Disney Tips 2: What to pack for a day out at Disney with young children?
So, you've read my Top Tips for Disney with Young Children and you are getting ready to head to the Disney Parks for some immense fun. Excellent!
You have plenty to think about once you get to Disney without having to worry about having too much or too little "stuff" with you. You want to be efficient, but well prepared, and not carrying lots when you go on the rides - you need those hands free to usher children and not feel too burdened yourself.
So here is my check list for a day in the parks (obviously some of them may not be relevant if your children are a little older):
- 2 Bags
I advise you take a small back pack/cross body bag with all your valuables in and queue essentials. Take a second bag which you can fit under pushchair containing everything else, and that you are happy to leave in there when you go on rides. If your children are too old for a pushchair, then take a backpack(s) as they are easier to carry around.
You can buy lanyards to attach your pass around your neck if you wish. If not make sure you have it stored somewhere safe but handy for switching between Disney Parks and collecting Fast Pass tickets.
- Pushchair and Rain Cover.
You can hire pushchairs in Disney. It currently costs €20 for the day (check if it is included if you are an annual pass holder). Even older young-children, who wouldn't usually want to ride in a pushchair, find them handy in Disney, and i've noticed older siblings catching a ride on them too when legs get tired. I notice most people don't lock up their pushchairs, but you could take a lock if you are concerned.
- ID Bracelets
We have the Littlelife ID bracelets which I can write my phone number inside. You could just write your number in pen on their arm if you wish, or you can buy disposable ID bracelets. The reason I like these ones is because the kids love to wear them as they picked their own designs from Amazon.
- Littlelife Backpack Reigns
I love these reigns. Not only are they really cute so my kids love wearing them, and they get some lovely comments, but they are so practical with the little bag. I often pop a beaker, small snack and wipes or spare knickers in ours, so when we are in the queues and not with the main bag we have back ups.
- Weather dependant clothing/accessories:
Wet: Waterproofs (better than umbrella as they leave you with free hands). Or if you get caught out you can buy fun Disney ponchos!
Cold: When it is very cold, I don't/didnt (even when they were very little) use a snow suit on my two, because the queues for rides are sometimes inside, and sometimes vary between inside and outside, such that there is a risk of baby/toddler overheating or it being a real faff to have to take off and put on multiple times. Instead I use the pushchair foot muff and well thought out layers, that are easy to remove and leave in the pushchair if necessary. The last thing you want is to be stripping off big layers in queues and then have to carry them for everyone.
Hot: (always the best) sunhat, suncream, sunglasses.
- Spare Clothes
For obvious reasons!!! ...and if you are super savvy you can plan outfits for the rides you want to go on and head straight to the front of the queue!
- Snacks Snacks Snacks.
It's tiring enjoying the full magic of Disney, and the best way to sustainably boost little people's energy levels is with healthy snacks that you know they will enjoy. Of course there are plenty of places to buy snacks in the park, and candy floss the size of your head!!!! ("Barbe a Papa" in french, literally Daddy's beard!), but you could save a little money by taking some of your own and they are immediately to hand.
- Water beakers AND extra water in the summer
l always carry this under the pushchair. Although there are lots of water fountains around and about, I have found that some don't work. If you have it with you, it is handy.
- Packed lunch
I almost always take a picnic into the parks for my young children. This way I know I have something on me that they will eat and enjoy and keep them full for at least one meal. Inevitably we are in the park spanning 2 meals so we eat in a restaurant or snack bar too, but it's good to know I can manage their energy levels at the time I need to, rather than finding a restaurant, queuing and sometimes missing their optimum window. Which, with small people, is key.
- Potette / Travel Potty
There are toilets all over Disney, and most of the time you can walk right into one. BUT I can guarantee my kids will want to do a wee as we reach the entrance to a ride, or when we are waiting for a show, or there may be a few false alarms (potty training joys!). And often that need for a toilet break is fairly immediate, and unforgiving of a need to check a map, locate and walk to the nearest facilities. And in the facilities, this Potette Plus doubles up as a training seat too!
You can get a photo pass for professional pictures of your loved ones meeting their favourite characters, but for all of those many hundreds of other moments in between, you will want your own camera to record the memories forever.
If you run out or forget these, you can buy supplies from the Baby Centre.
- Wet wipes
I always take more wipes than I think I will need. You never know if it will be the day when they will both have toilet accidents, eat a chocolatey ice cream and smear it everywhere, and knock over a drink. I keep one with the nappies/potette, and the other pack with the food items. The use of these beauties is often immediate, so you need them to hand!
If your child is as expressive an eater (i.e. mucky) as my second born, you'll need a bib with you. Alternatively, extra spare clothes and copious wet wipes do the recovery work!!! I love love love these bibs by Cornish Daisy. They roll up neatly, look great, and last years.
- Firepad / Ipad / DS
In Disney, queues are inevitable. Keep an eye out for my tips for surviving Disney queues with little ones coming soon in this Disney Series. But making sure you have some form of electronic device has been a fun-saver in my experience.
- Phone Charger
I always make sure I have my iPhone charger tucked away in my handbag - for emergencies, or should the battery fail on the kids devices, I have back up entertainment (or as a back up camera!)
This packing list is also pretty helpful for any day out with little ones too I think.
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