This article was first published on Sept 16th, 2015 and has been updated and republished with a new date.
Disney Trip Packing List for Kids
I’m a HUGE list maker! I honestly make lists for everything. It helps me stay organized leading up to a trip, when planning, packing and yes, even when putting everything back into the suitcase to come home. Don’t want to leave anything behind! In my family of 6 (with preschoolers to teens), the packing list varies for each.
If you’re planning your first trip to Disneyland or visiting Disney World for a first family trip, you’ll want to do your advance research and plan ahead. This printable checklist includes the basics every kid will need for a Disney vacation.
Trip Packing List for Kids
Even with the best laid plans, sometimes things go awry! On one Disneyland road trip, my husband put our toddler in the car without his shoes on. It wasn’t until we were a block from the Disneyland Resort did we realize that he didn’t have any shoes! Quick stop at Target and all was good.
But the ideal plan avoids extra stops – this Disney trip printable checklist will help you be more organized and prepared! Having a trip packing list for kids from the start helps in the entire vacation planning process.
Traveling to Disney with a baby? Check out this free baby travel packing list, just for families Traveling With a Baby in Diapers.
Helpful Packing Tips for Kids
In my family, I pack the suitcases for my two younger kids. And of course I pack my own suitcase, using the printable checklist from this Mom’s Disney Packing List.
My ultimate goal is to have my older kids pack their own travel bags. I’ve created a list that is straightforward and that kids can check-mark off as they go.
Nobody will forget their shoes if they follow this list! Open and print a copy for each child and they’ll be prepared to pack up their own Disney vacation bag. Keep reading for the free printable and read all the helpful tips along the way.
What to Wear at Disney Parks
Depending upon the weather and destination your choice of the best Disney outfits for kids will vary. Quick drying cotton tees and shorts are popular for a reason.
If you can sew or craft, there’s nothing like making your own outfits for the kids to wear throughout the trip. I’ve shared the project details to recreate this unique Disney California Cricut Shirt design.
There’s a reminder on the packing checklist to choose comfortable clothing and broken-in shoes. Some kids may need additional reminders not to pack too-small outfits or shoes that are overly soft and falling apart at the seams!
My favorite shoes for younger kids are pediped. They feature flexible but supportive soles and stylish designs. Many are water-resistant (good for rainy weather) and machine-washable as well.
Here’s what kids should pack in their suitcase:
- Tops – at least two per day
- Bottoms – at least one per day
- Shoes – at least 2 pair
- Socks – two per day
- Underwear – at least one per day, more for kids that are newly toilet trained
- Sweatshirt or jacket, for chilly weather
- Facial coverings – optional for airplane travel or indoor attractions
Should Kid Pack Costumes for Disney?
Some children really enjoy dressing up daily for their day in the park. It’s a personal choice that can add a certain magic to the vacation when kids are dressed in costume! Should costumes be on a trip packing list for kids?
Everyone can dress up in costume for special events like Mickey’s Halloween Party at Magic Kingdom in Walt Disney World or Oogie Boogie Bash at Disney California Adventure. Only kids 12 and under can wear costumes daily inside any of the Disney theme parks.
Before packing all the super hero costumes and glittery princess dresses, consider a few points.
- How easily can kids maneuver in their costume? Consider getting in and out of rides.
- Are the costumes weather appropriate? Children may be overly hot or too cold wearing a costume.
- Will your child want to wear the costume all day, or have a clothing change mid-day?
- Is the costume comfortable? In other words, are your kids going to be whining about too-tight sleeves, tripping over the length or an itchy neckline?
If wearing a costume, you child may like to participate in their own DIY Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique. Try this fun dress-up at the hotel room before heading to the theme parks. Add items including child-friendly make-up, colorful hair extensions and nail polish to the Disney packing list for kids.
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Pack Small with Travel Sizes
To save space in the luggage, think small by packing kids travel sized toiletries. These are a few tips on what to pack:
- Use a compact hairbrush that folds up or pack a travel sized version to preserve space. I like the Wet Brush Squirt Detangler Hair Brush, which is also perfect pool-side brush for combing wet hair.
- Consider smaller sized travel items that will fit inside a zippered pouch.
- Don’t worry about packing shampoo & conditioner since the hotel will usually have those available.
- Use your own body wash from home and refill these Leak Proof Silicone Travel Bottles.
- Remind kids with orthodontia to remember to pack their retainer and case!
- Choose a Travel Toothbrush that folds down compactly to fit inside the pouch.
Pack for a Day at the Pool
Whether your heading to the hotel swimming pool or to one of the Disney World Water Parks, you’ll want kids prepared for their day in the water. This includes packing appropriate swim gear and knowing what to bring and what to leave home.
No need to bring towels – they are available for use at the Disney Resort Swimming Pools or for “rent” at the water parks. You can also leave the flotation devices at home. Life jackets in multiple sizes are widely available for any child or adult non-swimmer to use, free of charge.
- Bathing suit, rash guard (to protect from sun) and a cover up to wear while walking to/from the pool
- Sunscreen with SPF 50 – we loved this Spray Sun Protection for Wet Skin to reapply throughout the day
- Swim diapers, for kids that aren’t fully toilet trained
- Detangling hair brush
- Eye drops, as hotels often over-chlorinate the swimming pools
- Swim goggles, ideal for kids who have eyes that are sensitive to chlorine
Keep the Hotel Room Neat and Tidy
Your kids might not keep their bedroom neat at home, but when sharing a hotel room space with others, it’s imperative. These organization ideas help my family of 6 stay tidy in the hotel!
- Pack a small pop up mesh hamper for kids to toss their dirty clothes into when they return from the park. Bring a large plastic trash bag to store them in the suitcase on the trip home.
- Designate a spot for luggage (many Disney Resort hotels have enough space under the bed for suitcase storage).
- Bring these small travel organization boxes to keep on the side tables and TV stand. Store all essentials including MagicBands, watches, room keys, wallets, etc in the boxes. This will help to to minimize misplacement throughout the room.
- Pack each child a complete outfit inside zip close bags including socks and hair accessories.
- Pull out everyone’s outfits the night before for the next day. Place them on the dresser to minimize a morning scramble.
- Have kids remove shoes at the door and line them up against the wall. This will eliminate the “Where’s my left sandal?!” question in the morning.
- Have kids store their personal toiletries in individual travel toiletry bags. This keeps the bathroom counter neat and tidy. Also nobody will be looking for their toothbrush when you all stagger back to the room late at night.
Children’s First Aid Kit
Yes, the Disney parks all have their own first aid stations in case you need additional care, like ice packs. But it’s better to have your own basic items quick at hand.
I love having everything in one easy-to-find bag, like this compact clear-front snap-close Disney-themed first aid bag from Ouch Pouch Shoppe on Etsy.
These are a few kid-friendly items to include inside your first aid kit each day:
- To care for small wounds, bring antiseptic wipes, Neosporin and waterproof bandages
- Sunscreen that’s age appropriate
- Antacids for tummy aches or nausea
- Children’s pain relief, including Tylenol for headaches
- Specific medical needs for your child, including teething gel for babies or epi-pen for those who suffer from allergic reactions
- Bug repellent that’s kid-appropriate, like Babyganics Insect Spray that helped us avoid mosquito bites on our Orlando trips.
Packing the Kid’s Disney Park Bag
Older kids can carry their own Park bag or backpack for each child. Kids older than about 6 yrs old can be responsible for carrying a backpack that holds their supplies for the day.
Find something that your kids can easily take off by themselves when getting on rides. Check out this list of fun and practical Disney luggage for kids at SheBuysTravel.
Many kids enjoy keeping track of their own snacks, souvenir money and maps. I know my son is always proud to carry his own Disney bag through the day (so long as it’s not overloaded or too heavy!) Here are a few ideas on what to pack inside a child’s Disney day bag:
- Park tickets and/or MagicBand+ (though if your kid is one to lose things, you might want to keep them yourself)
- Gum – you won’t find chewing gum anywhere inside the Disney theme parks. Sugar-free gum is a great way to clean teeth after eating so bring it with you in the kid’s day bag.
- Waterproof jacket or rain poncho
- Hand sanitizer
- Hat or Mouse Ears – if your kids wear these into the park each day, make sure there’s room in their day bag to store them later.
- Shout wipes for cleaning spots and stains off clothing
- Bottled water
- Snacks and food
- Wet wipes for cleaning hands and faces after eating
- Portable games or activities, like this Disney Eye Found It card game
- Cooling Towel or misting fan
- Touring books, like how to find Hidden Mickey images throughout the parks
- Cell phone with external battery charger and cord- if your kids have a cell phone, ensure that Life360 app is added. You’ll be able to find them via the app GPS if you get separated.
- Facial masks, at least 2 per day (optional)
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Disney Kid’s Packing Checklist Printable
Ready to let the kids pack their own Disney luggage and park bag? This trip packing list for kids will allow you to remember everything needed to bring on a vacation. Click here for your FREE Disney Trip Kids Packing List!
Click through for more Disney vacation tips!
- Disneyland With Kids podcast | What to Pack for Disney
- Pregnant at Disneyland packing list of essential needs
- The Delightful Life | Disney Character Locations & Tips
- Mom’s Packing list for Disney