Today I just wanted to share a quick detail and explanation about our Disney World trip that I have been asked about quite a bit. A lot of people have questioned how we decided it was the right time to go. As I have mentioned, we brought our older 2 kids only. They are ages almost 7, and 4.5 We have been planning the trip for pretty much a whole year, and if you want to be able to reserve everything as early as possible (which honestly I think is essential for a good trip, especially if you might go during busier seasons like spring break, summer, or Christmastime), you have to start planning at least 6 months before– which means you also have to predict how your kids will do 6 months from now!
Truly, in the end, I think our kids were the perfect ages for this trip! There were so many people there with much younger kids, and a lot of friends have planned to take their kids older– so here are the factors that played into 4.5 and almost 7 being PERFECT for us!
1). We know we will go again. This was not a one and done trip for us. Because of the expense, I do not expect that we will go multiple more times– but I am sure we will do 1 more trip, maybe 2, to make sure our youngest experiences it at at time he can really enjoy it the same way our big kids did this time. So that means that we wanted to take them this time for the magic…the character fun, the real belief in what they saw and experienced, the little kid wonder. And our almost 7 year old was almost too old for that– but it worked out and I will get to that in a bit! I think anytime 3.5 and after and before 7.5 or so, depending on your kids personalities, can give them the full magic experience. I thought a lot of kids there in the 3 year old range were even more joyful about characters than our kids (but a part of that is personality!)– but our kids were pretty thrilled. 3.5-4.5 is a hard age range for us here 😂, so we knew we wanted to wait until our girl was closer to 5 than 4! If this would have been a 1 and done for us, I think we would have waited a bit longer so that they were much more ready for all the rides.
2). That being said- we did get to do a LOT of rides, and that is because our kids are huge for their ages. So by size, they could do honestly almost everything at Disney World. So we knew that we would still get to experience a lot, vs if we had brought them a year earlier, our girl would have had to sit more out. We did more little kid stuff and more character stuff this time because we plan do do mostly ride stuff next time– but they were big enough that we could have done mostly anything we wanted.
3). Our kids are young at heart in terms of imagination. I am not sure I think every almost 7 year old boy would love the characters, princesses, and magic as much as ours did…but he is very sweet in that way and still very into all that and full of belief. If you have a kid who is almost 7 but in the middle of your kid lineup, or just much more mature for his age, you might miss the “magic” window if you wait until this age. But it was perfect for us! Our kids are also a little shy and hesitant in new situations, which we figured would play out in a little fear here and there about rides and chatting with characters, and it did. But it all worked out super well- our girl but loved them once we got on there (Slinky Dog was her favorite in the end!).
So those were the main factors for us. I do not ever believe there is a too old age for Disney! Not at all. There is so much there for everyone– I just think the experience is different depending on their ages. Waiting a couple more years until they didn’t need the stroller and were more independent would certainly have had it’s benefits, just like seeing a 2 year old version of my little princess running into the arms of characters would have been beautiful as well. Clearly, we made the decision that 1 was too young for our youngest to come along, and I think that was 100% the right choice for this trip for us. But there were so many babies waving and clapping and smiling (and crying ;-)) there, and I think that we would have enjoyed having him there as well! I just don’t think there is a right or wrong for this decision– it’s all about what you would want your trip to look like and what you want to focus on!