You are probably reading this because you have considered bringing a baby to Disney World. Let’s be honest for a moment. Traveling with kids can be a daunting prospect, and bringing a baby to Disney World may seem overwhelming. But, you know what? Compared to a trip to a beach resort, or trying to do a vacation rental, Disney is actually MUCH EASIER. Especially getting there. Here’s how to bring your baby to Disney World and achieve as close to traveling-with-baby-zen as possible.
Getting to Disney World with a baby is easy.
(With these tips.)
Stay in a Disney Resort and ship everything you need for your baby ahead of time.
Babies need lots of stuff, and that’s true whether you are taking your little one to Disney World or to Grandma’s house overnight. Your Disney resort will accept packages up to ten days ahead of your arrival. Just call Disney for exact instructions on how to address packages to yourself. In the U.S., that number is (407) 939-5277.
You can ship down formula, diapers, wipes, baby food, shampoo, you name it. DO pack enough to get you to Disney World with at least a day of extras in case of travel disasters. This is GREAT FOR TRAVELING WITH A BABY because…
- You can track your packages and know they arrived ahead of you, as opposed to the luggage that you check onto the plane with crossed fingers.
- You don’t have to lug it to the airport. Driving? You don’t have to take up precious cargo space with a vacation-long-supply of baby essentials.
- It probably costs less to ship from an online store than to pay your airline for another suitcase. Amazon Prime member? Even better. Free shipping! Please Note: Disney said in November, 2016 that they could start charging a $5 fee per box received. In some forums, it is suggested that this might be waved at hotels with convention centers. It is unclear whether this policy is being implemented.
Flying? You can use Disney’s Magical Express and your checked luggage will go straight to your room
Disney’s Magical Express is a shuttle service to Disney World from Orlando International airport for anyone staying at a Disney resort. AND THEY HANDLE YOUR BAGGAGE FOR YOU. You don’t see it until it arrives at your hotel room via, well, Disney magic. This is a HUGE reason traveling with a baby to Disney is easier than many other vacation options. For us, the airport logistics can be one of the most stressful times in a trip. If you are flying to Disney World, you don’t have to lug the baby and the luggage around at the destination airport. Just disembark with your carryons (and your kiddo!) and head for the Magical Express. Your vacation has started…
When you book your travel, select Disney’s Magical Express. Provide Disney with your flight info. Haven’t made flight reservations yet? No problem. Just call Disney and pass them along when you have them.
Sidenote/Disclaimer – Disney notes that it can take up to 3 hours for your bags to arrive in your room. It can take even longer at times, although this is not our usual experience. Pack enough in your carryon for everyone to get through one night and one day in case of any hiccups.
Flying? You can check in for your return flight at your Disney resort the morning you fly home.
This is epic. Just as it was great not to have to get your bags when you arrived in Orlando, it is equally awesome that you can complete the entire check in process before you even leave you resort. If you use this free service, you will check in, check your bags, and get your boarding passes all before heading for the airport. Once you get there, the only thing that you will need to do is go through security. Not having to struggle with baggage at the end of a trip is especially wonderful.
The airlines that participate in this program are:
Delta Airlines (U.S. domestic flights only)
Make a stroller plan
We have compiled some great stroller tips as well as rating the best stroller for Disney World. We are fans of bringing your own stroller and knowing ahead of time how accessories will fit, but they can be rented in Orlando as well. Most airlines do not count strollers as a checked bag for the purposes of fees, so you can attach a Magical Express tag and have it show up in your room. If you do plan to rent one, the park strollers are uncomfortable and have almost no storage, so you might want to consider a stroller rental company that works with Disney. There are a bunch and some will deliver them to your room for you.
Once you are there…
Plan a low-key daily schedule
If you keep things relaxed in your touring plans, your baby will probably have a wonderful time at Disney World. We recommend checking out a park in the morning, and lounging around the hotel in the afternoons and letting your Disney Baby nap. There are lots of rides and attractions that will interest your baby or toddler, but don’t overdo it!
If you can afford it, stay at a Disney resort located on the monorail.
Getting your little one to a cool, quiet place to nap with ease is a huge bonus when bringing a baby to Disney World. The Deluxe monorail resorts allow you to get back to home base with no fuss. If you sense your little one needs a break, just hop on the monorail and cruise back to your hotel from Magic Kingdom. The Contemporary, the Grand Floridian, and the Polynesian are all on the resort monorail line. If you are coming from Epcot you will need to do a transfer at the Transportation and Ticketing Center. You don’t even have to fold your stroller.
There is a lot to do outside of the parks
We usually take a day or two off from the parks, in addition to taking most afternoons off. There will be a lot to do both at your resort or at other Disney resorts if you choose to explore. This is particularly easy to do via monorail. You are welcome to enjoy the amenities of other Disney hotels, with the exception of the pools. We enjoy trying out new restaurants and just wandering around the other resorts. Disney Springs is another great option for wandering and restaurants.
The pools and splash pads are great for babies
The Disney resort pools are wonderful for babies. They have splash pads and many have a pool with a zero entry option. This is great if you just want to dip those tiny toes in the water without committing to a full-blown swim! I think my kids have just as much fun in the pools and splash pads as they do doing anything else at Disney. That said, if you ask my three-year-old her favorite part of Walt Disney World, you will hear a very diplomatic, “all of it.”
We would love to hear your favorite tips for bringing a baby to Disney World. Just let us know in the comments!