9 Ways to Keep your Kids SAFE at Disney World

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

9 Ways to Keep your Kids SAFE at Disney World

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Are we safe at Disney World? Whether you are already booked or are thinking about booking a trip to Disney World here is what you need to know to keep your kids safe at Disney World.
9 ways to keep your kids SAFE at Disney World - great, practical, and helpful Disney World tips for your next family vacation!


Are we going to be safe at Disney World?

This is something I've been hearing a lot of recently. Between the toddler killed by an alligator, the shootings in Orlando, and the Zeeka virus people are being more cautious when it comes to planning their next family vacation.

First of all I want to remind you that bad things happen everywhere - even in your own community. Unless you want to live shut up in your house in fear, you are going to need to take some risks to enjoy life.

With that being said, here are some of the things families going to Disney World should know about keeping their families safe.



Alligators at Disney World
On June 14, 2016 at 9:30pm an alligator drags a toddler into the water water and drowns him by the Grand Floridian at Disney World. Boy dies.

The biggest concern most families have right now is about alligators at Disney World. So here we go - YES there are Alligators at Disney World. Disney World is in FLORIDA so it is kind of a package deal.

Honestly the fact that an encounter with an alligator has historically only happened once every 30 years is remarkable.Now, I'm not saying Disney has done everything they could have/should have to protect guests, but they were doing something.

To me there are 3 issues that led to the problem:

  1. Disney should have posted warning signs - a sign saying no swimming does not imply imminent danger, but rather the water may no be treated or no life guards on duty
  2. Apparently guests were feeding alligators - according to experts alligators are more likely to be aggressive and hurt people that feed them
  3. Lack of understanding about Alligators from many guests who do not live in a part of the country or world where they are found (that's me too!)
So, how do you protect your family from alligators at Disney World?
  • do not put any part of you in lakes in Florida (the splashing calls to the alligators)
  • stay away from the edge of water (like several feet back), especially around 9pm - prime feeding time
  • If the unthinkable happens FIGHT! Make lots of noise to scare them back, scream to call for help, throw rocks/sticks/anything at their EYES. 
  • Personally, we will not be going closer than 5 feet to any lake/river/canal at Disney World
  • Personally, even following our new ater safety, my children will not be more than one arm length away from my husband or I so we can get to them and protect them.


Lightening at Disney World

Storm in Florida are very common - they come and go quickly! 

Please remember that you should never swim when there is lightening (or thunder). It's not safe! Lightening is attracted to water so being in the pool you are a sitting duck.

They will close the main pools, but those without lifeguards are not monitored and you'll see people swimming with big thunder storms. I repeat, it is NOT safe! 

HINT: We like to bring stroller covers that we put on if the radar shows rain. Chances are it will rain while you are in a ride and be done by the time you get out, but without a cover your stroller will be soaked the rest of the day!


Extreme Heat at Disney World

It can get very, very HOT at Disney World! Children are especially sensitive to heat and parents need to take precautions so they don't overheat or dehydrate. 

Here are some fantastic tips for 10 Ways to Beat the Heat at Disney World.


Getting Lost at Disney World

Unfortunately, kids can get lost anywhere. But when you add to that the sheer number of people and distractions at Disney World, the odds are not in your favor. Here are some practical tips you"ll want to read:
  • Give your kids a bracelet, temporary tattoo or note with your cell phone number so if they get lost they can get a hold of you
  • Teach your children what to do if they are lost - we teach our kids to seek help from employees with nametags at Disney World. 
  • Magic Bands will help employees identify who your child is and your name and contact information so they can locate you
  • We like to all wear the same color so we are easy to spot in a big color blob and it makes it easier to look for each other since we know what color they were wearing.
  • Make sure kids are aware of the crowds and that you expect them to stay together. Children under 5 will be most comfortable in a stroller (both because of the walking, crowds, and getting lost), children under 10 should be holding an adult hand, and pre teens should stay within arm length to maneuver through crowds
  • At night we like to all wear glow in the dark necklaces that are the same color so we can again find our color blog and find each other. I highly recommend NOT LEAVING with the after parade blob! Either duck out early (for an easier experience catching the bus) or stay late and grab an ice cream at Plaza Ice Cream Parlor or do extra shopping as main street is open 1 hour past park closing time. Then it will be less congested when you leave.

Germs at Disney World

Sure, germs are EVERYWHERE - but when you put that many people (from so many places) in one place there is a greater cocktail of germs.

You've all read abou the Measels outbreak at Disneyland, we've experienced nasty stomach viruses also at Disneyland, and my son has gotten Pinkeye at Disney World too.  So although you are on vacation, it is time to be on high alert as far as hygeine!

  • Wash your hands with soap and water every time you use the restroom (gets rid of germs better than hand sanitizer)
  • Keep hand sanitizer with you to use after trips to the buffet, after you sit down to eat (you touched the chairs), and before you eat anything (you've touched lots of ride lap bars!)
  • Remind your kids NOT TO TOUCH THEIR EYES, NOSE, MOUTH, etc. That is just good practice, but especially important when your hand are touching the same lap bars as millions of other people in a short amount of time.
  • Remember that tables are not always as clean and sanitary as they look (remember the video of the employee cleaning a table with a mop he had used on the floor), so don't put your food directly on the table
  • It never hurts to have a plastic grocery bag and a change of shirt or two in the backpack for just in case..... trust me =)
  • If you do get sick, take it easy and get better (and keep your germs in your room).
  • If you have pink eye or something else that requires a doctor, you can easily get to an urgent care clinic via a free shuttle that will pick you up at your resort. Just as the front desk for more information.
  • Most importantly, relax. Hopefully you won't get sick, but if you follow some good hygiene - chances are you won't get sick.

Zika at Disney World


The good news is that #1 it is not main stream yet and #2 Disney World already sprays  their grounds extensively. In the many, many  visits we've made to Disney World we have NEVER gotten a mosquito bite!

How to protect your family?
  • If you are still worried bring your own bug spray with Deet 20% (Zeeka is resistant to "natural" bug sprays)
  • If you are around water (camping, fishing, campfire, etc.) consider wearing light weight long pants or shirts to cover the most skin possible
  • If you are PREGNANT or consider becoming pregnant in the next 6 months I'd talk to your OB/GYN first to be safe


Sunburns at Disney World

Florida is hot and sunny; that is part of why Walt choose this part of the country to build his amazing park! So....be prepared:
  • Bring, apply, and re-apply sunscreen every 3-4 hours
  • Wear sunglasses to protect your eyes
  • Wear a hat to keep the sun off your face and neck
  • Whenever possible stand/sit/walk in the shade
  • Plan shows, afternoon breaks, and leisurely meals for midday when the sun is at it's peak


Drowning at Disney World

Drowning can happen anywhere so parents need to be vigilant on vacation just like they should be at home. Remember....
  • Lifeguards are there as a back-up, but you should be arms length away from non swimmers at all times
  • There are FREE life vests to borrow by all Disney World pools - use them
  • Please remember there are only lifeguards at the "main" pool of each resort - so not all pools have lifeguards
  • Never swim by yourself! Not even adults.


Obey the Rules

I know this seems like it goes without saying.....but the rules are there to protect you and those around you! So......

  • Keep your hands, arms, feet, and legs inside the ride at all times (or you could cause it to stop or worse get your fingers cut off)
  • Don't feed the wildlife (or someone may get hurt by animals who are no longer afraid of people)
  • Selfie sticks are banned for a reason - your (and others) safety. 
  • Don't run (people fall or fall on others and get hurt)
  • Lock up valuables in the safe (money, memory cards, medicine, etc.)
  • Children must be 7 years or older to ride without an adult (but again, make sure they are responsible enough to stay seated and obey ride rules.


More Helpful Disney World Tips and Tricks






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