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Upcoming Changes to WDW Parks: Smoking Areas, Strollers, and More

By March 30, 2019News

The spring vacation season is upon us, and with it, Disney has rolled out a handful of rule and policy changes via a recent post on the Disney Parks Blog. The changes cover a few important areas and go into effect between the last week in March and the first week of May, so read on for the details.

Downsizing of strollers

First up are some changes to the rules around strollers:

Beginning May 1, we are adjusting our guidelines on stroller sizes, which will require them to be no larger than 31″ (79cm) wide and 52″ (132cm) long.

Thankfully, according to Disney, many strollers on the market, including many double jogging strollers, fit within these size limitations. But as always, don’t make assumptions about your baby carting machines, take a few minutes to measure your stroller before packing it up for your next WDW trip. Double check your stroller rental as well, some of the double strollers available at the popular rental sites do not fit these new guidelines. The last thing you want is to show up at a park and be denied entry because your stroller is just too honkin’ large.

Also of note, the post goes on to specify a change regarding stroller wagons:

Beginning May 1, stroller wagons will also no longer be permitted.

So if you were planning an epic stroller wagon kid, cooler, and mobile WDW command-center for your next vacation, you’re going to have to make alternative plans.

According to Disney, all of these changes are intended to improve the overall park going experience for visitors by decreasing congestion, and we’d be hard pressed to question the validity of that goal.

Goodbye smoking areas

Next up, Disney is abolishing all smoking areas within the parks:

Also beginning May 1, smoking areas will no longer be present inside Walt Disney World or Disneyland theme parks, water parks, ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex or Downtown Disney District in California.

There will still be designated smoking areas outside the parks as well as in Disney resort hotels, but this is a pretty substantial change and we anticipate there will be a fair amount of uninformed guests that’ll have a hard time swallowing the changes.

Still, given the steady eradication of smoking areas in most public places in the US, it seemed like only a matter of time before Disney made this change. Regardless of if you’re a smoker or not, it’s hard to make an argument against it.

Lose the loose ice

Lastly, a change regarding a topic that is surely near and dear to everyone’s heart, loose ice:

Beginning today, if you plan to bring a cooler or cooler bag to store snacks and drinks for theme park or water park adventures, it’s important to know that loose or dry ice are no longer permitted in our parks.

So if you were planning on toting along a bag of ice on your next park visit, you’ll have to leave it behind. Luckily, guests are still permitted to bring ice packs and loose ice can be had at any of the drink stations in the parks.

Wrapping up

And that’s about it. Nothing too major, but definitely all good changes to be informed about before heading out on your next WDW trip. What do you think about these changes? Hit us up in the comments. Or, until next time, have a magical trip!

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