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How to Survive Disney with Little Kids

How to Survive Disney with Toddlers and Babies

Disney trips are magical for the whole family but they can be a lot of work if you have little kids.  Many people question if they should go to Disney with toddlers but seeing Disney through your kids eyes will make the whole vacation worth it!

The key to a successful vacation to Disney with a baby is planning. Take a look at my top tips for surviving Disney with kids! You also may need some travel inspiration for traveling with kids so make sure to check out these 25 adventure quotes for traveling with little ones!

Disney Castle

***Disclaimer***  This post contains affiliate links. This means I may earn an affiliate commission if you click on an affiliate link. Full disclosure, I only post products that I have or recommend! 


Rope Drop When Visiting Disney With Toddlers

One of the biggest hassles with visiting Disney World with babies or toddlers is nap time.  One of the best ways to address nap time while at Disney is to rope drop. 

You may be asking what rope drop is. At Disney, rope drop is being at the Disney Park before opening so you are ready to go as soon as the park gates open. 

disney with toddler

So what’s the math behind Disney rope drop with kids? Regardless if your on vacation or not, little kids generally wake up early. Since your kids are already awake, might as well head to the Disney Parks for rope drop. 

Being at the park for rope drop allows you to get lots of attractions done in a short time. Additionally, the morning is the coolest part of the day so being at Disney park for rope drop is optimal for families with kids.

Honestly, I recommend everyone be at the park for rope drop but it’s often more feasible for families with little ones.

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Schedule A Pool Break at Disney With Babies

This goes hand and hand with rope drop. If you are at the Disney Park early, take an afternoon pool or nap break with your kids.

Many little ones take naps and it’s a hassle to have your kids nap while in a Disney Park. An afternoon break at Disney with toddlers will make all the difference to accommodate their sleeping schedule.

disney wilderness lodge pool

I usually build in an afternoon break around lunch and head back to the Disney resort for a nap, lunch, and pool time. Hopefully this helps you keep your sanity while visiting Disney with kids! 

Honestly, an afternoon break is actually great for the whole family.  As a childless millennial, we take afternoon breaks ourselves to recharge and rest for the evening.  

If you do plan on taking a pool break, make sure to bring water accessories for your kids!



Plan One Sit-Down Meal Everyday While at Disney with Kids!

Being at a Disney park is go-go-go and often meals are at weird times or completely missed altogether. But let’s face it, kids and some adults need to eat on a schedule. 

One of the best Disney with toddler tips is to make sure they are fed! If the babies aren’t happy, no one is happy! 🙂

disney with baby

I always recommend parents plan at least one sit-down meal everyday while at Disney. This allows you to plan ahead and know everyone will have some time to eat and enjoy a nice meal. 

As a parent, this is something you will look forward to with all the craziness of the Disney shuffle. You will also appreciate some time to sit down and relax on your Disney vacation with kids! 

Be prepared for dining out at Disney with easy to clean up bibs!  



At Disney with Toddlers Prepare For Fireworks And Late Nights 

This coincides with rope dropping and afternoon naps but make sure to have a plan for being up late while at Disney with a toddler.

In 2020 and 2021, Disney paused fireworks but hopefully they will come back soon. But staying at the Disney Parks for fireworks with little kids is a challenge. 

disney with kids

Fireworks will require you stay at the park late, past your kids bedtime. This is where the afternoon nap comes into play. If you have the option, I would rope drop in the morning and take an afternoon nap so your kids can see the Disney fireworks at night!

Make sure you take advantage of all that Disney has to offer by viewing the fireworks at Disney with toddlers and babies!



Use the Disney Rider Swap Program When at Disney with Kids

One of the most under utilized programs at Walt Disney World is the rider swap program. If you are visiting Disney World with toddlers but you want to check out adult rides at Disney, the rider swap program is for you! 

So what is the Disney rider swap program? The Disney World rider swap program allows both parents to ride Disney World thrill rides without waiting in line twice.

disney with baby

So how does this work? The first parent will approach the line attendant at the ride entrance and get a rider swap pass. One parent will wait the full wait time or use a Fastpass to get to the front of the line.

After the first parents rides the ride, the other parent presents the Disney rider swap pass to the line attendant and gets to skip to the front of the line. 

Definitely take advantage of the amazing rider swap program if you’re visiting Disney World with baby!

And let’s face it, you’ll be around your stroller a lot while at Disney World. Make sure everything is really accessible with these stroller gadgets!



If Visiting Disney With Baby Bring Help with You

This may not be an option for everyone, but if you can, bring a family member or friend to help you on your Disney vacation!

My family was very lucky when I was growing up and our grandparents always traveled to Disney World with us. Having extra hands to help at Disney with kids will never be a bad thing.

disney with toddler

I know it’s not always ideal to have someone else intruding on your vacation time but having an extra adult to help navigate Disney World with 1 year old will help you keep your sanity.  If this is an option for you, definitely consider it!


Prepare Your Park Bag With Items For Your Kids

Anyone visiting Disney should pack their Disney Park Bag  with all the essentials to have a great day at a Disney Park.  A well packed Disney Park Bag is even more important if you have kids. 


Make sure to bring you kids favorite snacks, drinks, and even toys to have a successful Disney trip with toddlers. There are other important items like sunscreen, hats, sunglasses, and a first aid kit that you should include too. 

Packing your Disney Park Bag is an important step to having a great Disney trip with kids! And there is no way to have a bad Disney vacation while sporting a Mickey themed backpack!


Disney with Kids Travel Necessities

Traveling to Disney with 3 year old is a lot of work regardless of how well you plan. Add these must-have items to your list for your Disney with toddlers trip!

These are some great items you will use at home, during other travels, and they will be super handy at Disney with babies. You’ll need a backpack for all your stuff and the stroller organizer for organizing your stuff and keeping your drinks cool!

If you’re looking for great items for traveling to Disney with kids, check out Best of Amazon for Kids. And consider these Disney travel necessities before your next Disney vacation! 

Are you considering visiting Disney World this year? Check out all the latest news on  Disney’s reopening!

disney with little kids


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First Disney Vacation Tips – You Need to Know!

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9 thoughts on “How to Survive Disney with Little Kids

  1. What are your thoughts about multi-day/park passes and little ones? Too much of the good stuff? In Paris there are 2 parks – studios and normal – and the studios offer more rides related to the movies our daughter has seen. It closes earlier and does not have the fireworks. If we do 2 parks in a day, we can forget the break (just not enough time), but if we do 2 parks 2 days, are we risking overdoing it?

    1. I would actually suggest doing 2 parks in 2 days. With little ones, it can often be difficult to do more than one park in a day. If you do 2 days, you can dedicate a day to each park and not push yourselves too hard. If you stay at a hotel nearby, you could even take time for a short afternoon break to let the little ones rest a bit! I hope this help! Let me know if you have any other questions!

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