Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Wordless Wednesday: Retro

Hey folks! I haven't linked to the Wordless Wednesday blog hop since I started this new blog, so it's been a while. The hop is a lot of fun, so I thought it was time I got back on board. The theme this week is "Retro"

It doesn't get much more retro than those hairdos! And check out those shades- they're making a comeback! I'm on my uncle's shoulders here on a trip in 1986!



Don't forget to Link Up with Focused on the Magic to see more great Disney Wordless Wednesday pics!

Focused on the Magic



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Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Tour Tuesday: Family Magic Tour

Woohoo, it's Tour Tuesday! If you're new, welcome, and thanks for joining us! If this is a return trip for you, thanks for coming back. It's great to see a familiar face :-)

As usual I'm here this Tuesday to showcase one of the many special tours offered at Walt Disney World to provide a little extra magic on your Disney vacation. (Check out the tours I've already covered by clicking here.) While many of the tours offered have age restrictions which don't allow younger children to attend, this week's tour is geared just for those little ones to enjoy!

Tour Tuesday
Family Magic Tour




Offered daily at 10am this tour is more on the fun side than it is informational. Geared for families with children ages 4-10 see magic unfold as you embark on a quest to save the Magic Kingdom. Follow clues and find cool surprises on this 2 hour guided scavenger hunt through many of the magical lands of Magic Kingdom.


You never know who'll you'll see along the way or what surprised you might find, so don't forget that camera!!

What a great activity for the whole family! This tour costs $34-$39 per person, plus tax.

 Know Before You Go:
  • Park Admission Required: YES
  • Park Admission Included: NO
  • Age Requirements: All Ages (geared for families with children 4-10 years old) Guests 16 years of age and under must be accompanied by a paying adult (18 years of age or older).
  • Consider proper footwear (tennis shoes/athletic shoes - It's two hours of outdoor walking- think practical, comfortable shoes)
  • The tour may be too strenuous for some of the younger Guests
  • This is an outdoor tour. Check the weather and dress appropriately
  • Don't forget your camera
  • "You will forfeit the entire price of your tour if you no-show or cancel within 2 days of your reservation"
  • Check in 15 minutes prior to tour time at the Chamber of Commerce building adjacent to City Hall 
  • Walk ups are accepted based on availability

This post carries a disclosure Level of 0. Please see my disclosure page for more details.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Vacation Shoes

I don't know about you, but I'm a flip flop kind of gal. As long as there's not snow on the ground you can usually catch me in a pair. I do tons of walking in them, the zoo, car shows, just every day stuff. They're what I'm most comfortable in. With those being all I really wear (aside from some heels when needed) my feet are used to them. For a trip in 2008 I packed various flip flops, and my hubby insisted on buying me some tennis shoes (I rarely wear them so the only ones I had were pretty old and worn out). With the new white Reebok classics- I like clean and simple- I was all set.

Now I knew there was going to be a lot of walking, but whoa! By morning 3 of our stay my feet had had it! Lucky for me Disney thinks of everything. They were selling Crocs all over the place. Now, to be honest, not a fan at all (this was before they started designing them in other styles). My husband and I have a bit of a shoe problem, and we're okay with that- We like the look of shoes, comfort comes in second, lol... that being the case, my feet had never even seen a pair of Crocs. Due to my condition at the time though I wasn't in a position to be picky; I was willing to try anything. I'm sure by now everyone knows or at least has heard how absolutely comfortable these things are, and I'm here to tell you, it's true!! Sadly, I am now the owner of a pair. It was like walking on air. The only consolation to buying them, aside from the immediate relief to my little piggies, was the fact that instead of the little holes in the tops, they had little Mickey heads. That, and I was able to get them in my home team's colors of red & black (Go CARDS!).

I am one of those people who match their shoes to their clothes, or vise verse,
so I think this was the most awful part...


With the experience I've just shared, it goes without saying that I now know how very important proper footwear is for the parks. A lightweight, flexible walking shoe with great support is ideal. If you have a good, trusty pair of shoes that fit the bill, great! If you have to buy new shoes I definitely recommend buying them far enough in advance to break them in properly.  In recollection, I think I had worn my flip flops on the first day and when my feet were so sore I decided to wear my new tennis shoes. And when I say new, I mean like a week old. These of course gave me blisters in no time. All that walking in one day in a new pair of shoes will surely do that to you.

Also, it's great to take at least two pair of tennis shoes. You can rotate them to give your feet a nice fresh start each day.

Whether you buy new shoes or not, I do recommend purchasing new socks. What good do the new shoes do if you're still wearing the same old worn down socks? And if you're using your old shoes, new socks will be a nice treat. Try some athletic, moisture-wicking socks to keep the moisture away from your feet, thus preventing blistering.


I'm not saying you can't bring your flips flops or sandals. They're great for days spent outside of the parks, or to head out for dinner and a relaxing evening. I just wouldn't count on them being your main park touring shoes.


Savings Tip: Check out the athletic shoe stores and see what fits, what's comfortable, etc., but before you purchase head over to Kohl's, or your nearest dept. store and see if they have something comparable, if not the same thing. They run sales more often than the mall shoes stores and are always offering coupons and other promotions, Kohl's especially


This post carries a disclosure Level of 0. Please see my disclosure page for more details.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Tour Tuesday: Wilderness Back Trail Adventure

It's Tour Tuesday again, which means I'm bringing you another tour offered at Walt Disney World to give you a look at all the magic that makes vacationing there so special. Hopefully these weekly tour blogs will help you find something new and exciting to check out on your next trip.

To see the previous tours highlighted so far click here. This week's tour is unlike the others because while you do cover a lot of ground, you won't be walking... see what I mean below!

Tour Tuesday
Wilderness Back Trail Adventure
Photo credit: Fellow Journeys agent, Sarah Stecker

Departing daily Tuesday thru Saturday from the Fort Wilderness Resort, these two hour sessions give you a unique experience while exploring Florida's natural beauty. Tour the back roads around the Fort Wildernesss Resort & Campground and Wilderness Lodge via your own personal all-terrain Segway XR!

Never been on a Segway before? No worries- the tour includes a half an hour instructional period where you'll get some practice and pointers on a training course to help you prepare for the various terrains of the tour. You'll be fitted with a helmet and electronic earpiece as well, for safety and so you can hear the tour guide.

As with all Disney tours you can bet the tour guide will not only share some information but will most likely have some fun while doing it ;-) There will be plenty of wonderful photo opportunities as you make stops at  Disney’s Wilderness Lodge, the stables of Tri-Circle-D Ranch, and glassy Bay Lake.

The cost of this tour is around $90 per person, plus tax.

Now, for the Know Before You Go:
  • Park Admission Required: NO
  • Park Admission Included: NO
  • Age Requirements: 16 years and older
  • You must have a valid photo ID
  • Proper footwear is required (tennis shoes/athletic shoes)- flip-flops, sandals or rocker/exercise-type shoes (e.g., Skechers Shape-Ups) will not be permitted as these are not compatible with the Segway
  • This is an outdoor tour. Check the weather and dress appropriately
  • Due to Segway design specifications, riders must weigh 100 to 250 pounds to participate. Riders should be in good general health and able to stand for the duration of the tour
  • Guests on the 8:30 AM tour may need to arrange alternate transportation to arrive at the location on time, as standard Walt Disney World transportation will not be available. Check with your Resort Concierge for transportation options. Guests are responsible for their own transportation costs (e.g., taxi fare)
  • "You will forfeit the entire price of your tour if you no-show or cancel within 2 days of your reservation"
  • Check in at the Bike Barn at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort 15 minutes prior to your tour

 For more info click here. To book this tour (and I recommend you do it as early as possible) call 407-WDW-TOUR (939-8687) or contact your travel agent.


This post carries a disclosure Level of 0. Please see my disclosure page for more details.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Almost Wordless Wednesday: Who's That Doggy in the Window?

Disney puts so much into everything they do, right down to the little details. They go above and beyond anything we could imagine and it is so evident throughout the parks, resorts, shopping, movies, and so on. If it has the Disney name on it, you can bet a lot of time went into making it special!

I know the quality of the photo isn't great, but this was one detail I loved! When the kids and I ate at Tony's Town Square Restaurant we were seated near this "window" which featured the silhouhette of someone you might recognize. This truly made me smile, and the kids were very intrigued. It's those little details that truly make the experience all the more special!

Window in Tony's Town Square


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Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Tour Tuesday: Keys to the Kingdom

Welcome back to Tour Tuesday, where each week I'll highlight a tour offered at Walt Disney World that allows you a closer look at the inner working of various attractions around the parks. Many folks don't know these tours even exist, so I'm hoping to shed some light on these magical offerings.

Now, on to this week's tour! We started with the "mac-daddy" tour of all four parks in one day last week with Backstage Magic. This week's tour focuses more on Walt Disney World's original park, Magic Kingdom.


Tour Tuesday
Keys to the Kingdom
Photo credit: Disney's PhotoPass Service


Offered daily at 8:30am, 9:00am, and 9:30am, this 5-hour walking tour is a great way to learn the captivating history of the beloved Magic Kingdom from conception to outstanding growth. See and hear it all, from backstage access (including the famed "Utilidors"), to trivia and tidbits, and even some hidden secrets throughout the park!

The focus of Walt Disney's vision for this park is an amazing tale to hear. See how his creativity and innovative thinking came to life and built this magical place.

Like the Backstage Magic tour, the Keys to the Kingdom includes lunch and a special souvenir to take home.

This is a wonderful tour for all Disney enthusiasts, and it's very reasonably priced at only $79 per person, plus tax.


Know Before You Go:
  • Park Admission Required: YES
  • Park Admission Included: NO
  • Age Requirements: 16 years and older
  • You must have a valid photo ID
  • Proper footwear is required (tennis shoes/athletic shoes)- no open-toed or open-heeled shoes allowed. (It's a lot of walking- think practical, comfortable shoes)
  • This is an outdoor tour. Check the weather and dress appropriately
  • Attractions and locations visited during the tour are subject to change
  • "No cameras, video equipment or cellphones may be used throughout the duration of the tour. Photography is strictly prohibited."
  • "You will forfeit the entire price of your tour if you no-show or cancel within 2 days of your reservation"
  • Check in 15 minutes prior to tour time at the Chamber of Commerce building adjacent to City Hall 
  • Walk ups are accepted based on availability

For more info click here. To book this tour (and I recommend you do it as early as possible) call 407-WDW-TOUR (939-8687) or contact your travel agent.


This post carries a disclosure Level of 0. Please see my disclosure page for more details.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Tour Tuesday: Backstage Magic

It's time for a new series here on the blog. I've been thinking lately about some of the tours that are offered at Walt Disney World, and it dawned on me... not many people know about the various tours they could experience while at Disney World. Yes, some are kind of pricey, but in doing my research I was surprised by how reasonable so many of them really were. So, meet me here for the next several Tuesdays, and I'll be happy to share some info on the tours with you!

 
Tour Tuesday
Backstage Magic
Photo credit: Disney's PhotoPass Service


Available weekdays at 9am this exciting 7-8 hour tour starts at Epcot and allows you the opportunity to see all four parks in one day and more!

Experience an insider's look at the daily operations at attractions in each of the parks to include a tour of the Magic Kingdom "Utilidor" tunnels, Creative Costuming, Centrals Shops (magical details around the Resort), Walt Disney World Nursery & Tree Farm, and some more surprises along the way.

You're going to get hungry with all this exploring, so a stop for lunch at the Whispering Canyon Café will do just right to hit the spot. And it's included in the price of the tour!

Not only will you leave this magical tour with a sense of history and "secrets" explained, you even get a special little something to take home to commemorate your experience.

Oh, and bottled water is provided throughout the tour!

The cost for this tour is $249-$255 per person, plus tax.


Now, for the Know Before You Go:
  • Park Admission Required: NO
  • Park Admission Included: NO
  • Age Requirements: 16 years and older
  • You must have a valid photo ID
  • Proper footwear is required (tennis shoes/athletic shoes)- no open-toed or open-heeled shoes allowed. (It's a lot of walking- think practical, comfortable shoes)
  • Attractions and locations visited during the tour are subject to change
  • While backstage absolutely no cameras, video cameras or cell phones may be used
  • "You will forfeit the entire price of your tour if you no-show or cancel within 2 days of your reservation"
  • Check in 15 minutes prior to tour time at the silver-and-blue "EPCOT GUIDED TOURS MEETING LOCATION" sign to the far right of the Main Entrance

For more info click here. To book this tour (and I recommend you do it as early as possible) call 407-WDW-TOUR (939-8687) or contact your travel agent.


This post carries a disclosure Level of 0. Please see my disclosure page for more details.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Wordless Wednesday: TWIGA means...

Seen while on the Kilimanjaro Safari at Disney's Animal Kingdom



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Thursday, April 23, 2015

The Pirates League Review

Alas, my beautiful daughter feels she's outgrown the wonderful Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique. She still enjoys photo ops with the princesses, however the frills of the dresses are no longer "her style". No fear though, because we found an awesome alternative- The Pirates League at Magic Kingdom. Which is wonderful because my little guy was finally big enough to want to partake in some of the fun extras as well. This suited the both of them perfectly!!

We made our reservations at 180 days, but were able to find some availability to change dates later. When making your reservation, be sure to reserve a spot for each member of your party who will be participating. This is an all ages activity! 

Finally, our trip had come! We signed in approx. 15 minutes prior to our reservation time and only had to wait about 5 minutes or so. It started with the kids getting their official pirate names from the captain's log
A few minutes later we were taken back to the Muster Stations. Each of the kids got their own veteran pirate to give them their makeovers and turn them into the adventurer of their choice
Options include The First Mate and Empress Packages (starting at $34.95 plus tax), Jake and the Never Land Pirates Package (starting at $29.95 plus tax), and The Mermaid Package (starting at $39.95 plus tax) (**Ask about The Mermaid Deluxe Package for $74.95 plus tax**)

My kids chose the First Mate (Captain Hook) and the Empress  Packages.

At the end of the makeover each new recruit is sworn in

Once they were sworn in we were taken to a secret hidden chamber where we found treasure we cannot even begin to speak of... Dead men tell no tales... This is also where a PhotoPass Photographer snapped some great shots. (They're available for purchase, but you can have them scanned to your Magic Band. This is especially great if you've pre-purchased the Memory Maker, as we all know I am a huge proponent of doing, because you'll receive whatever photos they take free for you to download at home!)

I was very fortunate to have received some Disney Magic while we were there. Someone noticed my 30th birthday shirt and asked if I'd be interested in receiving a complimentary Mermaid Makeover. Turns out they have a veteran pirate in training that I suppose they thought could get a few more makeovers under her belt. It didn't matter- the kids thought it would be awesome, and I jumped at the opportunity.
It was a lot of fun, and I certainly wasn't the only adult in the room getting a new look. I noticed this was a very cool family activity for several!! It's definitely something I'd do again, but I would probably opt for the pirate next time (it's more my style).

Though there is a parade, we didn't participate this time. We did, however, stop outside with a PhotoPass photographer for some cool photos.

And later we got this awesome magic shot in front of the castle. I love that our photographer suggested it when he saw my Little Captain Hook.

Oh, and back to the Memory Maker, you can add some pretty cool borders to your photos when you get home before downloading.

All in all, this was an awesome experience. We'll certainly do it again!

For more info, check out my previous post here.

Oh, and the kids' totally awesome pirate shirts and my festive birthday shirt were done by my friend Belinda of Time4MommyCreations. She does excellent custom work for shirts, both in embroidery and vinyl. She also does a multitude of other custom creations. If you can dream it, she can likely do it! Check her out!

This post carries a disclosure Level of 0/1. I paid for my children's makeovers and while there was offered some Disney magic for a free makeover of my own. Disney had no way of knowing I may one day blog about the experience. These opinions are my own and were in no way persuaded by the free service. I definitely recommend trying this out! Please see my disclosure page for more details.

Monday, April 20, 2015

The Pirates League at Disney's Magic Kingdom


"Avast! Captain Jack and his crew of scallywags are scouring the high seas in search of treasure—and new recruits! Sail away with The Pirates League, and transform ye self into a living, breathing swashbuckler from the days of olde.

First, be ye christened with yer Official Pirate Name from the leather-bound captain’s log. Then, make yer way o’er to the Muster Station, where the League’s veteran pirates will give you a marauder’s makeover as the adventurer of yer choosing"

Photo Courtesy of Walt Disney World


The First Mate and Empress Packages (starting at $34.95 plus tax):
  • Your choice of facial effect: Cursed Pirate, Captain Hook, Captain Jack, Blackeyed Jack or shimmering makeup*
  • Reversible bandana
  • Earring and eye patch
  • Sword and sheath
  • The Pirate League bag
  • Temporary tattoo
  • Unique pirate coin necklace
  • Personalized pirate oath
  • Official pirate name
  • Participation in a daily Adventureland Pirate Parade
*The Empress Package also includes vibrant makeup, lip gloss, nail polish and face gem.

Jake and the Never Land Pirates Package (starting at $29.95 plus tax):
  • Jake and the Never Land Pirates bandana with faux hair
  • Jake facial effect
  • Sword and sheath
  • The Pirates League bag
  • Unique pirate coin necklace
  • Participation in a daily Adventureland Pirate Parade
**Ask about The Jake and the Never Land Pirates Deluxe Package for $44.95 plus tax**

The Mermaid Package (starting at $39.95 plus tax):
  • Luminous mermaid makeup and makeup palette
  • Mermaid hairstyle and color-changing hair clip
  • Distinctive mermaid necklace
  • Nail polish
  • Mermaid sash
  • Participation in a daily Adventureland Pirate Parade
**Ask about The Mermaid Deluxe Package for $74.95 plus tax**


Know Before You Go


  • Hours are subject to change but are likely 9:00am to 4:pm daily
  • Reservations for The Pirates League can be made up to 180 days in advance and are highly recommended
  • This activity is for children 3 years of age or older. Adults are also welcome!
  • Children must be accompanied by an adult (18 years of age or older) for the entire experience.
  • Please bring your own brush or comb unless you have a hairstyle that doesn’t accommodate one (such as braids)
  • If you're having nail polish applied, arrive with clean, bare nails
  • Please check in 15 minutes before your experience is scheduled to begin. The Pirates League is located between the entrance of Pirates of the Caribbean and Plaza del Sol Bazaar.
  • Tickets for Magic Kingdom are required
To book your Pirate Makeover call (407) WDW-CREW (939-2739) or speak with your travel agent.
Click Here to see my review of our pirate makeovers!


This post carries a disclosure Level of 0. Please see my disclosure page for more details.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Thrifty Thursday: Ways to Save for Disney

Thrifty Thursday
Ways to Save for Disney

I've got another Way to Save for ya this week! If you've missed the others so far you can find them all here. Most of you will be familiar with this one, or at least most aspects of it. I do have my own little twist on one way to get these little beauties though...

Use Disney Gift Cards



Gift cards are an excellent way to save for Disney, and you can get them for just about anything!
  • Don't really have any big wants or needs this year for your birthday (Mother's/Father's/Grandparent's Day, Anniversary, Christmas... you get the gist)?? Ask for a Disney gift card!
  • House-sit for someone who wants to give you a little thank you? Mention Disney!
  • Give your children gift cards in place of their allowance or "treats" for special tasks or achievements as the trip gets closer.
  • My work gives out gift cards for certain crowning achievements, does yours or maybe another group you belong to?... If you're comfortable with it, and you know you're due for one, ask them to make yours a Disney GC. (For example, we have a walking program at my work. When a person reaches 2.5 Million steps, according to their pedometers, they get a $50 gift card. As my milestone approaches, I'll ask that mine be a Disney GC!)
  • Enter to win them through all the fabulous blogs you follow. You often see contests and drawings for Disney gift cards in various denominations- take the time to enter!!
  • The list could go on and on!
As for my own little twist on a way to get these gift cards, I suggest getting them with refunds! Not sure what I mean? Well let me tell you... Say you get a cash refund at the Disney Store, or a place like Walmart, Kohl's, Kroger, or wherever else has the gift card centers carrying Disney gift cards- turn around and use that cash to purchase a gift card!! The money was already spent anyway! By turning that cash into a Disney gift card you've guaranteed that that money is now solely for Disney.

You can use the gift cards as payment on your vacation package, on purchasing tickets, on buying Disney goodies before your trip, as spending money while there, or for anything really! 

For what occasions do you get Disney gift cards? How do you use them?


This post carries a disclosure Level of 0. Please see my disclosure page for more details.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Thrifty Thursday: Ways to Save for Disney

Thrifty Thursday
Ways to Save for Disney

I'm back this week with another way to save for Disney. If you missed my previous articles you can check them out here. This week's may not be a new one to you, but if you haven't tried it yet, I definitely recommend!

Round Up/Down in your Checkbook Register


I've been using this method to save for a couple years now. There's little effort required on my part and the savings add up quickly.


So, how does this work? Well, it's pretty easy once you train yourself to do it. You simply round your transaction up to the nearest whole dollar. Dinner was $26.32? Record $27 in your register, and you've just saved 58 cents! I'm also rounding down with my deposits (deposits or refunds). Say I'm depositing $100.98, I record $100. There's another 98 cents!


Periodically you can move your "savings" to a Savings account. I typically do this when I start a new checkbook register. I take the balance according to the bank and subtract any transactions that haven't cleared yet. From that total I subtract the balance I have recorded in my check register. I move the difference to my savings account and make a note on the cover of the register. Not only does that give me a little bit of a paper trail, but it shows me how much I saved in a certain time frame. 


For example, for one register that lasted me about 6 weeks, just by rounding up or down, I  saved over $60!! That $60 goes to the savings account and is there when I'm ready to make a payment for our trip.

I don't bank with them, but Bank of America offers a program that does this automatically. It might be worth checking into if you're interested.


Does anyone else do this? Has it worked for you?



This post carries a disclosure Level of 0. Please see my disclosure page for more details.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Wordless Wednesday: Beverly

This needs no words :-)
Have you tried Beverly?
This post carries a disclosure Level of 0. Please see my disclosure page for more details.

Monday, April 6, 2015

Orlando Stroller Rentals Review

Back in 2011, when planning for kids' first Disney World trip (then ages 7 & 2), I had a bit of a dilemma trying to decide whether I should take my own stroller, rent from each of the parks at Disney, or if I should use an external rental service in the area. Well, after careful consideration, based upon both research and the helpful responses of Facebook and Disney friends, I decided to go with a local company.

What led me to that decision? Well, for one, there was the layover in the very busy Atlanta airport to consider. My in-laws and I really didn't want to have to worry about gate-checking the stroller, getting it in Atlanta, trying to wield it through the rushing crowds and escalators/elevators, or risk damage while in flight (and after seeing one of my bags, I'm glad we didn't risk our nice stroller!), and then doing the same from there to MCO... all to do it all over again on the way home.

Why not rent from the Disney Parks? That just didn't make much sense to me at all! You're only able to rent a stroller for the time you are in a specific park. Yes, you can take your receipt with you to another park (on the same day) if you're park hopping, but what about the transition from park to park? Or more importantly, from the parks to your resort after a long, exhausting day?! Or how about Downtown Disney? I don't know about you guys, but my kids aren't exactly shopping enthusiasts, although my daughter is starting to come around :-) I couldn't go shopping without somewhere for my little guy to sit (or be strapped in, lol) so he wasn't getting into everything. Oh, oh!! And what about those sometimes long, but oh so lovely, walks from your resort room to your resort's food court/lobby? You get the drift...

What are the perks of renting from an area rental company? The obvious are all the things I just mentioned above. You have the stroller with you at all times, from parks back to the resorts, on the resort grounds, and at Downtown Disney. And for those that don't just stay on Disney grounds, really, you have them anywhere!! They deliver to most of the area hotels and even rental houses and condos! I loved the thought of simply making the reservation and picking it up at Bell Services at our resort. How easy is that?!

We utilized the services of Orlando's very first stroller rental company- Orlando Stroller Rentals!! And I'm sure glad we did!!


Shannon Tanner, with her husband Justin Tanner, founded the company after having visited Walt Disney World from Connecticut with her then 5 and 6 year olds whom had been out of strollers for some time. Once their little legs started to get weak her only option at the time was to rent in the parks. After having to return her rental and carry one sleeping child while the other tiredly (and I can imagine, grumpily) trudged all the way back to Beach Club Resort, she and her husband tried to figure out a better way... and you guessed it, this is where the Orlando stroller rental industry was born! She left her 12 year elementary teaching career and founded Orlando Stroller Rentals in June of 2008!!

Yes, there are now other companies in the area, so how did I come to choose Orlando Stroller Rentals?
  • For one, after a bold move like the one Shannon made in starting this company, how could I not choose to go with her?! That chick rocks! She saw a need and came up with a solution!
  • Secondly, the other companies didn't have near the selection OSR provided. They have multiple selections of both single strollers and double strollers, accommodating higher weights and heights.

  • Thirdly, though we didn't need one, I liked the fact that they offered a special needs chair. Several of the blogs I read cover stories of children with special needs traveling to the parks. I can imagine some of them require special strollers and such, and I think it's wonderful that a company has thought of them as well!

  • The last thing considered, before actually deciding on them, was another addition they offered that I didn't see elsewhere- a glider board! Though my daughter and I were "training" for Disney, I knew it was inevitable that her little legs would get tired at some point. The glider board comes attached to the stroller and easily flips down for the older child to ride along for a bit.

After having made our decision, working with Shannon was a breeze! Their website was easy to navigate and very informative. You can even see videos of each of the strollers in use, how to fold them, demonstrations of the sun canopies, how easily they turn, etc. When speaking with her on the phone she was oh so sweet and personable. Emails were responded to quickly and efficiently. Facebook junkie like me? OSR is on Facebook and quickly responds to your questions and concerns. Not sure which stroller is right for your child? Simply leave them a comment on their wall and you'll have your answer in no time! Not to mention you can find many satisfied customers there!!

Though I was able to utilize these amazing services at no charge, I still placed a reservation as everyone else would, online. And let me tell you, the process was effortless! The reservations platform on her website was very easy to use, and I quickly had confirmation emails in my inbox. When making your reservation you also have the option of purchasing insurance to cover your rental stroller in the unlikely event of damage or theft. Like I said, these things are unlikely, but when given the option of purchasing insurance the first thing that always comes to mind is an episode of Fresh Prince where they've rented a car and somehow they end up off the road and in a tree or something... and they didn't purchase the insurance for whatever the minimal amount it was... Needless to say, I always opt for it now. There's always that "what-if"...

Had I been charged for the rental I still would have come out on top over renting at the parks. Yes, the parks have multi-day rates, but they still don't beat OSR! Other rental companies claim to be the lowest in town (and they may be cheaper by a couple bucks) but for those I'd researched, their insurance fee is higher. And as I said before, they don't have near the options that Orlando Stroller Rentals provided. I'd gladly pay the few bucks more for these choices, with the exceptional service!

So, what did we get and how did we like it? Based on our needs for my two year old son, and considering my 7 year old daughter, we ended up with a City Mini Single with a glider board! And as I'm sure you've probably guessed by now we loved everything about our experience! We also had a rain cover, but were fortunate enough to have no need for it.

We checked in to Caribbean Beach Resort and our stroller was ready and waiting with Bell Services. It had a large tag affixed to the bottom axle with our name and a packet attached to the handle bar, again with our name, a business card, and an information card. The card provided folding instructions, troubleshooting issues (if the wheel isn't turning- it may be locked, etc.), and how to return the stroller to Bell Services for pick up at the end of your stay.

Please feel free to double-click on any of the images to enlarge the photo to see more clearly

The stroller was very clean, and so very easy to use. I quickly figured out the quick-fold and L-O-V-E-D it! It was easy to carry, even with my being short. The kids loved checking it out once we made it to the room. The weight limit for this stroller was 50 pounds which covered both my children, and the glider board maxes out at 45.

Here's Tessa standing on the glider board in the room

Like I said, it folded effortlessly and I was surprised at how compact it got. I know the following picture doesn't focus on the stroller, but notice how little space it takes up. I like a clutter-free hotel room, especially since they're so space limited as it is. The stroller never got in our way and we could easily grab it and head out the door. To see more on how it folds down and how flat it gets watch this video.

This photo shows the storage pouch on the back of the seat. We placed our small backpack in there with no trouble, though it didn't have much in it. There was also a small basket under the seat.


I LOVED the multi-position sun shade. Again you can see more in the video, but basically there were two ways to position the shade... as shown below, and then you could extend it even further to cover their legs as well! This was a huge benefit!!

Remember that little packet that was hanging from the handle when we picked the stroller up? Well, it was attached with a cute little orange ribbon. This worked nicely in identifying our stroller in the masses when parked in stroller parking.


I also want to mention how very comfortable Colten was all week. This was very important considering he spent so much time in it for the week we were there. We really liked that it lay almost completely flat, and when laid flat it had a very nice vent in the back to allow optimum airflow to the sleeping/resting child. We only used this feature a couple times as Colten didn't want to recline too far because he felt as though he was going to miss something, lol.


The stroller was the perfect spot to watch the parades. We'd get to our spots early enough to scoot it right up to the curb and he could sit comfortably without anyone having to hold him up, which was nice for us adults who also wanted to use the parade times as a little rest :-)

Oh, and I forgot to mention how easily I was able to get the stroller on and off the buses, monorail, train, and every other mode of transportation we tried. It folded so compactly, I could easily fit it down the aisle of even the older buses which aren't as wide as the newer ones.

I even encountered another family renting from OSR on a bus to Downtown Disney. I asked how they liked the double they were renting, and they quickly told me how pleased they were with it. They said they were initially afraid it would have been too bulky, but they were surprised at how easily it maneuvered through doors and stores.

So, not only was I super-happy with OSR, I met another family who was genuinely glad they rented from OSR as well! Oh, and not to mention, I spoke with several others about the stroller while we were sitting waiting for parades, or parking the stroller. People noticed the rental tag (when the glider board was down) and asked where OSR was, were they in the park? When I replied that they delivered right to our room, they were surprised and said they wished they had known that before renting from the park "especially since it looks so much more comfortable than this one". Turns out I could have used a few extra business cards in my packet to give out.

Well, I didn't mean to get so carried away here, but as I'm sure you know, when you find such an amazing service or product, it's easy to get excited about it. I hope you'll remember them when planning your next trip.

Please feel free to ask any questions you might have. I'm happy to tell you more! And you can always contact Shannon or Justin directly, like I said, they were great!

Orlando Stroller Rentals
Shannon & Justin Tanner

By email:
reservations@orlandostrollerrentals.com

By phone:
1-800-281-0884

By standard mail:
Orlando Stroller Rentals
1420 Celebration Blvd., Ste. 200
Celebration, FL 34747


This post carries a disclosure Level of 1. Please see my disclosure page for more details. I am not in any way affiliated with Orlando Stroller Rentals. I did receive this service at no cost, but I assure you that did not influence my opinion in any way. These opinions are my own, and I will tell you time and time again how pleased I was with the service and the stroller!