The Best Age for Kids at Disney World

Hello everyone!  I am so excited to post this very first article from our first guest blogger!  She has some amazing advice for that #1 asked question by all parents, grandparents, friends, aunts, uncles….neighbors….godparents….you name it!…..”What is the best age to take your kids to Disney?”  Well, look no further, because my friend Kathy, who is also an awesome Disney travel consultant…has your answer.  We both wish you a magical vacation!

Kathy Barkauskas is an avid traveler who has traveled to 5 continents and over 30
countries. Disney has a special place in Kathy’s travel heart as she has been traveling there nearly every year since she was a toddler and even worked there during college. After 15 years in corporate America working in various engineering and sales jobs she followed her passion to create magical family vacations for her
friends, family and clients.

If you’re interested in the free guidance Kathy provides for her clients, she can be reached at: kathyb@storybookworldtravel.com

“Ever since I worked at Disney World in college I’ve been asked the same question,
over and over again. “What’s the best age to take my kids to Disney???” Now that I
am a travel agent, I get asked this question at least once a week! For such a simple
question, it’s actually a fairly complicated answer that doesn’t have one answer.
First you need to ask yourself, “Will this be our one and only trip to Walt Disney
World as a family?” If you answered yes to this question my recommendation is to
target the ages of 5-10 years old. Your kids will be old enough make it through the
day without naps or getting too cranky but are still young enough to enjoy the magic
of Disney. Characters are still interesting and exciting for the kids to meet. Plus they
will likely be tall enough to ride the majority of the rides. If you can wait until all of
your kids are 48” tall that would be ideal.
When your answer is No the ideal age becomes a lot more complicated. Regardless
of your kid’s ages my first question in this situation is “Do YOU want to go to Disney
World?” If the answer is yes than ANY age is a great age to take your kids to a Disney
park! The argument you often hear is that young kids won’t remember the trip.
First YOU will remember the trip and that is worth every penny. Not to mention that
kids remember a lot more than we give them credit for. I took my son at 18 months
old and he still remembers things from that trip. He gets excited at the prospect of
another trip.
If you are considering a trip with a very young child (less than 3) there are a couple
of things to consider. First, children under 3 are free! So getting a trip in just before
your child turns 3 is a great way to save a little money on ticket prices. However it’s
also important to set your expectations accordingly for your child’s age. Plan to
bring along or rent a stroller for this age, even if you don’t typically use one at home,
little legs get tired!
Many families plan on taking a couple of trips when their kids are younger. For
those people I suggest targeting a couple of age ranges. I suggest a first trip in the
pre-school/ early elementary school time frame, around the ages of 2-7. Then
another trip 3-5 years later. This is enough time that you’ll look forward to seeing
the changes at the parks that have happened since your last trip but your favorites
will likely still be there. With this timing you will likely get in 2-3 trips to Disney
with your kids.
Other things to consider are the range of Disney travel destinations. Many travelers
only think of Walt Disney World (Florida) but Disney has a lot more to offer! If you
are traveling with young kids I LOVE Disneyland (California). There are only two
parks and everything is so close together. Disneyland is great for little legs and those
that are a little intimidated by the size of Disney World. At Disneyland you can feel
like you conquered the parks in only 2-3 days.
Another great option is a Disney Cruise. There are so many characters all over the
ship, so if meeting characters is your Disney goal this is a fantastic option. Also the kids clubs and day care areas are great to give mom and dad a break so they can
have some adult time. One thing to keep in mind though is that children need to be 3
years old and potty trained to use the pools on board. There are splash pad areas for
the younger kids, but this is something to keep in mind as you start to plan your trip.
In conclusion there is no wrong age to take your children on a Disney trip. The key is
finding the best age for your family and the answer to that question is something
only you can answer.”

 

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