One thing I didn't take into account when planning our trip to Disney World was the fact that my youngest would be potty training while we were on vacation! I have given a lot of thought on how to succeed with potty training at Disney World and I think my tips will help you if you are in the same situation!
How to Succeed with Potty Training at Disney World
Plan Ahead When Packing
You need to plan ahead when you are preparing to leave. Pack a lot of extras….extra clothing and underwear for your toddler! Don't forget extra socks, extra pull-ups or diapers if you are still using those part of the time. If you are not staying at a place with access to a washer and dryer…packing extras may save you from having to buy new clothing or undies while in Florida!
Practice at Home
You may want to try and practice “holding it” at home before your trip! We have had a couple of practice runs lately that just happened…one day my little one and I were on a walk…a mile from home when she needed to go! I told her she had to hold it and amazingly enough…she held it all the way back home! A few days ago she was able to hold it on a 20 minute drive! Woot, Woot…that is good preparation for that long walk to find a bathroom at an amusement park or the long line at the bathroom!
Be Prepared for Set Backs
I am mentally prepared that my daughter may regress in her potty training while we are out-of-town. Her routine is going to be totally obliterated and that is all you need for a toddler to take a few steps backwards. I am okay if we take some steps back while we are out-of-town. We will just pick up where we left off when we get home! I think if you have the right mindset about setbacks it will lessen your stress tremendously! When thinking about how to succeed with potty training at Disney World, remember that a setback doesn't mean disaster or a lack of success!!
Read the Maps
The first thing you need to do at the parks each day is look at the map and use a highlighter to mark all the restrooms. Keep your map handy and be ready to run if necessary! 🙂
It goes without saying that there may be a LOT of trips to the bathroom. Someone in the family may have to leave a line to take the toddler potty. Talk this over with your family ahead of time and get everyone's buy in and cooperation! Take turns taking the little one to the bathroom!
Try and Go When You Have the Chance
If you see a bathroom, ask your little one if they need to go. Go to the bathroom when you have the chance…when a bathroom is nearby! Even if the child says they don't have to go…it never hurts to try!
Monitor the Drinks
My toddler has a favorite cup that we lovingly call her “cuppy”. If allowed, she would drink from her cuppy ALL DAY LONG! She could potentially go pee every 30 minutes. We will not be taking her cuppy to the parks! I am NOT advocating restricting fluids….your child needs to drink, but I think you know what I mean! You may want to avoid getting them a huge mug of lemonade if you want to avoid accidents! Let your child drink at appropriate times, etc. but don't let them just sip on drinks all day long unless you want to spend a lot of time in the bathroom! Remember if it is really hot outside your child will need extra fluids! We are lucky to be going in November when it won't be overly hot!
This may be a good time to set up a short-term positive reinforcement program with your toddler! You could have special treats or goodies for them for each day they make it without an accident. If they are really struggling you may want to change it to a reward for each time they make it to the bathroom! You can get some special Disney stickers or small toys to use as rewards and go along with the theme of your trip! If you got some of the cute Disney Figure Sets you could give one figurine each day as a reward!
Plan for the Worst
I am still trying to decide if I will have my daughter wear a pull up when we go to the parks or not. She is almost totally potty trained during the daytime hours and I don't think wearing a pull up would set her back. I also know that it is easier to change a wet pull up then try to clean a big wet spot in the stroller! This will be something you have to decide on, but my advice is to have options with you in case the worst happens! Be sure to have baby wipes and maybe even some Clorox Wipes On the Go in case there is a problem in the stroller! Take a few changes of clothes and undies to the park in your bag. Having what you need will make clean up much quicker!
Give Your Child Grace
If some accidents happen…just go with it! Don't be hard on your toddler…they are in a new place without the normal comforts of home. Remember that you are in the happiest place on earth and an accident doesn't have to damper your family's fun!
Have you had a child who was potty training on vacation? What are your favorite tips for how to succeed with potty training at Disney World?