Tips for Traveling: A Solo Parents Guide - PassPorter.com
PassPorter.com
Award-winning travel guidebooks
Home Florida - Walt Disney World Caribbean - Disney Cruise Line California - Disneyland Resort Anywhere and Everywhere! Travelers Store Message Boards PassPorter's Club Help!
  About Us  |  Customs Office   |   Register Your Book   |   Book Updates   |  Newsletter  |  Articles  |  Photos  |   Follow Us on
       LINKS
       ARTICLES
WDW Planning Articles
A Treat for the Senses
A Year at Walt Disney World
Arrival Day at Walt Disney World
Baby Steps
Budget Disney World Lodging
Budget Disney World Souvenirs
Budget Disney World Tickets
Budget Disney World Transportation
Budget Your Disney Trip
Counting Down to Disney (Part 1)
Counting Down to Disney (Part 2)
Disney + Disabilities = Magic!
Disney Dreaming
Disney Dreaming With Kids
Disney Tech Primer - Part 1
Disney World 101 Quiz - Part 1
Disney World 101 Quiz - Part 2
Dreaming of Disney World
Emergencies While at Walt Disney World
Enjoying the Peace at Disney
Finding Answers
Finding Relaxation at Walt Disney World
Five Tips for a Trouble Free Trip
Getting There is Half the Fun
Greener Walt Disney World
Helping Plan A First Trip to Disney
How to Catch a Deal at Disney
Last Minute Planning
Lessons Learned
Making the Most of Walt Disney World
Mickey Mouse as Motivation
Mickey Mouse's Masterpieces
My Disney Mistakes - Part 3
Packing for Winter Weather at Walt Disney World
Planning Makes the Magic Happen
Planning Your First Trip to a New Park
Planning Your Walt Disney World Vacation
Pregnant At The Mouse House
Pregnant at Walt Disney World
Preparing Your Child For a Walt Disney World Vacation
Pros and Cons of the Magic Your Way Premium Plan
Safe Disney Travels with Kids
Saving Money for Disney
Season Survival Guide
Taking a Toddler To Walt Disney World
Taking a Toddler To Walt Disney World
Taking Kids Out of School For a Disney Trip
Taking the Grandkids
Taking Toddlers to Walt Disney World
Taming the Beast
The Art of Packing
The Disney Rumor Round-Up
The FASTPASS System
The Kids Are In Charge
The Magic of Slowing Down
The More, The Mickey-er
The Never Land Club
The Reluctant Mouseketeer
There's an App For That - Part 1
Tips for a Disney 'Newbie'
Tips for Traveling
Toddlers to Teenagers
Using Technology to Plan Your Disney Trips
Walt Disney World for Veteran Visitors
Walt Disney World With Teens? Absolutely!
What - No Parks?
What Keeps Us Coming Back to Disney?

WDW Traveling Articles

WDW Lodging Articles

WDW Touring Articles

WDW Dining Articles

WDW Making Magic Articles

WDW General Travel Articles

View all PassPorter articles
PassPorter's
Article Tools
Print Article
Download PDF
View Photos
Visit Forum
Read Comments on This Article

Tips for Traveling: A Solo Parents Guide

by Lisa Carder, PassPorter Guest Contributor
Last modified 8/10/2006
  

Cool Tip: Click here to get a FREE PDF version of this article, fully formatted to print and put into your PassPorter Deluxe Binder!


Filed in Articles > Walt Disney World > Planning  

Traveling to Walt Disney World as a solo parent can be a challenging but rewarding experience. I have been taking my kids to Walt Disney World solo since 1999, including driving from Ohio most years. As I am writing this we are getting ready to head off for our 8th family trip to the “World.” Here are my top ten tips for traveling to Walt Disney World as an only parent.


1. Go at your children's pace. While this is a good idea for all parents, it is especially important as the solo adult. After all, there's no one to hand off a cranky child to.

2. Act like a kid and let your hair down! Being a single parent has many everyday stresses, so use your vacation to relax and be playful. Besides, it does your kids good to see you stress-free and acting silly. I love to sing to the park music and skip and dance through the parks. My kids pretend to be embarrassed, but then they join in the fun.

3. Take care of yourself. Going commando and neglecting your own care makes for a miserable vacation. Afternoon breaks are a godsend for both parents and kids. Even if the kids are too old to nap, 30 minutes of down time in the hotel room lets everyone rejuvenate. I know I need a rest most days, so when we take a break the kids can either read or watch TV quietly while I try to get my second wind. After all, If Momma is tired; no one's going to have a good time!

4. Swim with your kids. No one cares what you look like in a bathing suit, and you will never see your fellow vacationers again. Even I will show my pasty white northern legs at the pool. My kids love it when I get in the pool with them and act like a kid.

5. Let people serve you. Single parents do so much for everyone else, so let cast members take care of you on vacation. Eat at a table service restaurant at least once a day and enjoy not having to juggle your food and the kids. I have a hard time not doing everything myself in my daily life, but when I am on vacation I accept help when it is offered. Smile and say thank you and offer to help someone else if you are able.

6. Get in the picture. Use Disney's professional photographers and PhotoPass to get pictures of your family together. You can ask cast members or even complete strangers to take a picture of all of you with your own camera, too. Some of my favorite pictures are ones where we are all together. I also offer to take pictures of families in return.

7. Talk to people. While vacationing with your kids is wonderful, sometimes you need a conversation that doesn't begin with “Why?” All those lines you can't avoid are more fun when you are meeting other people. I seem to find every fellow teacher on vacation, and it is fun learning where people are from.

8. Let your kids have some responsibility. On our first trip to Walt Disney World my kids were 4 and 6. I learned a lot on that vacation! One afternoon I was pushing the stroller, trying to keep track of my 6 year-old, and juggling a tray full of food while trying to find an empty table at Columbia Harbor House. I bet you can guess what happened next. Between the counter and the table my juggling act failed and our drinks toppled to the floor. I was mortified, but I realized that my kids could help out, even as young as they were. From then on the 6 year-old was in charge of the stroller, while I carried the food and found a table. They loved to help and our vacation was much smoother after that.



9. Take advantage of Disney transportation. With Disney’s Magical Express there is no need to rent a car, no need to try and navigate. Buses can take you anywhere you want to go and taxis are plentiful if you want a faster or more direct route. The years we drove to Orlando my car stayed parked in the resort parking lot 99% of the time.

10. Bond. I know it sounds corny, but vacations are a great time to have uninterrupted time with your kids. There are so many funny and unique things that only happen on vacation. These shared experiences carry over into our daily lives and connect us. Kids grow up too soon, and I want to treasure the time I get with them. Even this year, when my kids are old enough to go off on their own, they both told me they would rather spend time together. I couldn't ask for a better reward.

Vacations anywhere can be special, but vacations at Walt Disney World are truly magical for our family.





About the Author:
Lisa (aka bobcat on the Disboards) is a Middle School teacher and is headed to Walt Disney World with her kids!

Related Links:


Disney + Disabilities = Magic! - Enjoying Disney World with Disabilities last updated 11/07/2008
Saving Money for Disney - Tips and Tricks last updated 2/25/2011
Baby Steps - Six Sanity Savers For Baby's First Trip to Walt Disney World last updated 3/7/2011
Disney Dreaming - Book Excerpt from PassPorter's Walt Disney World last updated 1/16/2009
Walt Disney World for Veteran Visitors - Finding New Things To Do last updated 1/16/2009




Reader Comments:


View all comments in forum thread

So what do you think? Click here to share your comments, feedback, and experiences on this article and topic!

(Note: You must be a member of our PassPorter Message Board Community to leave comments. Join today for free!)




Updated 8/10/2006 - Article #385 



Read additional articles from PassPorter.com

Subscribe to our free e-mail newsletter, PassPorter News, published for more than 58,000 opt-in subscribers worldwide. As an added bonus for subscribing, you will receive a 20% discount coupon for the PassPorter Store -- no catch!

E-mail Address:

First Name:

E-mail Format:
-Text/Don't Know  

-HTML

 
 

We respect your privacy and never sell or rent our subscriber list. Subscribing will not result in more spam! We guarantee it.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

Copyright 1999-2014
by PassPorter Travel Press, an imprint of MediaMarx, Inc.

       SEARCH
       LEARN MORE
Learn More With Our Award-Winning Guidebooks


 


Warning: include(rssWDWtraveling.php) [function.include]: failed to open stream: No such file or directory in D:\Domains\passporter.com\wwwroot\articles\articletemplate.php on line 642

Warning: include() [function.include]: Failed opening 'rssWDWtraveling.php' for inclusion (include_path='.;C:\php5\pear') in D:\Domains\passporter.com\wwwroot\articles\articletemplate.php on line 642



Total Visits: 4636


PassPorter ~ 1998-2014 ~ 16 Years of Making Dreams Come True!
Publishers of bestselling travel guidebooks and proud recipients of 13 national book awards
About PassPorter
About Us
Site Map
Press
Privacy Policy
Images & Artwork
Guidebooks
About
Previews
Buy
Reviews
Updates
Features
News & Updates
Articles
Podcasts
Photos
Message Boards
Newsletter
Concierge Desk
Desktop
Trips
Books & E-Books
Tips
Settings
Customs Office
Register Books
Book Updates
Contests
Checklists
Help & Info
Finding Answers to Questions
Help Desk
Using Your PassPorter Forum
Store Customer Service
E-Mail Us
Follow Us
PassPorter.com Front Page (Updated Daily!)
PassPorter Newsletter (weekly and free)
Latest Posts
Facebook
Pinterest
YouTube Channel
Questions? Check our Site Map and visit our Help Desk to learn how to contact us online, by e-mail, and by phone.
Please feel free to link to this page so that other vacationers can find it.