If you’re heading to Walt Disney World in the near future, you’re probably already well aware of the fact that things are going to be different. Parades and fireworks will no longer be a part of the experience, and even character meets won’t be happening for a while. Another big change is going to be the way Cast Members and guests approach the challenge of keeping everyone involved healthy.
You have probably already heard that 1) temperature checks will be happening when you enter the gates, 2) park capacity will be limited, and 3) masks will be required. But have you thought about other steps you might personally take to keep your family well during your magical getaway? Have you thought about how you might accomplish those things without taking away from the experience for your kids?
Fortunately, there are ways to go about this. In this article we will talk about some options you have for ensuring your kids have a good time while still minimizing their exposure to germs in the parks.
1. Shop for Fun Masks
While Disney is currently planning to provide a limited number of free masks to guests each day, they can and likely will run out. At that point, those without masks will be turned away. Therefore, you will probably want to come prepared with your own mask. Besides, if you’re going to wear a mask all day, you might as well make it a fun one. Why not make the mask a fun thing for your child by allowing them to pick out a fun face-covering featuring their favorite Disney character? Shopdisney.com currently has several options available.
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2. Decorate Tiny Hand Sanitizer Bottles
Hand sanitizer is much more fun when it comes in tiny bottles with pictures of favorite Disney friends. Have your kids help you decorate little travel bottles to fill with hand sanitizer before you go. Pick up some Disney stickers and plastic bottles and let them go to town. Not only is this a super fun pre-trip project, it’ll also encourage them to use the sanitizer throughout your visit.
3. Pick a Handwashing Song
Of course, hand sanitizer does not replace good old handwashing. Since you’re going to have to wash your hands often, we recommend making it as fun as possible by choosing a favorite Disney song to be your handwashing song. Pick a section that is about 20 seconds long and have your kids sing it every time they wash their hands during the trip.
4. Reward Handwashing
In addition to adding a bit of music to your handwashing sessions, it might help to reward kids with something small such as a sticker or a tiny candy each time they wash their hands. This will help make the chore even more exciting.
5. Buy Disposable Placemats
The thing about dining in Disney World is that you never know who was dining at your table just before you. While we’re certain Disney will be on top of cleaning tables, you can never be too careful. For this reason, we recommend disposable placemats for the kids. Disposable placemats cover the part of the table your child is eating at, ensuring they aren’t picking up germs if they happen to drip a fry before it makes it into their mouth. These placemats come in all kinds of styles, meaning you’re sure to find something your kids will love, and as an added bonus, they make cleaning up a breeze.
6. Let Them Help Clean
In addition to hand sanitizer, we highly recommend carrying some cleaning wipes to wipe down benches before sitting, as well as tables that might have been missed during cleaning. Make the wipe-down a fun process for the kids by handing each of them a wipe and allowing them to help out.
7. Make Social Distancing a Game
Social distancing while spending time in a Disney park is going to be pretty difficult. This is especially true for young children who will likely be overwhelmed by everything around them. In order to keep them focused on maintaining distance between themselves and strangers, try making social distancing into a game you play at home and carry over into the park. Do this by having everyone carry hula hoops around their waists. Have all players navigate around a small space without running into another person’s hula hoop. If they do, they gain points. The person with most points at the end of the game loses.
Once you get to the park, have your child imagine they are playing the hula hoop game. If they start to wander too close to others, remind them of the game and give them a point. Reward the person with the least points at the end of the day with a sweet treat such as a Mickey bar.
8. Pack a Stroller
Afraid your kids won’t be great at social distancing? Worried they’ll touch everything they see? You can solve these problems within something as simple as a stroller. Simply have your child ride through the park. This will help keep things stress-free and keep their little legs happy to boot.