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As a pilots wife I will say it is dangerous!! Not only in an accident but during travel. Kids like to squirm when forced to be held. They try to get up and down! And yes there are parents who will watch every move their child makes but you also have the ones who thinks "hey we are in an airplane how far can they go?" Now the kids are under the flight attendants feet and any one else trying to walk around the plane! And take for an example an accident that causes brakes to slam real fast...send everyone flying forward....if your child is moving at the time because they are scared they can slip out of your hand and get really hurt!! No it doesn't happen every day but accidents do happen. But if you are going on vacation with you kids the infants in a child seat is easier to keep happy and frees you up to get toys and food to keep everyone happy!! Including the person on the 5am flight doesnt want to listen to your child cry because they are tired and can't comfy to sleep! In the end it is all up to you how you spend your money and if you want a squirmy child on your lap so be it!