Advice for families with toddlers

Trying to map out ADRs, rough day plans, etc for our trip 11/28-12/4. For those of you with young kids (mine will be 3 & 1 at the time), did you find it helpful to leave the park during the afternoon for a break? Or did you prefer to just push through until the end of the day and let kids nap on the go?

When my daughter was 3 I took her, and we took a break. Even if she didn’t nap, she did refuel at the hotel after a relax and a swim and could make it through leg two when we went back to the parks. It was a lot for her to take in so it worked better to take a time away every day.

Incredibly helpful for the 3yo. And probably essential for 1yo, but 1yo can sleep in stroller or baby carrier and if you can sort that out, then you can do a bunch of fun stuff while kid sleeps. Do it unless pushing one hour more e.g. 3pm means you can be done @ park for day.

When my DD4 turned 2 we did a week at Disney World for her birthday. We stayed in the park each day with break times built in through out the day so she had time to nap in the stroller. We also took advantage of the in park Baby Care Centers. These are small AC rooms in each park where we could take her when she would get a little cranky and need an unplanned break. We are headed back this Dec and plan to pretty much stay in park most of the day but have planned to have extended breaks in the day that’ll let us leave the park if needed.

I went with children the same age as yours, and I chose to alternate days when we would take a break in the hotel and days that I let them sleep in the stroller (I had a double stroller, where both seats reclined all the way). Both ways worked out, and they were at least well-rested half the days.

This is good to know! My 3 year old is pretty easily stimulated, so I really doubt she would nap in the park because she will be so excited and interested in what’s going on!

We are going with my parents who want dinner reservations for every evening, plus we are at AKL. So we will be out every evening most likely. Sounds like we should plan to break most days!

This is a great idea! Maybe I’ll plan a couple longer days in there. Thanks!

I have taken my kids at those ages and my answer is it depends. My kids would nap in their strollers, eventually, but not kids can. They never took good naps in the hotel but would fall asleep in their car seats. (We always drive to parks). We’ve been known to go for a drive. If the park hours are long and we want to stay late we leave for a break. If the park closes at 7 or 8 (happens in winter) we power through. Weather is also a factor, cooler weather is easier to keep going. We find that having a good stroller is essential for the power through strategy. We like to rent the City Mini for its full recline and huge canopies.

We are staying on site so no car naps unfortunately. We are planning to rent a city mini double GT for our trip. Maybe we will get some bus/stroller naps. We’ll see!

Amy make sure you get the rain cover to the stroller, this is extremely important for all the random rain that hits Disney world, the first time we went we through ponchos over the stroller but the 2nd time we used a rain cover and it was a much more enjoyable experience


Oh great reminder- thank you! I’m adding that to my list now :slight_smile:

GO WITH THE FLOW. Have a plan, however plan on going slow. Enjoy the time when they are looking at the fountain and if they want to ride the same ride over and over again - just go with it. Give plenty of time for breaks and know the signs of an impending melt down.

In addition to the rain cover I’d suggest that you take a towel to cover the stroller seat while it’s parked in stroller parking… most of the time that’s in direct sun and the seats can get very hot. Then you also just have a towel, if you need one. A wise traveler always knows where his towel is.

Also,iIf you don’t want to buy a stroller cover, or if you’re taking a model that doesn’t work well with any that are available you can make one pretty easily from a cute shower curtain. We use a deluxe umbrella stroller and last year (we went when there was a hurricane expected, and though it passed to the east and north we still got the outer bands of heavy rains nearly every day of the trip… I’d been there and done that with the weather so I was prepared!) I made a cover by cutting slits for the handles, and then cutting around the bottom, folding up, and making a “hem” with an iron. If we were going at a rainier time this year I’d further improve this by adding a window of clear vinyl, and grommets for tie-downs around the bottom. Since it’s not clear it works well to block the sun as well, though it does get warm underneath, as any cover will do… once my niece’s clothes were already wet she just sat on the cover. It still kept the stroller seat itself from getting soaked, which was actually the main goal because those things take FOREVER to dry.


Too true :slight_smile:

Thanks for all the tips! I think I’ll plan a break every day. If we decide to stay, then woohoo for extra time :slight_smile: