vacation with highly sensitive kids

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14 Ways to Avoid Lines at Disney World

Are you wondering how to avoid lines at Disney World?

Disney World is notorious for its crowds, long wait times for rides, and lines for EVERYTHING. The immersive theming, the nostalgia factor, and amazing cast members put Disney on top when it comes to theme parks. And this level of popularity means that crowds continue to flock there. If you’re hoping for a super relaxing and peaceful vacation, Disney World is probably not the first place that comes to mind. 

If you have highly sensitive, sensory sensitive or anxious kids, they are more likely to become overstimulated easily. Rubbing shoulders with strangers, standing in one spot for a long time, hearing conversations all around you, and having to wait during hot weather is a LOT for anyone. 

Imagine how much more difficult it is for someone who experiences all their sensory inputs in a more heightened way.

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Usually the first thing you think of when we talk about waiting in line is… waiting in lines for rides. And yes, I would say the bulk of your time in line at Disney World is probably for rides. But there are loads of other times when you may have to stand in line.

Waiting in Line for Transportation / Security / Tickets

So if you’re staying at a Disney World hotel, it’s possible that you will wait in line for transportation to get to the park. I will say I have very rarely waited in an actual line for Disney’s bus transportation when going from the resort to the park. But for Disney’s Skyliner, the monorail, and the boats, it’s pretty common to wait in line. 

Before you enter a theme park, you will have to wait in line for security. You will walk through a metal detector, and if you have a bag, they may check that as well. Then, you wait in another line to scan your Magic Band or ticket to officially be “in the park”. 

Phew, that’s a lot of waiting already and you haven’t even gotten in line for a ride yet!

Waiting in Lines for Shows / Fireworks / Parades

In addition to the rides, you may have to wait in line for shows. For example, this includes things like Enchanted Tiki Room at Magic Kingdom or Lightning McQueen Racing Academy at Hollywood Studios.

Fireworks and parades also involve waiting as well. No, you’re not really waiting in a line per se, but you may find yourself standing or sitting in one spot for awhile.

Waiting in Lines for Food

If you’re hitting up Woody’s Lunch Box at Hollywood Studios right at noon, be prepared to wait in line! And any of the places that sell Starbucks will have a line out the door, especially in the mornings. Yes, keeping your family nourished and hydrated (or caffeinated, for the adults) may require some waiting in line.

Waiting in Lines for Characters

Meeting your favorite Disney characters can also involve waiting in line. The lines can be even longer when they are pretty rare characters aka only found in one spot or during certain times of the year. 

Waiting in Lines to Buy Merchandise

Another time that you might have to wait in line is when purchasing your favorite merchandise at the various shops throughout Disney World and Disney Springs. 

I hope I haven’t made you anxious with the amount of waiting in line that could happen at Disney World! In my mind, it’s good to know what to expect.


Because if you know what to expect, you can do some good planning and preparation. And that means finding practical ways to avoid lines at Disney World. 

And hopefully by spending less time waiting in line, that can reduce sensory overload for your sensitive kids, and help mitigate those quintessential Disney meltdowns. 


If you’re looking for specific tips on how to avoid lines at Disney World, you are in the right place!

Here you will find 14 ways to avoid lines at Disney World.

Will your highly sensitive child enjoy Tomorrowland speedway? With pink background and image of entrance of Tomorrowland speedway. From moms make it magical dot com.

Tomorrowland Speedway for Your Highly Sensitive Child

Will your highly sensitive child enjoy Disney’s Tomorrowland Speedway?

It’s hard to miss Tomorrowland Speedway once you enter the Tomorrowland section of Disney’s Magic Kingdom. Your highly sensitive child will quickly hear the roar of the engines and the smell of gasoline fumes, once in the near vicinity. 

Basically, you get to drive a small gas-powered car around a 2000-foot race track, with a guide rail that keeps you in your lane. Some kids are really excited for this since it feels like you’re driving a mini race car, while enjoying the sights of Magic Kingdom around you. There is a height minimum of 32” to ride with an adult, and you must be at least 54” tall to ride alone. 

Image of cars driving on Disney's Tomorrowland speedway. Photo from magic guides dot com.
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There seem to be mixed opinions when it comes to this ride—some feel that it’s a classic, timeless Disney ride. Others think it is dated, smelly, and loud. 

Let’s break it down with a “Moms Make it Magical” rating to see whether or not your highly sensitive child will enjoy Tomorrowland Speedway, so that we can minimize those potential meltdowns. 

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Will My Highly Sensitive Child Enjoy Peter Pan’s Flight?

Have you wondered if your highly sensitive child will enjoy their experience on Peter Pan’s Flight? Peter Pan’s Flight is a classic Disney ride, which was an opening day attraction at Walt Disney World on October 1, 1971. It is located in the Fantasyland section of Magic Kingdom, right across from “it’s a small world”. It is a slow-moving ride where you board a “flying pirate ship” over London, and then to Never Land. The pirate ships are suspended from a rail on the ceiling, to simulate the sense of flying. 

Because it is a fairly gentle ride, there is no minimum height requirement. Infants and small toddlers, expectant moms, and older adults (if ambulatory) should be able to ride without a problem. I often see this ride and “it’s a small world” being recommended as some of the best rides at Magic Kingdom for very young children, kids who scare easily, and those who dislike typical thrill rides.

But what about for highly sensitive or sensory sensitive children? Let’s go through some of the attraction details to see whether your highly sensitive child will enjoy Peter Pan’s Flight, or totally hate it and freak out. 

14 Reasons why Disney can be hard for your highly sensitive kids. Photo of Ariel from Little Mermaid section of Art of Animation with two kids running towards it.

Top 14 Reasons Why Disney Can Be Hard for Highly Sensitive Kids

Are your kids easily overwhelmed? Do they get overstimulated quickly? Are they prone to meltdowns when their routines are out of whack? Do sudden noises and big crowds bother them? And… are you planning a trip to Disney World?! 

The most magical place on earth can feel like one of the most overwhelming and overstimulating places to visit, even for those who don’t identify as highly sensitive. It might not seem like the best idea to bring your highly sensitive child to Disney World, but it can be 100% doable once you have a better understanding of why Disney can be hard for them. 

This post may contain affiliate links, which means I’ll receive a commission if you purchase through my links, at no extra cost to you. Please read full disclosure for more information

Here are the top 14 reasons why a Disney vacation can be hard for highly sensitive or sensory sensitive kids: