To Rent or to Bring, that is the Question

The question of whether to rent a stroller or bring your own stroller with you when visiting Walt Disney World has always stymied me, up until last year, when we took our then 2 year old on his first trip.  I did a lot of research, being the planner that I am and compared the pros and cons of renting versus bringing our own with us and our verdict was to bring our own, but let me tell you how I got there.

The first thing to factor in was cost.  Bringing our own was free for us, but Apple Strollers was running a deal that a rental for the length of your vacation was free, you just had to pay the delivery and pick up fee and also an insurance fee, which for the Baby Jogger City Mini, came to $15.  Not a bad price at all to pay to rent what most moms deem one of the best strollers for Disney World.   The second factor was, do we want to drag the stroller through 2 airports and then onto the Magical Express to the hotel or just be able to pick it up when we check into our hotel?  As anyone who travels with kids knows, the less stuff you need to carry through an airport, the better, but in this case, I think bringing your own stroller could be a help, as Orlando airport is quite large and a lot of walking for little legs that are bound to get tired quickly.

City Mini Stroller

City Mini Stroller


After considering all the options, we decided to bring our own stroller.  And in hindsight, it was the right decision for us.  We also had a car seat with us and having a hook on the stroller to clip it onto was a lifesaver in itself.  Our son was comfortable in the stroller and we were able to bring all of our accessories with us, like the parent console, rain cover and the cooler and also know that we had a nice sunshade for the sunny days ahead.  I was also able to label it ahead of time, with a tag that made it easy to find for us, which is a complete must, as there are so many jogging strollers that come through Disney; it’s hard to find yours when they are all lined up nice and neat in front of the Tangled bathrooms.

This is a decision that everyone has to make that will fit well for their family; for us, taking ours was a great decision and one we will make again when we go this Fall.  The convenience of having it to get through the airport with, especially with a sleeping child, and being able to load it up in the airport, were lifesavers for us.  With the broad range of strollers that are now available for rental (and for great prices), the decision to take or bring will always be one that is discussed to make sure that a trip to Disney is as magical as possible.



4 comments for “To Rent or to Bring, that is the Question

  1. Erica
    24 February, 2014 at 8:15 am

    We’ve been to WDW 4 times now with stroller age kids and have brought our own every time. Our decision was to bring our Chicco umbrella stroller instead if the monstrous but comfy 4 wheeled beast we would usually use at home. The umbrella stroller is easier to fold up and haul onto the tram, up stairs and took up way less space in the rental car’s trunk. I think one thing to ease people’s minds is if something goes wrong you can always rent the plastic ones from the park for a day. We did that the night we went to Mickeys Not So Scary Halloween Party. Once our oldest (then 5) got tired she had somewhere to sit. Came in handy when both kids fell asleep during the parade and then the fireworks!

  2. Lauren Fresh
    24 February, 2014 at 9:38 am

    I think another factor to consider is how far your kids can walk! We considered renting inside the parks but decided against it because our children were 1 and 3 at the time we went last year and we would have had to hold/carry them while waiting on our bus, etc. We took our own double Bob with us and my husband has sworn we’ll never go back until they can walk on their own because he hated hauling it on and off the bus. I think it’d be easier to take our own and drive into the parks next year! 🙂

  3. Theresa Leppla
    24 February, 2014 at 9:44 am

    Lauren, that is such a good point too and an important factor! My son was able to walk in short spurts, butcame to realize he was the lucky one in the stroller 🙂 We love our City Mini, although it is not as big as the Bob, so I sympathize with your husband. I agree that sometimes taking your own is easier, especially if you are going to drive, more room to store!

  4. Theresa Leppla
    24 February, 2014 at 9:45 am

    E, renting the stroller is always an option from the Disney Parks, this is true 🙂 I would consider renting one of those once my son got to A’s age and we though he could walk around most of the time, as it seems better suited for older kids, to me.

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