10 Tips for Visiting Disney World with Toddlers

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Visiting Disney World with Toddlers

Once upon a time, way back when our daughter was almost three, she was (and still is!) an absolute Cinderella nut. This is why we decided to make the effort to include Walt Disney World during our trip to Florida. And we all had a great time, in no short part due to the fact that I had an ace up my sleeve: my friend Sandra. Sandra and her family have visited Walt Disney World and other Disney vacation properties probably more than 50 times. She shared with me some invaluable tips for Disney World with toddlers.

Had we not had Sandra’s guidance, I don’t think we would have had half the good time that we did.

At the time, Sandra had just launched her travel agency that specializes in Disney vacations: Click the Mouse. Now almost 10 years in, Sandra has grown her business into a thriving agency that specializes in making Disney dreams come true.

10 Tips for Visiting Walt Disney World with Toddlers:

•Take or rent a stroller…

Disney offers discounts for multiday rentals, and a rental is transferred to all four theme parks. Little legs get tired very quickly. A stroller is a must have to avoid tantrums.

•Book character dining…

Since characters visit and interact with little ones, you can all enjoy your lunch or dinner. Tip: Advanced Dining Reservations are highly recommended, call 1-407-WDW-DINE (939-3463). Advance Dining Reservations are available at most Full Service dining locations up to 180 days in advance (certain exceptions apply).

•Take advantage of the “Child Swap”

Child Swap is offered at Disney parks on most height-restricted rides. One parent/guardian can go on a ride while the other waits with the child. You then “swap”, and the second parent/guardian goes on the ride without waiting. Ask the Disney Cast member at the entrance of the ride about it.  Tip: use Fastpass+ (Disney’s system to help reduce long waits at popular attractions) to make the wait for the first parent even shorter!

•Take a break…

Go back to your resort for an afternoon swim/nap/snack and head back to the parks refreshed and ready for evening fireworks and parades.

•Take advantage of early risers…

Most parks do not get crowded until around 10:30-11am. If you are a resort guest you can take advantage of Extra Magic Hours, where particular parks are open one hour before and/or three hours after regular park hours on selected days. Check the schedule at the Disney owned resort you are staying at for details.

•Bring a change of clothes and/or bathing suit and towels…

There are misting stations and water spouts coming from the ground at Magic Kingdom, Epcot, and Animal Kingdom. Little ones can have fun getting wet and cooling off. Good luck keeping your kids away from them!

•Find the Baby Care Centre…

There is one located at each major park. This facility is not only great for changing diapers, it also carries a great assortment of baby/toddler supplies and gives nursing mothers a quiet place to feed. And they even have toddler toilets for those who are training!

•Purchase an autograph book for character greetings…

Whether you are at character dining or meeting them at the parks, this is big for toddlers. Tip: don’t forget to put your name/phone number/address inside the front cover. Disney will mail a missing book to you if they have recovered it, and this tip comes from first-hand experience!

•Keep your child safe and in sight…

Sometimes the crowds can be overwhelming, especially after parades and fireworks. Make an emergency plan depending on the age of your child just in case.

•Measure your child…

Avoid disappointments by measuring your child ahead of time and know which Disney World rides they will be able to go on before you line up for them.

 

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2 Responses to 10 Tips for Visiting Disney World with Toddlers

  1. I’ve been fantasizing about another Disneyland vacation for us (we went summer 2011) and I love reading this! Thanks for the links to the water bottles, I might have to buy some, and I can’t agree enough that it is a dance. We didn’t go on anything “fun” for adults, but took every darn train ride that we could find:)

  2. Great tips. I also love to spend a day at one of the water parks – Blizzard Beach or Typhoon Lagoon. They just love the water!

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