Nicole Betker is a mother, wife, rabid Toronto Blue Jays fan and a pop culture junkie. Always having an opinion or something to say, it’s time this journalism grad found a place to share her musings on the acts of “adulting”.
45 minutes. 45 long minutes… in line… surrounded by children, who were excited, hyper and hopped up on sugar, all for a 90 second ride on Peter Pan’s flight.
But it was all worth it the moment we exited the ride and Carson looked up and me and screamed excitedly – that was AWESOME.
I’ve written before about Carson’s (and mine) love of everything Disney, and we’ve returned from our Disneyland adventure. My advice to all parents, if you can, when you can… do it. The joy on his face daily, the excitement to see his heroes in person and the happiness and memories we created were well worth it all.
Here are a few tips for parents when deciding (note, these tips apply to Disneyland, Disney World is a whole other set of thoughts):
- Deals, Off-peak
Watch for deals from Disney and consider going in an off-time. We used Disney’s Canadian pricing giving us tickets at par, and went after Easter Break for shorter wait times. It’s still not a cheap adventure, but Disney makes your day full once you are in. The longer you stay the cheaper it is per day. Also, take your kids before the age of 10, for a reduced ticket price or under 3 for a free ticket.
- Rides for all ages
Disney rides have a whole different set of rules, than you may be used to from carnivals or Canadian parks nearby. The majority of rides can be ridden by any height, together as a family, Carson at 42” could ride all but two rides.
- Meal Plan
Find a hotel nearby with a free breakfast, and stop at a grocery store for snacks. Disney lets you take in most outside foods, allowing you to save money on snacking, and only eating meals in the park.
Disneyland is in the heart of Anaheim, surrounding by an abundance of hotels. Consider getting one within easy walking distance with a free breakfast, to allow easy walking to and from. Most hotels have shuttles, too. Also, at Disneyland, the park hotels (with the exception of the extremely expensive Grand Californian) aren’t that much closer than some of the other hotels.
- FastPass, Single Rider, Ride Switch
Take advantage of it and use it properly. Look up what rides have it, and plan ahead. It will save plenty of time.
- Park Hopper
At Disneyland, park hopper does make sense since the parks are only across a lot from each other. But I’ve preferred to spend one day in each park. I also found, Disneyland is much larger than California Adventure and needs more time to explore everything.
- Random Tips
Upon entering California Adventureland, go straight to Lightning McQueen ride for a FastPass. It normally has long lines, and runs out of the FastPass option early.
Don’t miss World of Colour in California Adventureland. It’s one of the best shows Disney has.
If you see a character, if you can, wait then. You might not see them again on your trip.
Take in the Redwood Creek Challenge Trail in California Adventureland to give kids time to run off steam.
Don’t get caught at the front of the parade in Disneyland, or you will be stuck for a while, unless you are leaving at this time. Also, get a spot for the parade early. They are some of the most spectacular floats you will ever see.
Disney Mom’s – any other tips I missed?