Copious amounts of sunscreen, ice cream dripping down arms, and the shrills of children screaming are what come to mind when we think about amusement parks. But, we’re not sure there’s any other better way to immerse yourself in an experience like that. Attending an amusement park with your kids is no small feat. It requires extensive packing, planning, and coordinating, practically until the moment you leave the park. However, it also provides great memories for both you and your family to look back fondly on.
While amusement parks are primarily for kids’ entertainment, there’s still a handful of practices to abide by to make sure you and your family are doing everything right to ensure a safe and fun-filled day. Read along below to see our top do’s and don’ts when visiting an amusement park.
Be kind and trust employees
Amusement park employees are arguably the backbone of the entire park itself. A simple “thank you,” or genuine acknowledgment to these workers could boost their mood even on the busiest or hottest days. Keep in mind that they’ve been trained for all scenarios, so whatever they say, goes.
Be aware of park resources
Take note of where first-aid is located, in case you or your family needs to stop by. First-aid locations usually can accommodate anything from overheating to headaches, which could occur at any point in the day.
Also make note of disability access programs, as most amusement parks have services that help accommodate you if needed, especially with queue lines or itinerary scheduling. Finally, if anyone in your party has food allergens, it would be beneficial to take note before on what’s best to eat in the park to fit your needs.
This could potentially go without saying, but you never know what you’re going to run into on a day out at the park. After making a checklist beforehand of everything you need to avoid any dips in the day, don’t forget to check (and double-check!) if you have everything you need. I know I wasn’t the only one who hated walking around an amusement park when I was younger with my clothes completely soaked from a ride. It doesn’t hurt to be extra prepared with:
- Bug spray
- Hand sanitizer and wipes
- Bandages and any medications
- Change of clothes and socks
- Water bottles and snacks
Download park apps on your phone
These days, most parks are completely digital, offering a map you can browse on your phone to see where you are in the park and what the wait times are like. You can also order food ahead on your phone, allowing you to see menus easily and walk up to pick up your order at certain stations.
Communicate with your kiddos
As scary as it sounds, you separating from your child could potentially happen at any point of the day. However, there is no need to panic (too much), as employees are intensively trained on how to reunite you and your little one. If this does happen, be sure to “quiz” your child beforehand on basics about you or another adult in your party. This includes your full name and what you are wearing, and (if they’re old enough to remember) your phone number.
Pro tip: Write your phone number down on a piece of paper and stick it in their shoe or pocket!
Have patience and grace
Amusement parks are crowded, noisy, and typically hot, so if you run into a little blip during the day, try to take it in stride and soak up the day as best as you can for all your family to enjoy.
Forget about where you are
Make sure you’re mindful about taking up space or stopping to take photos in certain areas. Try not to crowd in areas like emergency pathways or exits, or in heavy flowing traffic areas. Not only does this benefit you, but it benefits everyone else in the park as well.
Expect employees to watch your kids
Most amusement park employees are not allowed to touch guests in any way or form. Avoid handing your child for them to hold, or asking them to keep an eye on them for an extended period of time. Keep in mind that they have jobs to do and could potentially get in trouble for not following their main task at hand.
Ignore rules and signs
Park rules are set in place with you, the guest, in mind. Going against any rules could potentially ruin the fun for your whole party, and adhering to the rules just makes the day smoother and easier.
Forget your manners
An amusement park is not a lawless land. It’s essential to treat not only the employees but other guests and members of your own family with respect as well. When being the best version of yourself, you never know what kindness you’ll get in return.