As parents of young children know, safety is something that is always a priority – it’s something we are always thinking about, and trying to ensure we are providing for our little ones. From baby proofing to helmets for biking to seatbelts and carseats – I know I personally am always thinking (and worrying!) about making sure my son is safe. And when it comes to planning a vacation for my family, I always factor in safety and risks to ensure everyone has a good time but that we are all safe while doing so!
One big question I asked myself last time we went on vacation – to Walt Disney World (of course!) – is Should I bring along my son’s carseat? You might be wondering this too – and unfortunately, there’s no “easy” or “right” answer. What I did was break it down into smaller questions, and I think this can help you answer the question of “Do I Need To Pack A Carseat For Disney?”, too!
The first thing I thought about was “how are we getting to Disney?”
If your answer is by car – then of course the answer is YES you NEED to bring along a car seat for your little ones – it’s the law! If you’re bringing your own car, then you already have your car seat situation covered.
If you’re renting a car – then you can either bring along your own car seat (which is what I recommend), or you can rent one along with the car through the rental company. The issues I have with that option are: they don’t always guarantee availability which could potentially leave you stranded without a car seat, plus it’s not always free – some companies charge up to $15 per day for a car seat rental, and I think my biggest issue with it is that I don’t know the car seat’s history – call me anal, but I can’t for sure know it hasn’t been in a crash or has expired or anything like that. Plus – my kid is going to be most comfortable in his normal seat so for me – I’m lugging my own along with me – so my answer is YES I’m bringing that car seat along to Disney!
For those who fly to Disney (like me!) – you’ll have to decide this one for yourself, as the FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) strongly recommends you restrain your little ones in an “FAA approved car seat or harness” (Check out the FAA’s official info on car seats here for more on that), but – they do NOT require it. A child under 2 can travel as a “lap infant” for free, and even though older children need their own ticket and seat, a car seat is not required. Personally, while I’m a stickler for safety, I did NOT bring my own car seat on the airplane – as I knew we would be using all Disney provided transportation on trip, and that the car seat wouldn’t get used on those vehicles at all (more on that in a sec!)
Once you arrive at the Orlando airport, you can use several different modes of transportation to get to Disney – but the most popular one is Disney’s Magical Express, which whisks you right from the airport to your WDW Resort Hotel. Disney actually discourages the use of car seats on the Magical Express, as the motor coaches don’t all have the proper seat belts to safely secure a carseat.
Speaking of Disney Transportation – While you’re on Disney property, you have monorails, buses, and ferry boats at your disposal to get you around, and unfortunately, none of them really have the capability to accommodate a carseat. Plus, you wouldn’t really want to lug one around all day anyway from park to park (I know I wouldn’t!). If you’re concerned about safety on the different modes of transportation without a carseat – don’t worry, as the Cast Members driving you have been extensively trained and know exactly what they are doing – and they will get you safely to your destination – so fear not!
Non-Disney Transport: I already mentioned car rentals above, so aside from that you can always call a Minnie Van – and per Disney: “Each vehicle is equipped with 2 child safety seats that our Disney Cast Members are expertly trained to install for you”. When it comes to Uber, you can utilize the “UberFamily” service – where every car comes equipped with a carseat. Taxis are a little trickier – as many companies do NOT offer car seats, so if you plan on utilizing taxis or cabs while at Disney, you WILL want to bring along your own car seat from home.
Even the most family friendly place in the world – Walt Disney World – can present concerns and worries when it comes to the safety of you and your family. The question of “Should I Bring A Car seat to Walt Disney World?” Is a tough one, and one I can’t really answer for you – but hopefully this information helped you decide what would be right for you and your family based on how you’ll be getting around Disney during your trip