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Guests with Special Needs Discuss This is my first trip with my 1 year old niece. in the Vacation Planning forums; As I stated this is my first Disney world trip with my 1 year old niece and i want to know, what special accommodations do they have for those who ...
  1. #1
    dman1373 is offline B-Ticket Holder
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    This is my first trip with my 1 year old niece.

    As I stated this is my first Disney world trip with my 1 year old niece and i want to know, what special accommodations do they have for those who are bringing young children?

  2. #2
    NC_WDW_Daddy's Avatar
    NC_WDW_Daddy is offline Annual Passholder
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    Re: This is my first trip with my 1 year old niece.

    You have the baby centers which are great, but no other real accomodations. My kids loved the parks from 7 months on. They all napped very well in either a stroller or backpack as an infant. We did keep to a normal routine and left the parks early each night for bedtime, that helped a lot in keeping them from "hitting the wall".

  3. #3
    dman1373 is offline B-Ticket Holder
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    Re: This is my first trip with my 1 year old niece.

    what is this baby center you speak of? And I have also heard of swapping the baby with your family for some rides, how does that work?

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    HauntedGabe's Avatar
    HauntedGabe is offline Where'd she go???
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    Re: This is my first trip with my 1 year old niece.

    I am so sorry this is long, I tried to link it from the All Ears Site but it will not link since it is from the current newsletter: So Kudos's here to All Ears.



    FEATURE ARTICLE
    A Magical Birthday
    - or -
    How to Enjoy Walt Disney World with Your 1-Year-Old
    by

    Jonathan "the Voice" Dichter

    On September 30, we began a journey to Walt Disney World with our daughter Elizabeth. We knew from the moment we got on the plane that this was going to be a different kind of trip than any we'd ever been on. But, boy oh boy, did we have NO idea. I want to share some of the highs, lows, and my top 10 tips for traveling with an infant to Walt Disney World.[/SIZE][/FONT]
    The best way to do this is going to be just to tell you how the trip went.
    After a decent five-hour flight on Alaska Airlines and a smooth Magical Express ride, we checked in at the Polynesian with no issues. Within moments, there was a knock at the door, with our Pack and Play, and the floral items I'd ordered. We unpacked, and really just relaxed into the idea of being at WDW.
    Tip 1: Make sure you use your travel planner to advise the resort that you're bringing a baby and get a crib and/or pack-and-play. The DVC rooms even come with high-chairs and pack-and-plays in the room! You might even want to use Goodings grocery order service to have your baby items delivered to you: food, diapers, anything! Less to pack, less luggage to check. Just bring what you need for travel day and maybe a few extras.
    Our first morning held some interesting and exciting experiences. We had decided to take the trip slowly and enjoy as many "experiences" as we could, starting with a Supercalifragilistic breakfast at 1900 Park Fare.
    Tip 2: Take your child to a Disney Store or a Chuck E. Cheese or somewhere they can see large fluffy characters. Use this to gauge their reactions to characters in the parks. Try this before you make your Advance Dining Reservations (ADR). We didn't. Here's what we learned: Elizabeth is a very happy baby and loved seeing and interacting with people. If you smiled at her and she saw your face and it looked like what she's learned a face is supposed to look like -- for the most part -- she was happy as a clam. On the other hand, if you were a giant yellow bear that came RIGHT up to her -- she was TERRIFIED.
    Tip 3: If your child is terrified of characters at meals, warn your server and the characters as they approach. "Goofy, Elizabeth is a little nervous, so can you say hi from there?" or "Come sit with me, so Elizabeth can see you with Daddy, Mickey?" or even consider asking your server to tell the characters to skip your table altogether. Once they were approaching slowly and more gently, Elizabeth seemed to warm a bit.
    After breakfast, it was off to the Magic Kingdom to get Elizabeth's first ears!

    Tip 4: Tell EVERYONE that you've brought your toddler for her first trip! They LOVE seeing them, and talking to them, and just making your princess feel so special! But DO NOT expect to do rides, rides, rides. We did three or four rides A DAY -- if we were LUCKY -- and rarely together. Expect to slowly stroll, to park the stroller, to see cast members, to spend time with a napping baby, and to just go slowly. Expect to have time to take in everything around you. Expect to enjoy the scenery and more slowly moving attractions. And did I mention go slowly?

    Some of Elizabeth's favorite attractions included: The TTA Peoplemover; Carousel of Progress; Prince Charming's Regal Carousel; Dumbo; Spaceship Earth (as long as it wasn't too dark and she could see and hear Mommy); Pirates of the Caribbean (see Spaceship Earth); The Great Movie Ride (as long as the bank wasn't exploding); Seas with Nemo and Friends; Hall of Presidents; Country Bear Jamboree; Kilimanjaro Safari. Are you seeing a pattern?
    Tip 5: You must REALLY KNOW your attractions. For instance, Ellen's Energy Adventure -- great place for a nap and some nursing right? WRONG. DEAD WRONG. The big bang (the piggy bank? the ding-dang?) woke her up screaming within three seconds of her nodding off. And you CANNOT exit this ride. So we were stuck with a frightened baby for 37 minutes.
    We were very excited about enjoying Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party. However, realize that there's not a lot for a baby to do at this party. She can't eat candy yet, and dark gets scary after awhile. Plus it's near bedtime.

    Tip 6: Try to keep some semblance of bedtime and naptime schedules. Happy baby. Happy parents. Go back to your resort in the afternoon. Everyone take a nap before dinner. It's not worth a meltdown. In fact, on a bus from Hollywood Studios we witnessed one. A child of about 4 years old was literally wailing in his mothers arms. But the "funny" part was that this meltdown started with the poor child screaming, "Mommy, I just can't TAKE it anymore!" Trust me -- avoid meltdowns. Take breaks. Go slow. Take naps. Did I mention go slow?


    But back to the Halloween party. Lowest Point of the party? Discovering that Elizabeth REALLY is afraid of fireworks.
    So what do you do with a crying baby? One who is just panicked? Or hungry? Or tired? Or wet?
    Tip 7: Use the WONDERFUL Baby Care Centers. They are open from 9 a.m. until park closing, and are in the first aid area of EVERY PARK. They are stocked with supplies for sale, have clean changing areas, and quiet nursing rooms. They are QUIET rooms overall, with books, toys and movies -- but you CANNOT hear the outside noise of the parks. And you can stay as long as you need to. The cast members are WONDERFUL.

    I can't say enough good stuff about these centers. Use them, know them, love them. Hollywood Studios has the smallest one. Epcot's is out of the way inside the Odyssey building. Animal Kingdom's is HUGE (it's one of the few you can bring your stroller inside). Magic Kingdom is just very warm and friendly. Like I said, I just can't say enough good stuff about these centers. We spent about an hour a day inside them. Nursing, changing, or just taking a break.


    We also brought our own stroller, which had lots of room for storage, which made things easy for us... but also it was bulky. A sling or carrier can make touring much easier. Except that ours is BLACK, and would have killed us with heat and humidity. Regardless, we're used to commando touring, and it was really nice getting to sit a little -- and enjoy the parks and people watch -- and watch Elizabeth interacting with her world. Did I mention go slowly?

    And when she conked out, I rode Tower of Terror.

    Dark rides can be OK, as long as they're not too loud. And as long as you can talk to your baby, or she can KIND of see you, she'll be happy. BUT -- again -- know your attractions, and know your baby. Figment was great. Until the "Imagination is a BLAST!" ka-boom. Then the tears flowed again.

    Tip 8: The parent swap (otherwise known as Rider Switch). TOTALLY USEFUL. We only had to use it a few times for long lines on rides we both wanted to do, but trust me -- USE IT. Go to the FastPass guy, tell him/her what you want to do, and one of you hops on, while the other shops. Then meet up after the ride and the shopping parent gets an immediate Fastpass! Combine this with your NORMAL Fastpasses, and you've got a GREAT set of touring shortcuts. In fact, the longest line we waited in was to meet Tinker Bell at Pixie Hollow. And because Tinker Bell and Fawn had big smiles on them, Elizabeth LOVED them!
    Tip 9: Princess Storybook Dining in Akershus. NEW FAVORITE BREAKFAST. Hands down. Good food -- a nice Norwegian cold spread -- and GREAT character interaction. Lots of friendly princess time, and a wonderful breakfast. If you haven't tried it, TRY IT. We're going BACK on our next trip -- we've already booked it. Loved it.
    Tip 10: In case you didn't already realize this, know that each child is different, and each trip will be different. Just take it easy and let your child explore the World at her own pace --let her make the World her own. And use PhotoPass! A lot! Try out a family portrait session if you haven't yet. We got some great shots at the Polynesian with our photographer.
    So, as far as this trip for Elizabeth goes, she was a generally happy-go-lucky toddler for the trip. And she's usually a very happy baby anyhow. But even more so in the parks. So much so that cast members were stopping to admire her -- and she never stopped making friends. Several cast members remarked on her as "The Happiest Baby on Earth" -- which I will proudly claim as her new title.
    =============================

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

    Jonathan "the Voice" Dichter -- the Happiest Daddy on Earth -- is a blogger, podcaster, writer, husband, daddy, and proud DVC owner. For three years he co-hosted the All About the Mouse Disney Podcast as "the Mayhem" to Bryan Ripper's "Magic". He serves on the executive committee for the Pacific Northwest Mouse Meet. He has completed three Disney Half Marathons, and will be returning to WDW in January 2011 to complete the WDW Half Marathon. You can read about his race training, weight loss, and charity raising efforts at his blog: http://voiceofmousetunes.blogspot.com -- or email him at Grizzpyre@yahoo.com.

  5. #5
    Jonathantrott is offline A-Ticket holder
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    Re: This is my first trip with my 1 year old niece.

    You are a lucky dude, I am a cosmetology ce certified from cosmetologycampus.com and appled for a job in disney but ufortunately didnt make.

  6. #6
    dizneluver's Avatar
    dizneluver is offline C-Ticket Holder
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    Re: This is my first trip with my 1 year old niece.

    Hi...

    My name is Kelly. I have been a lover of all things Disney ever since my parents took me to DL when I was 9 months old

    I have a lot of recommendations for taking little ones to the HAPPIEST PLACE ON EARTH!

    First of all you and your family know your niece the best....with that being said I would follow her cues esp when it comes to loud noises, crowds and the like

    Here are some other recommendations in no particular order


    1. Especially if you are staying on property and/or plan to do night time activities (ie fireworks, night time parades ect), take time out during the day to return to your room to let you niece get some down time (aka nap)

    2. Each park has a BABY CENTER which is a quiet place where they offer baby supplies for sell, and have the facilities such as places to change and feed little ones.

    3. I would highly recommend that you buy an umbrella stroller to push your niece in...the ones that you can rent from Disney are hard plastic and you can't take it with you when you leave the parks. If you do decide to rent one instead of buying, I would get a blanket for your niece to sit on and snuggle with

    4. BABY SWAP
    No its not giving away your niece for another child ..hehe.

    It's a program that is provided for families with young children who can't ride rides such as splash mountain, space mountain ect. The entire group (including the child) goes through the attraction line and when you get to the load in point you tell the CM that you want to do a baby swap. Then one adult and the baby stays off to the side while the rest of the group rides the ride. When the riders come back the first adult gives the baby to another adult from their group and gets a chance to ride the ride for themselves. and a bonus is that somebody in the group is going to get to ride the ride two times in a row


    5. KIDS NITE OUT (KNO)
    (*disclaimer* I used to work for them when I lived in Orlando)

    KNO is Disney's contracted provider of in room child care. This is a wonderful service allows adults to go out at anytime (but esp at night) with out the children. They also provide caregivers to go into the parks as Parent Helpers if needed.

    There is an additional hourly charge to use KNO but IMHO it would be worth it.

    Thats all that I can think of right now.

    If you have any more questions, feel free to send me an email at
    kdizne at gmail dot com (use @ and . in the appropriate places)

    TTFN
    Kelly D aka NDA#5 and one of Lou's BOX PEOPLE <><
    Lover of ALL THINGS DISNEY since I was 9 months old which includes going to the Parks with undiagnosed ADHD until I was 33 years old (still go to the Parks but with the knowledge now that I live with ADHD):


    Disabilities/Special Needs Forum Moderator for The Disney Echo Forums

    Visit my blog DIZNELUVER'S WORLD


    Deck 7 COOL KID

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