Walt Disney World Resort More Walt Disney World Resort Stories

Moms Panel Update: Know Before You Go – Tips for Your Next Park Visit

Lisa Mendillo

by , Communications Manager, Walt Disney World Resort

It’s that time of year when many families are eagerly counting down the days to their next Disney vacation. With so many exciting new offerings coming to Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort in 2019 and beyond, there is so much to look forward to as you plan your next visit.

When planning, be sure to take a moment to look at the rules for each destination, which are easily available on DisneyWorld.com/Rules and Disneyland.com/Rules. These pages are an excellent planning resource and provide detail on a variety of policies for the parks, Disney Resort hotels and beyond.

While you may be familiar with the rules, please read them in advance of your next visit, as Walt Disney World and Disneyland make updates from time to time and are implementing some changes, including the removal of smoking areas within parks and the adjustment of park policies related to stroller size, stroller wagons and loose ice. As always, we will work with guests to help make this a smooth transition for all.

Here are a few tips to help ensure a seamless arrival during your next visit.

STROLLERS
Families with little ones know strollers are an important part of a vacation. It’s the napping zone, the storage place, and the spot for tired legs to rest while experiencing the magic.

Beginning May 1, we are adjusting our guidelines on stroller sizes, which will require them to be no larger than 31″ (79cm) wide and 52″ (132cm) long. The good news – many strollers on the market, including many double jogging strollers, fit within these size guidelines. Also, just a reminder that wagons are not permitted in our parks. Beginning May 1, stroller wagons will also no longer be permitted. These updates are designed to help guest flow and ease congestion, making the parks more enjoyable for everyone.

TIP: The smaller your stroller, the easier it is to navigate and maneuver the parks. “My number one go-to is renting a stroller from Disney,” explains Disney Parks Moms Panelist Tabitha. “At Walt Disney World Resort, you can rent a single or double stroller once you arrive, and they can be rented each day or you can choose a Length of Stay Rental.”  While Walt Disney World already offers a double stroller rental, Disneyland Resort will soon offer one too!

SMOKING
Also beginning May 1, smoking areas will no longer be present inside Walt Disney World or Disneyland theme parks, water parks, ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex or Downtown Disney District in California.

TIP: Designated smoking areas will be available outside the entrances of the areas listed above and at Disney Springs in Florida. For guests who have room or dining reservations, smoking areas are also available at Disney Resort hotels.

LOOSE ICE
Beginning today, if you plan to bring a cooler or cooler bag to store snacks and drinks for theme park or water park adventures, it’s important to know that loose or dry ice are no longer permitted in our parks.

TIP: We recommend you keep your items frosty with reusable ice packs instead. “You can visit any Quick-Service location for complimentary cups of ice,” recommends Disney Parks Moms Panelist Linda.

For additional information about these updates, visit our FAQs at DisneyWorld.com/RulesFAQ and Disneyland.com/RulesFAQ. For more tips or to ask questions about planning your upcoming Disney vacation, be sure to visit DisneyParksMomsPanel.com for a personalized response from one of our panelists.

CAPTION

Comments

  • I am a smoker, but I have absolutely NO issue with no smoking in the parks. I don’t typically smoke in public anyway, and if I do, it is in isolation where there are no people. I don’t condone smoking around children either. As for resorts, I do think there needs to be some sort of compromise on DSA’s. Last year we stayed at the French Quarter. The main area in the middle of guest rooms was probably not the best spot. I would suggest placing these areas in a parking area well away from guests. If you have to smoke that badly a short walk to a parking lot won’t be an issue. We are staying at the Boardwalk in this September and the DSA’s seem awfully close to foot traffic and guest rooms.

  • I first visited WDW in 1972, when it was only MK, and have over 30 visits under my belt. Somehow we all managed to survive before there were double jogging strollers, wagons, etc. My family did not stay home because I didn’t have my own mobile storage locker. Those who need a particular configuration due to special needs should consult with Disney before their trip as they will work with you to accommodate those needs, such as using a specific stroller as a wheelchair, even though it might be slightly too large.

    Ice? Put your ice in a baggie. If you want to cool reusables, fill your ice bucket and put the packs down in the ice, then put the bucket into your mini-fridge overnight. They will bring them to freezing or close. The small packs work well for insulin and the first aid centers can store drugs that need constant chill if necessary. My husband carried loaded syringes with him this way along with wearing an insulin pump and never had a problem with overheating.

  • For the strollers, is it only the part on the ground that has to be within the dimensions as it seems by the new squares that are on the ground at the parks? Can the handle hang out of the square. Our stroller fits width wise at the widest point, and it fits length wise when measured front wheel to back wheel, but the handles obviously hang out farther than the wheels? How is length being measured? The entire stroller or only the part on the ground (front wheel to back wheel)? As length doesn’t stop it from entering narrow areas, this has been confusing for many people.

  • Thank you for making Disney smoke free. I am sure you will find several that will not adhere to this. I wish this was in place several years ago! The chance of fire and also a child or adult getting a cigarette burn is very possible. It makes it nice for those of us who can not tolerate the smoke smell.
    Thank you again.

  • Can you please explain the justification for strollers still being allowed up to a certain width yet Keenz Stroller Wagons, within that size aren’t allowed? I can see you have repeated above many times when others have asked that they’re not allowed but you haven’t actually answered the question so can you explain WHY when they’re within the dimensions? We’d have to bring more strollers which would take up much more room in the park and therefore take longer to be checked by security than just using the one Keenz stroller. If you can explain this please, I’d be grateful.

  • After May 1st will glider boards attached to the back of strollers still be permitted, as long as the dimensions of the stroller with the glider board down do not exceed the new 31” x 52” size?

  • Are glider boards attached to the back of a stroller permitted, as long as the stroller fits within the new 31” x 52” size when the glider board is down?

  • One way to keep ice packs cold to almost frozen in the rooms is to bring or buy an insulated cooler (can be folded in luggage) or buy a styrofoam cooler (the are very inexpensive) and to get ice from ice machine to cover ice packs. Or you can buy bags of ice at Speedway or 7-11. You can recycle the styrofoam when you are finished with it or donate it to Salvation Army. Another thing about the wagons vs strollers is that Disneyland and WDW both have rules about pulling things behind you. You are supposed to push them. Strollers are much harder to pull. Wagons are easier to pull and SOME people will try to do that and by doing that, that don’t see where the wagon is going and can hurt another guest. So unfortunately a few ruin it for many….

  • Thank you for the no smoking inside the park. The smell from the smoke areas was horrible. Absolutely not conducive with a theme park.

  • Is the widest part of a stroller measured from the outside of the tire to the outside of the other tire?

    • It’s whatever part of the stroller is the widest – on many strollers, this could be tire-to-tire, but it depends on the model.

  • Please, PLEASE!!! Do NOT take away DSAs at the resorts. It is one thing to ask people to not smoke for an entire day(or walk all the way to the front and go through security again). But it would be totally unreasonable to expect smokers to go an entire 7-10 days without a smoke. And we have taken over 30 trips and always stay onsite.

  • The change regarding stroller wagons is very upsetting! We recently purchased annual passes and a stroller wagon to accompany them as our family of 5 can use one stroller wagon much more efficiently than a double stroller. Dimension wise it fits the required size and provides shade and comfort to my littles that a regular stroller does not. Not to mention that our basic double umbrella stroller measures in at 30″ (29.9″) wide vs the stroller wagon’s 22″. I hope Disney will rethink this policy change…

  • Is there no smoking in the Disneyland Paris park?

    • These rule updates are specific to Walt Disney World Resort in Florida and Disneyland Resort in California. At Disneyland Paris, smoking in the parks is only permitted in designated areas.

  • Question if Ice is allowed in small bags why isn’t that stated in the post and on the websites under the new rules. Also why is the size of bag not clearly defined. Most people bringing in a cooler would most likely use gallon sized bags to put ice in would that be too big? I understand the need to check the contains of a cooler and that’s why the loose ice ban but technically isn’t a bag a container?

    • The new ice rule is meant to streamline the bag-check and entry processes. You can use something small like a sandwich or one-gallon freezer bag, but we do not recommend bringing anything larger than that, as you may now be asked to dump it prior to entry. Please know that, as always, we will work with guests to help make this a smooth transition for all.

  • While these restrictions won’t affect our vacation plans, it’s great that this information is being shared for other families who need to plan accordingly! Thank you for spreading the words for this helpful information!

  • Regarding “loose ice” – there are several responses on the blog and twitter regarding this policy saying it is ok to bring ziplock baggies of ice into the parks. However, an email received from Disney says this is not so. Who has the correct answer? The rooms do not have freezers, making reusable freezer packs useless.

    • Sorry for any confusion! You can use something small like a sandwich bag, one-gallon freezer bag or even the bag from the ice bucket in your Disney Resort hotel room.

  • Ive been correted. The keenz stroller wagon 7 is 34L x 19.37w x 24h. Which meets your new measurement requirements and is even shorter in length. Im not sure what the difference is from a push wagon and a standard stroller are. Going through security is the same time. If not easier. Has less compartments. With 3 kids it helps out alot and takes up less space. But with the no wagons allowed will make us have to use 2 strollers? Not sure how thats going to help with space now. My standard stroller is just 2 inches shorter then my keenz wagon and can only hold 2 kids were the other can hold 3?
    agreed with those above about making things safer and more convenient for others. Im not a smoker anymore but understand their complaints. But walking to the front of the park isnt that big of a deal seeing you can get back in. The no ice, not sure how that is going to make going through the park safer or take up space. Security checking it in us going to take the same amount of time as well.

  • Does smoking include vaping? Because those vaping pens and smells are just as bad. Personally, I am more sensitive to those vaping smells than I am cigarette smoke.

    • Like today, smoking and vaping are only permitted in designated smoking areas. Beginning May 1, designated smoking areas for the parks will be located outside the entry points.

  • I have a keenz stroller wagon 7 that i believe the measurements are 21×30. Whats the difference in a wagon thats smaller then the measurements given to a 2 seater stroller?

    • Stroller wagons of any size will no longer be permitted beginning May 1.

  • I returned from a trip to Disney World earlier this month and I must say, I smelled more smoke in the parks than I ever have before. I am SOOOOOOO happy that you have banned smoking! It was really bad by Tower of Terror (my favorite ride), Big Thunder Mountain, the new entrance to Galaxy’s Edge, and Test Track. Planning a trip to Disneyland soon (if I can find a room!) and I’m SO happy that I won’t have to breathe smoke. Thank you SO, SO, SO much!!!

  • It seems sort of counter to the congestion explanation to say that for my four children, I can now use either one stroller for each of them or two double strollers when one stroller wagon (which is under the given dimensions) fit them all before. We have to go from one stroller – again, fits the dimension guideline – to at most 4 separate strollers. The wagon is so much more useful and comfortable too: it shades them much better than any standard stroller; can carry our infant; has a cooler compartment; and lets them stand, sit or lay down! This is so disappointing. Plus, the whole reason we bought this stroller wagon (not a cheap purchase) was because it was Disney approved.

  • After reading much of the comments and complaints I just want to stop for a moment and say thank you Disney. It’s very difficult to manage everyone’s expectations and make everyone happy. It is after all “the happiest place on earth”. Smokers are still welcomed but just have to walk further. It’s a kids park and as annoying as it sounds, it’s going to be okay. As for the strollers and ice it’s understandable that it’s just a matter of safety. It’s a pain for those of you who rely on those Keen wagons but you’ll be okay too. It’s a nuisance to have to change or adjust but it’s also hard and unsafe to move around congested areas with a large wagon. It’s going to be okay.

  • I will love to say thank you Disney for banning us smokers Now I can actually save money from coming cause the last time we spent over 10,000 Last year and I have been to Disney 19 time now it’s time for better Vacations

  • I agree with the post above about the smoking area at Pop Century. It’s not out of the way at all. I can understand the reasons for not completely banning smoking, but I’d like to see the smoking areas at the resorts reevaluated and maybe moved more out of the way of major walkways. And I’d like to see the cruise ships smoke-free too. But thank you for the new rules!

  • For the new stroller requirements, it is noted on the picture above that “many strollers meet these requirements”. Can you please provide a list of the “many strollers”? Are any of these double strollers? I am having a challenging time finding ones that meet the criteria. Thank you.

    Also curious if the strollers Disney rents will be replaced since they don’t meet their new requirements?

    • Yes, many double strollers meet the new size guidelines. You can often find stroller dimensions on the websites of stroller manufacturers. We will also continue to offer rental strollers for guests.

  • Just curious,
    What is the reason for no loose ice?

    • The new rule regarding loose ice is meant to streamline the bag-check and entry processes.

  • Thank you for the smoking ban! How do you define as the dimensions of a “small bag” of ice for a cooler? Thanks!

    • You can use something like a sandwich or one-gallon freezer bag. This helps to streamline the bag check and entry processes.

  • I am so ticked about the stroller wagon ban. We have 3 littles-and the KEENZ wagon accommodates them all. We bought one just for this vacation since it was the only allowed kind. For a “family” place this is hard for larger families!

  • Super disappointing about the stroller wagon. There should be an exception for children with special needs! We use it everywhere for our autistic 4 year old.

  • Seeing the smoking ban in the parks made my day!! This is LONG overdue! I wish they would ban it at resorts, nothing’s worse than walking to your room with little ones and the pathway has to go by the smoke area. There’s one at Pop right in the way and it’s so upsetting to have to walk by it. The only alternative route increases the walking time by 5 mins. Wish they would ban it at resorts too.

  • I’m really frustrated by the stroller announcement. The stroller wagons like Keenz are smaller than some double strollers.
    Renting a stroller is not always cost effective and they are not comfortable for my little ones who cannot walk the whole parks.

  • I’ve been waiting ages for the smoking ban!! I’m also glad about the wagons, they were everywhere and take up so much room. Thanks, Disney!!

  • Thank you! Although I’d like to see a complete ban on all properties this is a step in the right direction. How about the cruise ships too?

  • So happy that they are getting rid of smoking and vaping in the park! My lungs thank you Disney!

  • A bit frustrating about stroller wagons. I have a little one with asthmas, who has outgrown their stroller by height, and the stroller wagon is what we used in the parks.

  • So what about diabetics with insulin who need that ice? The resorts don’t have freezers in the rooms and the bell stand freezer can’t possibly accommodate all the ice packs for hundreds of rooms. Insulin can’t be out in the heat for more than a minute or two before it goes bad so waiting until you get through the line and going to get ice inside seems like a gamble… I am assuming we will be accommodated under the ADA and that more freezers will be available at the resorts?

    PS: I came in this morning with loose ice and not a word was said.

    • Ice may be brought into our parks as long as it is contained in a small bag. The new rule applies to ice that is loose within a container such as a cooler. As always, if Guests have a medical need that requires certain accommodations, we will continue to work with them to provide solutions that meet their individual needs.

  • How will the strollers be measured? The Baby Jogger City Select is listed as 53″ long as a double, but that depends on how it is configured.

    • Hi, Kyle. Beginning May 1, 2019, strollers should be no larger than 31” (79 cm) wide and 52” (132cm) long when measured across the widest and longest points.

  • Well guess who may be cancelling their since smokers are not welcome.

  • Does anyone have any suggestions on how to keep freezer packs frozen in the room for use the next day ? Our visits last year, we noticed the freezer section was no longer in the mini fridge in the rooms we stayed in.

  • What is “loose ice”? Can I still bring ice inside water bottles? What about those bags of ice?

    • Yes, you may continue to bring ice inside water bottles or small bags. The new rule applies to ice that is loose within a container such as a cooler.

  • What is number 5? Is it just the help plan ahead part?