Believe it or not, I’ve done both Disneyland and Disney World while pregnant. And I will confess, neither was easy. Between the two parks, Disneyland is a little easier as it requires less walking and depending on the time of year, the heat and humidity are less. It can be a bit of a bummer to have to sit out from some rides, but it does allow time to rest which is very important. At Disneyland, I was almost 6 months pregnant, and at Disney World, I was 7 1/2 months pregnant.
If you have booked a Disney vacation to one of the parks, and now find yourself expecting, here are some tips to help make your trip easier and more enjoyable.
- Schedule rest periods in your day. Regardless of which park you are at, you are going to need to rest. Even if you are in top shape and your pregnancy is going great, it isn’t worth pushing your body to stand for longer than it should and walk for longer than it can. Take two hours and lay down and nap.
- Stay close. Since you will need to minimize your walking and take naps and rests, it is best to stay on property and as close to a park as you can. At Disneyland, this means staying at one of their three resorts. At Disney World, there are several resorts that are close to Magic Kingdom and Epcot which can make your vacation easier and help with taking naps midday. The resorts that are farthest away, like All-Stars Resorts and Pop Century, will make it very hard to take mid-day rests.
- Drink LOTS of water. Both parks are coastal and have high heat, depending on the time of year, so you will get more dehydrated than usual. Bring two water bottles just for yourself each day, and after you rest, take two more. Also keep in mind the foods you will be eating in the parks are saltier than your normal diet so that will dehydrate you even more.
- Eat your fiber. All those processed park foods and trying to drink enough water can add to an already common pregnancy problem – constipation. Have fruit with every meal and add a bran muffin each day. Or pack some prune juice in your suitcase and add it to some apple juice every morning. The last thing you want is to deal with this problem on your vacation.
- Wear a band. Your growing belly may need some added support with all the standing and walking. Any Maternity Support Band will help – I liked the one by Boppy as it was soft on my skin. I also used the BellyBra which was a nice tank top that added great back support. I usually did one or the other, but not both. I’m not sure I could have done 10 days at Disney World without my BellyBra!
- Bathroom breaks. If your drinking your water like you should, you will be stopping for the bathroom everywhere. It is important to know where bathrooms are at all the parks. Scout them out on the map when you first arrive so you aren’t doing extra walking to get to one, especially at Downtown Disney which has hard to find restrooms.
- Ask for help. Cast members are always willing to help if you will simply ask. If there is standing room only for a line, ask if there is a handicapped area you could sit instead. Don’t be afraid to ask.
- Sleeping comforts. Don’t forget to bring any special pillows or wedges you normally sleep with, so you can easily sleep at night. It is hard to sleep soundly in a hotel room for some people, and you want to assure you can get the best rest that you can.
- Emergency info. Make sure you have on hand where the nearest hospital that is covered under your insurance is, and bring your insurance cards as well. Just in case something happens, it is best to be prepared when traveling.
- Plane travel. If you are flying, make sure you get up and down several times during the flight to help with blood flow. Blood clots can happen with pregnancy and sitting in the confined space of a plane for long periods can exasperate that, so get up every so often and stretch.
- Pack the Snacks. If your bringing along little ones, you will already be packing snacks for them throughout the day, but don’t forget yourself! Pack yourself some great snacks to help with low blood sugar and hunger cravings. Some ideas are Ritz crackers, raisins, goldfish, grapes, mandarin oranges, apple slices, string cheese…
- Pictures. Take lots of pictures with your beautiful belly! Have a PhotoPass photographer get a picture of just you in front of the castle, so your little bundle can see his or her “first” trip to Disney.
There are rides at both parks that are not recommended for women who are expectant. Here is a list for reference:
Gadget’s Go Coaster
Goofy’s Sky School
Grizzly River Run
Luigi’s Flying Tires
Radiator Springs Racers
Tower of Terror
Tuck n Roll’s Drive ‘Em Buggies
Rock n Roller Coaster
Tower of Terror
Kali River Rapids
Typhoon Lagoon & Blizzard Beach Water Parks
All water slides
Some of the things that were really hard on my Disney trips were having to sit out on some of the fun. Also, it was so warm, my ankles swelled up at Disney World and I had to elevate them every night. When I got back home, it went away, but my doctor said it was normal with all the heat and high sodium foods.
But the worst thing I had to deal with while at Disney World pregnant, was the comments from all the Cast Members. Somehow, people think they have to make some comment when they see you, and it can be hard to smile and hold your tongue. I had one CM say “Wow, you look like you are about to pop!”. Don’t know why he thought that was a kind comment, but I just half grinned and walked away. And of course, everyone wants to guess what you are having and make their predictions. So be prepared for lots of comments from Cast Members and take it with a grain of salt!
If you are taking a Disney vacation this year and you will be expecting, I hope these tips help and that you have a wonderful and memorable trip!