamps. When not in use, the seat collapses into itself and the metal table clamps pivot to lay completely flat, taking up minimal space in the diaper bag or stroller. As incredibly nice as that is, what really makes the seat portable is how light the whole thing is, even given the heavy weight materials used. In the super scientific “lift tests” we performed, the MeToo was substantially lighter and much more portable than other models.
Okay, so it wasn’t scientific at all, in fact we have zero data to support our findings, but you’re just going to have to trust me on this. Lighter, more compact and much more portable all means that it is much more likely to be used, of which I do have proof. We take the MeToo with us almost everywhere, including when we travel. On a recent trip to Spain and Morocco, we found the MeToo to be indispensable since there were no highchairs available at any of the cafes or restaurants we went to.
That’s right, it made a transatlantic flight with us and I would bring it again. You know how once you get to your destination you regret half the things you packed? Those cute black flats that have no arch support? Yeah, you’re gonna regret those. But, not the MeToo, you won’t. In addition to our Europe/Africa trip, the MeToo has seen its way all around the northwest, to California, Idaho, New York, and most recently to Chicago. On the rare occasion that the MeToo isn’t able to come along on our journeys or one of us accidentally forgets to put it back in the car after washings, meal times are much more difficult and our little one is much less likely to behave. For that reason, the MeToo is the one item (besides the car seat) that absolutely must be in the car at all times and is an absolute necessity when traveling out of town.
The only issue we have found is that sometimes the MeToo doesn’t fit on odd shaped tables that are extra thick or have aprons that are close to the edge of the table (vertical trim pieces on the underside of farm-style tables). So far we have found two restaurants we can’t use the MeToo at, which isn’t too bad considering we have used it in three different continents and a variety of States. I have heard rumblings that there is a new MeToo model that has a different clamp design that is more of a lobster closure than a screw on clamp. I’m not sure if the new design would solve these issues, since I haven’t actually seen it in person, but it might be worth checking into. One thing I would like to see Phil&Teds do in the future is to add a carrying bag or cover, as that would make the chair more portable and easier to fit in a diaper bag without the clamps becoming intertwined with the diaper bag contents as well as being more sanitary since the chair will likely come into contact with large amounts of pureed foods and sticky finger foods.
Speaking of sticky, I found the MeToo to be very easy to wipe clean with a damp rag or scrub out with a soapy mixture as needed. Even though the seat isn’t able to be removed from the metal frame and clamps for safety reasons, we have found it very easy to surface clean. It dries incredibly quick and is ready for use again in no time, which is great because you won’t want to be without it for long.
http://www.philandteds.com/ to see their New Zealand stock and drool over all the items that they don’t ship to the US, or you could do yourself a favor and just go to Amazon.com to buy
Price: $50, which is a bit more than other portable high chairs, but you’re paying for the compact size and lightweight design which makes it money well spent.