Whether you rent or bring your own, stroller usage is essential for Walt Disney World. You’ve no doubt already heard how you can walk a lot. Sometimes up to a 1/2 marathon if you’re doing a lot of park hopping and ride jumping. We’ve looked at why renting a stroller is a viable option and today we are going to dive into why bringing your own stroller might indeed be a better fit.
Kid Coral at the Airport
Whenever we head to WDW, we normally fly and bring our stroller along for the ride. Having the stroller to use in the airport means I have more free hands for juggling luggage. I don’t have to have one hand on my kids making sure they are staying close as I know they are tucked safely inside the stroller.
The undercarriage of the stroller provides a nice spot to stash smaller carry-on items, such as purses or water bottles.
Plus, if you have an older kiddo, but one who still needs to be kept close, you can have them hold onto the stroller as you push your little one through the airport.
Most airline companies will allow you to gear check your stroller. You’ll be able to wheel your stroller through the terminal and right up to the gate. Delta allows for this and is so helpful for young families.
Odds are your stroller might get tossed around a little once it gets gate-checked. I’d love to say it stays in perfect condition, but unfortunately this isn’t the case.
We have found that using a stroller bag has saved our stroller multiple bumps and bruises. We really like this simple one, and while it has seen better days, it has lasted us through several trips so far and is still going strong.
Your Stroller is Distinctive
Unfortunately, if you rent a stroller through a rental company or opt to rent a stroller at a Disney park or Disney Springs, you might get confused as to which is yours. Typically, there are a few unique identifiers on rental strollers and Disney park strollers, but at first glance all the strollers look the same. Especially when you are getting off a ride and a possibly a little disoriented.
If you bring along your own stroller, you’ll be very familiar with it and can even add more distinct identifiers to help you recognize your stroller. I like to add ribbons to the handle bar. Adding a large Mickey balloon is a popular option, but if everyone is doing it, you might not be doing yourself any favors. Plus, if you have your own stroller that is unique, you’ll be able to spot it quicker. This is especially key if a cast member did a little stroller reorganizing and moved your stroller.
Operations Pro (or Ninja) with Your Own Stroller
Odds are you will know how to operate your stroller better than a rental stroller.
When you get your new rental stroller the vendor will show you how to open and collapse it. It looks easy peasy. You leave the stroller setup, load in your kiddo and supplies for the day and head to your resort bus stop.
Then, as the bus approaches, you attempt to collapse your stroller and…hmm, how does this thing fold up again?
You have no clue and are reaching out to anyone to help. Odds are, you’ll find someone who has the same model stroller you rented, who has been in your shoes and with one hand, fold your stroller like it’s no big deal. Problem solved. However, you could save yourself from that potentially embarrassing situation (and bus holdup). Just by bringing your own stroller. One YOU know how to collapse with one hand!
It goes without saying, stroller rental is expensive. If you rent at the parks, at $13 a day for a multi-day rental, the cost adds up. Let’s say you plan to rent a single stroller for 6 days, that’s already $78 dollars. If you plan on using a double stroller for 6 days, you’re looking at $162.
Strollers are expensive in general, but by the time you are done renting you might be almost 1/2 way towards the cost of a stroller you could buy.
Car Seat Adapter
If you plan on taking a Walt Disney World trip with a real little, like a baby who is only a few months old, odds are you’re going to need a stroller that is compatible with an infant car seat. If you bring along your own stroller you know that your car seat will work with your stroller.
Many of the stroller options, specifically the ones in the Walt Disney World parks and Disney Springs won’t work for real littles. Be sure to consider this factor if you need a stroller for a real little.
We have found that having a stroller that is compatible with our car seat to be a huge help in the first year of life. We’ve been able to easily (some days more so than others!) get our son(s) to nap in the stroller.
Then when it is time to transition into an indoor place or a spot where a stroller might not fit, we are able to un-click the car seat and bring our sleeping baby inside with us. Thanks Disney for being flexible!
Yes, I can see you saying that will never work for my little one, and it might not. Yet, for the times that it does work, having our baby sleep a little longer has been a small blessing.
Home Stroller Collection
At home we have a small army of strollers. We have a single B.O.B, a double B.O.B., an umbrella stroller, a Graco Click and Go, and a Graco Sit and Stand. Our decision to buy the double Graco stroller came before our youngest son was born. We wanted to have the option to wheel our three-year old around, but also give our new baby a place to sleep. We love all of our strollers.
Single Graco Click and Go
We have taken both Graco strollers with us into the parks and they have worked wonderfully. We loved having the single Graco Click-and-Go for when we just had our oldest son. The under carriage and the cup holders up top helped us store items and free up our hands in the parks. As our son grew we were able to continue using the stroller without the infant carrier car seat. The back of the stroller reclines down and our little one was able to take naps while we explored Walt Disney World.
Double Graco Sit and Stand
As mentioned above, when baby number two came along, we moved to the Graco Sit-and-Stand. Our baby was able to travel via the infant carrier car seat and our oldest was able to use the sit-and-stand portion of the stroller as his legs became tired. I liked having the sit-and-stand option because he was able to get in and out of the stroller as he pleased. We didn’t have to stop and buckle him in and he didn’t have to keep asking to get in and out. Plus, the Graco Sit and Stand has a nice under carriage for storing Walt Disney World treasures.
Water Parks and Resorts
If you plan on renting a stroller to use just at the parks through Disney, be aware that the water parks and the resorts do not offer stroller rentals. At the water parks, odds are, you’re going to be toting along a lot of ‘water’ gear. Plus, sunshine + a day at the water park + a toddler can = a very tired little one, prone to a meltdown.
If your hands are full of all that ‘water’ gear, you’re going to have a hard time carrying your potentially super crabby toddler. On the other hand, if you bring along your own stroller, you’ll have a place for your kiddo to rest as you walk back to the buses and places to put all of your gear.
Updated Stroller Guidelines for Disney World
If you plan to bring your own stroller (which we obviously think is a good plan), be sure to be aware of the updated stroller guidelines at Disney World.
Guests are allowed to have strollers, but strollers can be no longer than 31″ in width and 52″ in length. Wagos, even stroller wagons, are not allowed in the parks.
Yes, they do measure, so save yourself the headache and be sure to measure your stroller at home. You don’t want to get to the parks and realize you can’t use your own stroller!
Conclusion on Bringing Your Own Stroller
There ya go! Lots of reasons why bringing your own stroller in the park is super helpful. Considering we almost always fly when we are heading down to Walt Disney World, bringing our own stroller is the best option for us. If you’re considering renting, be sure to check out my post on renting a stroller for Walt Disney World.
Still not sold on why having a stroller in Walt Disney World is important? Be sure to check out my post on how it’s going to help make your vacation a smooth one!
Heading to the parks soon? If you’re looking for ticket, hotel or car rental deals be sure to check out Undercover Tourist. We have used Undercover Tourist for several years and for numerous trips, both to Walt Disney and Disneyland. Every experience has been easy and resulted in a great deal. Be sure to click-through the link below to see their current offers. If you purchase after clicking through banner, we will receive a small commission. Thanks in advance!