There is no denying the fact that playing the single parent role is tough. Whether you are are flying solo for a weekend or a lifetime, you are bound to run into some issues along the way. Of course, this doesn’t mean you can’t have plenty of fun times too. After all, you and your kiddos deserve to be happy, and sometimes that means a visit to Disneyland is in order.
If you are one of the many brave parents who have made the decision to take the little ones to Disneyland on your own, there are some things you should know before heading into the parks.
Lucky for you, we have gathered the best tips and tricks out there and compiled them into the list below.
9.Go In with an Open Mind
This is actually a good tip for any visit to the Disneyland resort. By heading into your trip with an open mind, you can avoid disappointment later in the day. Know that moving through the park on your own with the kids in tow will be slow going, and that might mean you miss some things. Also, be prepared to skip the thrill rides that might be too intense for your young park buddies.
8. Keep Ride Rules and Limitations in Mind
Another way to avoid disappointment is to keep ride rules and limitations in mind. For instance, a young child will not be able to ride Space Mountain with you, meaning you’ll want to save that one for another trip.
Ride car sizes can also prove difficult for parents of kids under 7. A good example of this is the Dumbo ride, which really only seats two or maybe three if your kids are little enough. Therefore, this ride can be difficult if your entire crew is under 7 and unable to ride without an adult.
7. Pack Snacks
Juggling trays, kids, and strollers in a quick-service line is a single parent’s nightmare. Avoid this balancing act by packing plenty of snacks in your bag. This will help curb the kids’ hunger until the next meal time.
6. Opt for Table Service
Speaking of mealtimes, counter service is definitely not any better when you are trying to carry drinks and entire meals while pushing a stroller. Do yourself an enormous favor and pay the little bit extra to eat at a table-service location—but skip the buffets. This will allow you to actually relax while you eat as a server brings your food to you.
5. Make a Plan
Going into a Disney park without a plan is silly under regular circumstances, and just plain crazy when you’re alone with the kids. Take a look at the park maps, make a note of which attractions you really want to see, and find the most efficient path for doing so.
The less ground you have to cover, the less kid chasing, stroller pushing, and diaper bag lugging you will have to do.
4. Stand Out
Many parents find that dressing their little ones in brightly colored matching shirts can really help them keep track of everyone.
Besides making the kids easier to spot in a crowd, these shirts will also help others identify your family as a group. When they recognize that you are together, many will make an effort to allow you to stay together rather than accidentally stepping into the middle of your crew.
3. Take Precautions
Losing a kid in a theme park is a fear every parent has had at one time or another. Unfortunately, the likelihood of this happening is raised a bit when only one parent is responsible for all the kids.
Therefore, it is a good idea to go in prepared by putting ID bracelets on your charges and drilling them on what to do should they become separated from the group.
2. Bring a Stroller and a Bag
Unless you are an octopus, you are going to have a difficult time holding all the hands you need to hold while also carrying the things you need to have a good day. For this reason, it’s important that you bring a good, comfortable backpack, as well as a stroller big enough to accommodate all the young kids traveling with you.
While it might feel silly to push your 6-year-old around in a stroller, you’ll be glad you brought it when stressful moments arise.
1. Invest in MaxPass
MaxPass is a new premium FastPass system that Disneyland rolled out this summer. It allows users to make FastPass reservations from their phones while also giving them the opportunity to download the photos taken during that day of their trip.
This pass is a lifesaver for single parents who may not want to trek across the park for Radiator Springs Racers FastPasses, or those who want photos but can’t imagine carrying a camera in addition to everything else they’ve stuffed in their bag.
By putting these simple tips and tricks to use, you are sure to have a wonderful time in Disneyland with your kids. Take a deep breath, put on your superparent clothes, and get ready to have a blast.