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Thursday, July 8, 2010

Misadventures in Baby Raising’s Summer 2010 Must-Haves is off to a great start, this week’s theme is Amusement Park Fun and we have lots of great product reviews, giveaways, and tips to make your trip to the Amusement Park a great one! 
While I love visiting the amusement park, doing so with children takes lots of planning and patience.  I have complied a list of my Amusement/Theme park Travel Tips for you guys, I hope you find the tips helpful and I hope they help make your trip seamless!image
Amusement/Theme Park Travel Tips
Get there EARLY!  While I am all for sleeping in, you’ll want to get to the park early!  Arriving before the park opens insures a better chance of getting a good parking space and less of a wait in the ticketing lines.  Arriving early also gives you an opportunity to go over your plan of attack with your family.
Avoid weekends!  Now I know for many of us (including my family) this isn’t possible, but visiting a theme park during the week generally means less visitors therefore less time waiting in lines and a better chance of being able to ride the rides and visit the attractions that are most popular.  Another option is waiting until the afternoon to visit the park, most theme parks offer deeply discounted rates for visitors arriving after 5PM!
Buy tickets online!  Buying tickets online can save you big bucks…and when you’re talking about spending nearly $50 a pop as it is the extra savings make it such a sweet deal!  Some stores also offer discounted tickets
Pack Wisely!  If you are taking a stroller with you to the park then you have some room to play with, but if not packing wisely becomes very important!  I usually pack a small, mesh backpack for each of the bigger kids with me containing a change of clothes (important if their are water rides), swim suit, and towel.  In the diaper bag I pack the essentials (diapers, wipes, change of clothes, bottle, sippy cup) as well as a small first aid kit (complete with both children's and regular Tylenol and headache medicine, money, credit card, sunscreen, snacks, and extra water.
Sunscreen, sunscreen, sunscreen!  I know this one goes without saying, but if you’re like me I cover the kiddos in sunscreen and often forget myself—the last time I did that I got the worst sunburn of my life! 
Have an Emergency Plan!  I cannot stress the importance of making sure your children know what to do if they get separated from you, it is one of the most stressful parts of taking our big group of kids anywhere.  Make sure that older children know your cell phone number.  For younger children writing your cell number somewhere on the child or his belongings is a safe bet.  When my daughter Savanna went to Disney with her father I placed a slip of paper into the pocket of all of her shorts containing her name, her father’s name, my name, and our phone numbers.  On our recent trip to Kings Island I used Safety Tats on the younger kiddos and I cannot tell you how many parents wanted to know where they could buy them…they are an amazing thing to have to bring parents peace of mind! 
Take advantage of Souvenir Cups!  One of the most outrageous items at amusement parks is the food and drinks.  The initial investment of a souvenir cup can be pricy (we paid $20 for 2 souvenir ICEE cups on our visit to KI) but refills are normally cheaper than even a small drink in most parks.  Our $20 investment saved us countless money on our recent trip to the amusement park and the kids got to bring home a cool cup to help them remember their adventure!
Go See a  Free Show!  Many theme parks offer several free shows during the day and attending one of these shows is a great way to cool down if it’s hot outside (many of the theatres are air-conditioned) and get off of your feet for a while.  My children love watching the live shows and it seems to reenergize everyone to sit and relax a bit between rides!
I hope that I have given you a good starting point to  help make your next amusement park trip turn out amazing!  And if you know of a great tip that isn’t listed then by all means let me know…I love hearing what works best for other moms and dads!
*  Thanks to Statesman.com for some of the great amusement park tips*

3 comments :

  1. Buying tixs online is really good advice - I saved a bunch using my auto club discount online when went last month!

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  2. Great tips! I can always use more helpful ideas when planning a vacation with 4 kids in tow!

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  3. Great tips! I love the get there early one. So many times you get there late in the day and the lines are long.

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