Theme Park With Kids Tips

The life altering event of having kids really does follow the cliché and alters your life in ways you hear about but would never think they would apply to you – because you’re too cool to be a lame parent.  Well newsflash, you’re not, you will be a lame parent, but you sort of get into a rhythm where you start enjoying being lame.  This happened to my travel choices where before I would go to the trendy new Museum, Exhibit, or Gallery now I get witty at the thought of theme parks.  Granted I always loved theme parks, even in my short lived col phase between University graduation and having my kids.  But it’s such a common destination for me now that I’ve actually picked up a few tips if you’re planning on doing the same with kids.  No two theme parks are alike, and no two kids are the same – but some of these are general enough, they may still help you save a little of that stress.

  • Eat as much as you can and drink (within reason) before you head out to the theme park. Food and drink price gouging is the single most money maker for most theme parks.  It’s also a good idea to bring plenty of snack and water bottles (refillable ones).
  • Go super early, preferably when they open the doors, try to go on weekdays (taking the day off will save a lot of headaches and money in the end) and if it’s slightly cloudy or light rainy kind of day, even better.
  • For smaller kids, buy little 1 dollar stuffed toys or any toys, hide them in your bag pack and then give it to them when they are screaming for those overpriced useless toys.
  • Forget the professional photos – FORGET THEM! – take your own and ask others to take one of all of you, you should also return the favour. Not here to destroy someone’s living, but this is pure price gauging!
  • If you have bag pack (and you should) get a locker early, some theme parks charge a one-time fee so there is no reason to wait later in the day to use them, unless they charge by the hour. Still worth it than to lug them around everywhere.
  • If you both want to go to a roller coaster and you have a baby – take shifts, this will avoid resentment and will make the trip fun for you too not just the kids.
  • If you have to get one souvenir – as much as you try to fight the urge – get something useful and less pricey, beach towels are usually the best option and in some cases even small trinkets of jewellery (especially in Disney theme parks). Don’t get those cups, key chains, glasses or other less useful items.  These are often super overpriced because more people can afford them.  Go for less traditional souvenirs (socks or umbrellas are good options).
  • Plan out your route early, before you go – with a day or two between you and your trip, go online and get the latest park map.  See what rides you can go on, where they are located so you’re avoiding a lot of the back and forth, and more importantly where the rest stops are for those bathroom breaks.
  • Go light, the more you carry, the more annoyed you get. Plus with kids you’ll want to minimise the things they can lose as much as possible.
  • Dress appropriately – light jackets for cloudy rain, caps and sun lotion for scorching sunny days, otherwise you’ll get forced to buying them for triple the cost or more!
  • Remember you won’t have time to see everything, if you’re tired or the kids are, don’t force it. You want to have fun and there is always a next time.  Be prepared you won’t be seeing half the park in most cases anyway unless you have season passes.

4 Comments Add yours

  1. Mom A says:

    Love the dollar toy tips!

    Like

    1. It’s a great money saver 🙂

      Like

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