Need-To-Know Stroller Tips For Disney World

Bringing young kids to Disney World to experience the magic is a dream many parents have. But, we don't need to tell you that small kids at theme parks can be a handful. As small humans, their tiny feet can only walk so far, and carrying them throughout the park will test your physical strength and your patience as well — don't do it. So, strollers are a godsend as you make your way through Disney World's huge area.

You can either bring your own stroller or rent one from Disney, especially if you have an older child. Disney recommends its stroller rentals for children 50 pounds or less for a single stroller and 100 pounds or less for a double stroller. Just keep in mind the Florida theme park's rules about them. And, a little respect and courtesy for other park-goers while your little one is throttling in their stroller is, of course, a must. But, to make the most of your Disney World visit with a stroller in hand, here are some essential tips you need to know.

Areas off-limits to strollers

There's no doubt that Disney World is stroller-friendly, thanks to its wide walkways that provide much leeway for maneuvering your child in a stroller. However, don't expect to be able to bring your stroller everywhere in the park. There are certain areas that are off-limits for strollers.

First, strollers aren't allowed in lines for rides and attractions. You'll have to leave them in a nearby parking area for strollers before lining up for your ride. Or, you can avail of the park's Rider Switch service. It allows your companion to wait with your child while you get on the ride. Then you can switch places so they can enjoy the ride afterward. Rider Switch is available for select rides, including Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind, Slinky Dog Dash, and Avatar Flight of Passage.

In addition, you're usually not allowed to bring a stroller inside table service restaurants, though quick service restaurants, which are usually al fresco, might accommodate small strollers. Stories about parents bringing a stroller with their sleeping baby inside a restaurant are rare and totally up to staff discretion, so don't count on it. Most likely, cast members will ask you to park your stroller in a nearby parking area, especially for character meals. Strollers are also not allowed inside park theaters nor on escalators.

To fold or not to fold?

We've tackled the best ways to get around Disney World, but having a stroller in tow requires a different game plan. This is because when it comes to transporting strollers, Disney World takes on a different approach too. While strollers are not restricted from the park's various modes of transportation, you'll have to fold them in most cases.

Fold your stroller before you hop on a bus and keep it away from the aisle. You should fold your stroller when riding the park's monorail too, though if it's not crowded, you might just be able to push your stroller directly onboard. The same goes for ferries and bigger boats, but for smaller boats, such as those that travel from the Fort Wilderness Resort and Campgrounds to Magic Kingdom, you'll have to fold your stroller. On Disney Skyliner, there's a 30-by-48-inch area for ECVs (electric conveyance vehicles) and wheelchairs. If your stroller fits this area, then you don't have to fold it.

With these rules in mind, it's really important to get to know your stroller — especially a rental one — to make folding quicker. And, don't stress if you forget when to fold your stroller; cast members will let you know.

Quickly spot your stroller

When you're not pushing your stroller, you most probably have it parked nearby. However, unless you have a really unique stroller that stands out, you might have a hard time finding which one is yours among the sea of strollers in the parking area when you return to retrieve it. What's more, you might not find your stroller where you left it, as cast members often move strollers around for more room.

So, you'll want to differentiate your strollers from the rest, and there are many ways you can do this. You'll typically need something bright or flashy, or anything that catches the eye. Some parents have used balloons, but these can be expensive and might pop or fly away if not tied well. Better alternatives include an AirTag, ribbons or scarves of different colors, or a custom sign. Others have even used duct tape on the handles, a rain cover, or a special keychain. If you plan to stay till evening, it might help to have bright neon objects, glow sticks, or string lights attached to your stroller.

Easy stroller organization

When we have kids, there's just a ton of stuff that we must bring along wherever we go. So, a stroller that doubles as a carrier for all the things your child needs is ideal. There are many ways to organize your kid's items and you should use whatever works for you.

The most recommended stroller organization solution is a carabiner clip. This is great for strollers with minimal or low storage space. With carabiner clips, you can add extra storage by hanging a bag or several to put items in, such as baby wipes, hand sanitizer, and other supplies to clean your little one's mess during snack time. An attachable stroller bag or a stroller caddy will also work.

If your stroller has ample storage, you can use packing cubes to store items by category. Another idea is to use hanging shoe organizers. Simply cut one to size and attach it to your stroller. Clear organizers like these are great for security checks, which you'll have to go through before entering the park. Clear organizers make it easier for the park's security personnel to know why the metal detector sounded.

Temperature and weather ready

As you're in Florida, you should expect changes in temperature and the weather throughout the day. It might be bright and sunny when you leave the hotel in the morning but rainy in the afternoon. So, you have to make sure you keep your little one safe and comfortable, rain or shine.

Bringing a towel can help you prepare for any weather changes. You can use it as a blanket, to dry off a rain-soaked seat, or to keep the stroller cool under the sun. Another way to keep your child feeling fresh under the heat of the sun is to clip on a small fan. This will help your child tolerate the heat when the hood is on or if you have a towel or blanket to block out the sun. If your stroller doesn't have a stroller hood to dispel rainwater, consider buying a stroller poncho or rain cover. This will keep the stroller seat, as well as any other items, dry.