A family trip in June 2017, staying at Port Orleans Riverside, is what brought my husband and I back to Disney after many years. It had been well over 12 years since either of us had been. When this trip was first discussed, it was going to be the two of us with six other family members, but then we got pregnant with our first child. By the time the trip came around, our daughter was six months old. As any first-time mom traveling with a new baby, to crowded Disney, nevertheless, I was stressed to the max. How could we possibly do Disney with an infant? Well, let’s just say Disney IS the place you want to travel to for your first trip with a child. Think I’m crazy? Let me fill you in on a few reasons for my thinking …
It is truly magical. No need to grab your multiple pieces of luggage at baggage claim, which, when you’re already pushing an infant in their stroller, makes for a very luxurious walk to the Magical Express check-in. You simply hop on the bus and then off to your resort you go. You can hit the parks or Disney Springs, and your luggage magically appears in your room later that day.
Disney Dining Plan
So easy for foodies like us. All you need is your MagicBand to purchase food. No worrying about having cash or your wallet for that matter, and no stress over prices (I mean, who really wants to watch themselves hand over $6 for that delicious looking cupcake?)
There are so many options for infant friendly rides, most of which are too cute to pass up even if you aren’t with your infant. Then there’s Rider swap for those must-do rides that you can’t take the little babe on just yet. One parent can stay with the child while the other rides, and then swap without having to re-enter the line. You won’t miss out on any of the fun!
Baby Care Centers
Another huge worry of mine, being a nursing mother, was where would I find a quiet place, a comfortable spot, a cool shady area to nurse my babe. I have three words: Baby Care Centers! Each park has one, and they are AMAZING! Clean, air-conditioned, with friendly staff, changing tables, and quiet nursing rooms. I could keep going and going, not to mention that they carry all the baby supplies you could possibly need and, most importantly, those things you may have forgotten to pack. These centers absolutely made the trip for me. SOLD!
Exceptional Service (Pixie Dust)
On the last night of our trip, we had reservations at California Grill in the Contemporary Resort. We had been really excited all week for this dinner as we had heard so many great things. Shortly before we had to grab the bus, a pretty bad thunderstorm passed through. The lightning and wind were so bad that we were not going to take our 6-month-old out. We, unfortunately, missed our reservation and were obviously very disappointed. About one hour later, when the storm calmed, we said, “what the heck! Let’s head over and see what they can do for us as walk-ins.” Upon our arrival at California Grill hostess desk, we explained our situation and were pleasantly surprised with a response of, “No problem. We will get you a table”. Within 10 minutes, we had been seated. We were extremely impressed with their service and so happy that our last night of vacation hadn’t been ruined. We went on to enjoy a delicious meal and saw firsthand just how special these deluxe resorts are.
Our DVC Journey Begins
A few days after returning home, my husband and I kept looking at each other and saying, “are you missing Disney as much as I am?” We were completely taken. Disney really takes care of you and all the needs of your family at every age. The magic that we felt from that one trip, and the ease of our first vacation with an infant, we knew that Disney was not going to be a one-time occurrence for us as a family. We knew Disney would become a lifestyle, a twice a year (or more) habit, and would be a repeated source of memories that we will never forget.
In December of 2017, we officially became DVC members at Bay Lake Tower. We have since been back three times and are currently two months away from our fourth Disney Vacation Club trip. Since that first trip, we have discovered so many other ins and outs that continue to validate our decision to join DVC. We love it.
Our daughter is now three years old, and we have since added our little man, who is currently 11 months. Now, traveling with a toddler and an infant? That is a completely different story for another time!