When I booked my annual Disney vacation for this past September I knew I’d be traveling with my 2 month old. At the time, I didn’t really think about the logistics of taking an infant to the most magical place on Earth. As it turned out, my son was born two weeks late and now he was only 6 weeks old for our trip. Yikes, as if two months wasn’t hard enough! So what’s a mother to do?
Option A, cancel the trip. Option B, figure out a way to make it work. Being a diehard Disney fan I opted for Option B. I decided to start searching online for articles on how to handle my newborn in a place like Disney and I was surprised that there really wasn’t much out there. Maybe because people aren’t insane like me and think “bonding time” means staying in your house, which it probably does. I learned a lot about how to make my trip easier and thought I’d share those thoughts with you.
Most of these tips can be applied to young children in general so don’t think that because you’re child is older than 2 months they won’t apply. I have also included a few Amazon affiliate links to make planning easier. I hope you find this list helpful in planning your next magical Disney vacation.
Must Bring Items for an Infant
Being that our son was so young and Disney has so many people, we were very afraid of him getting sick. Every chance my husband and I got we stopped to wash our hands. In addition to hand washing we probably went through 3 bottles of hand sanitizer during our 10 day vacation. Needless to say, germs are everywhere and you’re better off being overly careful than having a child end up sick; that’s just no fun for anyone.
Change of Clothes
Whether it’s from rain, a splash pad, food or, you guessed it, poop, there is a good chance you will need to change your child’s clothes while at the park. I recommend bringing at least one extra set of clothes if not two (plus a bathing suit if that’s easier). Having to scramble and buy something at the park will cost way more than needed so make sure you arrive prepared!
Since our son was so young our pediatrician told us that a fever for an infant that warrants attention is anything over 100.4. Ok, so we’re in Florida and it’s above average temperatures, how do we know if our baby is getting too warm? Thankfully I brought our awesome temporal thermometer and probably used the thing 15 times a day. It was reassuring for me to know my son wasn’t too hot and made it easier for me to relax and enjoy our trip.
Blanket and/or Towel
A blanket you say? In Florida? Yes, a blanket is needed every day. The main reason is because Disney will try to freeze you out in every shop and bus ride. I personally don’t like going from hot to cold all day so I would imagine an infant wouldn’t either. To compound things, it gets so hot outside that my baby’s clothes were damp, so when we brought him indoors he would be very cold. Bringing a lightweight blanket solved all of our problems. This even helped at night when the nights got cool and even once during a rainstorm so our little one stayed completely dry. You may also want to bring a towel to dry off after playing in the splash pad or getting a little wet in the rain!
While the inside of stores seem to resemble Siberia, the outside heat can be just brutal. We purchased a fan from Amazon that clips on to the stroller and has adjustable speeds. There are many kinds of stroller fans that I’m sure work very well, but we chose a less traditional model because it had better reviews for battery life and fan speeds. We wanted to make sure our son was comfortable in the stroller when we were walking around the parks.
Having a comfortable baby leads me to my next point. Our son loves to be close to us. If he had things his way, he’d be carried around all day long. Funny thing is, he seemed to get his way and was in the baby carrier more than the stroller. This made things very easy at night when the lights are dim and it’s hard for people to see and also made it easier to take him on rides. (By rides I mean It’s a Small World and Winnie the Pooh, not Test Track or Rockin’ Roller Coaster.)
We thought we were really smart to bring our portable bassinet that our son was used to. Sadly, our son didn’t really like the bassinet during the day and would only sleep in it at night. Combining no comfort items and an overly stimulated baby makes for a bad day for mom and dad. We ended up going to Walmart and buying the exact swing we have at home and set it up in the hotel room. Let me tell you, it was worth its weight in gold. Our son instantly fell asleep for hours and my husband used this time to go to the gym. (On vacation, who does that?) So if your child has a special swing or bouncer that they really like, I would suggest bringing it even if it means more to pack. Otherwise you’ll end up like us, with two swings.
Unless you want to spend money each day renting a stroller at the park, I recommend bringing your own. Having your child in a stroller they are used to and feel comfortable in will also make for a more enjoyable experience. Jessica, the Mommy University, founder and fellow Disney nut, still brings a stroller to Disney and her kids are ages 4 and 6. Don’t forget, a stroller is also great for storing food, diaper bags and, of course, souvenirs.
Stroller Rain Cover
Bringing a stroller is a must, but what happens if it rains and that small cover isn’t big enough? That’s when you pull out the stroller rain cover. For those who have not been to Disney yet, it is important to know that it rains frequently. There are often quick showers or thunderstorms that only last a few minutes, but getting caught in one makes for a very wet day. Protect your little one with a rain cover and everyone will be happy!
Thankfully, our trip went very well and our son will have lots pictures to look back on since I’m sure he won’t remember a thing. I think about a dozen people told us it was too early to bring him because he would never remember going to Disney. For us, it wasn’t about him remembering it; it was about us watching him enjoy everything around him. We got to see his first little smiles in the most magical place on earth and that was priceless. If you want to take a small child to Disney, it is completely manageable and you will have a great time as well.