My friend Keri recently took a trip with her family of 5 to Disneyland and was able to successfully do it on a budget. (Make sure to read her posts, 12 Tips for Saving Money at Disneyland and 17 Tips for Saving Time in Disneyland in case you missed them!) She suggested a final post about her trip – how to prevent meltdowns with your kids in Disneyland. Given all the tears I often see while there, I thought her post sounded like a lot of fun! With that, here’s Keri:
While Disneyland is known as the happiest place on earth, it can easily become meltdown city for kids and adults! There is so much that goes on in one day at the park that doesn’t typically happen in your everyday life. With these tips and some deep yoga breaths, you will be able to stay happy and sane at Disneyland.
1. Go for the kids. Disney is magical at any age, but it is especially magical for the littlest ones. My best advice is to go with your youngest in mind. If they are thrilled with things you would rather skip, give in to their whims because chances are the next time you come, they won’t care about the same things. You can save yourself time and energy by adjusting your expectations to your kids’ desires and remind yourself that one day they won’t be so little anymore.
2. Act like a kid! I find that taking myself way less seriously at Disneyland only enhances the experience. Laugh at all the silly jokes, hug the characters, and embrace your inner child! Try to forget you are an adult for a few days. Keeping your mom face on will make you crack by day 2.
3. Souvenirs! Be sure to include a souvenir budget for kids and adults in your planning. Having to say no constantly in the happiest place on earth is just NOT FUN. By creating a budget, your kids will know they have a choice to make about their souvenir and will likely have a much happier heart about the whole thing. We also encouraged the kids not to make any purchases until our 3rd day at the park. This way they had ample time to see what was available at all of the shops and avoid buyers’ remorse later when they found something else they wanted.
4. Play the games! It’s not too often that I indulge my kids with arcade games. But, at Disneyland I give in! The Penny Arcade and the Frontierland Shootin’ Exposition were some of our favorites. There are some great carnival games at Paradise Pier in California Adventure, too. For the quality of the games, you get way more than you paid for, especially as compared to the county fair.