Hello all! I thought I would put it out there how I traveled with my daughter, Alicia, over the years especially to Disney. I am asked countless times to my delight how I made it through Disneyland CA with her at the young age of 1- 1/2 yrs old. First off, my daughter was an angel every time we took her to Disney from that young age. She was even an angel on non-Disney vacations. Yes, we do take other vacations to other destinations. But, Disney does win over any others in my book ! Now I am not trying to scare you but want you to be prepared for an amazing adventure that you should not be stressed over.
Disney is a very family friendly vacation spot for all ages. The best way to take a family to Disney is to go with the flow. Yes, that means don’t push them to go from a.m. to late p.m. Running from the early a.m. without a break can make you & the kids very cranky especially on a hot day. I told my one friend that had a baby they were taking, you would be good with going back for a nap since they were staying on property. I also told them not to worry about riding the rides as Disney has the rider swap, where one parent can ride then the next parent rides after giving the baby to the other parent. Also, that there are plenty of trees & benches to get shade for all ages to enjoy at the park. I explained about the baby care centers around the parks that the parents can take the kids for easy changes or other needs, they were amazed.
For those parents with the older kids, if your planning on heading to the World you may (I suggest you do) want to research ahead of time what your family is in to within the parks and at the resorts. Some good suggestions are the pools at the resorts and water sport rentals at designated resorts. With each resort having activities for the family and beautiful grounds to explore to break up the day, there is so much to choose. Plus there is Downtown Disney. So plan and listen to your family to see what they want to do.
Here is one thing I have started on my 40th birthday trip !! I pick a day on our vacation where we get up early to enjoy time pool side. On that day we head to the parks later in the a.m. I have had breakfast poolside with my daughter at the Beach Club when we stayed there. It was so nice to sit, sip coffee and eat a muffin with that view.
Speaking of food, I’ve been asked, “do you get the dining plan?” No, we usually don’t as we are not large eaters, but small meal snack people !! We like to try everything, so a lot of times we will eat a meal then grab snack foods the rest of the day. We also share a few different dishes to try a variety, so the dining plan isn’t really for us. Then comes a much talked about how is the food priced? To us is not that pricey as some may think. It is very comparable to my home state of Buffalo, NY. We like to eat a burger, they range $8.99 to $12.00 here so no different from Disney. I had a friend that was lucky to get the dining plan for her family of 5, during the free dining. The said it worked out saving them a lot of money when they came home with the receipts to compare the cost if they paid for the plan or just ate as they enjoyed. So the next time they went they purchased the dining plan and it did save them money.
A few little side notes:
I had a friend with a young child with a nut allergy. They were avoiding vacations for a long time with the fear of not being able to eat out. I explained to them, Disney is the best place to take a member of your family with an allergy as they take great care of their guests with allergies. So they booked their Disney vacation. They came back to tell me that Disney took great care with the food allergies and that they had a wonderful experience.
Another of my friends, in a wheel chair, said they visit Disney frequently as they are always comfortable at the parks with all the Cast Members able to assist her for the rides and with the resorts handicap rooms. The rooms are perfect for accessibility of wheel chair guests.
We all know children want every souvenir they see, so I started when Alicia was young giving here Disney dollars (now gift cards) for her own spending money at Disney. My best friend suggested it when we took her in 1998. She got a blast out of purchasing her items of choice. Still to this day I get her Disney gift cards for the holidays for her next adventure to Disney!
I hope you enjoy & can feel more comfortable with planning your first or next Disney vacation.
Until next time, Have a Magical Day!
Darlene is also co-host of the Tiara Talk Show Podcast. Listen to some of her interviews with co-hosts Tammy & Denelle and famous Disney stars (like Susan Sarandon & Helen Reddy) in iTunes or at their website here: www.tiaratalkshowpodcast.comShare