Tips for Expectant “Moms-to-Be” at Walt Disney World
Talk to your doctor before your visit. Adhere to his/her advice!
This page does NOT contain medical advice. This page contains Reader Experiences only!
Lori Cammie Rice shares:
My doctor just told me to avoid the rides that the park “restricts” for expecting moms. Your doctor may have additional restrictions based on your situation. By all means, what your doctor says should override anything suggested here! There’s plenty to do at WDW for moms-to-be, even if you normally spend your visit hopping from Space Mountain to Splash Mountain and back.
Take it easy
Even if you’re a Disney commando, you may not be able to maintain your regular speed. We can usually see everything we want at Animal Kingdom or Disney’s Hollywood Studios in the morning and early afternoon, then cover a good portion of Epcot or Magic Kingdom in the evening. Not this time: We covered Africa and Asia at AK before I was ready to drop. Never even made it to Dinoland. On a separate day at Epcot, we covered Future World, and half of the World Showcase.
I believe the recommended amount of water in a day for an expectant mom is at least 64 ounces. I found that it was much easier to keep up with that when I brought my water with me, instead of buying it at the park. On the way in from the airport, we stopped at Walmart and bought a cheap styrofoam cooler, two cases of water (12-20 ounce bottles each), and a bag of ice for under $10. I took one bottle with me when we left in the morning, one when we headed out after our afternoon nap, and I’d drink another when we got back to the room at night. With the additional water I’d get with dinner (usually at a full service restaurant, so it was free), I covered my 64 ounces, and then some. We saved at least $30 by buying the water at Walmart, and more importantly, it was convenient.
Schedule a break into your day
What worked best for us was getting breakfast at the hotel, and heading to a park for the morning and early afternoon. We’d come back to the hotel around 2:00 or 3:00, and I’d nap for an hour or two. Then, we’d hit another park for an hour or so, before our reservations for dinner, around 7:30. We did this twice, hitting the Studios and MK one day, and AK and MK the next. (On our last day, I didn’t get my nap since we had already checked out of the hotel. I was miserable…)
Be prepared to adjust your dining plans
…based on your food cravings/aversions: I hadn’t thought of this in advance. Luckily, I’ve been able to eat almost anything, except a big slab of meat — just can’t handle it. We had reservations at ‘Ohana one night, which we loved on our last trip. The night before our reservation, my husband reminded me that ‘Ohana is primarily meat! After a few minutes’ consideration, we changed our reservation to the Kona Cafe, where I got the mushroom ravioli — it was a much better fit for how I was feeling.
Consider your sleeping habits
I sacrificed room in my suitcase to bring along the wedge pillow I use to support my tummy while I slept — I would have been miserable without it. I also had housekeeping deliver three extra pillows to the room. It wasn’t quite like home, but it was pretty close.
Schedule a down day into your trip
We were in Orlando for five days, and bought 4-day park hoppers. Our original plan was to hit Sea World on the fifth day. After some consideration, we decided instead to use the extra day to do the things around the World that we don’t normally get to. We had a character breakfast at Chef Mickey’s, hit Disney Springs, and resort-hopped. After a longer nap than on the other days, we just had a nice dinner out. If the weather had been more cooperative, we may have gone to either Typhoon Lagoon (I was set to spend an hour or two in an innertube on the river), or played miniature golf at the Fantasia Gardens course. We ended up taking this down day as day four, so I’d have more energy on day five.
Consider wearing a maternity support belt
I bought one at the maternity store at my local mall. It’s two pieces of heavy-duty elastic, with Velcro to adjust. I really think it helped keep my back from hurting. Also, I found it much more comfortable wearing it on the outside of my clothing – it didn’t rub anything the wrong way with the extra layer between. All of my maternity tops were long enough that you couldn’t see the belt at all.
A few notes on restrooms
Since it seemed like I was visiting every other restroom we passed, just a few notes. It seems like Animal Kingdom has fewer restrooms, with a lot of stalls. At the other extreme, Epcot has a ton of restrooms, but with just a few stalls… except for the massive restrooms in the American Adventure pavilion. Just something to keep in mind.
Fun things to do
Buy your little one his or her first Mickey Mouse ears — the cast member helping us really wanted to embroider a name on the ears; we just don’t know the name yet!
Rides that Disney suggests expecting mothers should skip
Check the complete list of ride restrictions HERE or your guidemap, but the biggies are as follows. Magic Kingdom: Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, Splash Mountain, Barnstormer, Space Mountain, Tomorrowland Speedway, Seven Dwarfs Mine Train; Epcot: Test Track; Disney’s Hollywood Studios: Tower of Terror, Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster, Star Tours, Slinky Dog Dash; Animal Kingdom: Dinosaur, Kali River Rapids, Kilimanjaro Safaris, Expedition Everest; Avatar Flight of Passage.
Things I wish I’d brought from home
The water bottle I normally walk with. My water bottle at home zips in and out of an insulated case with a long strap — it would have kept the water a bit cooler, and is very easy to carry.
Last summer, I not only visited Walt Disney World but also Disneyland while expecting and thoroughly enjoyed both visits. The key is to pace yourself — afternoon naps and a shower will do wonders. While the rest of our family rode rides I couldn’t, I shopped the gift shops for the baby; it was a lot of fun. I agree with the advice that if a ride seems like a bad idea it probably is. I rode Pirates of the Carribbean and remember a small hill in the one in Disneyland that was jarring and I was terrified something bad had happened, which really ruined that day for me. I was in line for Barnstormer when I saw an advisory sign and when we got to the ride the cast member helped me get out of the line and to the exit. I loved all the walking and eating and shopping, don’t let people tell you not to go if you’re pregnant. (Marcie)
Pregnant women aren’t supposed to go down waterslides. You should add this to your site, so readers can get used to the idea before they go. (Jeancbpugh)
I visited WDW while I was 7-1/2 months pregnant. One piece of advice I did not see on your page was to invest in a maternity bathing suit and during your daily breaks, especially in warmer weather, spend some time in the pool at your hotel. I found a swim followed by a nap recharged my battery and I was ready for an evening of fun. It also helped with the “heat” problems of pregnancy. Also, don’t let the ride attendants be your guide on riding rides. One tried to convince me to take a spin on Test Track, and the braking sequences most certainly would have caused me trouble had I gone along. If you aren’t sure about whether or not to ride something, send a family member on it first. I was traveling with both my husband and my parents, and found their advice was most helpful. (Amy Hutton)
My baby doc advised me about the rides with restrictions, although I did choose to ride one that does have restrictions: the safari ride at AK. It was an informed decision, as I have ridden the safari several times before and knew what to expect. I would (and did) tell people to sit closer to the front since it isn’t nearly as bumpy there. On our safari, there was a gal that was at least 7 months along and the CMs didn’t even bat an eye as she boarded the jeep. She sat behind me and couldn’t see why this was a restricted ride. A thought about eating — make sure to take extra snacks in your backpack. I have the opposite of morning sickness, I am starved all the time! It was a good idea for me to have peanut butter crackers or a piece of fruit in the bag when the “munchies” hit. I also ate what sounded good and snacked and sat often. We took it slow, but we are Annual Passholders, so that part was easy. I was hesitant about making the trip pregnant, but it was that or wait more than a year to go back (never!). It was a great trip — now I have to look forward to taking a new little one next time! (Madge Hearne)
Kris Kopp writes: I made a trip to WDW when I was 8 months pregnant. I was able to ride Splash Mountain without any trouble. I discussed the rides with my doctor before going and he said that flume rides were OK since they weren’t bumpy (everyone should ask their own doctors first). We just took it easy and saw the things we normally skipped because we were riding the big rides. I always took a break around lunchtime to rest up, too. I would tell everyone not to skip the trip just because you are pregnant. The trip I made while I was pregnant is still one of my favorites trips to WDW. I just recently took my daughter for the first time (she is 3). There are still so many things you can do — it is just a different way to do the world!
I went to WDW when I was in my seventh month. I really had no problems. We went at the end of September so the weather was still hot but the crowds were down. My best tip might sound strange. Now keep in mind that I always overdo it when I visit the parks. I was one of those women who had to make frequent, and I do mean frequent trips to the restroom my whole pregnancy. However I was the one who carried the backpack with all our things. I think the weight on my back countered the weight on the front. We saw everything and I had no problems at all with my feet or my back. I felt great. (Rachelle)